As a people person who is cooperative, sympathetic and committed to helping others, why not put those admirable traits to work?
By enrolling in an online medical assistant program you’ll have the opportunity to do just that—plus you’ll be embarking on a career that anticipates a 23 percent growth rate through 2024. That’s much faster than average for all occupations according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2016-17 Occupational Outlook Handbook. National long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.
Better yet, earning your medical assistant certification online or a two-year associate’s degree online will allow you to keep working in your current career and meet any family obligations you may have.
About Medical Assisting
Medical assistant are as vital to the health care industry as the vital signs you’ll monitor on the job. You’ll often be the first contact a patient has in a doctor’s office or hospital, so you’ll be a crucial asset to your medical team because it’ll be up to you to make a good first impression.
In your job as a medical assistant you'll perform the following tasks:
- Build relationships with patients
- Update patient medical records
- Schedule appointments
- Perform routine medical procedures, such as lab tests
Online Medical Assistant Program Options
Because you may have existing responsibilities, an online program is a great choice because you’ll be able to study on your own schedule. The good news is medical assisting programs only take between nine months and two years to complete, depending upon whether you want to earn a medical assistant certification or an associate’s degree.
|Online Degree Program||Time to Completion||Average Tuition*|
|Certificate||9 months – 18 months average||$2,860 – $6,120|
|Associate's degree||2 years||$6,428|
As you do your school research, make sure you choose a school that is accredited by one of the two agencies (or one of the six regional agencies) that specifically accredit medical assisting schools:
- Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)
- Accreditation Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES)
You’ll need to graduate from an accredited program for a couple of very important reasons:
- Employers often prefer to hire graduates from accredited over non-accredited programs
- You’ll need to graduate from an accredited program if you plan on becoming certified later
Though there is no law that you must attain certification after graduation, 90 percent of medical assistants choose to become certified. This gives you another advantage when looking for a job, and may offer more responsibilities, as well as earning a higher salary.
Salaries for Graduates
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2016-17 Occupational Outlook Handbook, the median national annual salary for medical assistants is 29,960. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors.
If the thought of using your people skills every day in the work place sound like a dream come true, why not start researching top online medical assistant programs and get started on your future today?
*Based on in-state tuition from accredited public schools.
Source: College Board's Trends in College Pricing 2013, collegeboard.org