Medical Assistant Career
Medical assistant career opportunities are one of the professions in the United States that has a high employment growth. As a matter of Fact, the United States Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics expected that opportunities for medical assistant careers will still be on high demand until the year 2012. The reason why medical assistant careers are on the rise is because of the constant advances of the field of medicine, the ever increasing and aging population and the development and growth of practices, health care service facilities, clinics and hospitals.
The need for additional personnel is very much needed to meet the demands, most especially with the medical assistant careers that are able to handle both clinical and administrative procedures and tasks. The duties and responsibilities of medical assistants are to perform routine administrative and clinical tasks in order to uphold the efficiency in the offices of physicians (podiatrists, chiropractors, etc.), hospitals, clinics and other health care service facilities. The duties and responsibilities of medical assistants vary depending on the location, State law and the size of the practice.
Some of the administrative and clerical tasks that a medical assistant perform are answering the telephone, schedules appointments, files and updates the medical records and information of patients, files and processes insurance forms, book keeping, handles communications, billing and arranging hospital admissions and laboratory services.
The clinical duties that a medical assistant performs depend on the law of the State that they are currently employed. Some of these duties and responsibilities are documenting medical histories of patients, recording vital signs of patients, giving details of procedures of treatments to the patients, getting the patients ready for their examination and assisting the physician during an examination. Other duties of medical assistants include collecting and preparing laboratory specimens, doing basic laboratory test, disposing contaminated medical supplies and sterilizing medical instruments. Medical assistants can also give details on the medications of a patient and special diets. Medical may also set up and administer medications to the patient and authorize medication refills (as directed by the physician of course) and telephone prescriptions to a pharmacy. There are some State laws that enable the medical assistants to draw blood, prepare the patients for X-ray, take ECGs, changes dressings and remove sutures.
Medical assistant careers can move up if they specialize on some areas in the health care service industry. Additional certifications and formal trainings can make the medical assistant careers advance to other health care professions like nursing. The earnings of medical assistants depend on some factors. These depend on the level of expertise, work experience and the location of a medical assistant. A medical assistant can earn as low as $17,000 to as high as $35,000 annually.