A career as a medical assistant starts with you sending that first email to an admissions counselor at an accredited school. If you’ve dreamed of working as a healthcare professional in a role that helps others, there is no time like the present to begin making that dream a reality.
As an in-demand occupation, medical assisting has many opportunities for those interested in the medical field and the expansive scope of healthcare.
Medical assisting requires technology savvy as well, which is good for those who are interested in technology as a whole. Consider your desire to work with software and specialized medical devices on a daily basis. If you’re comfortable with the idea of relying on electronic tools in your job, medical assisting may be the right choice for you. You’ll have the opportunity to work with needles, nebulizers, scope sets, and spirometers, among other tools. As for computers, you’ll need to master email, medical and office suite software.
If you’re considering becoming a medical assistant, make sure that your income will match your needs and lifestyle. Because medical assistants can work in a variety of health centers, salary may differ between industries. According the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for medical assistants in 2016 was $31,540. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $22,870, while the highest 10 percent earned more than $45,310.
From 2016 to 2026, medical assistant employment is projected to grow 29 percent, which is much higher than the national average. As the baby boomer population ages, there will be an increased demand for preventive medical care. As a result, doctors will expand their practices to hire more medical assistants to handle administrative and clinical duties, which will allow care centers to see more patients.
Additionally, as healthcare facilities, clinics and practices grow, they need more support for administrative and clinical duties. Because medical assistants mostly work in primary care, a growing healthcare sector, their job outlook is very positive. This is supplemented by the increased access to health insurance, which means more medical care and need for medical support.
You can also boost your job eligibility and pay by having specialized skills that other medical assistants may not have. Those who earn certification and have familiarity with electronic health records (EHRs) will be more likely to find a job. Being familiar with MEDITECH software, a fully web-based mobile EHR, is a great way to add to your skill set, as it is a hot new technology used by many healthcare locations.
If you think your personality, career aspirations and educational goals are in line with that of medical assistants, start your career path by deciding between a certificate or the associate’s degree. Remember that, though a certificate program is quicker, you will not have as much access to other courses and educational opportunities during your program as you would with an associate’s degree. Also make sure to check that your school is accredited so you can sit for the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam.
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