A medical assistant is a crucial part of a doctor’s office; they handle most of the front end of the clinic and also assist with in-office procedures. Without a medical assistant, many offices would not be capable of running – as doctors are busy seeing patients and do not have the time to take care of administrative tasks.
Getting a medical assistant education can be completed at many community college and online programs. In as little as a year, you can begin a program and graduate as a certified medical assistant (CMA). This diploma program is popular with recent graduates and those looking to upgrade their career to become part of an office environment.
As a CMA, you will learn to become familiar with computer systems that are used in an office environment. Patients phoning to book an appointment will have to be entered into a database program. A CMA must be proficient with the database program to enter new patient information into the program, update contact information, as well as booking future appointments. Often, training will be completed on these general types of programs in CMA training programs and experience with these programs will help the graduate when they are trying to find jobs.
Other office duties that are important for a CMA are taking patient information once they have entered the office and charting notes such as height, weight or the reason for the visit at that time. A CMA will chart this information, so it is able to save time for the doctor to complete the exam, talk with the patient and prescribe medication or create an appointment with a specialist. Often, these tasks can save valuable minutes when the doctor sees the patient. Be sure to note whether the doctor prefers the measurements in pounds, or kilograms and inches or centimeters.
Being able to assist with other procedures is essential when preparing for a CMA career. Often, these procedures include assisting with yearly physicals, or completing eye tests within the office for medicals. Along with these procedures, medical instruments must be cleaned and sanitized within the office to ensure that the patients are protected when procedures such as stitching, or stitch removal within the office. Highly specialized sanitizing tools are used to sanitize these instruments. Steam is used to clean the instruments and sanitize them so they are safe for use with another patient.
Medical terminology is an essential part of preparing. The terminology used will allow you to converse with specialist offices when booking appointments for the patients, or to understand laboratory results when they have arrived in the office. This way, you can determine whether lab results are critical and must be attended to immediately.
The first step to getting a job as a CMA is applying for a Medical Assistants Degree The medical assistant program will not only open the door to many CMA jobs, but also allow the student to increase their medical knowledge and gain valuable contacts within the medical industry.
Learn how to get a job as a medical assistants with a Medical Assistants Degree