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The Fascinating Truth about Medical Assistants

The Fascinating Truth about Medical Assistants

Dr. Doran's Post on the Fascinating Truth about Medical Assisting: 

After a recent conversation it occurred to me that not only people who came to the United but most born-and-raised Americans are not familiar with the variety of education and jobs in the medical field. One of these professions is Medical Assisting.

I, myself, a trained Dermatologist from another country, discovered the profession by accident. I was told by the head of the Department of Dermatology at Rush that all dermatology and plastic surgery practices are looking for Estheticians with deeper medical training and broader scope of practices to enable them to do laser and other advanced procedures. He said that it would be very beneficial for Clinical Estheticians (who were limited in their responsibilities) to get trained in Medical Assisting. I was puzzled by his suggestion. Like a lot of people, I thought that Medical Assistants were the same as Certified Nursing Assistants, who help take care of the disabled and the elderly.

Still, on the way back, I kept thinking about it and wondered if I had missed something important. Later that day, I retold the conversation to our manager, Anastasia, and asked her to look into what Medical Assistants are.

After thorough research, she presented what the profession was, the educational requirements, and the scope of their practice. And I immediately thought about what a great complementary match it was, both for our Academy and for our Clinical Esthetics graduates!

So here are the fascinating facts about the Medical Assistants:

Medical Assistants (MAs) were introduced as a profession to cover for shortage of nurses to assist the doctors. Originally, Medical Assistants were trained by the doctors who hired them, which meant that their skills were not uniform and there was no recognition at the State or national level. Today, many private practices refer to hire several Medical Assistants instead of one just one nurse. The scope of practice differ between the two professions, depending on the State regulations, but MAs can perform many of the same tasks as nurses, including injections (not intravenous in IL) and laser.  

Today, in order to become a Medical Assistant, your best bet is to enroll in a training program. Although there is no license (the way it is for estheticians), national certification is the credential that helps you find work. At our Academy, we include the preparation and the cost of the NHA examination in the program. And we are very proud that 100% of our graduates pass the National Certification exam!

The changes to the profession have not affected its popularity. Now, more that ever, Medical Assistants are needed both in private offices and in hospitals. In fact, according to the  US News , it is one of the most in-demand careers in America!

An according to the  US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the outlook is sunny -- the profession is expected to grow by 29% between 2016 and 2026

From the time we started to research Medical Assisting, we quickly realized that even with a favorable job market, the key to success is to have: knowledge of all aspects of the career and great practical skills! This is why we have decided to include in our program basically four different professions: Phlebotomist, EKG Techologist, Administrative Medical Assistant, and Clinical Medical Assistant. We have also decided early on that we want to continue to put our commitment to quality of training above all else -- and limit the number of students in each class, so that they get a lot of personalized attention from the instructor. After  talking to medical doctors and hospitals, we realized that what many new medical assistants lack is the extensive practical training, especially working with needles. And this is another area where we knew we could distinguish ourselves! 

It has now been nine years since I have learned about Medical Assistants -- and 8 years since we've launched the program. It has been a delight to watch the many many women and men we have trained, both already licensed estheticians and people looking to change careers, succeed as Nationally Certified Medical Assistants, working not just in Illinois, but in Arizona, Florida, and other States. And after all these years, my passion for Medical Assisting burns as brightly as when our manager told me about the career. I hope you will get as excited about this amazing profession as I am!  

With Love, 

Dr. Doran

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