Home >> Arizona >> Phoenix >> Medical Assistant Schools Near Me


Receive Free Info on CMA Programs Phoenix AZ 85001

How to Enroll In the Best Medical Assistant Training School Near Phoenix Arizona

Phoenix Arizona CMA holding patient filesNow that you have made a decision to join the rewarding field of health care and enroll in a medical assistant school near Phoenix AZ, it's time to select a school that will furnish the proper training. But just how do you go about evaluating and comparing colleges so that you ultimately enroll in the ideal one? Many future students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are nearest to their residences and then gravitate toward those that have the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are extremely important such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors also. You may choose to look into a few online medical assistant programs as an option as well (more on that later). The bottom line is that prior to selecting a college you need to complete your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are reviewing. And to help you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you need to ask all of the schools on your "maybe" list. But before we start that review, let's briefly talk about the function of a medical assistant and the kind of credentials and training that are available.

It Takes Just a Few Minutes to Start Your Medical Assistant Career Below!

The Job of a Medical Assistant

Phoenix Arizona medical assistant holding door for patient on crutches

So what do medical assistants do? These professionals typically work in Phoenix AZ physicians’ offices, hospitals, and outpatient care centers. They’re responsible for both clinical and administrative tasks, taking on varied responsibilities such as answering phones; managing appointment schedules; maintaining patient records; greeting patients; coding medical information; processing billing and bookkeeping; coordinating services with other healthcare providers; recording medical histories; collecting lab samples; cleaning examination rooms; and doing basic lab tests. Some of these healthcare professionals may even draw blood, administer medication, perform electrocardiograms, remove stitches, discard biohazardous waste, and change wound dressings. These duties vary based on experience, specialized training, certification, and even state of practice.

Medical Assistant Training

Phoenix Arizona CMA working with senior patient in skilled nursing facilityIn contrast to most other medical practitioners, medical assistants are not mandated to become licensed, certified, or to have a college degree. However, many Phoenix AZ health care employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training school (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are generally two choices provided for a formal education. The first and fastest route to becoming a medical assistant is to acquire 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 fundamentals of medical assisting and prepare graduates for entry level positions. The second option is to obtain an Associate Degree, which are usually two year programs provided at community and junior colleges together with vocational and technical schools. They are more expansive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They often have a clinical element requiring an internship with a local healthcare 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 related field.

Certification Options for Medical Assistants

As previously mentioned, certification is not a legal requirement, but is an excellent choice for those who want to advance their careers. It will not only help in getting a position after graduation, but it might also help with initial salary negotiations. A number of possible Phoenix AZ medical employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained certification or accredited formal training. One of the most popular and perhaps the most respected certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provided by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to take the CMA examination, a candidate must be a graduate or will be graduating within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are offered also, including the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Medical Assistant Online Schools

Phoenix Arizona young woman attending online medical assistant trainingThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs available online as well. They are a good option for individuals who may not have time to attend classes on campus but could fit them in if attended at home. This is an especially good choice for students who continue to work full-time while pursuing their degree or certificate. As an additional benefit, a number of online schools have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses including those for commuting, textbooks and school supplies may be lessened as well. But keep in mind that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be met, but they can typically be carried out in Phoenix AZ area medical facilities. If you can earn a degree without the formal structure of going to supervised classes on campus, then this method of receiving your training might be the ideal option for you. Between the online classes and the clinical training, everything needed to attain proficiency to work as a medical assistant is provided.

Points to Ask Medical Assistant Schools

Before you can start reviewing your medical assistant school alternatives, you have to choose which type of credential you want to earn, and if you would prefer attending classes on campus or online from home. Once those selections have been made, you can start the procedure of comparing medical assistant schools. As we covered at the opening of this article, some potential students limit their searches to the schools that are closest to Phoenix AZ with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are important qualifiers, they are not the only ones. There are several additional considerations that you should examine when assessing schools. To help you with that process, following are a few questions that you should ask about all of the programs you are thinking about before making your ultimate choice.

Is the Medical Assistant Course Accredited? There are several great reasons to make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited. First, accreditation helps ensure that the education you receive will be both comprehensive and of the highest quality. Next, if you intend to become certified, you need to complete an accredited program. Two of the approved 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 one of these organizations, you will not be qualified to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you anticipate obtaining a student loan or financial aid, they are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. And finally, as previously mentioned, many potential Phoenix AZ employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited college.

What is the Program's Passing Rate? Most of the accredited medical assistant colleges develop their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification exams. To begin with, you need to find out which of the certifications the programs you are considering are preparing their students to take. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then naturally you will need to enroll in a program focused on that certification. Second, learn what the school's passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. This is just one of the methods to help evaluate the quality of a college's program. Of course schools with lower rates are those that you will want to avoid.

Which Programs are Offered? As we previously covered, there are basically two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and obtain 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 elect to obtain an Associate Degree and receive a more comprehensive education that will take about 2 years to complete in a community college or vocational school. Whichever program you choose to enroll in, make sure that the schools you are reviewing offer the type of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Available? A large number of medical assistant programs offer internship programs with Phoenix AZ area healthcare providers. They are a great way to obtain hands-on clinical experience and training. They may also assist students develop relationships within the Phoenix health care community. And as an additional perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Service Offered? Finding that initial job can be a daunting undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the colleges you are interviewing provide job placement assistance in the Phoenix AZ area and find out what their placement rate is. If a program has a higher job placement rate for its students, it affirms that it has an excellent reputation within the medical community. It also suggests that it has a broad network of employers to help place students in positions.

How Big are the Classrooms? Class size can be an indication of how much individual instruction you will receive throughout your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to furnish greater access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If practical, try to sit in on a few classes before selecting a school to witness what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students receive.

Is Class Scheduling Accessible? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work on a full time basis, it's imperative that the college you choose provides classes that fit your schedule. If you need to go to classes at night or on weekends near Phoenix AZ, confirm that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in easier with an online college, but you will still have to schedule any internships or clinical training that may be required. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of illness, work or family issues.

Become a Medical Assistant in Phoenix

Enroll in the Right Phoenix Medical Assistant Training

It's important to begin your new career on the right foot by selecting a medical assistant school that will furnish the right training. Whether you're planning to launch a career in healthcare starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you must obtain the appropriate information on available programs prior to making your decision. There are so many colleges providing training these days that you can make a selection based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have covered in this article, make certain that the program you select is accredited by an acknowledged organization, for example the CAAHEP. This is particularly critical if you anticipate taking the CMA certification exam. But regardless of the kind of credential that you plan to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an on-campus or online school, don't forget to ask the questions we have provided in order to compare programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the ideal program you can subsequently begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Phoenix Arizona.




 

Phoenix Medical Assistant Schools | Phoenix Medical Assistant Schools Near Me | Phoenix Medical Assistant Training