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How to Become a Medical Assistant
If you want to know more about how to become a medical assistant, you will be happy to know that there are several different educational paths you can choose to take in order to become prepared for a career within the field.
Although there are no formal state or national education or training requirements for those who want to know how to become a medical assistant , completing a formal training program will help you improve your chances of getting a job. Some educational paths you may take include:
When deciding which educational program is right for you, it is essential to make certain the program is properly accredited through a reputable accrediting agency. Most postsecondary medical assistant programs take about one year to complete, at the end of which you will earn a certificate or diploma. Or, you may complete a two-year program in order to earn an associate degree in the field.
Regardless of the path you choose to learn how to become a medical assistant, you can expect your medical assistant training to include classes such as:
You will also learn clinical and diagnostic procedures as well as laboratory techniques, pharmaceutical principles, first aid and how to administer medications. In many cases, these programs will also include an internship stage, through which you will gain hands-on practical experience at a healthcare facility or physician''s office.
In addition to looking for those who have completed a formal training program, employers are also looking for medical assistants with good "people skills." This is because medical assistants are regularly called upon to work with the public. Since medical assistants must perform basic medical procedures, they must also have good visual acuity and manual dexterity skills.
Some employers may also require medical assistant candidates to earn certification in the field. This is particularly true when it comes to medical assistants who are interested in working in a specific area within the medical field, such as optometry, podiatry and ophthalmology. Numerous organizations offer certification programs for medical assistants, including the Association of Medical Technologists (AMT) and the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). Even if certification is not an employment requirement, most employers prefer hiring those who have become certified. Furthermore, you may be eligible for an increase in salary if you successfully complete the certification process.
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