Medical Assistant Course Requirements Exeter ME

How to Pick a Medical Assistant School Program near Exeter Maine

Exeter ME medical assistant checking pulseNow that you have made a decision to become a part of the rewarding field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Exeter ME, it’s time to select a college that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you approach evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently pick the best one? A number of future students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are critical issues as well. You might decide to look into several online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more about that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you must carry out your due diligence and compare all pertinent aspects of the schools you are evaluating. And to assist you with that process, we have provided a few questions that you should ask all of the schools 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 type of training and credentials that are offered.

The Function of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Exeter ME nursing home patientThe function of a medical assistant can be varied as well as demanding. Essentially their function is to make sure that the Exeter ME hospitals, clinics and other healthcare institutions where they work run successfully. Depending on the size or type of facility, they may be more of a clinical assistant, an administrative assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are responsible for giving direct assistance to the nurses, doctors and other health professionals but may also be found performing duties at the front desk or in an office. Some of the potential responsibilities of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Setting and verifying appointments
  • Weighing and taking patients vital signs
  • Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for doctors
  • Providing basic support during exams and procedures

Even though medical assistants can carry out almost any duty they are qualified to under Maine law, some prefer to specialize in a specific area and obtain certification. Two of the options 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 practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to obtain a college degree. However, many Exeter ME health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that are certified. There are essentially 2 choices provided for a formal education. The first and shortest route to becoming a medical assistant is to attain a diploma or a certificate. These programs typically take about a year to complete, a few as little as 6 to 9 months. They are developed to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs available at community and junior colleges together with technical and vocational schools. They are more expansive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include general education courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They frequently have a practical element requiring an internship with a local healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a four year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a related field.

Medical Assistant Online Colleges

woman attending medical assistant school online in Exeter METhere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs offered online also. They are a good choice for individuals who may not have the time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if accessible at home. This is a particularly good alternative for students who continue working full-time while earning their degree or certificate. As an extra benefit, some online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus options. Supplemental costs including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies can be lessened as well. But keep in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can often be carried out in Exeter ME area medical facilities. If you can learn without the formal structure of participating in supervised classes on campus, then this method of receiving your training might be the best choice for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to work as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As stated previously, certification is not a legal mandate, but is a good choice for individuals who want to boost their careers. It will not only help in securing a position after graduation, but it may also help with preliminary salary negotiations. A number of potential Exeter ME medical employers simply will not employ 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) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to sit for the CMA examination, an applicant must have graduated or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are offered as well, for instance the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

What to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Exeter ME medical assistant programsPrior to reviewing your medical assistant school alternatives, you must 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 process of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some potential students limit their searches to the schools that are nearest to Exeter ME with the lowest tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional issues that you should look at when assessing schools. To assist you with that process, below are some questions that you should ask about all of the schools you are considering before making your final choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are many great reasons to verify that the school you select is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the instruction 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 accepted 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 organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, many potential Exeter ME employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the Program’s Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you must find out which of the certifications the schools you are looking at are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will need to choose a program concentrating on that certification. Next, learn what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is one of the ways to help assess the quality of a college’s program. Obviously programs with low rates are ones that you will prefer to avoid.

Which Credentials are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are generally two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and obtain entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can opt to obtain an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will take about two years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you elect to enroll in, make sure that the schools you are looking at provide the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Provided? Many medical assistant colleges offer internship programs with Exeter ME area health care providers. They are an excellent method to obtain hands-on clinical training and experience. They can also assist students establish relationships within the Exeter health care community. And as an additional benefit, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting that initial job can be a daunting task for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive a little help from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are evaluating provide job placement assistance in the Exeter ME area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a high job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also suggests that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in positions.

How Big are the Classes? Class size can be an indicator of how much individual instruction you will get throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to provide increased access to instructors and face to face interaction. If possible, try to attend a couple of classes before selecting a school to see what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue to work full-time, it’s important that the college you enroll in offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Exeter ME, verify that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in easier with an online college, but you will also need to schedule any clinical training or internships 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 Exeter Maine?

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

Exeter, Maine

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 38.59 square miles (99.95 km2), of which, 38.56 square miles (99.87 km2) of it is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.[1]

In 1793 the Commonwealth of Massachusetts granted the township to Marblehead Academy of Marblehead, Massachusetts. The township was lotted in 1800 by Moses Hodsdon of Kenduskeag. Dr. John Blaisdell acted as agent for early proprietors. Among the proprietors were Benjamin Jay and William Turner of Boston. The first settlement was made in 1801 by Lemuel Tozier. Prior to incorporation the town was known as "Blaisdelltown".

The town incorporated on February 16, 1811. The name "Exeter" was selected in memory of Exeter, New Hampshire, from which some settlers had moved. The first school was taught by Miss Anna M. Stevens in 1804. The first mill was built by Levi Stevens in 1813.[5]

Enroll in the Right Medical Assistant School Exeter ME

Exeter ME medical assistant studentIt’s imperative to begin your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant school that will provide the appropriate training. Whether you’re objective is to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to get the right info on available programs before making your decision. There are so many colleges 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, verify that the program you select is accredited by a recognized agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is particularly critical if you intend on taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Course Requirements. 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 in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the right program you can subsequently begin a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Exeter ME.

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