How to Find the Right Medical Assistant Training Program near Thornton California
Now that you have made a decision to enter the gratifying field of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Thornton CA, it’s time to select a school that will furnish the appropriate training. But just how do you approach evaluating and comparing schools so that you ultimately enroll in the best one? Many prospective students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are closest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors also. You may decide to take a look at several online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more on that later). The main point is that before you select a college you must carry out your due diligence and compare all relevant qualifications of the schools you are evaluating. And to assist you with that process, we have furnished some questions that you should ask each of the schools on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the role of a medical assistant and the kind of training and credentials that are available.
The Duties of a Medical Assistant
The job of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as demanding. Primarily their duty is to make sure that the Thornton CA clinics, hospitals and other healthcare facilities where they work run efficiently. Depending on the type or size of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for giving direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other health professionals but may also be found working in an office or at the front desk. Some of the potential duties of a medical assistant include:
- Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Weighing and taking patients vital signs
- Taking blood and other tissue and fluid samples
- Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
- Supplying general support during exams and procedures
Even though medical assistants may carry out almost any duty they are qualified to under California law, some elect to specialize in a specific area and attain certification. Two of the choices offered are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) provided by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Training Programs
Unlike most other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to obtain a college degree. However, a number of Thornton CA health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are basically 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and fastest path to becoming a medical assistant is to acquire a certificate or diploma. These programs normally take about one year to complete, a few as little as six to nine months. They are designed to teach the basics of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to obtain an Associate Degree, which are normally 2 year programs available at junior and community colleges as well as vocational and technical schools. They are more expansive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They frequently have a practical element requiring an internship with a local medical practice. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.
Medical Assistant Online Colleges
There are many accredited medical assistant programs available online also. They are a good alternative for those who might not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good solution for students who continue working full time while attaining their degree or certificate. As an extra benefit, some online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies can be reduced also. But remember that any requirements for practical training or internships must still be met, but they can usually be completed in Thornton CA area health care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on campus, then this approach to receiving your education might be the best option for you. Between the online classes and the practical training, everything needed to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.
Certification Options for Medical Assistants
As stated previously, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent choice for those who want to boost their careers. It will not only help in securing a job after graduation, but it may also enhance preliminary salary negotiations. Many potential Thornton CA medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained certification or accredited formal training. One of the most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to take the CMA exam, an applicant must have graduated or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available as well, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we previously mentioned which are offered by the NHA.
Points to Ask Medical Assistant Schools
Before you can start evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to determine which type of credential you would like to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online at home. After those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, some students confine their searches to the schools that are nearest to Thornton CA with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you need to look at when researching schools. To help you with that process, below are some questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are several great reasons to verify that the school you select is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you plan on becoming certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged agencies for accreditation are the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If your school is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, a number of potential Thornton CA employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.
What is the School’s Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges design their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you need to learn which of the certifications the colleges you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then of course you will need to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, learn what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the means to help assess the quality of a school’s program. Obviously programs with lower rates are ones that you will want to avoid.
Which Credentials are Provided? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and obtain entry level training in the fastest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is closer to one year. Or you can choose to earn an Associate Degree and receive a broader education that will require about 2 years to complete in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you choose to pursue, make certain that the schools you are looking at provide the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Available? Many medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with Thornton CA area health care providers. They are a great way to obtain hands-on practical experience and training. They may also help students establish relationships within the Thornton health care community. And as an additional perk, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding that very first job can be a challenging undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are researching provide job placement assistance in the Thornton CA area and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also signifies that it has a wide network of contacts to help place students in positions.
How Big are the Classrooms? Class size may be an indicator of how much individual attention you will get during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to offer greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If possible, try to monitor a couple of classes before enrolling in a college to see what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue to work full-time, it’s imperative that the program you select provides classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Thornton CA, make certain that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online college, but you will also have to schedule all clinical training or internships that may be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Thornton California?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Thornton CA area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Joseph Eric Thornton (born July 2, 1979) is a Canadian professional ice hockey centre and an alternate captain for the San Jose Sharks of the National Hockey League (NHL). He was selected first overall by the Boston Bruins in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft and went on to play seven seasons with the club, three as its captain. During the 2005–06 season, he was traded to the Sharks. Splitting the campaign between the two teams, he received the Art Ross and Hart Memorial Trophies as the league's leading point-scorer and most valuable player, respectively.
Thornton's on-ice vision, strength on the puck, deft passing ability and power forward style of play have led to him becoming one of the league's premier top line centres. Listed at 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, he has received the nickname Jumbo Joe. His nickname also comes from Jumbo the elephant who was killed in St. Thomas, Ontario, where Thornton was born.
Thornton grew up playing minor hockey in his hometown of St. Thomas, Ontario, for the St. Thomas Travelers. He played "AA" hockey for the Travelers and in peewee won an Ontario Minor Hockey Association (OMHA) championship in 1992–93. His Bantam year was the first for the newly created "AAA" Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs organization, and Thornton joined the "AAA" Elgin-Middlesex Chiefs of the Minor Hockey Alliance of Ontario for the 1993–94 season. The creation of this organization led to the St. Thomas Minor Hockey Association to compete at the "A" level. During his bantam year, he appeared in six games for the Junior B St. Thomas Stars of the Ontario Hockey Association (OHA), scoring eight points in six games as a 14-year-old. The following season, Thornton joined the Stars full-time and reeled off 104 points over 50 games as a 15-year-old, and was subsequently drafted second overall in the 1995 OHL Draft to the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds behind Daniel Tkaczuk, who was selected by the Barrie Colts.
Choose the Right Medical Assistant College Thornton CA
It’s essential to begin your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant program that will furnish the proper training. Regardless if you’re planning to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to obtain the appropriate info on available programs prior to making your selection. There are so many colleges offering training these days that you can make a decision based on your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have discussed in this article, make sure that the program you select is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Certified Medical Assistant. But regardless of the type of credential that you intend to earn or if you have decided to attend either an on-campus or online school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have provided so you can evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the right program you can ultimately begin a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Thornton CA.
More Medical Locations in California
Business Results 1 - 10 of 371