What is a Medical Assistant?

what is a medical assistant

What is a medical assistant?” It’s an important question if you are considering a healthcare career. The scope of their duties and responsibilities of certified medical assistants are quite large.
A lot of that is determined by the atmosphere in which you are employed. Each office or facility has different tasks needed from their CMAs. Below we cover the tasks that are typically required for a medical assistant career.

So, What Is A Medical Assistant?

In short, a medical assistant is a medical professional that supports healthcare professionals like doctors or nurse practitioners. The support comes in various forms. They can be administrative, clinical or situational tasks that are all supporting the overall function of the medical office or facility.
To become a CMA or certified medical assistant, you will need to complete either an online medical assistant program or a traditional medical assistant program. After completion of the program you will then need to pass the CMA examination for your medical assistant certification. Not required in all states, it does give you a leg up on your competition in states that do not require it since your training level will be higher. Many employers only hire certified medical assistants regardless of state mandates.

What Does a Medical Assistant Do?

Depending where you are employed and the type of facility it is determines how much your job is weighted towards clinical or administrative tasks. Most offices have multiple CMAs that do individual tasks all the time. It just depends on the office. All you can do is get prepared.

CMA Clinical Responsibilities

In clinical work, a CMA would be working with the patient and the doctor or licensed professional. There is a limit on what a CMA can do since they have a limited training for some duties. Here are some usual clinical duties:

  • Monitoring patient vital signs
  • Collect samples for testing
  • Administer injections and or medications
  • Prep all necessary medical supplies and or medical instruments

Administrative Responsibilities

In an administrative setting a CMA would be doing more clerical like duties like scheduling patients, making phone calls, answering phones, filing and other tasks. Below we listed others:

  • Tracking billing
  • Answer phones and schedule appointments
  • Manage patient files
  • Coordinate all lab work

What is a Medical Assistant

Summing up – What Is A Medical Assistant?

The certified medical assistant is an integral part of the medical office team as any other. They handle many tasks and get compensated well for that work. They are the Jack of all trades in the medical office!!

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