Medical Administrative Assistant Programs in Washington
With the appropriate degree or certificate, you can become a certified medical administrative assistant in Washington. Depending on your skills and experience, you may find employment opportunities in clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, and private practices. As a medical administrative assistant, you may greet arriving patients, schedule appointments, provide support services, process insurance information, and maintain patient files, helping medical facilities stay organized and keep information flowing smoothly.
To find the med assisting programs offered in your area, contact the schools you find listed below and request program information today.
If you are a detail-oriented individual, medical assisting can provide you with a rewarding career, especially if you enjoy helping others. You should have excellent communication skills, which can be developed through an in-depth degree or certificate program. Most employers in Washington prefer hiring those who have earned an accredited degree and have passed the certification exam, even though some do hire high school graduates.
According to a recent survey, approximately 65 percent of medical administrative assistants have earned their certificate; while 18 percent have obtained an associate’s degree (O*Net, 2013). By earning your medical assisting degree at an accredited college in Washington, you could qualify for a higher wage at medical centers.
Medical Administrative Assistant Education in Washington
In order to enroll in an accredited medical administrative assistant program in Washington, you need to prove that you have earned your high school diploma or GED. Many colleges may even require a background check and the completion of an English proficiency test before you are accepted. If your goal is to earn an associate’s degree in med assisting, you may need to meet the college’s minimum high school GPA requirements for enrollment.
Requiring one year of full-time coursework, medical assistant certificate programs in Washington may cover a wide range of subjects, including medical terminology, customer service in a healthcare setting, medical office procedures, and patient coding. For an associate’s degree program, you will need to complete two years of educational training, including math, English, and science.
If you are in need of financial assistance to cover your college costs, the federal government offers various options, such as Federal Pell Grants or Federal Student Aid. The government awards financial aid to those who are attending four-year colleges, universities, or community colleges recognized by the Department of Education. You may also qualify for low-interest loans or work-study jobs. If you need to take out a loan, you may be eligible for a direct loan, such as The William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program. As with any loan or grant, always do your research to ascertain one that will benefit your financial situation.
Medical Administrative Assistant Careers in Washington
A recent report shows that the employment outlook for medical administrative assistants is predicting a 29 percent growth throughout the nation by 2022 (BLS, 2012). With medical facilities in Washington employing approximately 12,850 medical assistants, this increase in demand may provide an additional 3,727 job opportunities over the next few years (BLS, 2014). Once you have earned your medical administrative assistant certificate or degree, you are eligible to take a certification examination accredited by the Institute for Credentialing Excellence, including the:
- Certified Medical Administrative Assistant exam through the National Healthcareer Association
- National Certified Medical Assistant exam through the National Center for Competency Testing
- Certified Medical Assistant exam through the American Association of Medical Assistants
With Washington being one of the top five paying states for medical assistants, you may earn an average annual wage of $35,850. Taking the certification exam may qualify you for a higher wage at your place of employment, potentially allowing you to earn around $46,650 annually (BLS, 2014). Becoming a certified medical administrative assistant can bring you career stability, while allowing you to provide essential health services in your community.
Contact the medical assistant programs in Washington to learn how you can enter this rewarding career field today.