Medical Assistant Training Programs in Kansas

How to Enroll In a Medical Assistant School in Kansas

Kansas Medical Assistant completing internship trainingOnce you have decided to join the gratifying field of healthcare and enroll in a medical assistant course in Kansas, it’s time to choose a school that will provide the right training. But just how do you undertake comparing and evaluating schools so that you subsequently enroll in the ideal one? Most potential students begin by evaluating the medical assistant schools that are closest to their homes and then lean toward those that have the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are very important, such things as accreditation, job assistance and internship programs are important factors as well. You might choose to look into some online medical assistant programs as an option also (more on that later). The main point is that before you select a college you need to complete your due diligence and compare all important qualifications of the schools you are reviewing. And to assist you with that task, we have furnished several questions that you need to ask all of the schools on your “maybe” list. But prior to starting that review, let’s briefly talk about the function of a medical assistant and the type of training and credentials that are available.

The Role of Medical Assistants

The role of a medical assistant can be diverse as well as challenging. Basically their job is ensure that the Kansas clinics, hospitals and other medical care centers where they work run efficiently. Based on the type or size of facility, they can be more of an administrative assistant, a clinical assistant, or in smaller facilities both. They are tasked with giving direct assistance to the physicians, nurses and other health professionals but may also be found performing duties in an office or at the front desk. A few of the many functions of a medical assistant include:

  • Completing insurance forms and filing claims
  • Scheduling and verifying appointments
  • Taking vital signs and weighing patients
  • Taking blood and other tissue and fluid specimens
  • Preparing instruments and rooms for physicians
  • Supplying general support during exams and procedures

While medical assistants may perform almost any duty they are authorized to under Kansas law, some opt to specialize in a specific area and attain certification. Two of the choices offered are for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) made available by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).

Medical Assistant Education and Certification

Compared to many other medical professionals, medical assistants are not mandated to become certified, licensed, or to obtain a college degree. However, many Kansas employers prefer to hire graduates of an accredited medical assistant training program (more on accreditation later ) that have earned certification. There are basically two choices provided for a formal education. The first and shortest path to becoming a medical assistant is to obtain a certificate or diploma. These programs normally take about a year to finish, a few as little as six to nine months. They are designed to teach the fundamentals of medical assisting and ready graduates for entry level positions. The second alternative is to attain an Associate Degree, which are normally two year programs offered at community and junior colleges together with technical and vocational schools. They are more comprehensive in design than the diploma or certificate programs, and include liberal arts courses in addition to the medical assistant classes. They often have a practical element 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, certification is not a legal mandate, but is an excellent idea for individuals who wish to advance their careers. Not only will it help in securing a job after graduation, but it may also help with preliminary salary negotiations. Many potential Kansas employers simply will not hire a medical assistant that has not attained accredited formal training or certification. The most popular and perhaps the most highly regarded certification is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). To qualify to apply for the CMA exam, a candidate must have graduated or will graduate within 30 days from an accredited medical assistant program. Other certifications are available also, including the CCMA and the CMAA that we discussed earlier which are provided by the NHA.

Online Medical Assistant Programs

CMA working with children in KansasThere are numerous accredited medical assistant programs accessible online also. They are an excellent choice for individuals 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 to work full time while earning their degree or certificate. As an extra benefit, a number of online schools have cheaper tuitions than the more traditional on-campus alternatives. Supplemental expenses such as for textbooks, commuting and school supplies might be reduced also. Just bear in mind that any requirements for clinical training or internships must still be met, but they can typically be performed in area Kansas medical facilities. If you can earn a degree without the rigid structure of attending supervised classes on-campus, then this mode of getting your training might be the best choice for you. With the online lessons and the practical training, everything necessary to achieve proficiency to perform as a medical assistant is furnished.

Topics to Ask Medical Assistant Colleges

Prior to assessing your medical assistant program alternatives, you need to determine which type of credential you would like to attain, and if you want to attend classes on-campus or online from home. After those choices have been made, you can begin the procedure of comparing programs. As we discussed at the beginning of this article, some students limit their searches to the colleges that are closest to home with the cheapest tuitions. Although location and cost are important qualifications, they are not the only ones. There are several additional issues that you need to examine when assessing Kansas programs. To assist you with that task, following are a few questions that you need to ask about each of the programs you are considering before making your ultimate selection.

Is the Medical Assistant Program Accredited? There are several great reasons to ensure that the college you choose is accredited. First, accreditation helps guarantee that the instruction you receive will be both extensive and of the highest quality. Second, if you intend to become certified, you must 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 either of these organizations, you will not be eligible to take the CMA exam. Additionally, if you plan on applying for a student loan or financial assistance, they are often not offered for non-accredited programs. And finally, as mentioned previously, many prospective Kansas employers will not hire a medical assistant who has not graduated from an accredited school.

What is the School’s Passing Percentage? Most of the accredited Kansas medical assistant schools design their programs to prep students to pass one or more certification examinations. To begin with, you need to find out which of the certifications the programs you are considering are preparing their students for. If you are interested in taking the CMA for example, then obviously you will need to select a program focused on that certification. Second, learn what the program’s passage rate is for the certification and compare it to the national average. This is one of the ways to help evaluate the quality of a school’s program. Of course programs with low rates are those that you will prefer to avoid.

Which Credentials are Offered? As we covered earlier, there are basically two paths to getting medical assistant training. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program and get entry level training in the shortest amount of time, starting at just 6 months, although the average is about one year. Or you can opt to acquire an Associate Degree and get a broader education that will require approximately 2 years to accomplish in a junior college or vocational school. Whichever program you elect to pursue, verify that the Kansas colleges you are looking at offer the kind of program you are interested in.

Are Internships Sponsored? A large number of Kansas medical assistant schools sponsor internship programs with local medical providers. They are an excellent way to get hands-on practical experience and training. They can also help students build relationships within the healthcare community. And as an added benefit, they are an advantage on resumes and for job interviews too.

Is Job Placement Assistance Offered? Getting that initial job can be a challenging undertaking for medical assistant school graduates unless they have some assistance from a job placement program. Confirm that the schools you are interviewing offer job placement assistance and find out what their placement rate is. If a college has a high job placement rate for its students, it indicates that it has a good reputation within the healthcare community. It also signifies that it has a broad network of contacts in Kansas to help place students in positions.

How Big are the Classes? Class size might be an indicator of how much personal instruction you will receive during your training. Small classes and classes with a higher teacher to student ratio are more prone to furnish increased access to teachers and face to face interaction. If convenient, try to attend a couple of classes before choosing a college in Kansas to observe what the teaching environment is like and how much attention the students get.

Is Class Scheduling Convenient? If you anticipate attending a medical assistant school while you continue to work full-time, it’s essential that the college you choose provides classes that fit your schedule. If you need to attend classes in the evenings or on weekends in Kansas, make certain that those times are available. You may be able to fit your classes in easier with an online college, but you will also need to schedule any internships or practical training that may be required. Also, find out what the policy is for making up classes that you might have to miss because of work, illness or family responsibilities.

Choose the Best Medical Assistant Training in Kansas

It’s imperative to start your new career on the right foot by enrolling in a medical assistant college that will provide the proper training. Whether you’re goal is to begin a career in health care starting out as a medical assistant or to practice medical assistance as your life long career, you need to acquire the appropriate information on available programs before making your decision. There are such a large number of colleges offering training nowadays that you can make a selection based on your individual circumstances and personal preferences. And as we have addressed in this article, confirm that the program you decide on is accredited by an acknowledged agency, such as the CAAHEP. This is especially critical if you plan on taking the CMA certification examination. But regardless of the kind of credential that you plan to earn or if you have decided to attend either an on-campus or online school, make sure to ask the questions we have provided so you can evaluate programs and make an informed decision. And by choosing the right program you can subsequently begin a gratifying career as a medical assistant in Kansas.

Some Cities in Kansas That May Be Of Interest

  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Hugoton KS 67951
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Sharon Springs KS 67758
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Colby KS 67701
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Colony KS 66015
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Iola KS 66749
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Junction City KS 66441
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Syracuse KS 67878
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Galena KS 66739
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Oberlin KS 67749
  • Medical Assistant Training Programs near Galva KS 67443