Skip to content
NEW YEAR SALE - SAVE AN EXTRA 15% – PLUS FREE COURSE BUNDLE UPGRADES - SALE EXTENDED 7 DAYS
NEW YEAR SALE - SAVE AN EXTRA 15% – PLUS FREE COURSE BUNDLE UPGRADES - SALE EXTENDED 7 DAYS

Country

How To Become A Certified Medical Assistant

How To Become A Certified Medical Assistant

Medical assistance is an integral part of the healthcare system. From administrative tasks to assisting with medical care, medical assistants ensure the smooth operation of your healthcare experience.

Medical assisting is a growing career, and medical demand is increasing, raising the importance of those assisting healthcare professionals.

You need your CMA AAMA Certificate to become a medical assistant, obtained through a training program and exam.  

Are you interested in healthcare, have strong communication skills, and want a range of career opportunities? Consider becoming a medical assistant.

We’ll share what a medical assistant career entails and our tips on the best certification programs to get you started.

What is a certified medical assistant?

A medical assistant is a dynamic career, and it involves completing everything from medication administration to practical nursing, such as billing and keeping patient records.

Depending on your employer, level of experience, and specialization, you may be required to undertake more technical tasks. A medical assistant might help as a pharmacy technician, for example.

A certified medical assistant is someone who has obtained their Certified Clinical Medical Assistant CCMA credential. The American Association of Medical Assistants can award this.

Receiving your medical assistant CCMA will give you more excellent career prospects. From better job security to respect from employers, you will be better able to launch your medical clinical assistant career.

To achieve your CCMA certification, you need to take an exam. There are many training courses available to help you succeed. 

What does a certified medical assistant do?

The job of a Certified Medical Assistant CMA varies from administration to lab procedures. A medical assistant career is diverse and exciting.

A newly accredited medical administrative assistant might predominantly work in office management. 

Managing a medical office involves looking after health records, keeping them up to date and accurate. You will act as an office administrator, organizing billing and communicating with patients. You might also be in charge of ordering supplies. Understanding how to navigate health information technologies is essential.

A medical assistant might also complete medical coding, transferring patient information into a universal code for electronic medical records.

A lot of medical assistant duties differ depending on the place of work. A job in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) might include assisting in ambulatory care and understanding surgical technology. In a hospital, you might act as a radiologic technologist, positioning patients and ensuring the quality of results.

Working in a medical office or surgery might require assisting with clinical procedures, physical therapy, and laboratory procedures. A medical assistant will take a patient’s vital signs and perform minor medical procedures.

To become a medical assistant, you do not need certification or qualifications. However, a certified medical assistant will have better job opportunities and career growth. 

A certified medical assistant might be more likely to be trusted with technical, skilled medical tasks. If you want to progress your career as a medical assistant, start your medical assistant training to get your certificate.

What skills does a medical assistant need?

The essential skills that all medical assistants need are strong organizational skills, communication, and a willingness to learn.

1. Admin skills

Administrative skills involve everything from organization to time management. Knowing your way around an office and computer systems is vital, as are your written communication skills. 

You will complete medical billing, so communication with patients should be polite, professional, and transparent. The more organized and clear you are, the smoother the healthcare system will work.

Basic medical skills are necessary for working as a medical assistant. An understanding of anatomy and physiology, medical law and ethics, and medical terminology is crucial. Most medical assistance training will cover the required knowledge.

2. Follow medical protocols and procedures

Following protocols is essential. A medical office can be fast-paced and pressured, and knowing when to follow instructions is crucial for patient safety. Also, understanding rules concerning confidentiality are imperative.

3. Strong interpersonal skills

Interpersonal skills are also beneficial for a medical assistant. You will spend a lot of time conversing with patients, and you need to be a good verbal communicator. You will need to create small talk, relax a distressed patient, and clearly explain medical procedures and care.

4. Attention to detail

Lastly, meticulous attention to detail is critical. Careful keeping of patient medical records and an immaculate office will make you a better medical assistant. You need to record medications and procedures for future reference, so accuracy and precision are essential. 

To receive your AAMA Certification, you will need to prove you possess these skills. Training programs cover how to learn and improve to increase your employment opportunities.

Is a medical assistant a promising career?

Medical assistant careers have good job potential and personal growth opportunities. The healthcare system is vast and ever-growing. Becoming a clinical medical assistant will provide plenty of scopes to develop your career.

It is a stable and secure job choice. Increasing patient numbers and demand for healthcare means that there is always a need for medical assistants. 

You might want to pursue another career in medicine, such as nursing or a clinical team leader. A background as a medical assistant is an excellent way to progress into other areas in healthcare.

It is a well-respected job, with the opportunity to meet plenty of exciting professionals and people. You will get personal enrichment from helping others and taking care of patients.

Unlike many other medical professions, becoming a certified medical assistant does not take years of training, and you can get your CMA Certification in under a year. If you’re looking for a quick way into the industry and a viable career, becoming a medical assistant is beneficial.

Medical assistants are always in high demand, and the career is flexible. Wherever you move, whichever state you are in, you will likely always be able to work as a medical assistant. As a professional in your field, you will receive the respect and opportunities you deserve.

How much does a certified medical assistant make?

According to the Bureau of Labor, certified medical assistants make on average $35,850 annually, and the job has a faster than average growth rate.

Do medical assistants have to be certified?

While you do not need to be certified to be a medical assistant, it is a good idea. From increased job prospects to a better understanding of the job, getting accredited can boost your career. You can take any training program or online medical assistant course to prepare.

There are several levels of accreditation for medical assistants, and third parties administer the exams and certifications. 

The National Commission for Certifying Agencies recognizes the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant CMAA from the National Healthcareer Association.

They also recognize the CMA from the American Association of Medical Assistants and the National Certified Medical Assistant NCMA from the National Center for Competency Testing.

To become a certified clinical medical assistant, receiving your CMA AAMA or assisting certificate requires an exam. There are many programs of study to prepare you to take your clinical medical assistant’s exam.

Passing the exam accredits medical assistants with a certification to prove your commitment to the job. Prospective employers will value a certified medical assistant over a non-certified one. 

To work as a medical assistant without certification might require years of experience instead. Unless you have previous experience in medicine, receiving your certification is a quicker route to securing your medical assistant job.

Certified medical assistants prove your competence to work in the healthcare system. It enables you to get taken seriously by other healthcare professionals who have similarly worked hard for their qualifications.

What is required to become a certified medical assistant?

To receive the CMA credentials, you need to meet the exam eligibility criteria. To apply for the exam, you need to have graduated high school or got your GED. Relevant subjects like science and math or health programs will be beneficial. You need to complete a medical assistant course to prepare yourself to take the CMA exam.

If you can get work experience or volunteer in a medical office, this will look good on your resume. Work experience will provide you with a broad scope of practice to help you achieve your certification.

Enroll in a recognized medical assistant program to learn the necessary skills and experience to pass your exam and succeed. Courses can take as little as six weeks to complete and cover the required content. 

Submit your exam application to an accreditation body, such as the National Healthcareer Association NHA or National Center for Competency Testing. Or the Registered Medical Assistant RMA or CMA AAMA exam.

Different testing bodies have different admissions requirements, so check what you need before applying. They also might require exam fees.

The exam often covers human behavior, human growth, death, data collection, nonverbal communication, and medical law. You need to pass the exam within one year of finishing your accredited training program.

You then need to maintain your certification by renewing it. The CMA is valid for 60 months and requires renewal every five years. You can maintain your CMA by retaking an exam or taking continuing education modules.

What courses to take to become a medical assistant?

Many accredited medical assistant programs guarantee student success to become a certified or registered medical assistant. A technical college might offer a program guide to medical assisting.

Online medical courses are flexible and accessible. Courses for Success offer a Being an Administrative Medical Assistant Online Certificate Course. A medical assistant course online will help you prepare for the exam.

The content outlines scheduling appointments, medical law, patients insurance, billing, and diagnostic and procedure codes.

The course takes six weeks to complete, requiring only two to four hours of study per week. It is entirely online and accessible 24/7 for you to learn at your leisure. If you lead a busy life, an online training program will suit you.

You might want to take several courses to build a well-rounded knowledge of the role and medical profession.

Programs accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies receive medical assisting certifications. It is also advisable to look for courses that offer practice exams to ensure you are ready.

How long is a medical assistant course? 

Medical assistant programs can take only a few weeks to complete. Course descriptions usually tell you how long they are. Find the right assisting programs that offer as much training as you need.

If you think you need plenty of time for your health education and exam content, find a medical assistant school that takes the time you need.

Becoming a certified medical administrative assistant should take less than a year, and it depends on when you feel you are ready to take your certification exam.

Decide on the right course to suit your needs and flexibility to receive your medical assistant certification. Put the hours in that are required, and soon, you will be a medical assistant CCMA.

Why Courses for Success? 

Courses for Success offers over 10,000 online courses, all of which aim to help you in your personal development and career progression. Not only that, but you can also study them anywhere and at any time, and take them at your own pace, too.

You don’t need career diplomas or specific experience to get started. From our coding courses and trading courses to design courses and developer courses, every course we offer will help boost your prospects, no matter who you are.


Beyond just the education itself, students will be issued a certificate online after completing each of the learning courses they do. Our online administrative medical assistant courses are no exception and are recognized by industry leaders. You could make a name for yourself by signing up for a Courses for Success short course today.

Previous article 6 Reasons Why Active Listening Is Important