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Medical assistant median annual salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median national annual salary for medical assistants is $38,270. The top 10% of medical assistants earn more than $51,710 annually.

Medical Assistants

National data

Median Salary: $38,270

Projected job growth: 13.9%

10th Percentile: $30,390

25th Percentile: $35,330

75th Percentile: $45,360

90th Percentile: $51,710

Projected job growth: 13.9%

State data

State Median Salary Bottom 10% Top 10%
Alabama $31,800 $25,310 $39,180
Alaska $47,350 $38,580 $59,110
Arizona $38,930 $33,080 $46,450
Arkansas $32,970 $28,380 $39,650
California $44,650 $35,370 $68,670
Colorado $43,240 $36,190 $53,090
Connecticut $43,060 $37,040 $52,860
Delaware $37,890 $29,900 $45,250
District of Columbia $49,110 $40,140 $61,730
Florida $36,930 $30,570 $45,460
Georgia $36,480 $28,790 $46,790
Hawaii $43,750 $35,960 $54,010
Idaho $38,450 $32,170 $46,990
Illinois $39,020 $31,540 $48,530
Indiana $38,770 $31,130 $47,530
Iowa $39,360 $31,820 $48,360
Kansas $36,550 $28,810 $45,920
Kentucky $35,450 $28,010 $43,350
Louisiana $31,150 $22,580 $40,760
Maine $40,750 $35,190 $48,690
Maryland $39,900 $31,750 $48,920
Massachusetts $45,690 $36,510 $59,440
Michigan $36,790 $29,570 $45,060
Minnesota $47,680 $37,380 $55,890
Mississippi $30,930 $23,480 $41,400
Missouri $36,320 $29,670 $45,330
Montana $40,130 $32,220 $49,420
Nebraska $37,740 $30,750 $48,460
Nevada $37,290 $31,240 $48,750
New Hampshire $42,620 $35,650 $49,860
New Jersey $40,380 $32,780 $50,210
New Mexico $36,220 $29,760 $44,990
New York $43,830 $35,360 $54,450
North Carolina $37,660 $30,680 $45,730
North Dakota $38,840 $26,920 $47,850
Ohio $36,900 $29,910 $45,700
Oklahoma $34,320 $28,810 $42,950
Oregon $46,050 $37,370 $57,060
Pennsylvania $37,230 $30,870 $47,030
Rhode Island $39,490 $32,780 $47,340
South Carolina $35,800 $27,950 $44,630
South Dakota $35,230 $28,650 $44,440
Tennessee $35,940 $29,140 $46,600
Texas $36,830 $28,320 $45,880
Utah $37,530 $29,890 $46,180
Vermont $41,160 $36,130 $48,340
Virginia $37,500 $30,280 $50,850
Washington $48,810 $39,120 $61,890
West Virginia $30,850 $26,860 $37,120
Wisconsin $42,190 $34,290 $48,270
Wyoming $37,090 $29,700 $49,870

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2022 median salary; projected job growth through 2032. Actual salaries may vary depending on location, level of education, years of experience, work environment, and other factors. Salaries may differ even more for those who are self-employed or work part time.

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Factors that Affect Salary

Actual salaries for medical assistants can vary based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience, education, and a variety of other factors. Administrative medical assistants’ duties will differ from clinical medical assistants, for instance, though there may be some overlap of responsibilities.

A full-time medical assistant may receive a benefits package that could include healthcare, vacation, holiday pay, sick leave, and a 401(k) plan. According to the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA), approximately 97% of all full-time medical assistants receive benefits from their employer.

Where Medical Assistants Work

Your first thought about where medical assistants work might be doctors’ offices, but many work in other medical settings:

Physicians’ Offices57%
Outpatient Care Centers8%
Chiropractors’ Offices4%

Salary by Workplace

Now, take a look at BLS salaries for those same four workplaces.

WorkplaceAnnual Salary
Doctor’s Offices$39,850
Outpatient Care Centers$46,590
Offices of Other Health Practitioners$35,650

How Can I Earn More as a Medical Assistant?

Racking up years of experience is one way to boost your salary as a medical assistant, but there are also other ways to enhance your ability to earn top dollar:

  • Go where the jobs are
  • If you have a certificate or diploma, earn an associate degree
  • Volunteer to teach and tutor aspiring medical assistants
  • Earn a medical assisting credential 
  • Earn credentials in complementary fields to add to your skills

Consider a New Career

For some, medical assisting is a stepping stone to a higher-paying role. For instance, you could go back to school to become a nurse. Your extensive knowledge and experience working with patients would give you an advantage over students who are just starting out. 

Want to continue as a medical assistant? You can work toward a management position in which you supervise other medical assistants. Job advancement typically adds up to a higher salary.

Job Outlook for Medical Assistants

Jobs for medical assistants are expected to grow by 13.9% through 2032, much faster than the average for all occupations, according to the BLS. This is partly due to the growing baby boom population, which will continue to create demand for medical services. 

New and changing tasks for medical assistants also are pushing up demand for this role. For example, as more and more physicians’ practices switch to electronic health records (EHRs), the need for tech-savvy medical assistants will increase.

Though medical assistants work mostly in primary care—a steadily growing sector of healthcare—an increasing number of group practices, clinics, and other healthcare facilities also will need medical assistants and other support workers.

Many healthcare facilities depend on state budgets and other funding to operate at their best. If a state’s budget doesn’t allot enough money for maximum efficiency, there may be fewer jobs available for medical assistants and other healthcare staff. In other cases, some states may simply have fewer facilities due to the size of their population and its medical needs. 

While job duties are generally the same no matter where you live, some states offer higher salaries and employ more medical assistants than others. Much of the demand for medical assistants is determined by a state’s demographics and how many facilities it has for baby boomers and the elderly, who partly drive these statistics.

Best-Paying Cities for Medical Assistants

The BLS ranks metropolitan areas by salary, and California dominates the top 10 list for medical assistants, along with a few other locations that may surprise you.

Metro Area Median Annual Salary
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA $71,480
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA $62,400
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA $58,630
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA $55,980
Napa, CA $55,460
Santa Rosa, CA $55,020
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA $52,620
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI $48,850
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, OR-WA $47,910
Olympia-Tumwater, WA $47,840

Which Cities Employ the Most Medical Assistants?

If you’re looking for a city that has a high number of medical assistants—and possibly demand and jobs—here are the top 10 metropolitan areas with the most medical assistant jobs. 

Metropolitan Areas Employment
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 41,120
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 36,770
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 17,820
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI 16,820
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 16,600
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 16,050
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, GA 14,720
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 14,500
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ 13,670
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD 12,250

Salary and Job Growth Comparisons

Medical assistants are one specialty within a diverse group of healthcare assistants who work to keep patients healthy. Because of different skill sets and education, salaries for various healthcare assistants vary as well. Here are some median annual salaries from the BLS for four other in-demand healthcare careers, as compared to medical assistants:

Career Median Annual Salary
Medical Assistants $38,270
Nursing Assistants $35,760
Phlebotomists $38,530
Dental Assistants $44,820
Physical Therapist Assistants $62,770

How Does Job Growth Compare?

The BLS projects growth for all jobs to be 5% through 2032, but some roles will be much more in demand. This chart shows how medical assisting compares with healthcare careers that require similar education.

Healthcare PositionProjected Job Growth
Medical Assistant13.9%
Physical Therapy Assistant26.1%
Dental Laboratory Technician-4.5%
Dental Assistant6.9%
Medical Records Specialist8.5%
Pharmacy Technician5.6%
hana larock

Written and reported by:
Hana LaRock
Contributing writer