If you are interested in working with medical patients in a variety of settings, a career as a medical assistant might be right for you. At MTI College, our medical assistant diploma program can be completed quickly, allowing you to start a rewarding job as soon as possible. If you are interested in a stable and meaningful job, there are many reasons you should consider medical assisting as your career choice. These are some of the most compelling.
1. Earn Your License in a Short Period of Time
A diploma in medical assisting can be completed in less than a year, putting you into your rewarding new job faster than most other educational paths. The experienced instructors at MTI College will provide you with the educational foundation you need to succeed in the field, and some of the coursework you will be required to complete includes:
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medical Terminology
- Medical Protocols and Procedures
- Infection Control
Once you have fulfilled your coursework requirements, you will complete a 160-hour externship at an off-campus facility. Additionally, MTI offers a phlebotomy certification program that can be taken in conjunction with the medical assistant program – which can help expand your healthcare employment opportunities. The experience that you earn in this real-life medical setting will be incredibly valuable to your education, future success as a medical assistant, and completion of the certification exam.
California Certified Medical Assistant (CCMA) exam
The medical assisting program at MTI College has an endorsement from the American Medical Technologists Association and the National Center for Competency Testing. It is designed to prepare you for the California Certified Medical Assistant (CCMA) exam and consists of three portions:
- Basic Exam: includes 175 multiple-choice questions to be completed in two hours.
- Administrative Exam: includes 100 multiple-choice questions to be completed in one hour.
- Clinical Exam: includes 125 questions to be completed in one hour.
For those medical assistant students wanting to pursue the CCMA exam, it can be taken at the Learning Resource Center on campus. Many of our students pass it within a year of beginning their diploma program.
After you complete your program at MTI, our job placement assistance program will even help you find a position. Our expert staff will connect you with the resources you need to get your first post-college job, and we also provide resume writing and job interview assistance to help you find your first medical assisting job in the Sacramento area.
2. Job Security
With rising unemployment rates and an uncertain economic future in the United States, job security is an important asset for any position. By pursuing a career as a medical assistant, you will have just that. Healthcare is a growing industry, and with an aging baby boomer population, the need for highly qualified support will only continue to grow.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistants can feel confident in their job outlook through at least 2024. Employment is projected to grow 28% from 2014 to 2024, a much faster rate than average for all U.S. occupations, which are expected to grow at 7%. Likewise, other healthcare support occupations are projected to see a 19% increase throughout the same time frame.
3. Interesting Duties and Responsibilities
Medical assistants work alongside doctors and nurses, and they are cross-trained to perform both clinical and administrative duties. Some of your clinical responsibilities as a medical assistant may include:
- Taking medical histories
- Preparing patients for exams
- Collecting lab specimens and blood draws
- Explaining medical treatment procedures to patients
- Preparing medications and other treatments, as directed by a physician
- Changing dressings and removing sutures
Likewise, the American Association of Medical Assistants outlines many administrative duties for which you may be responsible:
- Answering phones and scheduling appointments
- Greeting patients as they arrive at the medical facility
- Filing and updating patient medical records
- Completing and coding insurance forms
- Bookkeeping, billing, and other correspondence duties
With so many different responsibilities throughout your day, you will never be bored with a career in medical assisting. Whether you are putting notes into the computer system or helping a nervous patient feel comfortable before a medical procedure, no two days at your job will ever be exactly the same.
4. A Variety of Occupational Settings
The field of medical assisting is incredibly versatile, and once you receive your certification, you will have a variety of occupational settings from which you can choose. Whether you want to work in a fast-paced urban hospital or would prefer the slower style of a small clinic, there will be a setting out there to fit your needs. Some of the most common occupational settings for medical assistants include:
- Primary care facilities and clinics
- Specialty care centers
- Mental health facilities
- Medical laboratories
- Chiropractic offices
- Retirement communities
- Long-term care facilities or nursing homes
- Home care and hospice programs
Where there are doctors and nurses, there will also be a need for medical assistants and other support staff. You may also have the opportunity to specialize in an area of interest throughout your career, such as pediatric or geriatric care. The possibilities are endless.
5. Flexible Scheduling
For some people, a regular 9-5 job is an ideal schedule. While there are certainly medical assisting jobs that can accommodate these schedules – especially clinics and primary care facilities – these are not the only schedules that medical assistants can work. Medical assisting is one of the few professions within the medical community that will offer flexible hours, allowing you to work around your family, school, hobbies, and any other obligations that might be a part of your life.
Likewise, medical assistants are not even required to work on location all the time. Some medical assistants choose to work from home or to travel to provide in-home care services. Other large medical systems may offer multiple locations, and medical assistants may have the option to work at different facilities. The flexibility and variety not only improve job satisfaction, but they can also provide you with some valuable experience that will benefit you as you continue your career.
6. Advanced Certifications
Medical assisting serves as a good starting point for careers in the medical field. While advancements are available within the field itself, you can also go on to pursue specialty licenses or certifications that may increase your employment possibilities. Other medical assistants are inspired to pursue higher education in either an administrative or clinical capacity, such as pursuing a phlebotomy certification. A phlebotomy certification will enhance your medical assistant diploma, making you more marketable within the industry. MTI offers a phlebotomy certification program that can be taken alongside our medical assistant program, enabling students to look for positions in either the medical assisting or phlebotomy field.
With a career in medical assisting, you will never feel “stuck.” The possibilities of moving on to bigger and better things are numerous.
7. A Rewarding and Fulfilling Career
Working within the healthcare industry will allow you to interact with a variety of patients. From those having a simple physical exam to those who are critically ill, you will be one of the first personal connections that patients make at a healthcare facility. You will actively make a difference in the lives of each patient that you encounter, from the newest babies to seniors living out their golden years.
Unfortunately, meaningful work is not the norm for many people. According to a report by the State of the American Workplace, only about 32% of the U.S. workforce stated that they were engaged in their work – in other words, they felt passionate about their work and strongly committed to their jobs. With a career like medical assisting, where you are helping people on a daily basis, you can feel confident that you are situated among that 32%.
So, what are the benefits of choosing a fulfilling career? There are many from which to choose, including those outlined in a 2010 study in Research in Organizational Behavior. These include individual performance, decreased absenteeism, and career development, but others you can expect include:
- Improved professional and personal relationships
- Increased self-esteem and confidence
- Serve as a good role model for your children
- Improved view of the future
If you have always dreamed of a career in the medical field, what are you waiting for? Contact an admissions representative at MTI College today, and get started on your journey to your new life.