Listed below are schools offering Medical Assistant programs in South Dakota. As a rule, you should contact at least 3-5 schools during the course of your research, and ideally more. As with many things in life, the way to find the right Medical Assistant program for your needs is to spend some time shopping around.
Healthcare is one industry that's not likely to slow down any time soon. Medical Assistants comprise a significant portion of the healthcare workforce, and typically work in clinics, hospitals and nursing homes. Given the fact that the entire state of South Dakota only has around 2,000 Medical Assistants according to the BLS, you could likely find job opportunities in many locations across the state.
If you enjoy working with people, want to find a stable career and need to know that you can start working in a short period of time, a medical assisting program may be just right for you. Request information from the med assisting programs in SD listed on this page to begin.
Medical Assistant Education in South Dakota
The minimum requirement for a Medical Assistant is to obtain a basic diploma in medical assisting, though many people find the extra time and effort needed to obtain an associate degree well worth it. This coursework can take between six months to two years, depending on your program of study and college of choice. This seems a small investment for a potential lifetime of benefit; both for you and your future patients.
Once you have completed your education, you must usually pass a national certification exam to practice. There are four certification tests available. The most common exam is the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam, from the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). The Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) exam is administered by American Medical Technologists (AMT). The National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA) exam is given by the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT). The final certification available is the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) exam, provided by the National Health Careers Association (NHA).
Course requirements will depend on the school you choose. Generally, you only need a high school diploma or GED to begin a med assisting program in South Dakota. Courses commonly include subjects such as physiology, health, anatomy, medical terminology, medical law, clinical procedures, pharmacology, CPR/First Aid, medical ethics, bookkeeping, medical information security and patient record keeping.
Scholarships and financial aid may be available to help you become a South Dakota Medical Assistant. Check with your school of choice for specific details. There are also many state based financial aid programs in South Dakota. For more information, check out the FAFSA website, where you can also begin paperwork to apply for aid.
Medical Assisting Careers in South Dakota
There are two main areas of focus for a Medical Assistant: Clinical or Administrative. A Medical Office Assistant is an example of the administrative side. Keeping patient records organized and up to date, making and receiving calls and scheduling appointments are a few of the typical duties involved. If you're looking to work more directly with patients, becoming a Clinical Medical Assistant may suit you better. You may perform essential functions such as blood draws, giving shots, taking a person's blood pressure and performing tests. A typical Medical Assisting program will offer both class study and require a hands-on externship in a medical facility.
The average Medical Assistant earns a mean salary of $27,440 a year in South Dakota and can work in a wide range of places: doctor's offices, hospitals, outpatient care centers, specialty hospitals and personal care services are among the choices. South Dakota is among the states with the lowest number of people working in this field. Take control of your future today and explore the possibilities of becoming a Medical Assistant.