How to Select a Medical Assistant Training School near Shawnee Colorado
Once you have made a decision to join the gratifying profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Shawnee CO, it’s time to select a school that will furnish the appropriate training. But just how do you undertake comparing and evaluating schools so that you subsequently pick the best one? Most potential students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then gravitate toward those that have the lowest tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are critical factors as well. You might want to research several online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more about that later). The main point is that before you select a program you need to finish your due diligence and compare all relevant aspects of the colleges you are evaluating. And to assist you with that process, we have provided a few questions that you should ask each of the schools on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the function of a medical assistant and the type of credentials and training that are available.
The Function of a Medical Assistant
The responsibilities of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Basically their function is ensure that the Shawnee CO hospitals, clinics and other medical care centers where they work run successfully. Based on the size or type of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are tasked with providing direct support to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but may also be found working in an office or at the front desk. A few of the possible responsibilities of a medical assistant include:
- Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
- Scheduling and confirming appointments
- Weighing and taking patients vital signs
- Collecting blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
- Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
- Providing general support during examinations and procedures
While medical assistants can perform almost any activity they are qualified to under Colorado law, some elect to specialize in a specific area and attain certification. Two of the choices 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 Programs
In contrast to many other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to have a college degree. However, a number of Shawnee CO health care employers choose to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that are certified. There are generally 2 choices available for a formal education. The first and shortest way to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a diploma or a certificate. These programs normally take about a year to finish, some as little as six to nine months. They are created to teach the basics of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are normally two year programs provided at community and junior colleges in addition to technical 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 often have a clinical component 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 related field.
Online Medical Assistant Colleges
There are many accredited medical assistant programs accessible online also. They are a good choice for students who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could work them in if attended at home. This is an especially good solution for students who continue to work full-time while pursuing their certificate or degree. As an added benefit, a number of online programs have lower tuitions than the more conventional on-campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses such as for textbooks, commuting and school supplies may be minimized also. But bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can often be performed in Shawnee CO area healthcare facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of attending supervised classes on-campus, then this method of receiving your education may be the best choice for you. With the online lessons and the clinical training, everything needed to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.
Certification Programs for Medical Assistants
As stated previously, certification is not a legal requirement, but is a good idea for graduates who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in securing a job after graduation, but it can also help with preliminary salary negotiations. Some potential Shawnee CO medical employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not received certification or accredited formal training. One of the most popular and perhaps 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. Additional certifications are available also, such as the CCMA and the CMAA that we previously mentioned which are provided by the NHA.
Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Programs
Before you can start examining your medical assistant school alternatives, you must choose which kind of credential you would like to attain, and if you want to attend classes on campus or online from home. Once those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, a number of prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Shawnee CO with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are significant qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional considerations that you should examine when assessing schools. To assist you with that task, following are some questions that you need to ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are many good reasons to ensure that the school you select 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 intend to become certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the approved 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 school is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are normally not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, a number of prospective Shawnee CO employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.
What is the School’s Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools create their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must learn which of the certifications the schools you are looking at are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then of course you will want to select a program targeting that certification. Next, learn what the school’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the means to help assess the quality of a school’s program. Of course programs with low rates are those that you will want to eliminate.
Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are basically two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program and get 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 decide to obtain an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require about 2 years to accomplish in a community college or vocational school. Whatever program you decide to enroll in, confirm that the schools you are reviewing offer the kind of program you are interested in.
Are Internships Available? Many medical assistant schools offer internship programs with Shawnee CO area medical care providers. They are an excellent way to obtain hands-on practical experience and training. They may also assist students develop relationships within the Shawnee healthcare community. And as an additional perk, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Help Offered? Landing that initial job may be a daunting undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in the Shawnee CO area and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its graduates, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also indicates that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in jobs.
How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal attention you will get throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to furnish increased access to instructors and face to face interaction. If practical, try to monitor a couple of classes before enrolling in a school to experience what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue to work full-time, it’s important that the college you enroll in offers classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Shawnee CO, verify that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online program, but you will also have to schedule all internships or practical training that will be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Shawnee Colorado?
If you are considering attending a medical assistant school in the Shawnee CO area, following is some background information that may be both interesting and useful regarding your future campus location.
Shawnee Rebecca Smith is an American actress and singer. Smith is best known for her role as Amanda Young in the Saw films and as Linda in the CBS sitcom Becker. Smith once fronted the rock band Fydolla Ho, with which she toured the US and the UK. She was half of Smith & Pyle, a desert country-rock band, with actress Missi Pyle. She starred as Jennifer Goodson, the ex-wife of Charlie Goodson (Charlie Sheen), on the FX sitcom Anger Management, which ended in 2014 after 100 episodes; Smith appeared in 94 of the episodes.
Smith was born at Orangeburg Regional Hospital, Orangeburg, South Carolina, the second child of Patricia Ann (née Smoak), an oncology nurse, and James H. Smith, a financial planner and former US Air Force pilot. When she was one year old, her family relocated from South Carolina to Van Nuys, California. Her parents divorced when she was two; and her mother remarried when she was eight. She attended Ranchito Avenue Elementary School in Panorama City, Los Angeles and Madison Jr. High in North Hollywood. She then attended North Hollywood High School, graduating in 1987.
Smith began acting as a child appearing on stage in A Christmas Carol repertory from ages 8 to 11 and starred in a stage play with Richard Dreyfuss at age 15. She performed in the original stage production of To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday and won the Dramalogue Critics Award for her performance, becoming the youngest actor up to that time to receive such an honor. She made her television debut in a McDonald's commercial titled "Best Friends" in 1978.
Pick the Ideal Medical Assistant Program Shawnee CO
It’s essential to start your new career on the right foot by choosing a medical assistant school that will provide the right training. Whether you’re goal is to launch a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you must acquire the appropriate info on available programs before making your decision. There are such a large number of schools providing training nowadays that you can make a selection based upon your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have addressed 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 What Can You Do With A Medical Assistant Degree. 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, make sure 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 rewarding career as a medical assistant in Shawnee CO.
More Medical Locations in Colorado
Business Results 1 - 10 of 14