How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant School Program near Newnan Georgia
Once you have decided to enter the gratifying field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Newnan GA, it’s time to choose a school that will furnish the appropriate training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently enroll in the right one? Most future students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are closest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are critical issues also. You may choose to research some online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more on that later). The main point is that before you select a college you need to complete your due diligence and compare all pertinent qualifications of the schools you are examining. And to help you with that process, we have provided some questions that you need to ask all of the colleges on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the responsibilities of a medical assistant and the kind of training and credentials that are offered.
The Function of Medical Assistants
The responsibilities of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Basically their duty is ensure that the Newnan GA clinics, hospitals and other healthcare centers where they work operate efficiently. Depending on the size or type of facility, they can be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for providing direct support to the physicians, nurses and other health practitioners but can also be found working in an office or at the front desk. A few of the potential duties of a medical assistant include:
- Completing insurance forms and filing claims
- Setting and verifying appointments
- Weighing and taking patients vital signs
- Taking blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
- Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
- Supplying general support during examinations and procedures
Even though medical assistants can perform almost any activity they are authorized to under Georgia law, some prefer 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) offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Training Courses
Compared to many other medical professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become licensed, certified, or to obtain a college degree. However, many Newnan GA health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that are certified. There are essentially 2 options provided for a formal education. The first and quickest route to becoming a medical assistant is to attain a diploma or a certificate. These programs normally take about a year to finish, a few as little as six to nine months. They are created to teach the basics of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to attain an Associate Degree, which are usually 2 year programs offered at community and junior colleges as well as technical and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They frequently have a practical element involving an internship with a local healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.
Online Medical Assistant Courses
There are many accredited medical assistant programs available online too. They are an excellent option for individuals who might not have the time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good choice for students who continue working full-time while earning their certificate or degree. As an added benefit, some online programs have lower tuitions than the more traditional on-campus options. Ancillary costs such as for textbooks, commuting and school supplies might be minimized as well. Just remember that all requirements for clinical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can often be completed in Newnan GA area health care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of getting your training might be the right choice for you. With the online classes and the practical training, everything needed to achieve proficiency to work as a medical assistant is provided.
Certification Options for Medical Assistants
As previously mentioned, certification is not a legal mandate, but is a good choice for those who wish to boost their careers. Not only will it help in securing employment after graduation, but it might also enhance initial salary negotiations. A number of possible Newnan GA medical employers simply will not employ a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. Among the most popular and possibly the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to take the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available as well, for instance the CMAA and the CCMA that we previously mentioned which are offered by the NHA.
Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Prior to reviewing your medical assistant school options, you must decide which kind of credential you would like to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. Once those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, many prospective students confine their searches to the colleges that are closest to Newnan GA with the cheapest tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are a number of additional issues that you must look at when assessing schools. To assist you with that process, following are some questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are several great reasons to verify that the school you select is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged agencies for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your school is not accredited by either of these agencies, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Also, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are often not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, many prospective Newnan GA employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.
What is the Program’s Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. First, 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 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 one of the ways to help assess the quality of a school’s program. Naturally schools with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are essentially two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can select a diploma or certificate program and obtain entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can decide to acquire an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require about two years to complete in a community college or trade school. Whatever program you decide to pursue, make certain that the colleges you are looking at provide the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Provided? Many medical assistant colleges sponsor internship programs with Newnan GA area health care providers. They are an excellent method to obtain hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also help students develop relationships within the Newnan medical community. And as an additional benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.
Is Job Placement Service Furnished? Landing that initial job can be a daunting task for graduating medical assistant students unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the schools you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Newnan GA area and find out what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also indicates that it has a wide network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Large are the Classes? Class size may be an indicator of how much individual attention you will get throughout your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish increased access to teachers and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to sit in on a few classes before enrolling in a program to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue working on a full time basis, it’s essential that the program you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Newnan GA, make sure that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will also need to schedule any internships or clinical training that may be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Newnan Georgia?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Newnan GA area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Newnan is a city in Metro Atlanta and the county seat of Coweta County, Georgia, approximately 40 miles (64 km) southwest of Atlanta. The population was 33,039 at the 2010 census, up from 16,242 in 2000, for a growth rate of 103.4% over that decade.
Newnan was established as county seat of Coweta County (replacing the defunct town of Bullsboro) in 1828 and was named for North Carolinian General Daniel Newnan. It quickly became a prosperous magnet for lawyers, doctors, other professionals, and merchants. Much of Newnan's prosperity was due to its thriving cotton industry, which relied on slavery.
Newnan was largely untouched by the Civil War due to its status as a hospital city (for both Union and Confederate troops), and as a result still features much antebellum architecture . Celebrated architect Kennon Perry designed many of the town's 20th century homes. During the Atlanta Campaign, Confederate cavalry defeated Union forces at the nearby Battle of Brown's Mill.
Choose the Ideal Medical Assistant Course Newnan GA
It’s essential to start your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant program that will furnish the right training. Regardless if you’re goal is to begin a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your life long career, you need to get the right information on available programs before making your decision. There are so many schools providing training nowadays that you can make a selection based on your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have discussed in this article, confirm that the program you select is accredited by a recognized organization, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you plan on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Evening Classes. 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, be sure to ask the questions we have supplied in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the best program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Newnan GA.
More Medical Locations in Georgia
Business Results 1 - 10 of 56