Clinical Medical Assistant Training Searsport ME

How to Find the Right Medical Assistant School near Searsport Maine

Searsport ME medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have decided to enter the rewarding profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Searsport ME, it’s time to select a school that will furnish the appropriate training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing schools so that you ultimately pick the best one? Most potential students start by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the lowest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are critical issues as well. You might want to take a look at some online medical assistant programs as an alternative as well (more about that later). The main point is that prior to selecting a program you need to finish your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are examining. And to assist you with that task, we have included several questions that you should ask all of the colleges on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit 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 Searsport ME nursing home patientThe duties of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Essentially their role is to make sure that the Searsport ME clinics, hospitals and other healthcare facilities where they work run efficiently. Depending on the size or type of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are tasked with providing direct assistance to the nurses, doctors and other medical professionals but can also be found working in an office or at the front desk. A few of the many functions of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and filing claims
  • Setting and confirming appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Collecting blood and other fluid and tissue specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for doctors
  • Providing general support during exams and procedures

Although medical assistants can carry out almost any task they are authorized to under Maine law, some opt to specialize in a particular 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 Training

Compared to many other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, many Searsport ME health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (we’ll cover accreditation later ) that are certified. There are generally 2 options available for a formal education. The first and shortest way to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a certificate or diploma. These programs typically take about 1 year to complete, some as little as 6 to 9 months. They are designed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to earn an Associate Degree, which are typically two year programs available at community and junior colleges together with trade and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in design than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant training. They frequently have a practical component involving an internship with a local healthcare 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 Classes

woman attending medical assistant school online in Searsport METhere are many accredited medical assistant programs available online also. They are an excellent option 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 attaining their certificate or degree. As an extra benefit, many online programs have lower tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Ancillary costs including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies might be reduced also. Just bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can often be carried out in Searsport ME area medical facilities. If you can learn without the formal structure of participating in supervised classes on campus, then this mode of getting your education may be the ideal choice for you. Between the online courses and the clinical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to work as a medical assistant is furnished.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As previously mentioned, certification is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent option for those who wish to advance their careers. Not only will it help in getting a position after graduation, but it can also enhance initial salary negotiations. Some potential Searsport ME medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not obtained 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). To qualify to apply for the CMA exam, a candidate must be a graduate or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Alternative certifications are available also, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Searsport ME medical assistant programsPrior to evaluating your medical assistant school alternatives, you must decide which kind of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online at home. Once those decisions have been made, you can begin the process of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we covered at the beginning of this article, some prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Searsport ME with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional issues that you must explore when evaluating programs. To assist you with that process, following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your final choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are many great reasons to confirm that the college you choose is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you need to enroll in an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by one of these organizations, you will not be allowed 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 finally, as previously mentioned, a number of potential Searsport ME employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.

What is the School’s Passage Rate? The majority of accredited medical assistant colleges design their programs to prepare students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you need to find out which of the certifications the colleges you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for instance, then obviously you will need to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, find out what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Obviously schools with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to avoid.

Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are basically 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 closer to 1 year. Or you can opt to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take approximately 2 years to finish in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you elect to pursue, make certain that the colleges you are looking at offer the type of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Available? A large number of medical assistant programs sponsor internship programs with Searsport ME area medical providers. They are a great means to get hands-on practical training and experience. They can also help students develop relationships within the Searsport medical community. And as an additional perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Service Offered? Finding that initial job can be a challenging undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive a little assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in the Searsport ME area and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a higher job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also suggests that it has a wide network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much individual attention you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to offer greater access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If practical, try to sit in on a few classes before choosing a school to see what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work full-time, it’s imperative that the school you select provides classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to attend classes at night or on weekends near Searsport ME, verify that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online college, but you will still need to schedule all clinical training or internships that will be required. Additionally, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to illness, work or family issues.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Searsport Maine?

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

Searsport, Maine

Searsport is an incorporated town and deep water seaport located at the confluence of the Penobscot River estuary and the Penobscot Bay immediately SE of Sears Island and Cape Jellison in Waldo County, Maine, United States.[4][5][6] The population was 2,615 at the 2010 census. Searsport includes the village of North Searsport. The town is known as "the home of the famous sea captains" and the "Antique Capital of Maine".[7]

Searsport was settled in the 1760s and incorporated on February 13, 1845 from portions of Prospect and Belfast. In 1747, when fire destroyed the Province House in Boston, General Samuel Waldo advocated, unsuccessfully, that the capital of Massachusetts be moved to Searsport, which was part of the Waldo Patent he purchased about 1720.[8] It was named after David Sears of Boston after he agreed to grant a large sum of money towards the town's founding. Searsport is noted for its rich maritime history. During the 19th-century the port had 17 shipyards and built 200 ships, while supplying fully one-tenth of the nation's merchant marine deep water captains.[8] The Penobscot Marine Museum faithfully recalls this heritage.

Searsport is Maine's second largest deep water port and is ideally located from the point of view of railroad, wood products and other development interests.[1] Indeed, the town became the Penobscot Bay shipping terminus for the Northern Maine Seaport Railroad, a line opened in 1905 by the Bangor and Aroostook Railroad, which sent potatoes, timber and other products from here by boat, and loaded coal for use by its locomotives, without having to arrange rates with the Maine Central Railroad.[9] Searsport harbor is an excellent sheltered anchorage covering an area of roughly 2 by 3 miles (3 by 5 km) with a controlling depth of 40 feet (12 m) at mean low water and an average tidal fluctuation of 10 feet (3.0 m). The railroad pier is 800 feet (240 m) long and 100 feet (30 m) wide with belt conveyors to handle bagged cargo to and from four warehouses. Tracks running along either side of the pier can hold 24 railcars on the west side and twelve cars on the east side. Sprague pier is 614 feet (187 m) long with an adjacent berth 850-foot (260 m) long. Berths adjacent to the piers are dredged to a mean low water depth of 32 feet (9.8 m), and are connected to a turning basin by channels 500 feet (150 m) wide. The Searsport railway yard can hold 700 cars.[10] The port facilities at Searsport were a preferred loading point for ammunition during World War II;[11]

Select the Best Medical Assistant Program Searsport ME

Searsport ME medical assistant studentIt’s essential to begin your new career on the right foot by picking a medical assistant program that will furnish the proper training. Regardless if you’re planning 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 acquire the appropriate information on available programs prior to making your selection. There are so many colleges offering training these days that you can make a decision based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have discussed in this article, make sure that the program you pick is accredited by an acknowledged organization, for example the CAAHEP. This is particularly important if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Clinical Medical Assistant Training. But irrespective of the type of credential that you intend to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an online or on-campus school, be sure to ask the questions we have provided so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the right program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Searsport ME.

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