Whether you’re just starting your career or considering changing your existing profession, why not consider joining the medical field as a medical assistant? Typically found on the frontlines of a hospital or doctor’s office, medical assistants work directly with patients and ensure efficient operations of a medical team or department.
Medical assistant duties can vary depending on the size, location, and specialty of the facility in which they work. For a more in-depth look at things every medical assistant should know and how you could get started on this career path, keep reading.
What is a Medical Assistant?
Medical assistants collaborate with doctors, typically in outpatient or ambulatory care settings like clinics and medical offices. They serve as the go-betweens for patients and the doctor or medical staff, carrying out both administrative activities and patient care responsibilities.
Despite working closely with doctors, medical assistants are not permitted to counsel patients on their health. They typically gather data and set up the patient and doctor for the appointment.
What Are the Skills of a Medical Assistant?
To fulfill their jobs and contribute effectively to the team, medical assistants need a combination of administrative and healthcare skills. Their expertise keeps the healthcare practice operating efficiently. Some of the abilities you’ll need to succeed as a medical assistant include the following:
The office work that medical assistants do includes taking phone calls, setting up appointments, and keeping track of patients. Strong time management abilities, attention to detail, and a fundamental understanding of technology and medical records systems are all required.
During an appointment, medical assistants are frequently one of the first people to speak with patients. They may be in charge of getting a patient’s medical history, outlining a procedure, and instructing them on how to take care of their teeth.
Customer service skills
A significant portion of a medical assistant’s primary duties involves interacting with patients. Making a positive first impression by smiling as you greet patients and offering assistance when it’s required will keep patients feeling comfortable. Being warm and pleasant might help reassure clients who are uninitiated or anxious about seeing the doctor.
What Are the Duties of a Medical Assistant?
Are you wondering “what are the duties of a medical assistant?” Medical assistants handle both clinical and administrative functions. They are vital members of any healthcare team tasked with testing and caring for patients. The duties of this role includes between clinical and administrative tasks, ensuring quality patient care.
Medical assistants typically do a wide variety of tasks on any given day. It’s an exciting and rewarding choice for any healthcare professional. Typical duties can include the following:
- Measure vital signs, such as blood pressure
- Help physicians with patient examinations
- Give patients injections or medications as directed by physicians and as permitted by state law
- Schedule patient appointments
- Enter patient information into medical records¹
Medical assistants can even specialize in either administrative or clinical work in larger practices or hospitals. Their role is one of flexibility and teamwork to provide the utmost care for patients.
What Are the Traits of a Successful Medical Assistant?
Along with a strong set of skills, medical assistants should possess a few essential traits that will help them start and grow their career.
Medical assistants need to have both empathy and good manners when dealing with patients. Service and patient satisfaction are often prioritized in medical facilities. All healthcare professionals should treat their patients with respect and professionalism when interacting with them.
Attention to Detail
Working as a medical assistant frequently entails gathering patient health data and entering it in their charts or health records. They must therefore pay close attention to detail when they ask the correct questions, record the information (including medical language), and make sure the information they record is precise and thorough.
Every day, healthcare professionals—including medical assistants—deal with the private health data of patients. HIPAA requires them to safeguard patients’ privacy. As a result, it is crucial to exercise the best judgment and the greatest levels of honesty.
The operation of a healthcare facility depends heavily on medical assistants. Doctors, nurses, and other professionals must rely on the excellent support staff since they frequently wear numerous hats.
These characteristics make a fantastic foundation for a list of desirable traits as a Medical Assistant.
How Do I Become a Medical Assistant?
A medical assistant is a popular career choice. There’s a growing demand for quality healthcare care in numerous settings like hospitals, clinics, and senior care facilities. In fact, the employment of medical assistants has been projected to grow 18 percent from 2020 to 2030.²
But what type of education and training is required to become a medical assistant?
Get a High School Diploma
Most states and employers require at least a highschool diploma to begin a medical assistant career. A few states require no formal educational requirements, with medical assistants learning through on-the-job training. But a secondary school education is a minimum for most.
Attend a Certified Program
In the majority of states, there are no formal educational requirements to become a medical assistant, however employers may favor hiring assistants who have successfully completed certain courses. Medical assisting programs can be found at community colleges, technical schools, universities, and vocational schools. They last around a year to complete. Typically, these courses result in a certificate or degree.
Now that you know the things every medical assistant should know, you may be asking if there a medical assistant program near me? Blue Cliff College can provide the training you need to achieve your career goals as a medical assistant. You can obtain the skills you need to succeed as a medical assistant by enrolling in our Clinical Medical Assisting (CMA) diploma program.
Our medical assistant program at Blue Cliff College is created with your future in mind. With these courses under your belt, you might be more equipped to take on the healthcare industry and establish a rewarding career.
For those worried about managing school on top of personal obligations need not become a worry. We offer day and night classes for our training program at two of our locations:
Blue Cliff College also offers flexible financing plans to those students who qualify. Financial plans vary, depending on the length of the program being financed and the amount of the student’s initial down payment.