How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant School near Kennebunkport Maine
Once you have decided to enter the gratifying field of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Kennebunkport ME, it’s time to select a college that will furnish the right training. But just how do you approach evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently pick the right one? A number of future students start by researching the medical assistant schools that are closest to their residences and then lean toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are critical issues as well. You might choose to research several online medical assistant programs as an alternative as well (more on that later). The bottom line is that before you select a program you must finish your due diligence and compare all pertinent qualifications of the colleges you are assessing. And to help you with that process, we have furnished several questions that you should ask all of the colleges on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the function of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are offered.
The Role of Medical Assistants
The function of a medical assistant can be varied as well as demanding. Basically their job is to make sure that the Kennebunkport ME clinics, hospitals and other healthcare centers where they work operate successfully. Depending on the type or size of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are tasked with giving direct support to the nurses, doctors and other health professionals but may also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. A few of the many duties of a medical assistant include:
- Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
- Scheduling and confirming appointments
- Taking vital signs and weighing patients
- Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
- Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
- Giving general support during exams and procedures
While medical assistants may perform almost any duty they are qualified to under Maine law, some choose to specialize in a particular area and earn 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 Courses
Compared to most other medical practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to have a college degree. However, many Kennebunkport ME health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are basically two choices available for a formal education. The first and quickest route to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a diploma or a certificate. These programs generally take about 1 year to finish, some as little as six to nine months. They are developed to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative 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 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 healthcare practice. Associate Degrees are routinely 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 Courses
There are numerous accredited medical assistant programs available online too. They are an excellent choice for students who might not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is a particularly good alternative for students who continue to work full time while attaining their certificate or degree. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools have cheaper tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Supplemental costs including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies may be lessened also. Just remember that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be met, but they can often be performed in Kennebunkport ME area medical care facilities. If you can learn without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of getting your training may be the best choice for you. Between the online classes and the practical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to work as a medical assistant is furnished.
Certification Options for Medical Assistants
As stated previously, certification is not a legal requirement, but is a good choice for individuals who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in attaining employment after graduation, but it can also help with initial salary negotiations. Some possible Kennebunkport ME medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained certification or accredited formal training. 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, an applicant must have graduated or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available also, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we previously mentioned which are provided by the NHA.
What to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges
Before you can start evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to determine which kind of credential you want to attain, and if you would prefer attending 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, many potential students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Kennebunkport ME with the cheapest tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifications, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors that you should look at when evaluating programs. To help you with that process, following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your final choice.
Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are many good reasons to ensure that the college you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you need to complete an accredited program. Two of the accepted 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 either of these organizations, you will not be qualified to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, a number of prospective Kennebunkport 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 examinations. To begin with, you must find out which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously 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 just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Naturally programs with low rates are those that you will want to avoid.
Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma 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 opt to earn an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will require about 2 years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you elect to enroll in, confirm that the colleges you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Offered? A large number of medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with Kennebunkport ME area medical care providers. They are an excellent means to receive hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also assist students build relationships within the Kennebunkport healthcare community. And as an additional perk, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Getting that initial job may be a difficult task for medical assistant school graduates unless they obtain a little assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the schools you are evaluating offer job placement assistance in the Kennebunkport ME area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher 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 employers to help place students in positions.
How Big are the Classes? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get during your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to furnish increased access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to attend a couple of classes before selecting a college to observe 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 program while you continue to work full-time, it’s imperative that the program you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends near Kennebunkport ME, verify that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will also need to schedule all clinical training or internships that may be required. Additionally, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to work, illness or family responsibilities.
Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Kennebunkport Maine?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Kennebunkport ME area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Kennebunkport is a town in York County, Maine, United States. The population was 3,474 people at the 2010 census. It is part of the Portland–South Portland–Biddeford metropolitan statistical area.
The town center, the area in and around Dock Square, is located along the Kennebunk River, approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) from the mouth of the river on the Atlantic Ocean. Historically a shipbuilding and fishing village, for well over a century the town has been a popular summer colony and seaside tourist destination. The Dock Square area has a district of souvenir shops, art galleries, seafood restaurants, and bed and breakfasts. Cape Porpoise, while retaining its identity as a fishing harbor, has a very small village area with several restaurants, a church, grocery store, coffee shop, small library, and art gallery. Kennebunkport has a reputation as a summer haven for the upper class and is one of the wealthiest communities in the state of Maine.
Kennebunkport was first incorporated in 1663 as Cape Porpus, subject to the government of the Massachusetts Bay Colony (Maine was admitted to the Union in 1820 as part of the Missouri Compromise). Due to Indian depredations, the town was depopulated by 1689, and not resettled by Europeans again until the early 18th century. The town was renamed Arundel, and the town center located inland at Burbank Hill. In 1821 the town was renamed again, this time to Kennebunkport in reflection to its economy becoming one of shipbuilding and trade along the Kennebunk River.
Select the Ideal Medical Assistant College Kennebunkport ME
It’s essential to start your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant program that will provide the proper training. Whether you’re objective is to launch a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your life long career, you need to acquire the right info on available programs prior to making your selection. There are such a large number of colleges providing training nowadays that you can make a selection based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have covered in this article, make certain that the program you pick is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example 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 Schools Near Me. But irrespective of the type of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an online or on-campus school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have supplied in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by picking the right program you can ultimately begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Kennebunkport ME.
More Medical Locations in Maine
Business Results 1 - 10 of 20