Category Archives: Mississippi

Medical Assistant Night Classes Southaven MS

How to Choose a Medical Assistant Program near Southaven Mississippi

Southaven MS medical assistant checking pulseOnce you have made a decision to become a part of the gratifying profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant school near Southaven MS, it’s time to choose a college that will provide the proper training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing schools so that you subsequently pick the right one? Many prospective students start by checking out the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then gravitate toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are important issues also. You may choose to research some online medical assistant programs as an option also (more about that later). The main point is that before you select a college you need to carry out your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are assessing. And to help you with that task, we have provided several questions that you should ask all of the colleges on your “maybe” list. But before we start that review, let’s briefly talk about the role of a medical assistant and the type of credentials and training that are offered.

The Function of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant with Southaven MS nursing home patientThe duties of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Primarily their duty is ensure that the Southaven MS hospitals, clinics and other medical care centers where they work operate efficiently. Based on the type or size of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller practices both. They are responsible for providing direct support to the physicians, nurses and other health professionals but can also be found performing duties at the front desk or in an office. A few of the many functions of a medical assistant include:

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

Even though medical assistants can carry out almost any duty they are qualified to under Mississippi law, some opt to specialize in a particular area and earn 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 Courses

Compared to most other healthcare practitioners, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, many Southaven MS health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are generally 2 options available for a formal education. The first and fastest route to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a diploma or a certificate. These programs usually take about 1 year to finish, a few 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 option is to acquire an Associate Degree, which are normally 2 year programs provided at community and junior colleges in addition to technical and vocational schools. They are more expansive in nature than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They usually have a practical component requiring an internship with a local medical practice. Associate Degrees are routinely a pre-requisite for and credits can be applied to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.

Medical Assistant Online Classes

woman attending medical assistant school online in Southaven MSThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs accessible online too. They are a good alternative for those who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is a particularly good option for students who continue to work full time while attaining their certificate or degree. As an added benefit, many online schools have lower tuitions than the more conventional on campus alternatives. Ancillary expenses including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies might be reduced also. But keep in mind that all requirements for clinical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can typically be carried out in Southaven MS area medical care facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of going to supervised classes on-campus, then this method of receiving your education may be the best choice for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything needed to attain proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is provided.

Certification Programs for Medical Assistants

As previously mentioned, certification is not a legal mandate, but is a good idea for individuals who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in obtaining employment after graduation, but it may also enhance preliminary salary negotiations. Many potential Southaven MS medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not obtained accredited formal training or certification. Among the most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to sit for the CMA examination, a candidate must have graduated or will be graduating within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are offered as well, including the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Concerns to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Questions to ask Southaven MS medical assistant programsBefore you can start evaluating your medical assistant school options, you need to determine which type of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on-campus or online at home. After those decisions have been made, you can start the procedure of evaluating medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some students confine their searches to the colleges that are nearest to Southaven MS with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are a number of additional issues that you must look at when researching programs. To help you with that task, below are some questions that you need to ask about all of the schools you are thinking about before making your final selection.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are several good reasons to ensure that the program you select is accredited. To begin with, accreditation helps guarantee that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you must complete an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged 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 program is not accredited by one of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. 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 Southaven MS employers will not employ a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.

What is the Program’s Passage Percentage? The majority of accredited medical assistant schools develop their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification exams. To start with, you must determine which of the certifications the schools you are reviewing are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then of course you will need to select a program targeting that certification. Second, learn 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 assess the quality of a school’s program. Obviously schools with low rates are ones that you will prefer to avoid.

Which Programs are Available? As we previously covered, there are essentially two paths to acquiring medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, from as little as 6 months, although the average is closer to one year. Or you can opt to obtain an Associate Degree and get a more comprehensive education that will require approximately 2 years to accomplish in a community college or trade school. Whichever program you choose to pursue, verify that the schools you are considering offer the kind of program you have an interest in.

Are Internships Available? Numerous medical assistant programs offer internship programs with Southaven MS area health care providers. They are an excellent method to receive hands-on clinical experience and training. They may also help students develop relationships within the Southaven healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Help Provided? Landing that initial job may be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they have some help from a job placement program. Confirm that the colleges you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in the Southaven MS area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher job placement rate for its graduates, it indicates that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indicator of how much personal instruction you will receive during your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide greater access to instructors and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a program to see what the teaching atmosphere is like and how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full time, it’s essential that the college you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Southaven MS, make certain that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in more conveniently with an online program, but you will also need to schedule any clinical training or internships that will be required. Additionally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

Enrolling in a Medical Assistant Program near Southaven Mississippi?

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

Southaven, Mississippi

Southaven is a city in DeSoto County, Mississippi, United States. It is a suburb of Memphis, Tennessee, and a principal city in the Memphis metropolitan area. The 2010 census reported a population of 48,982,[3] making Southaven the third-largest city in Mississippi and the second most populous suburb of Memphis.[5] Southaven is traversed from north to south by the I-55/I-69 freeway. The city's name derives from the fact that Southaven is located south of Whitehaven, a neighborhood in Memphis.

Southaven began as a village when Memphis homebuilder Kemmons Wilson (founder of Holiday Inn) wished to develop a few residential subdivisions featuring small starter homes just across the Mississippi border from Whitehaven, Tennessee, an unincorporated suburb of Memphis. Whitehaven was eventually annexed by Memphis. Officially incorporated in 1980, Southaven is one of the fastest-growing cities in the southeastern United States.[citation needed] In just 20 years, Southaven doubled its land area, while its population tripled.

The construction of Interstate 55 through Southaven in the 1970s helped to promote growth and make for easier access to the city from Memphis, Jackson, St. Louis, and Chicago. Interstate 69, which will eventually run from Canada to Mexico, was cosigned with I-55 in Southaven in 2007.[6]

Pick the Best Medical Assistant Program Southaven MS

Southaven MS medical assistant studentIt’s important to start your new career on the right foot by choosing a medical assistant school that will provide the right 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 lifetime career, you must obtain the appropriate information on available programs before making your selection. There are such a large number of schools offering training these days that you can make a decision based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have addressed in this article, make certain that the program you choose is accredited by an acknowledged organization, for example the CAAHEP. This is particularly critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. You came to this site initially because you had an interest in Medical Assistant Night Classes. But regardless 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, make sure to ask the questions we have provided in order to compare programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the right program you can ultimately begin a fulfilling career as a medical assistant in Southaven MS.

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