Want to break into the medical field but don’t necessarily have the time or resources to get a full medical degree? You’re in luck, because there are plenty of options available for people in your situation. Medical Assistants are one of the fastest growing professions according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics and will continue to grow for the foreseeable future. In fact, between 2016 and 2026, there is an expected 29% increase in job growth for Medical Assistants, which is much higher than the average across all occupations. In this article, we will break down what it takes to be a Medical Assistant and what roles you might expect to fill at a Medical Assistant job in a variety of work environments.
Education and Training
While a job as a Medical Assistant typically only requires a high school diploma or GED, employers are much more likely to select job applicants who have had hands-on training with real medical equipment. This type of experience can be achieved through an accredited Medical Assistant certification program. Another important part of Medical Assistant career training is the completion of an internship at a medical facility. An internship is a perfect chance to get real work experience and get accustomed to the day-to-day responsibilities of a Medical Assistant.
Medical Assistants have a unique role in the medical field, in that they are required to be versatile and fill a wide variety of roles. Depending on the office and taking into consideration the practice size and the lead practitioners specialty, a Medical Assistant may be called on to do administrative duties, clinical duties, or some combination of the two. Here is a breakdown of just a handful of the duties a Medical Assistant might be required to assist with:
- Assisting physicians during examinations and minor surgeries
- Taking and recording patients’ vital signs
- Communicating with patients, including explaining treatment procedures
- Preparing and administering medications as directed by a physician
- Preparing patients for examination
- Collecting and preparing laboratory specimens
- Performing basic laboratory tests and procedures
- Sterilizing examination rooms and medical instruments
- Performing phlebotomy procedures and EKGs.
- Taking medical histories and updating patient electronic health records (EHR)
- Removing sutures and changing dressings
- General office duties, such as answering phones, greeting patients, updating and filing medical records.
Medical Assistants will be dealing directly with patients and physicians, and are generally expected to handle many responsibilities at any given time. This is why good communication skills and the ability to multitask are essential qualities of a successful Medical Assistant. Medical Assistants have a fast-paced and varied daily schedule, so it is a good fit for candidates looking for a high energy job.
The career of a Medical Assistant is a very rewarding profession for the short period of time it takes to become certified. If you have any interest in getting started in the medical field, consider seeking out Medical Assistant training and be on your way to working in one of the most in demand fields in the country.
Advantage Career Institute Medical & Dental School in Eatontown, New Jersey offers a variety of programs that provide hands-on training in the in-demand medical and dental industries.
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