Category Archives: Connecticut

Certified Medical Assistant Certification Willimantic CT

How to Choose a Medical Assistant Program near Willimantic Connecticut

Willimantic CT medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have made a decision to enter the rewarding profession of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Willimantic CT, it’s time to select a school that will provide the right training. But just how do you approach comparing and evaluating schools so that you ultimately pick the best one? Most prospective students begin by checking out the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the lowest tuition. While location and cost are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors as well. You might want to look into some online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more about that later). The main point is that before you select a college you must carry out your due diligence and compare all important aspects of the schools you are reviewing. And to assist you with that task, we have furnished some questions that you need to ask each of the schools on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the function of a medical assistant and the type of credentials and training that are available.

The Duties of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Willimantic CT nursing home patientThe job of a medical assistant can be varied as well as challenging. Primarily their job is ensure that the Willimantic CT clinics, hospitals and other medical care centers where they work operate efficiently. 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 assistance to the nurses, doctors and other health professionals but can also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. Some of the possible duties of a medical assistant include:

  • Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
  • Scheduling and confirming appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Taking blood and other tissue and fluid samples
  • Preparing rooms and instruments for physicians
  • Providing general support during exams and procedures

Although medical assistants may carry out almost any activity they are qualified to under Connecticut law, some opt to specialize in a specific area and obtain certification. Two of the options 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 Training Courses

Compared to many other healthcare professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, a number of Willimantic CT health care employers would rather hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are essentially 2 options provided for a formal education. The first and shortest path to becoming a medical assistant is to acquire a certificate or diploma. These programs usually take about a year to finish, some as little as 6 to 9 months. They are created to teach the basics of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to attain an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs provided at community and junior colleges in addition to trade 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 training. They frequently have a practical component involving an internship with a local medical 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 similar field.

Online Medical Assistant Classes

woman attending medical assistant school online in Willimantic CTThere are a number of accredited medical assistant programs accessible online also. They are a good alternative for those who may not have the time to go to classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is a particularly good choice for students who continue to work full time while earning their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, some online programs have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus options. Ancillary costs including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies can be minimized as well. Just remember that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be fulfilled, but they can often be completed in Willimantic CT area medical care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of participating in supervised classes on-campus, then this approach to receiving your training might be the right option for you. Between the online classes and the clinical training, everything needed to achieve proficiency to work as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As previously mentioned, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is a good choice for individuals who want to boost their careers. Not only will it help in obtaining a position after graduation, but it might also help with initial salary negotiations. Some possible Willimantic CT medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. Among the most popular and possibly the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to apply for the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are offered also, such as the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Willimantic CT medical assistant programsBefore you can start assessing your medical assistant school options, you need to 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 decisions have been made, you can start the process of researching medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some students restrict their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Willimantic CT with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional considerations that you need to look at when assessing programs. To assist you with that task, following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.

Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are a number of great reasons to ensure that the program you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the accepted agencies 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 one of these organizations, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you anticipate applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, many prospective Willimantic CT employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the Program’s Passage Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you must determine which of the certifications the schools you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are planning on taking the CMA for instance, then naturally you will want to enroll in a program targeting that certification. Next, learn 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 college’s program. Of course programs with lower rates are those that you will prefer to eliminate.

Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are generally two paths to obtaining medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the fastest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is closer to one year. Or you can decide to acquire an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take about two years to accomplish in a junior college or trade school. Whatever program you elect to pursue, make certain that the colleges you are reviewing provide the type of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Available? Numerous medical assistant colleges offer internship programs with Willimantic CT area medical providers. They are a great means to get hands-on clinical experience and training. They may also help students build relationships within the Willimantic healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Help Supplied? Getting that first job may be a difficult undertaking for graduating medical assistant students unless they receive some help from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are researching offer job placement assistance in the Willimantic CT area and ask 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 healthcare community. It also indicates that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Large are the Classes? Class size may be an indication of how much individual instruction you will get during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to provide greater access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If practical, try to monitor a couple of classes before choosing a school to see what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Accommodating? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue working full time, it’s essential that the college you choose provides classes that fit your schedule. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Willimantic CT, make certain that those times are offered. You may be able to fit your classes in easier with an online program, but you will still have to schedule any internships or practical training that will be required. Additionally, ask what the policy is for making up classes that you may have to miss due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Willimantic Connecticut?

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

Willimantic, Connecticut

Willimantic is a census-designated place, former city and borough. It is located in the town of Windham in Windham County, Connecticut. Known as "Thread City" for the American Thread Company's mills along the Willimantic River, it was a center of the textile industry in the 19th century. Originally incorporated as a city in 1893, it entered a period of decline after the Second World War, culminating in the mill's closure and the city's reabsorption into the town of Windham in the 1980s. Heroin use, present since the 1960s, became a major public health problem in the early 2000s,[6] declining somewhat by the 2010s.[7] Though the city was a major rail hub, an Interstate Highway has never passed within ten miles, despite early plans to connect it.[8]

Willimantic was populated by a series of ethnic groups migrating to the city to find work at the mills, originally Western European and French Canadian immigrants, later Eastern Europeans and Puerto Ricans.[9] Architecturally, it is known for its collection of Victorian-era houses and other buildings in the hill section, the Romanesque Revival town hall and two crossings of the Willimantic River: a footbridge and the "Frog Bridge". It is home to Eastern Connecticut State University and the Windham Textile and History Museum. As of 2016, Willimantic had an estimated population of 17,339 people.[1]

Willimantic is named for the Willimantic River which passes through it. The word was first attested in English writing as Waramanticut in 1684,[10] and later as Wallamanticuk, Wewemantic and Weammantuck before being standardized as Willimantic.[11] The word is of Algonquian origin, either Mohegan-Pequot or Narragansett. It is commonly translated as "land of the swift running water", but the word more likely means "place near the evergreen swamp".[12]

Enroll in the Ideal Medical Assistant Training Program Willimantic CT

Willimantic CT medical assistant studentIt’s essential to start your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will furnish the proper training. Whether you’re objective is to begin a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you need to obtain the right info on available programs prior to making your decision. There are such a large number of schools offering training nowadays that you can make a decision based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have covered in this article, make sure that the program you decide on is accredited by a recognized agency, for example the CAAHEP. This is particularly critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification examination. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Certified Medical Assistant Certification. But regardless of the kind of credential that you intend to earn or if you have decided to attend either an on-campus or online school, don’t forget to ask the questions we have supplied in order to evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the best program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Willimantic CT.

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