Listed below are all of the schools offering Medical Assistant programs in Maine. As a rule, you should contact at least 3-5 schools during the course of your research, and ideally more. There are important differences between the programs in terms of cost, admissions requirements, and other characteristics, and, as with many things in life, the way to find the best Medical Assistant program for your needs is to spend some time shopping around.
Medical Assisting is an attractive career goal for the high school graduate or GED holder in Maine. In one or two years, the skills could be learned to qualify for a medical assisting job in a physician’s office or hospital. Many homemakers or mature workers who are unemployed are enrolling in medical assisting programs along with young high school graduates to become employable.
Because of the nursing and physician shortages nationally as well as in Maine, the demand for medical assistants to provide clinical help in the medical setting is very high. The Bureau of Labor Statistics listed the 30 occupations with the highest predicted job growth, and medical assisting fell fourth on this list, showing a predicted 29 percent job growth between 2012 and 2022.
Contact the medical assisting schools in Maine that are listed on this page to learn more about your options. Information is free, and it will help you decide which medical assistant program is best for you.
What Do Medical Assistants Do?
The medical assistant provides both administrative help to the physician or medical center as well as laboratory and clinical assistance to facilitate the treatment of patients. The office duties include answering phones and making appointments, maintaining patients’ records, coding and filling out insurance forms, and handling correspondence, billing and bookkeeping. The clinical responsibilities include taking medical histories, preparing patients for exams and treatment, collecting and preparing laboratory specimens, drawing blood and administering medications as directed by the physician.
Medical Assistant Education in Maine
The medical assisting programs in Maine will train you for both administrative and clinical tasks. But some schools such as Beal College provide, additionally, a medical administrative specialist program offering a choice of concentration on coding or transcription. Eastern Maine Community College has an associate degree program in Medical Office Technology. Central Maine Community College has a one-year certificate program in Medical Coding and Electronic Health Records.
These choices suit the student whose interest is in office and computer work rather than laboratory or clinical activities. The complex office procedures required with new federal regulations on electronic health records, along with a new World Health Organization medical coding system, require more intensive training for these tasks.
Medical Assisting programs commonly require courses in anatomy and physiology, clinical procedures, laboratory protocols, pathophysiology, principles of pharmacology, medical terminology, administrative procedures, medical transcription, health insurance and claims processing, and medical office law and ethics. The program ends with a practicum or externship. An associate degree program takes two years to complete. A certificate program can be completed in one year.
Accredited programs in medical assisting expect students to be prepared to take the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) certification examination. In addition, the expected outcomes are graduates who demonstrate ethical behavior, critical thinking and problem solving, effective communication, and continual growth professionally.
Applying for admissions generally involves submitting an application form together with letters of recommendation. Most Maine colleges require the applicant to take the Accuplacer Test. Other requirements may include a criminal background test and an immunization record. All college applicants are provided the opportunity to apply for financial aid. The college will have a list of scholarships and grants available to applicants. The Finance Authority of Maine also provides a list of scholarships. Federal loans and grants are also available.
Medical Assisting Careers in Maine
Although the state of Maine does not issue requirements for training or certification in medical assisting, you may find, upon looking up job posts, that almost all positions require graduation from an accredited program plus expected or accomplished certification. You can attend one of the five colleges that have programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) which qualify you to take the AAMA certification examination.
The following schools also offer medical assisting programs and carry institutional accreditation, but are not specifically accredited for their medical assisting programs. Graduates of these schools may qualify to take the Registered Medical Assistant certification examination of the American Medical Technologists (AMT) or have the option of taking a certification test given by the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT).
With positive job growth predictions and an average annual salary of $31,300, higher than the national average of $30,780, it is no wonder that medical assisting is becoming a popular career choice in Maine. Besides job security, the medical assistant enjoys a dynamic work situation and a chance to make a difference in the flow of work in a medical setting and in the ease and comfort of patients. Contact the schools you are interested in today to get started on your way to this rewarding career.