If you’re looking to join the medical profession, your first opportunity may come as a certified medical assistant. What exactly does a certified medical assistant do, and what are they responsible for? When deciding upon the next step of your career journey, consider if you’re a good fit for becoming a CMA. Let’s take a closer look at what all of this means.
The essential responsibilities of a certified medical assistant will generally be either in clerical work or in clinical work. Despite how similar they may sound, each category has different tasks and procedures for the assistants to accomplish. Here are a few examples of clerical duties:
- Greeting new or returning patients
- Making sure all records are kept up-to-date
- Responding to phone calls and emails
- Scheduling appointments and performing intake
- Completing relevant documentation for insurance purposes
- Organizing and bills and payments
And here are some examples of clinical duties:
- Preparing patients for their examination
- Performing initial tests
- Sterilizing medical equipment and drawing blood
- Changing bandages or removing stitches
- Performing X-ray scans
- Helping patients take their medication and facilitate prescription refills
If you do become a certified medical assistant, you can anticipate that you will need to be:
- Well-educated and certified: Getting your education in this field is the first step on the path to becoming a certified medical assistant. This process involves graduating from a reputable and properly accredited program. Once you have earned your degree, you can also choose to take the certification test. While certification is certainly conducive to your future career prospects, you don’t always need to be certified before you can start working as a CMA – you could always earn that certification while working professionally.
- Dressed well and neatly: In any field, it is important to project a professional appearance. As a CMA, you will want to make a good first impression, The key to achieving this is by keeping your scrubs clean and pressed; you should also be sure your shoes are clean as well. Appearance is an integral part of the job, so be sure your hair and nails are neatly-groomed as well. If you have any tattoos, make sure they are obscured or hidden while you work.
- Upbeat and cheerful: Being upbeat, cheerful, and friendly will not only lift the spirits of your patients, but will contribute to more positive experiences with everyone around you, including the doctors and nurses you are assisting.
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