Medical Assistant Programs in Washington D.C.
The best way to obtain a medical assisting job in the District of Columbia is to become a certified medical assistant (CMA). Certification is not yet a requirement in order to obtain a job, but is highly preferred by most employers. Certification is gained by passing an exam given by the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to take the exam, you need to complete either a certificate or diploma training program or earn an associate degree in medical assisting that has been accredited by the CAAHEP or ABHES. Your other option is to to get certified as a Registered Medical Assistant (RMA), which is administered through the American Medical Technologists (AMT) organization. Eligibility for RMA certification requires graduation from a nationally accredited medical assistant school that offers a medical assisting program that provides at least 720 hours of medical assistant skills training including clinical hours. An associate degree in medical assisting requires two years of training, and a certificate or diploma medical assistant program just about nine months.
Schools Offering Online Medical Assistant Programs in Washington D.C.
There are a handful of medical assistant program locations in Washington DC and there are many online medical assisting programs providing a convenient and accredited option. Find the online programs listed below and a link to programs offered in surrounding states.
An accredited medical assistant program will provide you with a solid foundation in clinical skills that you will use on the job. These include assessing patients, taking vital signs, taking blood, collecting lab specimens, assisting nurses and physicians with procedures, and other technical tasks. Additionally, administrative and clerical skills will be covered, such as record keeping, billing, proper communication with patients, and protocol for dealing with insurance companies. Medical assistants require many skills in order to help an office or clinic run smoothly, and they are becoming increasingly important as technology enables ambulatory clinics to provide more medical care and as providers are seeking to keep costs down.
In addition to a very positive job outlook, a medical assistant job usually provides very good health benefits. The mean salary for a medical assistant in DC is around $30,000, according to salary.com. This can vary depending on experience and employer. The healthcare industry is one of the fastest growing job sectors and medical assisting is projected to continue to grow rapidly through 2016. With advanced post-secondary education and experience, you could work toward becoming an office manager, or could become a more specialized medical assistant in a specific medical field. Take advantage of this opportunity and find an accredited training program today that can help get you on your way to becoming a certified medical assistant (CMA).
(Sources: AAMA, Bureau of Labor Statistics, District of Columbia Department of Employment Services, American Medical Technologists)