Medical Assistant Training Programs in Rhode Island

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The best path toward becoming a qualified medical assistant in Rhode Island is to earn a voluntary certificate or degree, or at least to gain some vocational training in the field at one of the schools listed below. While it is not legally required to obtain a license or certificate to work as a medical assistant in the state, gaining vocational training, becoming a certified medical assistant (CMA) or becoming a Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) will give you a competitive edge in the job market and a head start on your career. Increasingly, more and more healthcare employers are seeking candidates who have professional medical assisting training. Training and certification demonstrates a dedication to the profession and superior knowledge in the field versus a non-trained, uncertified individual.

Medical Assistant Training Programs in Rhode Island

It usually takes nine months to a year to complete these programs, and closer to two years if you earn an associate degree in medical assisting. Instruction covers clinical training as well as administrative training. There are many skills to learn in order to be a successful medical assistant. Curriculum covers how to conduct some technical procedures, such as assessing patients, taking vital signs, taking blood, or running some diagnostic tests. You will also learn to prepare patients for procedures, administer medication, or aid physicians during procedures. Students will learn about human anatomy, pharmacology, or medical terminology. On the administrative side of the job, students will learn the proper procedures for communicating with insurance companies and patients, about billing, record keeping, and office management. Some medical assistants work entirely on the administrative side, some on the clinical side, and many work in both roles.

If you are seeking formal certification from the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA), then the training program you choose should be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). There are currently no CAAHEP or ABHES programs in the state, but distance learning online in conjunction with an internship provides an excellent opportunity to earn your degree from an accredited program. You can find ABHES and CAAHEP accredited online programs listed below. RMA certification has multiple criteria to qualify for certification, graduation from a CAAHEP or ABHES program or graduate from a medical assisting program with at least 720 hours of medical assisting skills training including clinical hours and is offered through a school that holds national accreditation. You can find schools matching these requirements below.

The outlook for this career is very good. There were approximately 1,700 medical assistants working in Rhode Island in 2009, and new jobs are always opening. Medical assisting is one of the fastest growing occupations and is projected to continue to grow for many more years.This growth is in part due to advanced technology enabling a growth of outpatient clinics, and a growing aging population. The mean annual salary for a medical assistant in Rhode Island is $30,010 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the mean hourly rate is $14.43. This will vary depending on location, experience, and skills. Salaries are also slightly higher in outpatient clinics and hospitals than they are in doctors’ or specialists’ offices. If you are interested in taking advantage of the growing healthcare field, this is an excellent job to pursue.

Medical billing and coding programs in Rhode Island have also become a popular pathway to good paying and secure careers in the allied health field. This is a career path worth investigating in addition to medical assisting.

Find out which program is best for you by requesting information from the schools below, taking the first step toward a career in healthcare as a medical assistant.
(Sources: AAMA, Bureau of Labor Statistics, CAAHEP, Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training)

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