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Medical Assistant Schools and Training Programs

Medical assistants work with physicians, chiropractors, and other health-care professionals, assisting them with clinical and administrative duties. While they may have received some training in medical procedures, they do not diagnose illness or prescribe treatments.

Medical Assistant Careers

About 62 percent of medical assistants worked in physicians’ offices in 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov); 13 percent worked in public and private hospitals, including inpatient and outpatient facilities; and 11 percent worked in offices of other health practitioners, such as chiropractors and optometrists. Most of the remainder worked in other healthcare industries, such as outpatient care centers and nursing and residential care facilities. Most medical assistants work a standard 40-hour week, although there are some part-time positions available.

Types of Medical Assistants

Administrative medical assistants update and file patients' medical records, fill out insurance forms, and arrange for hospital admissions and laboratory services. Like administrative assistants in non-medical settings, they also answer telephones, schedule appointments and handle billing and bookkeeping.

Clinical medical assistants are regulated by state law, so their duties may vary. However, those duties may include taking medical histories, recording vital signs, preparing patients for examinations and assisting physicians during examinations. They may also collect and prepare laboratory specimens, and even perform basic lab tests. Clinical medical assistants also might be responsible for purchasing and maintaining examination room supplies and equipment.

Certain physicians require specialized medical assistants. Eye doctors use ophthalmic medical assistants to conduct vision tests, apply dressings and teach patients to use contact lenses. Podiatric medical assistants take x-rays, make foot castings and assist podiatrists in surgery.

Medical Assistant Employment and Advancement Opportunities

Because of the aging of the population and advancements in medical technology, medical assisting has become one of the fastest growing occupations. The bls.gov projects 34 percent employment growth between 2008 and 2018, which is much faster than average.

Driving this job growth is the increasing prevalence of conditions such as obesity and diabetes, putting a greater burden on physicians and the healthcare system in general. In addition, the industry has seen a rise in group practices, clinics, and other healthcare facilities that need a high proportion of support personnel, particularly medical assistants who can handle both administrative and clinical duties.

Earnings and Advancement Potential

As with almost any career, earnings of medical assistants vary based on location and job experience. The average annual wage of a medical assistant was $29,760 in 2010, according to the bls.gov. Earnings tend to be highest in physicians’ offices and clinics.

Experienced medical assistants may advance their careers to office management or support positions. Medical assisting, combined with additional training, can also lead to other healthcare careers, such as medical technology or nursing.

Additional Information for Individuals Searching for a Medical Assistant School
Medical Assistant Career Information
Medical Office Administration Training Schools

Additional Resources for Medical Assistant Degree Prospects
American Association of Medical Assistants
American Society of Podiatric Medical Assistant

Campus and Online Medical Assistant Schools

 
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Platt College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Assisting
  • Certified Nurse Assistant
  • Veterinary Technology Alternate Route - Certificate
  • More
Quick Summary: Turn your talents into a career at nationally recognized and accredited Platt College.

American Career College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Dental Assisting
  • More
Quick Summary:

American Career College (ACC) offers hands-on training that will prepare students for careers in the healthcare industry at three campuses in Los Angeles, Ontario, and Orange County, California.


National Career College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant
  • Dental Assistant
  • Medical Billing and Coding
  • More
Quick Summary: Choosing a school and a new career path can be a very overwhelming process.

Brightwood College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant
  • Healthcare Assistant
  • Medical Office Specialist
  • More
Quick Summary:

About Brightwood College

Brightwood College offers accelerated programs that combine flexible schedules and professional instruction to create a rewarding learning experience for individuals focused on gaining the skills for specific careers. Brightwood College is owned and operated by Education Corporation of America.


California College San Diego

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Specialties (AOS)
  • Respiratory Therapy (AS)
Quick Summary:

The Secret to Getting Ahead is Getting Started


San Joaquin Valley College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Certificate - Medical Assistant
  • Degree - Medical Assistant
  • Certificate - Dental Assistant
  • More
Quick Summary:

San Joaquin Valley College - A Private Junior College.


Mayfield College

[Campus]
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Billing and Coding
Quick Summary: Give your career a boost with an education from Mayfield College.

Keiser University

[Online]
Programs:
  • Associate of Science in Medical Assisting Science
  • Bachelor of Science in Health Science
  • Associate of Science in Medical Administrative Billing and Coding
Quick Summary:

Since 1977, Keiser University has provided quality student-centered, career-focused education.


North-West College

[Campus]
Locations:
  • Santa Ana
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Insurance Biller
  • Online Billing & Coding
Quick Summary:

Milan Institute

[Campus]
Locations:
  • Merced
Programs:
  • Medical Assisting
  • Administrative Medical Assistant
  • Dental Assistant
Quick Summary: Prepare for an exciting new career at the Milan Institute.

Southern California Health Institute

[Campus]
Locations:
  • Reseda
Programs:
  • Medical Assistant Program
  • Physical Therapy Aide/Sports Rehab Program
  • Medical Billing and Coding Specialist Program
Quick Summary: Since 1996, Southern California Health Institute has been dedicated and committed to helping students achieve their dreams by providing an exceptional education that enables them to become skilled and successful manual therapists.

Intercoast Colleges

[Campus]
Locations:
  • Fairfield
Programs:
  • Administrative Medical Assistant
Quick Summary: Get your career started with Intercoast Colleges.

Ultimate Medical Academy Online

[Online]
Programs:
  • Diploma - Medical Administrative Assistant
  • A.S. - Medical Billing & Coding
  • Diploma - Medical Billing & Coding
  • More
Quick Summary:

Get personalized attention with UMA.

One-on-one tutoring, pre-interview coaching, job search assistance, alumni services-they’re all included in Ultimate Medical Academy’s competitively priced tuition. As a nationally accredited school, we provide quality career training online and at our campus in Clearwater, Florida.


Grand Canyon University

[Campus]
Locations:
  • Phoenix
Programs:
  • M.B.A.: Health Systems Management
  • B.S. in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
Quick Summary: Which career path will you take – Business, Nursing, Education, Psychology? Something else? GCU offers more than 100 majors to get you started!

Capella University

[Online]
Programs:
  • MHA - Health Administration
  • BS - Health Care Administration Leadership
  • BS - Health Care Management (ACBSP-accredited)
  • More
Quick Summary: The world of health care is changing rapidly - will you stay ahead? Explore degree options at Capella University.

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