Top Medical Assistant Degree Programs Online
Medical assistants perform duties that range from filing records and taking patient histories to assisting doctors during examinations. Many employers prefer job candidates who have completed online medical assistant programs, a medical assistant certificate or a medical assistant associate degree.
Click on the "request info" button next to an accredited school listed below to receive information on specific Medical assisting degrees and programs.
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Medical Assisting Degrees, Online Training and Jobs
For many jobs, medical assistants need only a high school diploma and medical assistant training. However, some employers prefer those who have at least a medical assistant certificate or an Associate Degree in Medical Assisting. Those with a career in medical assisting will find themselves in a secure field as the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates a 31% increase in the number of medical assistants. The median medical assistant's salary was $28,860 in 2010, according to the BLS.
Medical Assistant Job Description
Medical assistants work in a variety of healthcare facilities – hospitals, doctor’s offices, nursing homes and specialist clinics such as those for podiatrists and optometrists. A medical assistant job description usually includes taking patients’ history and vital signs and scheduling appointments. In some cases, they also prepare blood for laboratory tests, give injections and assist physicians with examinations.
Duties of a Medical Assistant
The type of jobs performed by medical assistants are as varied as the facilities they work in. Typical work for a medical assistant might be: administrative medical assistants, who take a patient's information, code records, fill out insurance forms and buy and store equipment and supplies; clinical medical assistants, who handle medical duties such as basic laboratory tests, sterilizing medical equipment, preparing patients for X-rays and drawing blood; specialist medical assistants such as those who work with podiatrists, making castings for feet and developing X-rays.
How to Become a Medical Assistant
A medical assistant can begin their career with a high school diploma and medical assistant training. Medical assistant certification programs, which are offered online and at many community colleges and vocational and technical schools, usually take about one year to complete.
Some medical assistants earn a two-year associate's degree in medical assisting. Some states also require that medical assistants graduate from an accredited program or pass an exam. Medical assistants who work with patients are typically required to have such licensure.