Category Archives: Tennessee

Medical Assistant Tech Surgoinsville TN

How to Choose a Medical Assistant Program near Surgoinsville Tennessee

Surgoinsville TN medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have decided to enter the rewarding field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Surgoinsville TN, it’s time to select a college that will provide the right training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently enroll in the ideal one? Many future students start by researching the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then gravitate toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important issues also. You may want to look into some online medical assistant programs as an option also (more on that later). The main point is that before you select a program you need to finish your due diligence and compare all relevant qualifications of the colleges you are assessing. And to assist you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you should ask all of the schools on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the role of a medical assistant and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.

The Responsibilities of Medical Assistants

medical assistant with Surgoinsville TN nursing home patientThe function of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as demanding. Essentially their duty is ensure that the Surgoinsville TN clinics, hospitals and other medical care facilities where they work operate successfully. Depending on the type or size of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for providing direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but can also be found performing duties at the front desk or in an office. Some of the possible functions of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Scheduling and verifying appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Taking blood and other fluid and tissue samples
  • Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
  • Supplying general support during examinations and procedures

Although medical assistants may perform almost any activity they are authorized to under Tennessee law, some prefer to specialize in a particular area and earn certification. Two of the options available are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) provided by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).

Medical Assistant Programs

Compared to many other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not required to become licensed, certified, or to have a college degree. However, many Surgoinsville TN health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are essentially two options provided for a formal education. The first and shortest route to becoming a medical assistant is to attain a diploma or a certificate. These programs normally take about 1 year to finish, a few as little as six to nine months. They are created to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to attain an Associate Degree, which are normally two year programs provided at community and junior colleges together with technical and vocational schools. They are more extensive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They frequently have a clinical component involving an internship with a local medical facility. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.

Online Medical Assistant Programs

woman attending medical assistant school online in Surgoinsville TNThere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs available online as well. They are a good choice for those who might not have time to go to classes on campus but could work them in if attended at home. This is an especially good solution for students who continue working full time while attaining their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, some online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Ancillary costs including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies can be reduced also. Just bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be met, but they can typically be performed in Surgoinsville TN area medical care facilities. If you can learn without the rigid structure of participating in supervised classes on-campus, then this approach to receiving your training may be the ideal choice for you. With the online lessons and the clinical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to work as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, certification is not a legal requirement, but is a good choice for individuals who want to boost their careers. Not only will it help in obtaining a position after graduation, but it might also help with initial salary negotiations. A number of potential Surgoinsville TN medical employers just will not employ a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. The most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to apply for the CMA examination, a candidate must be a graduate or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are available also, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we previously mentioned which are offered by the NHA.

Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Surgoinsville TN medical assistant programsPrior to examining your medical assistant school options, you need to determine which type of credential you want to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. As soon as those decisions have been made, you can start the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many potential students confine their searches to the colleges that are closest to Surgoinsville TN with the cheapest tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you should look at when researching programs. To assist you with that task, following are a few questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are thinking about before making your ultimate selection.

Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are a number of good reasons to confirm that the program you enroll in is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved agencies for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your program is not accredited by either of these agencies, you will not be qualified to take the CMA exam. Also, if you intend on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many potential Surgoinsville TN employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the Program’s Passing Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you need to learn which of the certifications the schools you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then of course you will need to enroll in a program concentrating on that certification. Next, learn what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the means to help evaluate the quality of a college’s program. Obviously programs with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.

Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can choose to obtain an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will take approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you elect to enroll in, make sure that the colleges you are considering provide the kind of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Offered? Numerous medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with Surgoinsville TN area healthcare providers. They are a great method to receive hands-on practical experience and training. They can also assist students establish relationships within the Surgoinsville medical community. And as an added benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Service Offered? Getting that initial job may be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are evaluating provide job placement assistance in the Surgoinsville TN area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the healthcare community. It also indicates that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in jobs.

How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indication of how much personal attention you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to offer increased access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before enrolling in a program to observe what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue to work full-time, it’s imperative that the college you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Surgoinsville TN, verify that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online program, but you will still need to schedule any clinical training or internships that will be required. Additionally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Surgoinsville Tennessee?

If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Surgoinsville TN area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.

Surgoinsville, Tennessee

Surgoinsville is a town in Hawkins County, Tennessee, United States. The 2010 census showed a population of 1,801,[1] up from 1,484 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Kingsport–Bristol (TN)–Bristol (VA) Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is a component of the Johnson City–Kingsport–Bristol, TN-VA Combined Statistical Area – commonly known as the "Tri-Cities" region.

Surgoinsville is located just northeast of the geographic center of Hawkins County, on the north side of the Holston River. U.S. Route 11W, a four-lane highway, passes through the northern part of the town, leading northeast 18 miles (29 km) to Kingsport and southwest 10 miles (16 km) to Rogersville, the Hawkins county seat. Tennessee State Route 346 is Surgoinville's Main Street, forming a business loop with US 11W.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Surgoinsville has a total area of 5.6 square miles (14.5 km2), of which 5.6 square miles (14.4 km2) are land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km2), or 0.63%, are water.[1]

Choose the Right Medical Assistant Training Program Surgoinsville TN

Surgoinsville TN medical assistant studentIt’s important to start your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant college that will provide the appropriate training. Whether you’re planning to launch a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to acquire the appropriate information on available programs prior to making your decision. There are such a large number of schools providing training nowadays that you can make a selection based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have discussed in this article, make sure that the program you select is accredited by a recognized agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you intend on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Tech. But regardless of the kind of credential that you intend to earn or if you have decided to attend either an online or on-campus school, make sure to ask the questions we have supplied so you can evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the right program you can subsequently begin a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Surgoinsville TN.

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