How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant Course in Newark New York
Now that you have made a decision to enter the gratifying profession of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant course in Newark NY, it’s time to select a college that will furnish the right training. But just how do you undertake comparing and evaluating colleges so that you subsequently enroll in the ideal one? A number of potential students start by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are closest to their residences and then gravitate toward those that have the lowest tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, internship programs and job assistance are important factors also. You might choose to take a look at a few online medical assistant programs as an alternative also (more on that later). The main point is that before you select a program you must finish your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are examining. And to help you with that task, we have provided a few questions that you need to ask all of the schools on your short list. But prior to starting that review, let’s talk a little bit about the role of a medical assistant and the type of credentials and training that are offered.
The Responsibilities of a Medical Assistant
The role of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Primarily their role is ensure that the Newark NY hospitals, clinics and other medical care centers where they work operate efficiently. Based on the size or type of facility, they may be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are responsible for providing direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other medical practitioners but can also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. Some of the possible functions of a medical assistant include:
- Filling out insurance forms and submitting claims
- Setting and confirming appointments
- Taking vital signs and weighing patients
- Collecting blood and other fluid and tissue specimens
- Preparing instruments and rooms for doctors
- Supplying general support during examinations and procedures
Even though Newark NY medical assistants can perform almost any activity they are qualified to under New York law, some choose to specialize in a specific area and obtain certification. Two of the choices available are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
Medical Assistant Training Courses and Certification
In contrast to most other medical practitioners, medical assistants are not required to become certified, licensed, or to earn a college degree. However, a number of Newark NY employers would rather hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that are certified. There are essentially 2 options available for a formal education. The first and fastest path to becoming a medical assistant is to earn a certificate or diploma. These programs typically take about 1 year to complete, some as little as 6 to 9 months. They are designed 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 usually 2 year programs offered at community and junior colleges in addition to technical and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in nature than the certificate or diploma programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant courses. They frequently have a practical component involving an internship with a local medical facility. Associate Degrees are commonly a pre-requisite for and credits can be transferred to a 4 year Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Assistant Studies or a similar field.
As stated previously, becoming certified is not a legal mandate, but is a good choice for individuals who wish to boost their careers. It will not only help in obtaining a position after graduation, but it can also enhance preliminary salary negotiations. Many possible Newark NY employers just will not hire a medical assistant that has not obtained certification or accredited formal training. The most popular and possibly the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to sit for the CMA exam, an applicant must be a graduate or will graduate within thirty days from an accredited medical assistant program. Additional certifications are available also, for instance the CMAA and the CCMA that we discussed earlier which are offered by the NHA.
Medical Assistant Online Colleges
There are a number of accredited medical assistant programs accessible online also. They are an excellent option for those who may not have the time to go to classes on campus but could work them in if accessible at home. This is an especially good option for students who continue working full time while attaining their degree or certificate. As an added benefit, many online programs have lower tuitions than the more traditional on campus alternatives. Ancillary expenses including those for textbooks, commuting and school supplies can be reduced also. Just bear in mind that all requirements for practical training or internships must still be satisfied, but they can often be carried out in local New York healthcare facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of participating in supervised classes on campus, then this method of receiving your education may be the best choice for you. With the online classes and the clinical training, everything necessary to attain proficiency to perform as a medical assistant in Newark NY is furnished.
Concerns to Ask Medical Assistant Schools
Before you can start reviewing your medical assistant school options, you need to decide which type of credential you want to earn, and if you want to attend classes on-campus near Newark NY or online from home. After those selections have been made, you can start the process of comparing colleges. As we covered at the opening of this article, a number of potential students confine their searches to the colleges that are nearest to home with the most affordable tuitions. Although location and cost are important qualifiers, they are by no means the only ones. There are several additional factors that you need to look at when researching New York programs. To assist you with that task, following are a few questions that you should ask about each of the schools you are considering before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Medical Assistant School Accredited? There are many great reasons to make sure that the college you enroll in is accredited. To start with, accreditation helps ensure that the training you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you need to enroll in 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 program is not accredited by one of these organizations, you will not be allowed to take the CMA exam. Also, if you plan on obtaining a student loan or financial assistance, they are normally not offered for non-accredited programs. And last, as mentioned previously, a number of prospective Newark NY employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited program.
What is the Program’s Passage Percentage? Most of the accredited Newark NY area medical assistant colleges create their programs to ready students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you need to learn which of the certifications the programs you are looking at are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will need to choose a program targeting that certification. Second, ask what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and contrast it to the national average. Doing this is one of the means to help evaluate the quality of a college’s program. Obviously programs with low rates are those that you will want to avoid.
Which Programs are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are essentially two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can choose a certificate or diploma program and receive entry level training in the fastest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is closer to one year. Or you can choose to earn an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require approximately two years to accomplish in a junior college or trade school. Whichever program you elect to pursue, make sure that the Newark NY area colleges you are reviewing offer the type of program you have an interest in.
Are Internships Offered? A large number of New York medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with area medical care providers. They are an excellent way to receive hands-on clinical training and experience. They may also help students establish relationships within the Newark NY healthcare community. And as an added perk, they are an asset on resumes and for job interviews too.
Is Job Placement Help Provided? Finding that very first job can be a difficult task for graduating medical assistant students unless they obtain some assistance from a job placement program. Verify that the schools you are evaluating provide job placement assistance and ask what their placement rate is. If a school has a higher job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has a good reputation within the medical community. It also signifies that it has a wide network of employers in the Newark NY area to help place students in positions.
How Large are the Classes? Class size might be an indication of how much individual instruction you will get during your training. Smaller classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more likely to provide greater access to teachers and one-on-one interaction. If possible, try to monitor a couple of classes before selecting a school in the Newark NY area to witness what the teaching environment is like and just how much attention the students receive.
Is Class Scheduling Accommodating? If you plan on attending a medical assistant college while you continue working on a full time basis, it’s essential that the college you enroll in offers classes that accommodate your schedule. If you have to go to classes at night or on weekends in Newark NY, make sure that those times are available. You might be able to fit your classes in more easily with an online college, but you will still have to schedule all internships or practical training that will be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of illness, work or family responsibilities.
Pick the Right Medical Assistant Training in Newark NY
It’s imperative to start your new career on the right foot by choosing a medical assistant school that will provide the right training. Regardless if you’re goal is to begin a career in medical care starting out as a medical assistant or to pursue medical assistance as your lifetime career, you must acquire the appropriate info on available programs before making your selection. There are such a large number of schools providing training nowadays that you can make a selection based on your personal preferences and individual circumstances. And as we have discussed in this article, make certain that the program you select is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example the CAAHEP. This is especially important if you intend on taking the CMA certification exam. But irrespective of the kind of credential that you plan to earn or if you have made a decision to attend either an online or on-campus school, be sure to ask the questions we have provided so you can compare programs and make an informed decision. And by selecting the right program you can ultimately start a rewarding career as a medical assistant in Newark NY.
Why Did You Desire to Be a Medical Assistant?When preparing to interview for a medical assistant position, it's a good idea to review questions you could be asked. One of the things that hiring managers often ask applicants is "What drove you to select medical assistance as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a CMA, but also what qualities and talents you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to medical assisting, along with a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should ready a number of ideas about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional medical assistant and the leading candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
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