Administrative Medical Assistant Programs in Idaho
An administrative medical assistant is an important part of any well-functioning healthcare facility. This assistant is frequently the person that greets the patient upon arrival, so attitude and communication skills are important.
At the same time, this member of the healthcare staff needs to be detail-oriented. A well-trained administrative medical assistant can be quite helpful to a physician or nurse practitioner in documenting details of patient care and assisting with the smooth daily operation of a clinic. An administrative medical assistant with a friendly and helpful demeanor can have a positive impact on the quality of a patient’s scheduled visit. If you enjoy interacting with people, it is likely that you’ll enjoy key aspects of this profession.
Contact the schools you see below that offer administrative medical assisting programs in Idaho to learn more about your options today.
Medical Office Assistant Programs in Idaho
In order to be hired as this type of medical assistant, you will have to meet the employer’s educational requirements. Some jobs will require an associate degree in medical assisting, while others may only require a certificate or a high school diploma.
In many cases, a prospective employer will prefer that an applicant must have successfully completed a certificate or diploma program. In fact, O*Net reports that more than two-thirds of surveyed administrative medical assistants had completed such a program. Their survey concluded that another 18 percent of respondents had associate’s degrees, and 10 percent were in possession of a high school diploma or equivalent.
If you are interested in being accepted into an Idaho medical assisting certificate program, at least a high school diploma will be required. Some schools may require passing grades in proficiency exams that test keyboard and English language skills. Admission to an associate’s degree program will often require a certain minimum high school GPA.
Certificate programs are often completed in 12-18 months. A student that goes to school full-time may be able to complete the required coursework in one year. Such programs will mix some general classes with those specific to administrative medical assisting.
General classes may focus on computer systems and software like Microsoft Office. Career-specific classes in patient coding, medical office procedures, customer service, medical terminology and public health are common. You’ll often have an opportunity to take other courses in medical transcription, keyboard skills and computer spreadsheets.
An associate’s degree is a more advanced two-year program. You’ll get general coursework in English and math, along with possible courses in psychology and anatomy. The acquisition of an Associate’s Degree may open the doors to higher-paying jobs and future advancement opportunities.
National Health Careers Association administers the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) exam. Passing this exam will lead to a two-year certification that can be renewed every two years. Your certification can be renewed after two years as long as you have completed a minimum of 10 hours of continuing education classes during that time.
Career Outlook for Medical Office Assistants in Idaho
O*Net reports a national median wage of $29,610 in 2013. In Idaho, the median wage of $29,200 is very similar. O*Net projects a 22 percent nationwide increase in administrative medical assistant jobs for the period from 2012 to 2022. Although a greater number of positions will be available in and around Idaho’s major cities like Boise, Pocatello, Nampa, Meridian and Idaho Falls, rural medical clinics and healthcare facilities almost always employ medical administrative assistants as well.
An administrative medical assistant will often enjoy interactions with both patients and healthcare professionals. A comforting and caring attitude can be very helpful to patients that may be nervous about upcoming procedures or consultations. Such patients will often appreciate your kind demeanor. At the same time, interactions with physicians, physicians’ assistants, nurses and other fellow professionals can be very rewarding.
Administrative medical assistants in ID often enjoy a significant amount of job security, and advancement is possible. Experience and continuing education may lead to management or supervisory positions.