How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant Training Program near Burgin Kentucky
Now that you have made a decision to join the gratifying field of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Burgin KY, it’s time to choose a college that will provide the right training. But just how do you undertake evaluating and comparing colleges so that you subsequently pick the best one? Many future students begin by checking out the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then gravitate toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While location and cost are very important, such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are critical factors also. You might want to research several online medical assistant programs as an option also (more on that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you need to complete your due diligence and compare all important aspects of the colleges you are assessing. And to assist you with that process, we have included a few questions that you need to ask each of the colleges on your short list. But before we start that review, let’s talk a little bit about the function of a medical assistant and the kind of credentials and training that are available.
The Function of Medical Assistants
The duties of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Essentially their role is ensure that the Burgin KY hospitals, clinics and other healthcare centers where they work run efficiently. Depending on the type or size of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for giving direct support to the nurses, doctors and other health practitioners but may also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. Some of the possible duties of a medical assistant include:
- Completing insurance forms and submitting claims
- Scheduling and verifying appointments
- Taking vital signs and weighing patients
- Taking blood and other fluid and tissue specimens
- Preparing rooms and instruments for doctors
- Providing general support during examinations and procedures
Even though medical assistants can perform almost any task they are qualified to under Kentucky law, some choose 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) made available by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Training
Compared to many other medical practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to have a college degree. However, many Burgin KY health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that are certified. There are generally 2 options offered for a formal education. The first and shortest route to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a certificate or diploma. These programs generally take about 1 year to finish, some as little as six to nine months. They are developed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and prepare 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 as well as vocational and technical schools. They are more extensive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They usually have a clinical element requiring an internship with a local healthcare facility. 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 similar field.
Online Medical Assistant Colleges
There are many accredited medical assistant programs offered online also. They are a good choice for individuals who might not have the time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good alternative for students who continue to work full time while earning their certificate or degree. As an additional benefit, a number of online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus options. Ancillary expenses such as for textbooks, commuting and school supplies may be minimized also. But keep in mind that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can typically be performed in Burgin KY area health care facilities. If you can learn without the rigid structure of attending supervised classes on campus, then this method of receiving your education may be the right choice for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to work as a medical assistant is provided.
Certification Programs for Medical Assistants
As earlier stated, certification is not a legal requirement, but is an excellent option for those who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in attaining a position after graduation, but it may also help with preliminary salary negotiations. Some potential Burgin KY medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not received accredited formal training or certification. One of 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 apply for the CMA examination, an applicant must be a graduate or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are offered as well, including the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are offered by the NHA.
Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges
Before you can start assessing your medical assistant school options, you have to choose which kind of credential you would like to attain, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online from home. As soon as those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the opening of this article, many prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Burgin KY with the lowest tuition. Although cost and location are significant qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional factors that you must explore when assessing programs. To help you with that process, below are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are thinking about before making your final selection.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are several great reasons to ensure that the school you choose is accredited. To start with, 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 must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged organizations for accreditation are the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If your program is not accredited by either of these agencies, you will not be qualified to take the CMA examination. 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 previously mentioned, many prospective Burgin KY employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the School’s Passage Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges design their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you need to find out which of the certifications the programs you are reviewing are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will want to choose a program targeting 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. Of course schools with lower rates are ones that you will want to avoid.
Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and obtain entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about 1 year. Or you can decide to earn an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will take approximately 2 years to accomplish in a junior college or trade school. Whatever program you decide to pursue, make sure that the colleges you are considering offer the type of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Sponsored? Many medical assistant programs offer internship programs with Burgin KY area medical care providers. They are a great means to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also help students develop relationships within the Burgin health care community. And as an added benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Assistance Furnished? Finding that initial job may be a daunting task for medical assistant school graduates unless they have a little assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the schools you are researching provide job placement assistance in the Burgin KY area and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the healthcare community. It also indicates that it has a large network of contacts to help place students in positions.
How Large are the Classes? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal attention you will receive during your training. Smaller 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 convenient, try to monitor a few classes before enrolling in a program to experience what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students get.
Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant college while you continue working full-time, it’s essential that the college you choose offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Burgin KY, confirm that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online college, but you will still need to schedule all internships or practical training that might 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 Burgin Kentucky?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Burgin KY area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
What is now Burgin was originally known as "Cane Run." In 1874, the Cincinnati Southern Railway obtained a right-of-way from local landowner Temple Burgin and opened Burgin Station. The town was established in 1877 and incorporated in 1878. The post office opened as "Bergen" in 1877 and changed its name to "Burgin" in 1886.
Burgin is located at 37°45′18″N 84°45′56″W / 37.75500°N 84.76556°W / 37.75500; -84.76556 (37.754961, -84.765681). The city is concentrated along Kentucky Route 152 (Main Street), with most of its public buildings lying just west of the highway's intersection with Kentucky Route 33 (Danville Street/Pleasant Hill Drive). Harrodsburg lies to the west of Burgin along KY 152, and Danville lies to the south along KY 33. Burgin is located at the headwaters of Cane Run, which flows eastward into the Dix River.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Burgin has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
Enroll in the Right Medical Assistant Program Burgin KY
It’s essential to begin your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant school that will provide the appropriate training. Regardless if you’re goal is to launch a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to acquire the appropriate information on available programs prior to making your decision. There are so many colleges offering training these days that you can make a selection based on your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have addressed in this article, confirm that the program you choose is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example the CAAHEP. This is especially important if you plan on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Training School. But irrespective 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 in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the best program you can ultimately begin a fulfilling career as a medical assistant in Burgin KY.
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