Medical Assistant Certification Requirements Canton ME

How to Pick a Medical Assistant Training Program near Canton Maine

Canton ME medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have decided to become a part of the rewarding field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Canton ME, it’s time to select a college that will provide the right training. But just how do you go about comparing and evaluating colleges so that you subsequently pick the best one? A number of prospective students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then gravitate toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors as well. You may want to take a look at several online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more on that later). The bottom line is that before you select a college you need to complete your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the colleges you are reviewing. And to assist you with that process, we have furnished some questions that you need to ask all of the colleges on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the role of a medical assistant and the type of credentials and training that are available.

The Function of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Canton ME nursing home patientThe function of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Basically their function is ensure that the Canton ME clinics, hospitals and other medical care facilities where they work operate successfully. 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 tasked with giving direct support to the physicians, nurses and other medical professionals but may also be found performing duties at the front desk or in an office. Some of the possible duties of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Setting and verifying appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid samples
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for doctors
  • Giving general support during examinations and procedures

While medical assistants can carry out almost any duty they are authorized to under Maine law, some prefer to specialize in a specific area and earn certification. Two of the choices available 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 Programs

In contrast to many other medical professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become licensed, certified, or to earn a college degree. However, many Canton ME health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are essentially two choices available for a formal education. The first and fastest route to becoming a medical assistant is to earn 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 developed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to earn an Associate Degree, which are normally two year programs offered at community and junior colleges together with vocational and technical schools. They are more expansive in design 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 facility. Associate Degrees are commonly 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

woman attending medical assistant school online in Canton METhere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs accessible online as well. They are an excellent choice for students who might not have time to attend classes on campus but could work them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good choice for students who continue to work full-time while earning their degree or certificate. As an added benefit, a number of online schools have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus options. Supplemental costs including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies might be lessened also. Just remember that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can often be carried out in Canton ME area healthcare facilities. If you can learn without the rigid structure of attending supervised classes on campus, then this approach to getting your education may be the ideal choice for you. Between the online lessons and the practical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, certification is not a legal requirement, but is an excellent choice for individuals who wish to boost their careers. It will not only help in obtaining employment after graduation, but it may also help with initial salary negotiations. Many potential Canton ME medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained certification or accredited formal training. 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 sit for the CMA examination, a candidate must be a graduate or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are offered as well, for instance the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

What to Ask Medical Assistant Programs

Questions to ask Canton ME medical assistant programsBefore you can start examining your medical assistant school options, you must choose which kind of credential you would like to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online at home. Once those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Canton ME with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors that you must look at when researching schools. To assist you with that process, following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.

Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are several great reasons to confirm that the college you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved 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 school is not accredited by one of these agencies, you will not be allowed to take the CMA examination. Also, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are often not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, a number of prospective Canton ME employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the School’s Passage Percentage? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools develop their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you must find out which of the certifications the programs you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will want to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, ask what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is one of the means to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Of course programs with low rates are those that you will want to avoid.

Which Credentials are Provided? As we covered earlier, there are generally two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can elect to obtain an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will require about 2 years to complete in a community college or trade school. Whatever program you elect to enroll in, make certain that the colleges you are reviewing offer the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Available? A large number of medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Canton ME area health care providers. They are a great method to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They can also assist students build relationships within the Canton healthcare community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Service Furnished? Getting that very first job may be a daunting undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they obtain a little assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Canton ME area and ask what their placement rate is. If a college has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also indicates that it has a large network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indication of how much individual attention you will get throughout 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 choosing a school to observe what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full-time, it’s important that the program you enroll in offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes at night or on weekends near Canton ME, make sure that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online college, but you will also need to schedule all clinical training or internships that will be required. Also, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to work, illness or family issues.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Canton Maine?

If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Canton ME area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.

Canton, Maine

Canton Point was the site of Rockemeka, village of the Anasagunticook (or Androscoggin) Abenaki Indians. It is said the tribe had 500 acres (2.0 km2) cleared to raise corn. By 1757 the tribe population was devastated by smallpox.

The land became part of a grant the Massachusetts General Court awarded to Captain Joseph Phipps and 63 other soldiers for their services during the French and Indian War. Called Phipps-Canada, it would be incorporated in 1795 as Jay in honor of John Jay, the first chief justice of the U. S. Supreme Court. On February 5, 1821, Canton was set off from Jay and incorporated, named after Canton, Massachusetts.[4]

Settlement began in the early 1790s when William Livermore, William French, Joseph Coolidge and Alexander Shepherd arrived. Others followed, principally from Massachusetts. The surface of the town is uneven in the outskirts, but smooth and level at Canton Point, where the soil was considered unsurpassed in the state for agriculture. The outlet of Lake Anasagunticook provided water power for industry. Gustavus Hayford settled here in 1814. In addition to a log cabin, he built a sawmill and gristmill. First called Hayford Mills, it would be renamed Canton Mills, and now Canton. In the 19th century, it had a machine shop to manufacture farm implements, a tinware factory and an iron foundry.[5] It remains the business center. The Rumford Branch of the Maine Central Railroad passed through the town in the late 1850s, carrying freight but also tourists. The community developed as a resort area for camping.[6]

Select the Best Medical Assistant School Canton ME

Canton ME medical assistant studentIt’s important to start your new career on the right foot by picking a medical assistant college that will furnish the right training. Whether you’re planning to begin a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to obtain the appropriate info on available programs prior to making your selection. There are so many schools providing 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, make certain that the program you choose is accredited by a recognized organization, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you anticipate taking the CMA certification examination. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Certification Requirements. But irrespective of the kind of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an online or on-campus school, be sure to ask the questions we have supplied so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the ideal program you can ultimately begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Canton ME.

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