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Questions to Ask Medical Assistant Programs

Prior to assessing your medical assistant school alternatives, you need to decide which kind of credential you would like to attain, and if you want to attend classes on campus or online from home. Once those decisions have been made, you can start the process of researching medical assistant schools. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, many prospective students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to Maricopa AZ with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional issues that you should look at when assessing schools. To assist you with that process, below are some questions that you need to ask about all of the programs you are considering before making your final choice.

Is the Medical Assistant College Accredited? There are many great reasons to make sure that the college you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps guarantee that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you plan on becoming certified, you must enroll in an accredited program. Two of the acknowledged organizations for accreditation are the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). If your school is not accredited by either of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA examination. Also, if you intend on applying for a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And last, as previously mentioned, a number of prospective Maricopa AZ employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the School's Passage Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant schools design their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification exams. First, you must learn which of the certifications the programs you are reviewing are preparing their students to take. If you are planning on taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will want to choose a program targeting that certification. Second, learn what the program's passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. Doing this is just one of the methods to help assess the quality of a college's program. Of course schools with lower rates are ones that you will prefer to eliminate.

Which Credentials are Offered? As we previously covered, there are essentially two routes to acquiring medical assistant training. You can choose a diploma or certificate program and receive entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, however the average is closer to one year. Or you can choose to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a broader education that will require about two years to finish in a junior college or vocational school. Whichever program you decide to enroll in, make sure that the colleges you are reviewing provide the kind of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Available? Many medical assistant colleges sponsor internship programs with Maricopa AZ area health care providers. They are a great means to receive hands-on practical training and experience. They may also assist students build relationships within the Maricopa health care community. And as an additional perk, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews as well.

Is Job Placement Support Offered? Getting that first job may be a daunting task for medical assistant school graduates unless they receive a little help from a job placement program. Verify that the schools you are interviewing offer job placement assistance in the Maricopa AZ area and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has an excellent reputation within the health care community. It also suggests that it has a broad network of contacts to help place students in jobs.

How Large are the Classrooms? Class size might be an indicator of how much individual attention you will receive throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to furnish increased access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a program to experience what the teaching atmosphere is like and just how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Practical? If you plan on attending a medical assistant program while you continue working full-time, it's essential that the program you select offers classes that fit your schedule. If you have to attend classes at night or on weekends near Maricopa AZ, confirm that those times are offered. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online school, but you will still need to schedule all internships or clinical training that might be required. Additionally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes that you may have to miss because of work, illness or family issues.

How to Be a Certified Medical Assistant in Maricopa





 

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