Medical assisting profession is one of the rapidly developingcareers in health care. There are rapid transformations in health care from enhanced technology to effectingeconomical medicine and providing quality patient services. A medical assistant is an absolute match to this transforming sector(Kelley-Arney & Wise, 2011). Qualified medical assistants have skills that enable them to multitask.This paper discusses the medical assisting profession in terms of training and the overallrange of practice. Is also examines recruitment methods and different HR practices in health organizations.
Formal educational programs in medical assisting are provided in many educational settings, such as vocational-technical high schools,postsecondary vocational schools, community and junior colleges, and 4-year colleges and universities. Vocational school programs take about 9 months to one year to complete and award a certificate or diploma. Postsecondary programs take one year for a certificate or diploma and two years for an associate degree. They also learn office practices, patient relations, medical law, and an ethics. Accredited programs comprise a practicum that offers concrete experience in doctors’ offices, hospitals, or other medical facilities(Ferrer et al., 2009).
The agencies that accredit medical assisting programs are the Commission on Accreditation of Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES)(Lindh et al., 2013).Though there is no licensing for medical assistants, certain states necessitate them to complete a test or a course before they can execute particular duties like conducting x-rays (Lindh et al., 2013).
Medical assistants who are members of Professional Support for Certified Medical Assistants (AAMA) access a wide variety of educational opportunities like chapter-sponsored seminars and workshops about the current administrative, clinical, and management topics.Medical assistants can progress to office directors. They may also merit for various managerialassistance careers or instructing medical assisting. Those with further education join other health professions like nursing and medical technology(Ferrer et al., 2009).
There is likely to be a shortage of medical assistants because the profession is growing at a faster rate. The increased number of physicians’ group practices and other health care practices that need support staffs will increase the demand for medical assistants. Increased outpatient clinics and health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and population growth will lead to increased employment opportunities for medical assistants(Lindh et al., 2013).
Many employers choose to employ graduates of recognizedcourses in medical assisting. The employers emphasize that medical assistants need to have credentialing within their discipline. Malpractice, cost implications imposed by managed care organizations (MCOs), State and federal regulations, Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) certification, and American Medical Technologists Organization credentialing, are the reasons why acquiring and retaining a profession credential has become relevant for medical assistants’ entry into and progression within the health force(Kelley-Arney & Wise, 2011).
In some health care organizations, face-to face- interview is a standard element of the hiring process and the nature of the work in healthcare facilities requires that further testing be performed to evaluate the candidates’capability and integrity. However, other health care organizations regard educational qualifications and accreditation as a standard element for hiring.
Medical assistants carry out routine managerial and medical duties to facilitate smooth operation of physicians, podiatrists, chiropractors, and optometrists’ offices and clinics. They are not supposed to be confused with physician assistants who conduct inspection, diagnosis, and treatment of patients under the guidance of a medical doctor.
Ferrer, R. L., Mody-Bailey, P., Jaén, C. R., Gott, S., & Araujo, S. (2009). A medical assistant–based program to promote healthy behaviors in primary care. The Annals of Family Medicine, 7(6), 504-512.
Kelley-Arney, C., & Wise, B. A. (2011). Medical assisting: Administrative and clinical competencies. Clifton Park, N.Y: Delmar.
Lindh, W. Q., Pooler, M., Tamparo, C. D., Dahl, B. M., & Morris, J. (2013).Delmar’s comprehensive medical assisting: administrative and clinical competencies. Cengage Learning.