Medical Assistant Schools in Alabama
As an increasing amount of people get health insurance and seek medical care for the first time, doctors, nurses, and other medical personnel are finding themselves pressed for time. Between the highly-skilled work they’re trained for and basic tasks like collecting patient history, doctors are forced to put their patients through long wait times. If you’re looking for a way to get into the medical field and help this shortage, consider becoming a medical assistant!
AL.com notes that Alabama has been working to expand Medicaid. What does this mean for health care institutions in Alabama? They may have a big jump in patient numbers, leading to an increased demand for medical assistants.
Many health care institutions are looking to medical assistants to help perform basic tasks and reduce the amount of time patients spend waiting. A recent report shows that Alabama has one of the longest average wait times in the country. Medical assistants may play a significant role in fixing this issue.
There are also professional resources available for medical assistants, which can help you get a jump-start on your career. The American Association of Medical Assistants notes that there are five chapters of the Association in Alabama.
Medical Assistant Education in Alabama
Ready to start your medical assisting education but not sure what this program has in store for you? To start, you’re looking at a one-to-two year commitment. Diploma and certificate programs in this state tend to last about one year, but you’ll need two years of study to earn an Associate’s degree. If you’re interested in pursuing optional certification through the American Association of Medical Assistants, you’ll need to attend a CAAHEP or ABHES-accredited program.
Alabama MA schools address many different learning outcomes. These instructors hope to create graduates that can carry out diagnostic tests, act within legal and ethical boundaries, instruct patients on basic care, perform clerical work, and provide a basic level of patient care.
To meet these goals, you’ll likely have to take classes in different areas of health care. Some of the core classes that may be part of your curriculum include Anatomy and Physiology, Medical Laboratory Procedures, Medical Specialty Procedures, and Patient-Centered Care. You won’t be spending all of your time in the classroom in this degree program. Instead, you will likely spend quite a bit of time in local hospitals, nursing homes, and other medical facilities. You can shadow doctors and medical assistants to learn how to apply your training.
Since medical facilities and organizations in Alabama are invested in the success of medical assisting students, they provide many different scholarships for health care students. Once you are accepted to a medical assisting program, you can start the scholarship application process. The Alabama Public Health Association awards a range of scholarships to health care students that care about public health. If you’re willing to commit to employment at a specific place after graduation, you might be able to apply for a scholarship through the East Alabama Medical Center. The Baptist Health Care Scholarship Program funds more than $20,000 in scholarships each year.
You’re ready to get involved in one of Alabama’s fastest growing industries. Healthcare isn’t likely to slow down anytime soon, with changing legislation and a growing population creating a high demand for medical professionals. Medical assistant schools in Alabama are the ideal place to begin your education, with tons of program options and different areas of study.
If you’re trying to get as much as possible out of your education, it’s important to focus on practical experience. Theory is important to any healthcare career, but you have to be able to put knowledge to work when you’re with patients. If you have the opportunity, go above and beyond minimum requirements to spend more time with patients. Not only may this make you more technically skilled and competent, it may help you build professional connections in this industry.
Medical Assisting Classes in Alabama
As you explore clinical and medical office training in Alabama, you may come across standard medical assisting programs. These programs are meant to fit the needs of those who want to work in office and clinical settings. When you go this route, you may split your time between administrative skills and patient care skills.
During your administrative training, you may find out what it’s like to be in the front office of a clinic or hospital. Your training may explore skills like patient interaction, practitioner communication, insurance paperwork, and medical billing. In this area of study, clinical experience may not be necessary. However, you should still try to get some work experience in a nearby medical facility.
The other part of your education is clinical in nature. Your clinical education may show you skills like phlebotomy, vital signs, patient transfers, and medication administration.
While this may seem like a lot to cover, programs are generally very quick. In one year, you may earn a certificate or diploma. In two years, you may get your Associate’s degree.
Medical Assisting Coursework
- Medical Law and Ethics for the Medical Assistant
- Clinical Procedures
- Medical Administrative Procedures
- Medical Assisting Theory
- Management of Office Emergencies
Billing and Coding Programs in Alabama
At quite a few medical assistant schools in Alabama, you can explore the world of billing and coding. Unlike typical med assisting programs, which include clinical work, billing and coding is strictly administrative. If this sounds more appealing than applying for medical assistant certification in Alabama, you may learn about the technical side of medical office administration. Medical billing is key to the running of any healthcare facility. Without proper billing procedures, healthcare facilities quickly run out of money. Coding is the other half of this field. Facilities code for every diagnosis given out by a practitioner and for every procedure that patients go through. This makes it easy to appropriately bill insurance and patients.
Class Options in Billing and Coding Programs
- Diagnostics and Pharmacology
- Health Data Content and Structure
- Medical Coding Systems
- HIT Classification and Reimbursement
- Expanded Medical Coding
Alabama Nurse Aide and Patient Care Tech Classes
Perhaps you’d rather focus on clinical assisting work instead of medical office training in Alabama. Becoming a certified nursing assistant or patient care technician makes it easy to focus your efforts on patients, rather than office work. If you choose this route, be ready to put in lots of physical work. You may learn how to transfer patients, ensure that they are fed, provide updates on their status, and help them ambulate. While you may spend a bit of your time in the classroom or lab, most of your training time takes you into local clinical settings.
CNA and Patient Care Tech Courses
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
- Medical Terminology
- Fundamentals of Nursing
- Paramedic Cardiology
- Medical Assisting Theory
Medical Secretary and Administrative Med Assisting Programs in Alabama
At many medical assistant schools in Alabama, you can learn how to become an administrative medical assistant. Medical secretaries are typically the first professionals that patients see when they arrive at a clinic or hospital. It’s crucial for each facility to have well-trained, professional staff members that can help patients feel comfortable as they wait to be seen. Your training may help you master medical terminology, customer service skills, documentation skills, and healthcare communication skills.
Administrative Medical Assisting Classes
- Medical Terminology
- Medical Office Procedures
- Computer Fundamentals in Healthcare
- Medical Insurance Procedures
Are you ready to start working toward medical assistant certification in Alabama?
This is your time to act. Explore our list of medical assistant schools in Alabama and get in touch with the ones that offer your program of choice.
Learn More About Medical Assisting Programs in Your City
Medical Assisting Careers in Alabama
Medical Assistant Career Outlook in Alabama
Once you finish your medical office training in Alabama, you may be ready to start exploring local job openings and places of employment. Several industries have seen substantial growth in Alabama in recent years, and much of this growth is led by the healthcare field (Birmingham Business Journal, 2017). If you’ve been waiting for the ideal time to get started in this field, the coming years may have lots of new job openings.
Before committing to a program, it’s helpful to look into the job outlook in your area. Between 2014 and 2024, job openings for medical assistants may swell 27% in Alabama (O*Net, 2017). If you graduate from a medical billing and coding program, you may be able to apply for medical records technician jobs. By the year 2024, job openings may jump 18% (O*Net, 2017). Certified nursing assistants may apply for job openings at nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other long-term care facilities. A 16% increase in demand is anticipated between 2014 and 2024 (O*Net, 2024). Those with experience in medical office management are in high demand in Alabama; a 23% growth in job openings is expected by 2024 (O*Net, 2017).
Earning medical assistant certification in Alabama can pay off in many ways. Throughout your career, you may enjoy the freedom of exploring different work settings. Some new graduates choose to stay in long-term care, while others explore acute care needs in hospitals and clinics. No matter which of these options appeals to you, your journey begins with the right education.
Listed below are all of the schools offering Medical Assistant programs in Alabama. 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.
Here are the Medical Assistant schools…
Salary numbers provided are from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.