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Online Medical Assistant Degrees

Online medical assistant degrees are designed for students who are juggling many responsibilities.

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Home » Medical Assisting » Online Programs

Are Online Programs Different?

From working parents to career changers, an online medical assistant degree can properly prepare you for a role working alongside other medical professionals.

You’ll be immersed in the same curriculum as an on-campus student. The benefit to an online program? Many are self-paced which means you can study when it’s convenient for you.

If you’ve never enrolled in an online class before, don’t be intimidated. An online medical assistant degree program is designed to be intuitive and easy-to-use. You’ll simply log on and have access to lessons, readings and assignments.

You’ll also have the opportunity to interact with other students and receive support from faculty members.

Your degree or certificate won’t list the fact that it was earned online. Potential employers for this in-demand skill are mostly concerned about your mastery of the material—not the delivery method.

Online Medical Assistant Programs

Your medical assistant training program should prepare you for a variety of tasks in a hospital, clinic or private medical practice environment. Your job duties will range from taking vital signs to scheduling patient appointments, so you’ll need medical assistant training that covers a spectrum of administrative tasks as well as patient care procedures, and if you want to later specialize there are certification courses online to help you focus on your area of interest.

You’ll also get plenty of real-world practice during your externship in a hospital or doctor’s office.

Types of Medical Assistant Programs

As an online student, you can do your homework at the times that work best for you—early in the morning while the house is asleep, waiting for the kids’ soccer practice to end, or in the evenings when they’ve gone to bed.

Most online programs partner with local healthcare facilities. That’s where you’ll complete your clinical requirements, getting hands-on practice in skills such as measuring blood pressure, performing basic lab tasks and using a microscope. You may even get to examine X-rays. All the while, you’ll be learning the ropes of a medical office, record keeping to insurance processing.

But before you enroll in any medical assisting program, make sure it’s accredited. This third-party stamp of approval signals that the course provider meets important criteria for quality and rigor.

A Note About Accreditation:

Federal financial aid is only available to students enrolled in accredited programs.

What Online Coursework Looks Like

Online programs share the same aim as their traditional brick and mortar counterparts: to ready you to take on vital clinical and administrative tasks in a hospital, clinic or other healthcare setting. Too, you can take online coursework while you continue to work, which can help you when it comes time to advance in your career or negotiate a salary adjustment.

Medical assistant courses generally include curriculum in the following:

  • Patient Care–A medical assistant is often the first person a patient sees in a clinical setting. This course covers the basics of delivering care: recording vital signs, charting, recordkeeping, and a basic physical exam.
  • Intercultural Communications–Get a handle on basic psychology as it relates to healthcare, and recognize the various cultural perspectives on illness, stress and caregiving.
  • Clinical and Diagnostic Procedures–Learn how to administer an electrocardiogram, from positioning the patient to placing the leads that measure heart rate. You’ll study the cardiac cycle and learn how to recognize and interpret emergency conditions.
  • Anatomy & Physiology–Learn the ins and outs of the human body as you gain fluency in the language of anatomy. This course also covers diseases and related tests for the body systems you’ll learn to name.
  • Front Office 101–From medical scheduling to records maintenance to computer basics, explore the systems and procedures that keep an office humming.
  • Sterile Techniques–After successfully completing this course, you’ll be equipped to assist a physician with a minor surgery. Learn about sterile principles and procedure, surgical instruments and patient preparation and follow-up
  • Intro to Medical Billing and Insurance Coding–Learn to navigate medical insurance coding to successfully decipher and submit claims. The course should provide an overview of all types of medical insurance, from Health Management Organizations to Medicare and Medicaid.
  • Medical Law and Ethics–Get familiar with legal terms and concepts in a healthcare setting. The coursework will cover confidentiality, risk management, medical records, documentation and more.
  • Medication Administration–How do you calculate medication dosages and deliver them correctly to a patient? This course covers all factors, including drug labels, the six rights of drug administration, and hands-on practice in giving oral meds, injections and more.
  • Pharmacology–Explore the principles of this discipline, including the origin, properties, uses and effects of drugs. You’ll also learn about regulations and legal classifications, plus the proper storage and handling of medications.
  • Disease and Pathology for Medical Assistants–Review terminology and anatomical structures, and learn about the most common diseases and disorders of various body systems.
  • Phlebotomy for Medical Assistants–Learn the theory and practice of blood collection, including the anatomy and physiology of the cardiovascular system. You’ll also practice patient interaction, finding a proper site, and the selection of various methods of blood collection.

Accreditation for Online Programs

Online or on-campus, there’s one important component to look for in a medical assisting school: Accreditation.

Before enrolling in a degree or certificate program, be sure the education you receive abides by the policies and standards of one of the following accreditation organizations:

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