Train for a career as a Medical Assistant

If you're considering a career change, you might want to consider becoming a Medical Assistant. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for Medical Assistants is much greater than average. There are expected to be almost 140,000 new Medical Assistant jobs between now and 2024. This is a hiring growth of 23%, which is much higher than the average for all jobs.

by Rebecca King

Train for a career as a Medical Assistant

If you're considering a career change, you might want to consider becoming a Medical Assistant. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for Medical Assistants is much greater than average. There are expected to be almost 140,000 new Medical Assistant jobs between now and 2024. This is a hiring growth of 23%, which is much higher than the average for all jobs.

What does a Medical Assistant do?

If you enjoy working with people and you're interested in a healthcare career that offers full time employment, becoming a Medical Assistant is a great option.

As a Medical Assistant in a doctor's office, you'll spend time with patients, recording their medical history and personal information. You'll check the patient's vital signs and assist the doctor in patient examinations.

In some states, Medical Assistants give injections or oral medication as directed by a physician.

You might also work with your patients to schedule and plan for follow up appointments.

Some Medical Assistants work in clinical facilities, and the job is a little bit different as a Clinical Medical Assistant.

It varies from state to state, but Clinical Medical Assistants can do basic laboratory tests, and prepare medical equipment and supplies. If you work in this setting, you will spend time teaching patients about their medication or briefing them on dietary restrictions, preparing patients for x-rays and other tests, removing stiches, drawing blood, and changing bandages.

Just as doctors sometimes specialize in specific types of care, Medical Assistants may specialize as well. You might choose to work in an eye doctor's office as an Ophthalmic Medical Assistant, for example.

How to become a Medical Assistant

Requirements to become a Medical Assistant are different from state to state, but most require a diploma or certificate from an accredited program. Some states also require you to pass a state-wide Medical Assistant examination.

Your best bet is to complete a Medical Assistant college training program, which typically takes less than a year. In a college Medical Assistant training class, you'll learn necessary terminology and procedures, the proper way to talk with patients about their care, and skills necessary for working in a medical setting. You'll learn some medical coding, and how to record patient information on paper and electronically.

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