Medical Assistant Schools in Pennsylvania
Few industries offer the wide range of opportunities offered by the health care industry. If you’re looking for a new career path that may allow you to develop medical expertise, interact extensively with medical professionals and patients, and enjoy different employment opportunities, consider becoming a medical assistant. Medical assistant schools in PA can give you the technical knowledge and clinical skills you need to thrive in this field.
All across the state of Pennsylvania, health care is expanding and medical institutions are struggling to keep up with demand. Dropping insurance rates, along with federal healthcare expansion efforts, have increased the number of Pennsylvania residents with health insurance, increasing the amount of patients at each doctor’s office in turn. Legislators in the state are attempting to expand Medicaid in Pennsylvania, which could further grow doctors’ caseloads. To be able to provide prompt, non-rushed care, many medical institutions hire medical assistants. Medical assistants can take vitals, take patient histories, and perform other services that can be time-consuming for doctors.
If you work well with children, Medical Assisting in Pennsylvania may be a great career to explore. According to Live Insurance News, the Pennsylvania Children’s Health Insurance Program has received a grant that allows it to offer insurance to more children. Pediatric clinics and wards may need more medical assistants to meet statewide needs.
Another benefit of starting your medical assisting career in Pennsylvania is the professional support in this area. The Pennsylvania Society of Medical Assistants offers continuing education events, networking opportunities, and job listings to medical assistants.
Medical Assistant Education in Pennsylvania
If you’re looking for a career in a reliable, steady industry that continues to grow year after year, you really need to look into options in the healthcare industry. Healthcare is a universal need; people of all ages, backgrounds, and medical needs rely on the services of doctors and nurses to stay healthy.
There are many support positions within this industry that only require a diploma, certificate, or Associate’s degree. Whether you want to work in a clinical role or an administrative role, you may be able to get started at one of the many medical assistant schools in Pennsylvania.
You may find medical assisting programs at local hospitals, community colleges, and technical schools. You will want to decide what your long-term goals are and choose the appropriate program based on that. If you want to continue your education to earn a Bachelor’s degree, consider starting with an Associate’s degree medical assisting program. This option requires about two years of school. Certificate and diploma programs, which generally last about one year, may be better suited to those who wish to get into the field as quickly as possible, with less concern about future educational degrees.
To become a medical assistant, PA schools require you to complete a variety of clinical and administrative courses. On the clinical side, you may take classes like Clinical Procedures, Lab Procedures, and Phlebotomy. While you may spend some time in the classroom, most of your time in these classes will likely be spent in the lab or at a clinical site. Required administrative courses may include Medical Insurance and Billing, Medical Office Procedures, and Medical Law & Ethics. Classroom-based courses that focus on medical knowledge and understanding include Medical Terminology, Pharmacology, and Human Physiology.
Upon completion of your medical assistant training in PA, you may wish to become certified as a medical assistant. While this state does not require licensure, medical assistant certification in PA may help you when you go to apply for jobs. The American Association of Medical Assistants requires you to provide proof of your education and pass a comprehensive exam before you become a Certified Medical Assistant.
Many medical assistant programs in PA offer scholarships and grants. You may also qualify for third-party scholarships through other organizations. The PinnacleHealth Auxiliary Ernest R. McDowell Health Career Scholarship is worth $1,000. You may also apply for scholarships through the Pennsylvania Health Information Management Association. Guthrie Health offers scholarships worth $650 per year.
Medical Assisting Classes in Pennsylvania
One of the most popular options for aspiring healthcare professionals is a medical assistant program. This type of program is available at various levels of study, including one-year diploma and certificate programs and two-year Associate’s degree programs.
If you want to apply for medical assistant certification, PA requires that you attend an accredited school and apply for certification after graduation. Throughout your education, you may get lots of clinical experience in local nursing homes, hospitals, and clinics. However, you also delve into medical theory in classroom coursework.
Course Requirements in Medical Assisting
- Medical Assistant Lab Procedures
- Medical Assistant Clinical Procedures
- Pharmacology for Allied Health
- Medical Assistant Practicum
Billing and Coding Programs in Pennsylvania
Some students would prefer to work with paperwork and technology more than patients. If you see yourself in an administrative role in healthcare, you may want to explore a billing and coding career. Billing and coding involves ensuring that healthcare paperwork is correct and includes all of the procedures that a patient has gone through. This helps the facility get paid for its services, materials, and time.
You may send bills to individuals or insurance companies. This often involves following up with insurance companies and sending remaining bills to patients. This degree tends to offer lots of experience with medical billing and coding programs.
Class Options in Billing and Coding Programs
- Medical Language
- Human Anatomy and Physiology
- Coding for Insurance
- Healthcare Records
Pennsylvania Nurse Aide and Patient Care Tech Classes
Do you want to spend most of your work hours working directly with patients, improving their healthcare experience, and ensuring that they get the care they deserve? Another option for training in Pennsylvania is patient care technician or certified nursing assistant education.
These programs are often similar in length, usually lasting eight to 12 weeks. Some patient care technician programs are longer, since they cover a greater variety of medical techniques and services. If you go into a patient care technician program, you may graduate in as little as one semester.
While you may learn how to do documentation on a patient’s status and care, the majority of your experience should come from clinical hours spent working hands-on with patients.
Nurse Aide Classes
- Clinical Phlebotomy
- Medical Terminology
- Ethics in Healthcare
Medical Secretary and Administrative Med Assisting Programs in Pennsylvania
Perhaps you’re really interested in an administrative healthcare career, but the field of billing and coding just doesn’t feel like a good fit for you. Consider becoming a medical secretary or medical office assistant. While there are programs with both titles, the title of medical office assisting is gaining popularity at many schools.
In this degree, you do not learn how to provide patient care. Instead, you find out what it takes to make a medical office run smoothly every day and how to provide those services. Clinical experience isn’t mandatory for many programs, making this a convenient choice for those who want to complete their medical assistant training online.
Some of the topics you may cover in your training include patient privacy, patient scheduling, billing, and office management.
Required Medical Secretary Courses
- Electronic Health Records
- Healthcare Documentation
- Medical Office Administration
- Patient Billing and Reimbursement
It’s clear that there are many paths to the healthcare industry, making it easy to choose a training option that makes full use of your skills and interests.
Why not start looking into educational options today?
If you’re ready to learn more about medical assistant certification, Pennsylvania schools are ready to help you. Contact programs near you today to get started.
Learn More About Medical Assisting Programs in Your City
Medical Assisting Careers in Pennsylvania
Now that you’re well-versed in training options for aspiring medical assistants, you can learn more about using your education in the workforce. Pennsylvania is home to hundreds of clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, and insurance companies that rely on professionals who have the right training.
Healthcare is a fairly demanding field with varying scheduling needs, so you should be ready to work nights, weekends, and holidays as needed. This may include overtime, since nursing homes and other facilities often deal with staffing shortages. As you gain seniority and work your way up the ladder, you may qualify for daytime positions that let you work more conventional hours.
Job growth in Pennsylvania is, as a general rule, fairly close to national averages. Between 2014 and 2024, job openings for medical assistants may jump 15% in Pennsylvania (O*Net, 2017). At the same time, demand for medical records technicians may increase 12% (O*Net, 2017). A 12% increase in job openings for CNAs is expected by 2024, while demand for medical secretaries may swell 13% (O*Net, 2017).
Pennsylvania has a growing population of young families and retirees, both of which have a variety of healthcare needs. Legislation has improved outcomes in Pennsylvania and decreased the amount of uncompensated care given at hospitals and clinics (Post Gazette, 2017). As a result, many facilities now have the funding they need to operate at higher staffing levels and provide better care to patients.
If you’re ready to become part of one of the largest industries in Pennsylvania, take advantage of this opportunity to get involved in healthcare. Whether you want to work in a rural or urban area, you have numerous options to explore.
Get on the right path today by reaching out to medical assistant schools in Pennsylvania.
Listed below are all of the schools offering Medical Assistant programs in Pennsylvania. 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.