Become a Medical Assistant in 6 Weeks

Accelerated Medical Assistant Programs

become a medical assistant in 6 weeksYou’ve decided you want a career in the medical field, but you know that health care careers require extensive training.

You are the type of person who wants things done NOW! You don’t want to spend years in school. What do you do?

Consider becoming a certified medical assistant. You will be working with patients, doctors, physician assistants, and other staff members as needed.

Training for most medical professions takes years, however, you can become a medical assistant in just six weeks.
 


Related Programs That Might Interest You


 


Jump to:

6 Week Online Medical Assistant Programs | Accelerated Online Medical Assistant Programs | Medical Assitant Programs Near Me

Many vocational or technical courses take a year of study in order to receive a certificate, including the medical assisting field. These courses are good choices for a variety of people, depending on your lifestyle, career goals, and motivation. However, it is important to take the time to recognize what options will work best for you before you jump into your college adventure.

Thanks to technology, courses have been created which allow you to become a medical assistant online. There are also in-class options available, as well as hybrid versions.

When choosing which course option to take, it is important to consider your lifestyle, how well you learn on your own, or if you prefer to learn in a group setting. You will also need to consider how much time you are able to devote to your studies.

What is a Medical Assistant?

As a medical assistant, you will work directly with doctors and patients. There are two types of medical assistant positions: administrative medical assistant and clinical medical assistant. You may do one or the other, or possibly both, depending on the needs of the healthcare facility in which you work. Below is a brief listing of job summaries of both positions. Keep in mind, this list is not exhaustive.

  • Administrative Medical Assistant:
    • Greeting patients
    • Answering phones
    • Accounting and bookkeeping duties, including billing
    • Coding insurance forms
    • Corresponding with insurance companies
    • Updating patient records
    • Scheduling procedures and surgeries
    • Obtaining pre-authorization for procedures
  • Certified Clinical Medical Assistant:
    • Taking patient history
    • Recording vital sign information
    • Drawing blood
    • Performing simple tests such as EKGs
    • Running basic laboratory tests
    • Assisting doctors or nurses during exams
    • Removing sutures
    • Dressing wounds
    • Advising patients of how to take medications

Choosing the Right MA Program

Before jumping into the first medical assistant certification program you find, take time to do some research. Evaluate your personal situation with regards to time and money, as well as your aspirations. Taking the time to answer a few questions will ensure that you are on the right path to your educational goals.

Previous Education

Do you have any previous education under your belt? If so, you may be able to transfer your existing credits and graduate in a shorter amount of time. If you have professional experience in a medical setting, these may also help you to grasp concepts more quickly and may increase your chances of completing some courses in a shorter amount of time.

Classroom Setting: Online vs. In Class

    • Are you the type of person who does well working on your own?
    • Do you like to have an instructor to speak with, directly?
    • Do you enjoy working with other students?
    • Do you need to have interaction with others to help you succeed?
    • How much time can you devote to studying each day?
    • Can you study at specific times, or do you need more flexibility?

Answering these questions will help you to decide if an online medical assistant program or an in-person course is best for you. Many schools also offer a hybrid of these two choices.

How long does it take to become a medical assistant?

The quickest medical assistant program is six weeks long but most medical assistant training is three months or longer.

Medical assistant courses vary from a total of 5 days to two years, depending on the certificate or diploma you are earning. Courses that take roughly two years to complete generally allow you to earn an associate degree. Programs that only take a few months, or less, will provide you with a certificate. Deciding which you prefer, will also help you choose the right medical assisting course to take.

Are you a person who has the ability and resources to take a longer course? Or do you need to find a paying job quickly? Keep in mind that generally, people with more education receive more pay. However, don’t let that dissuade you from taking a shorter course to become a certified medical assistant, there are several options available to get you started.

Outlook for a Career in Medical Assistance

The job market for Medical Assistants holds a very positive outlook. As of 2020, there are 720,900 medical assistants jobs in the US. While the projected national average of job growth is 4% from 2020-2029, this field has a projected 18% growth.
An Associate’s Degree or certification is required for a beginner position as a Medical Assistant. Programs such as these will generally be faster and cheaper than a Bachelor’s Degree, and can grant greater access to jobs in the medical field to those with more limited resources. In this way, it can even act as a stepping stone to fund higher-level medical degrees if you choose to get them.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an 18% job growth rate for medical assistants from 2020-2029 – much faster than the 4% national average for all occupations.

With experience and graduate school, medical assistants can attain both greater skills and higher positions. Being certified in specialties such as orthopedics, pediatrics, or neurology can also broaden your horizons. In this article, we assess what salaries can be expected for various locations and specializations.

Medical Assistant Salaries

As of 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the median salary of medical assistants came out to $35,850 per year, or $17.23 per hour. Actual income for medical assistants can vary greatly based on education, location, experience, and specialty.
Medical assistants have a mean pay at varying levels of education and experience ranging from $13.75/hour to $17.85/hour, according to PayScale. As of 2021, certified and/or experienced medical assistants earn an average of $18.04/hour.
These salaries vary based on location and, according to the BLS in 2020, the mean salary of medical assistants ranges from its lowest at $33,700 in Texas to its highest at $46,610 in Alaska.

Medical Assistant Clinical Specialties

Medical assistants in clinics can specialize in one specific area of the healthcare industry. Most of these specializations require certification. In this article we’ve explained the basics of four of these specialties.

Endocrinology

Medical assistants specializing in endocrinology help endocrinologists treat endocrine disorders including hyperthyroidism, diabetes, and Cushing’s syndrome. Duties of an endocrinologist’s assistant include running tests, treating injuries or disorders, and preparing patients for procedures.
Medical assistants aiding endocrinologists need in-depth technical knowledge of human hormones and related disorders, including how they affect the various parts of the body. In helping patients, medical assistants in endocrinology need skills such as bedside manner, a strong knowledge base on hormone biology, and effective treatment of chemical disorders.

Neurology

In the field of neurology, medical assistants help neurologists treat patients suffering from neurological problems such as cognitive decline, neuropathy, and paralysis. Due to the nature of neurological conditions, the treatments rendered by neurologists and their assistants.
Medical assistants help neurologists conduct tests and brain scans, prepare patients for procedures, and inform patients and their families about their relative diseases and potential treatments. This specialty requires skills such as an informed knowledge of the human nervous system, compassion, and patience.

Obstetrics and Gynecology

Medical assistants that specialize in women’s care including obstetrics and gynecology help Obstetricians and Gynecologists to prevent, diagnose, and treat women and in-utero children. This specialty entails prenatal, natal, and postnatal care. These assistants often help OB/GYNs with scanning, testing, and treating as well as birth itself.
Medical assistants specializing in obstetrics and gynecology prepare women for procedures such as hysterectoymy, tubal ligation, abortion, and removal of ovarian cysts. Specialists in the obstetrics/gynecology field also need skills such as compassionate speech, bedside manner, and a technical knowledge of the anatomy and biological processes of women and fetal children as well as health risks to both. These experts use their skills and knowledge to heal, teach, and comfort their patients.

Oncology

Oncologists require the help of medical assistants for their work in preventing, diagnosing, and treating various kinds of cancers and other tumors in often lifesaving procedures. Most medical assistant roles in this specialization include performing scans or tests, administering treatments, and looking after other patient needs.
Medical assistants in oncology must have advanced knowledge of treatments, and symptoms, and outlooks of various forms of cancer. These assistants must also be compassionate and possess effective bedside manner skills due to the aggressive nature of cancer. Medical assistants in oncology provide life-altering care through effective prevention and treatment as well as through compassionate, supportive communication.

6 Week Medical Assistant Degree Online

You have several choices when searching for the right medical assisting certificate course. We have included a few schools to help you with your search.

St. Augustine School of Medical Assistants

Before enrolling in this online medical assistant program, make sure to check out the reviews on Better Business Bureau. If you are uncomfortable with the reviews, try some of the other fast-track medical assistant programs online below. They’re not six weeks but they are fast.

Time Frame: 6 weeks, self-paced so this MA program can be longer or shorter per your pace
Course Type: Online

Course Cost: $1215, offers reduced rates at different times

Certification Awarded: Certificate

Accreditation: NACB (The National Accreditation and Certification Board)

At St Augustine School you have the ability to take the Medical Assistant course at your own pace. This course does not have any deadlines or time limits, so you can study as your time allows. The average time a student finishes this course is 6-8 weeks. This is the way to become a medical assistant in 6 weeks.

During this course, you will take classes such as medical terminology, medical billing, infection control, and more. You will learn how to process insurance claims, how to give injections as well as emergency procedures, and how to provide CPR. This course allows you to secure employment with a Medical Assistant Certificate. However, St. Augustine also offers certificates in Medical Billing and Coding.

Accelerated Medical Assistant Programs Online & On-Campus

CareerStep Online Education & Training Solutions

Time Frame: 4 months

Course Type: Online

Course Cost: $3,999

Certification Awarded: Certificate

Accreditation: None. However several programs are recognized and certified by industry-specific organizations.

CareerStep Online Education & Training Solutions provides online medical assistant training, that allows you to earn a certificate in just 4 months. This program, coined “The Fast Track,” is all online and you work at your own pace. You will have access to the program for a total of 6 months. This allows you the ability to go back and look up information or you can use the entire 6 months to finish the program.

In the fast-track medical assisting course you will learn patient advocacy, phlebotomy, clinical care, and more. The course is taught online using exercises, images, games, and interactive tools to ensure your understanding of the material. CareerStep Online also offers other health-related courses such as medical coding and EMS education.

U.S. Career Institute

Time Frame: 4 months

Course Type: Online

Course Cost: $1239 Depending on which course you choose and how you pay.

Certification Awarded: Certificate

Accreditation: DEAC, NCCT, NHA, AMT, CACCS

U.S. Career Institute offers two different options for its medical assistant course; the Standard Course and the Enhanced Course. The financial difference is $10 per month. In the enhanced version you receive all of the same education that is taught in the standard version of the program, however, the school adds in a few extras: blood pressure cuff, medical watch, stethoscope, and more.

In this online medical assisting program, you will learn first aid, medical office procedures, medical insurance info, pharmacology, and more. Each course is taught online. However, you do have the option of purchasing hard copy materials for the courses. After you graduate, U.S. Career Institute will provide you with career coaching to help you land the perfect job.

Care One Health Training Institute

Time Frame: 7 or 9 Months

Course Type: Online

Course Cost: $3552.50

Certification Awarded: Certificate

Accreditation: None

At Care One Health Training Institute you can earn a Medical Assistant certificate online in as little as 28 weeks. This course is completed solely online; however, you must appear at the school in person in order to register. While classes are held online, there are deadlines that you must meet.

In this online program, you will learn about special diets, how to administer medications, draw blood, and basic lab procedures. You will also learn how to assist physicians with medical exams, as well as minor surgery. This school also offers several other health-related courses such as CPR, Phlebotomy, EKG Tech, and more. However, these other courses are not offered online, they are in-person courses.

Rasmussen College

Time Frame: 12 months

Course Type: Blended

Course Cost: $28,785 (total tuition and fees)

Certification Awarded: Diploma

Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission, ABHES, several regional accreditations

Rasmussen College offers several different options for those looking to enter the medical field. The medical assistant certificate program is a “blended” course, which means there are classes that are provided online as well as in-person courses.

This program teaches courses on math, communication, medical law and ethics, and administrative practices. You will also take courses that will teach functions of the human body, psychology, and more. In this course, you will also be required to do an externship. Before enrolling in the medical assistant certificate program, you are required to pass a background check as well as be up to date on certain immunizations.

Keiser University

Time Frame: 24 months

Course Type: Blended

Course Cost: $42,336 (yearly tuition excluding fees)

Certification Awarded: Associate of Science Degree

Accreditation: Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs

Keiser University offers a well-established medical assisting program. The length of the course is 24 months. However, you will receive an associate’s degree once you graduate. This program is only available in person and is offered at several campus locations in Florida.

During the medical assisting program at Keiser, you will learn how to prepare exam rooms, client communication, and how to assist in minor surgical procedures. You will take courses such as Radiography and Medical Terminology. Once your coursework is completed you will have two externships to complete as well. However, you must receive at least a “C” in your coursework before you will be able to begin your externships.

FAQ

Can you work as a medical assistant without being certified?

Yes, you can work as a medical assistant without being certified. You can earn a medical assistant associate degree. Nevertheless, having a certification is highly recommended to help set you apart from the ever-increasing competition. You may also find that some employers will only hire candidates that have obtained certification from an accredited medical assistant program as well as proof of certification.

Do medical assistants get paid well?

According to 2019 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical assistants earn an average annual salary of $34,800 per year or $16.73 per hour. The lowest 10% earn less than $25,820, and the highest 10% earn more than $48,720.

Do medical assistants make more money than CNA?

On average medical assistants make nearly $5,000 more per year than certified nursing assistants (CNA). In 2019, CNAs made $29,640 per year ($14.25 per hour) while medical assistants made an average $34,800 per year ($16.73 per hour).

Searching for Medical Assistant Programs Near Me

If you’re looking for medical assistant programs near you, use the tool below. Simply enter your zip code and this tool will populate schools with medical assisting programs near your location.

Related Programs That Might Interest You

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.