How to Find the Right Medical Assistant Program near Marble Hill Georgia
Now that you have made a decision to become a part of the rewarding profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Marble Hill GA, it’s time to choose a college that will provide the right training. But just how do you approach comparing and evaluating colleges so that you subsequently pick the ideal one? Many potential students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important issues also. You may decide to research several online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The bottom line is that prior to selecting a program you need to finish your due diligence and compare all important aspects of the schools you are evaluating. And to help you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you need to ask all of the schools on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the function of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are offered.
The Role of a Medical Assistant
The job of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as demanding. Essentially their duty is ensure that the Marble Hill GA clinics, hospitals and other healthcare centers where they work run successfully. Based on the type or size of facility, they can be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are tasked with giving direct assistance to the nurses, doctors and other medical professionals but can also be found performing duties at the front desk or in an office. Some of the many duties of a medical assistant include:
- Filling out insurance forms and filing claims
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Taking vital signs and weighing patients
- Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
- Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
- Giving general support during exams and procedures
While medical assistants may carry out almost any task they are qualified to under Georgia law, some elect to specialize in a particular area and earn certification. Two of the choices available are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) provided by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Courses
Unlike many other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, a number of Marble Hill GA health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are generally 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and shortest way to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a certificate or diploma. These programs generally take about a year to complete, some as little as 6 to 9 months. They are developed 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 two year programs available at community and junior colleges in addition to technical and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They usually have a clinical element involving an internship with a local healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are often a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.
Online Medical Assistant Colleges
There are a number of accredited medical assistant programs offered online as well. They are an excellent alternative for students who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good alternative for students who continue working full-time while earning their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, some online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses such as for commuting, textbooks and school supplies may be lessened as well. But keep in mind that all requirements for clinical training or internships must still be met, but they can typically be carried out in Marble Hill GA area medical facilities. If you can learn without the rigid structure of participating in supervised classes on-campus, then this approach to receiving your training may be the right choice for you. With the online courses and the practical training, everything needed to attain 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 a good choice for those who wish to advance their careers. It will not only help in attaining employment after graduation, but it might also enhance preliminary salary negotiations. Many possible Marble Hill GA medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not received certification or accredited formal training. Among the most popular and possibly the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to apply for the CMA exam, an applicant must be a graduate or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are offered also, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we previously mentioned which are offered by the NHA.
Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges
Prior to examining your medical assistant school options, you need to choose which type of credential you want to attain, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. Once those choices have been made, you can start the process of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many potential students limit their searches to the schools that are nearest to Marble Hill GA with the lowest tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional factors that you need to explore when assessing schools. To assist you with that process, following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many good reasons to make sure that the program you select is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the instruction you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you plan on becoming certified, you need to enroll in an accredited program. Two of the accepted organizations for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your program is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be qualified to take the CMA exam. Also, if you intend on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are normally not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, many potential Marble Hill GA employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.
What is the Program’s Passage Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must determine which of the certifications the schools you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Second, find out what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Naturally schools with low rates are ones that you will prefer to avoid.
Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, however the average is closer to one year. Or you can choose to earn an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require approximately 2 years to complete in a junior college or vocational school. Whichever program you decide to pursue, confirm that the schools you are looking at offer the kind of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Sponsored? Numerous medical assistant colleges sponsor internship programs with Marble Hill GA area medical providers. They are an excellent method to get hands-on practical training and experience. They can also assist students build relationships within the Marble Hill healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Help Furnished? Landing that first job may be a challenging undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they receive some help from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Marble Hill GA area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal instruction you will get during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to offer increased access to teachers and face to face interaction. If possible, try to attend a few classes before enrolling in a college to experience what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue working full-time, it’s imperative that the school you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Marble Hill GA, make sure that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online program, but you will also need to schedule any clinical training or internships that may be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to work, illness or family issues.
Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Marble Hill Georgia?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Marble Hill GA area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Pickens County, Georgia
The Georgia General Assembly passed an act on December 5, 1853 to create Pickens County from portions of Cherokee and Gilmer counties. Pickens received several more land additions from Cherokee (1869) and Gilmer Counties (1858 and 1863); however several sections of Pickens County have also been transferred to other counties: Dawson County (1857), Gordon County (1860), and Cherokee County (1870).
Most of Pickens County's early industry revolved around the marble industry. Georgia Marble Company is located in Marble Hill near Tate. The Tate Elementary school is built out of marble. The marble was also used to make the statue of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial. Most of the marble is white, but there is also very rare pink marble. It is one of the few places in the world where pink marble is found. The marble is also used for tombstones for the United States Military.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 233 square miles (600 km2), of which 232 square miles (600 km2) is land and 0.7 square miles (1.8 km2) (0.3%) is water. The highest point in Pickens County is the 3,288 foot summit of Mount Oglethorpe, the southernmost peak in the Blue Ridge Mountains and, for a number of years, the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail.
Select the Ideal Medical Assistant Training Marble Hill GA
It’s important to begin your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will provide the proper training. Whether you’re planning to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your lifetime career, you must acquire the appropriate information on available programs prior to making your selection. There are so many schools providing training these days that you can make a decision based upon your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have covered in this article, make sure that the program you choose is accredited by a recognized 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 Medical Assistant School Online Accredited. But regardless of the type of credential that you intend to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an on-campus or online school, make sure to ask the questions we have supplied so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the right program you can subsequently start a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Marble Hill GA.
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