Helping out in the examination room or working at the front desk, medical assistants assist with a variety of clinical tasks, and front office and that depend on any specialized training and the individual medical facility. Duties can range from keeping records and booking appointments to taking vital signs and giving injections. With medical assistants needing a briefer period of education, this career can be a good fit if you have a zeal for helping patients and want to enter the medical field more rapidly.
Medical assistants aid patients with administrative tasks like managing medical records, signing in and booking appointments, and they can also do clinical tasks involving blood testing, physical examinations, and patient instruction. Some are hired exclusively to perform administrative or clinical work, while others help out wherever needed in the healthcare facility.
Having excellent interpersonal skills is crucial for helping patients who are distressed and sick, while technical skills are essential for using medical instruments for clinical work. When handling patients’ information and records, you also are responsible for the precision, which needs having an eye for detail.
There are a few ways to become a medical assistant, with earning a certificate or associate’s degree in medical assisting most common. These programs can last a couple of years and include classes teaching medical topics and science and a clinical externship at a domestic medical centre along with laboratories.
The alternative to a postsecondary course is to find a medical assistant job that has an on-the-job training schedule. You have choices for voluntary certification in the field as well as through the National Commission for Certifying Agencies, including the Certified Medical Assistant, Certified Clinical Medical Assistant, and Certified Medical Administrative Assistant options.
How Much Do Medical Assistants Make:
Careers in the U.S:
The median pay for medical assistants, meaning half earned less, and half received more than this, in 2019 was $34,800 a year or $16.73 an hour. Salaries ranged from below $22,890 a year or $10.99 an hour for the bottom 10 percent to more than $45,320 a year or $21.79 an hour for the top ten percent.
Medical assistants who worked in physicians’ offices earned, on average $32,790 a year or $15.77 hourly, while those who worked in retirement communities averaged less at $27,250 annually or $13.19 an hour. Medical assistants working in Massachusetts, Alaska, and the District of Columbia averaged much more than those working in Louisiana, South Dakota, and New Mexico(1).
Careers in Europe:
The average pay for a Medical Assistant is €32,035 a year and €15 an hour in Germany. The average salary range for a Medical Assistant is between €24,322 and €38,415.
Careers in Asia:
An early career Medical Assistant with 1-5 years of experience earns an average total compensation of S$12,900 (Singapore). A mid-career Medical Assistant with 5-10 years of experience makes an average total compensation of S$25,800. An experienced Medical Assistant with 10-20 years of experience earns an average total compensation of S$35,800.
The most significant number of medical assistants work in physicians’ offices. Other assistants work in outpatient care centres, specialists’ offices, nursing homes, hospitals and different settings. Some may work at a front desk while assisting patients filling out documentation and book appointments. In contrast, others stand on their feet and work with other medical professionals to examine patients and do testing around the facility. This is most commonly a full-time profession with regular hours if you work in a doctor’s office or another facility that has regular business hours. However, you can work irregular hours if you work in a hospital or other facility that never closes.
[ Read: Steps to Become a Physician’s Assistant ]
Years of Experience
Gaining specialized skills such as electronic medical records or insurance, continuing your education or becoming certified to become a nurse are few ways you can grow your remuneration over time. Your medical assistant compensation too will generally change as you add more experience, similar to this hourly wage example based on March 2018 data:
- Entry-level: $10.15 – $16.60
- Mid-career: $11.95 – $18.71
- Experienced: $12.58 – $20.38
- Late-career: $12.95 – $21.22
Job Growth Trend
For the decade-spanning 2016 to 2026, medical assistants face good prospects with robust job growth of 29 percent, leading to 183,910 new positions. Demand for health services from the ageing population along with more health facilities opening power this growth. You can find many possibilities in primary care, where more medical assistants are specially required. Also, you can take up one of the medical assistant certifications to enhance your chances of entering the field.