Listed below are all of the schools offering Medical Assistant programs in Washington. 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.
Would you like to change the state of health care in the Pacific Northwest, one patient at a time? If so, you may want to consider becoming a medical assistant. You can choose from a variety of medical assistant schools in Washington State. This career can give you exposure to many different medical professionals, including registered nurses, medical doctors, and nurse practitioner, while you serve patients by providing them with basic healthcare services.
Washington Career Bridge reports that the demand for medical assistants is growing rapidly. The growth rate is higher than the statewide average for all jobs, so Washington Career Bridge lists it as an in-demand job. As a result, you may be able to choose from many different employment opportunities after attending one of the medical assistant programs in Washington State.
As the state rolls out its new and improved health care insurance site in August of 2014, the number of patients seeking primary medical care is expected to increase. This may benefit you as a medical assistant, as doctors may be hiring medical assistants to help minimize patient wait times.
Medical Assistant Education in Washington
The first step to becoming a medical assistant and enjoying a rewarding career is choosing the right school for you. There are quite a few technical and community colleges in Washington that offer medical assisting programs. Depending on the options available at schools near you, you may be able to earn an Associate's degree, certificate, or diploma. These options range from one to two years. While working towards becoming a medical assistant, Washington schools allow you to gain practical experience that can serve you well once you get into the workforce.
Having the correct prerequisites is important. You may be able to use credits earned at other colleges or even in high school to satisfy prerequisite requirements. Most medical assistant schools in Washington state require you to have completed courses like biology, chemistry, and anatomy.
Medical assistant programs tend to have very demanding curricula that fully prepare you for the many aspects of this job. Some of the courses you may take include Medical Terminology, Patient Preparation, Medical Office Skills, and Phlebotomy. As you become more skilled and knowledgeable, you may take classes like Disease Conditions, Diagnostic Testing, Coding and Billing, and Medication Administration. Many courses include a practical experience component, but you can plan on getting most of your experience during your end-of-program internship. This experience helps you put your education to work with real patients.
Upon getting accepted to a medical assisting program in Washington, you can begin applying for financial aid. Of course, federal grants and student loans may be an option for you. However, Washington is also home to many state that can help you gain medical assistant certification; WA options include the Washington Student Achievement Council. This agency awards scholarships to those who dedicate themselves to serving an underserved part of the state. The Washington State Opportunity Scholarship supports students that study math, science, or health care. Students can also apply for the Washington Hospital Healthcare Systems scholarships.
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Medical Assisting Careers in Washington
You can benefit from a fairly positive job outlook for MA careers in Washington. If you earn your medical assistant certification, Washington State may have a greater range of opportunities available to you. Certification can help demonstrate your skills and knowledge to potential employers, and may set you apart from other job applicants.
Medical assisting salaries are much higher in WA than they are in many other states. The average salary for a medical assistant in Washington is $35,000 per year, according to O*Net. The full reported salary range goes from $26,400 to $46,400 per year (O*Net, 2013). Learn more about your options for becoming a Medical Assistant by requesting information from the schools listed below.