How to Select a Medical Assistant School Program near Baileyville Kansas
Once you have decided to join the rewarding field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Baileyville KS, it’s time to choose a college that will provide the appropriate training. But just how do you undertake evaluating and comparing colleges so that you ultimately pick the best one? A number of prospective students begin by checking out the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are critical factors as well. You might want to research several online medical assistant programs as an alternative as well (more about that later). The bottom line is that prior to selecting a college you need to carry out your due diligence and compare all relevant qualifications of the colleges you are assessing. And to assist you with that process, we have furnished a few questions that you need to ask all of the colleges on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the role of a medical assistant and the kind of credentials and training that are available.
The Duties of a Medical Assistant
The function of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Primarily their function is ensure that the Baileyville KS clinics, hospitals and other healthcare centers where they work run successfully. Based 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 tasked with providing direct support to the nurses, doctors and other health professionals but may also be found working in an office or at the front desk. A few of the possible responsibilities of a medical assistant include:
- Completing insurance forms and filing claims
- Scheduling and verifying appointments
- Weighing and taking patients vital signs
- Collecting blood and other fluid and tissue samples
- Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
- Giving basic support during examinations and procedures
While medical assistants may carry out almost any task they are qualified to under Kansas law, some opt to specialize in a particular area and obtain 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 Courses
Unlike most other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to obtain a college degree. However, many Baileyville KS health care employers would rather hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are essentially two choices offered for a formal education. The first and quickest route to becoming a medical assistant is to acquire a diploma or a certificate. These programs usually take about a year to finish, a few as little as 6 to 9 months. They are designed to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to attain an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs available at community and junior colleges in addition to vocational and technical schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They frequently have a clinical element requiring an internship with a local medical facility. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.
Online Medical Assistant Programs
There are many accredited medical assistant programs accessible online as well. They are an excellent alternative for those who may not have time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good choice for students who continue to work full time while earning their certificate or degree. As an added benefit, many online schools have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies may be reduced also. But bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can typically be carried out in Baileyville KS area healthcare facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of attending supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of receiving your education may be the right option for you. Between the online courses and the clinical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.
Certification Options for Medical Assistants
As stated previously, certification is not a legal mandate, but is a good option for graduates who want to boost their careers. It will not only help in obtaining employment after graduation, but it may also enhance initial salary negotiations. Many potential Baileyville KS medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not obtained certification or accredited formal training. The most popular and arguably the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to sit for the CMA exam, a candidate must be a graduate or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are available as well, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we previously mentioned which are offered by the NHA.
Points to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Prior to reviewing your medical assistant school options, you must determine which kind of credential you would like to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. As soon as those decisions have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, a number of prospective students confine their searches to the schools that are nearest to Baileyville KS with the cheapest tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional issues that you should examine when evaluating schools. To help you with that process, below are a few questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are thinking about before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are several great reasons to ensure that the school you select is accredited. First, accreditation helps ensure that the instruction you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you need to complete an accredited program. Two of the approved 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 eligible to take the CMA exam. Also, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, a number of potential Baileyville KS employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the School’s Passing Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you need to determine which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will want to select a program concentrating on that certification. Next, find out what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Obviously schools with low rates are ones that you will want to eliminate.
Which Programs are Provided? As we previously covered, there are generally two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can select a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, however the average is about one year. Or you can choose to earn an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will take approximately two years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you elect to enroll in, make sure that the schools you are considering provide the type of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Offered? Many medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Baileyville KS area healthcare providers. They are a great way to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also help students establish relationships within the Baileyville health care community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Supplied? Finding that very first job can be a challenging undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they obtain a little assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in the Baileyville KS area and ask what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher 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 broad network of employers to help place students in positions.
How Large are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much personal attention you will get during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to provide greater access to instructors and one-on-one interaction. If convenient, try to sit in on a few classes before selecting a program to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work full-time, it’s essential that the school you select offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Baileyville KS, make certain that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will also need to schedule all internships or practical training that might be required. Additionally, find out 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 Baileyville Kansas?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Baileyville KS area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
The community was founded as Haytown, then renamed by Willis J. Bailey and his father to Baileyville. In 1903, Willis became the 16th Governor of Kansas Willis J. Bailey. The first post office in Baileyville was established in 1880.
Enroll in the Ideal Medical Assistant Training Baileyville KS
It’s important to begin your new career on the right foot by picking a medical assistant college that will provide the appropriate training. Regardless if you’re objective is to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your life long career, you need to obtain the right info on available programs before making your selection. There are so many colleges offering training nowadays that you can make a selection based upon 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 especially critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in National Medical Assistant. But irrespective of the kind of credential that you intend to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an on-campus or online school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have provided so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the ideal program you can ultimately begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Baileyville KS.
More Medical Locations in Kansas