Last Updated: April 2, 2017
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Medical Assistant Salary
How much does a medical assistant make? Medical assistants earned a mean average annual salary around $32,850 or $15.79 per hour in 2016 per the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The median wage amount is the wage at which half the laborers in an occupation earned more than that wage amount and half earned less. In addition, the lower 10% of workers earned less than $22,870 or around $10.99 dollars an hour, and the top 10% earned more than $45,310 or an hourly rate of about $21.78 per hour. Some of the top paying states for medical assistants are Alaska, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, Washington, and Minnesota. Alaska had the highest annual average salary of $41,340 or around $19.88 dollars an hour in 2016. For employment levels for this occupation, California is the highest with an estimated 83,230 employed medical assistants with an average annual salary of $36,620.
Medical Assistant Annual and Hourly Wages by State
|Job Title||State||Hourly Rate||Annual Salary|
|Medical Assistant||District of Columbia||$18.99||$39,500|
|Medical Assistant||New Hampshire||$16.81||$34,970|
|Medical Assistant||New Jersey||$16.95||$35,250|
|Medical Assistant||New Mexico||$13.98||$29,070|
|Medical Assistant||New York||$17.08||$35,530|
|Medical Assistant||North Carolina||$15.13||$31,460|
|Medical Assistant||North Dakota||$16.61||$34,540|
|Medical Assistant||Rhode Island||$16.55||$34,430|
|Medical Assistant||South Carolina||$14.60||$30,380|
|Medical Assistant||South Dakota||$13.86||$28,820|
|Medical Assistant||West Virginia||$12.60||$26,210|
Source: bls.gov, mean average salary data as of May 2016 | For more detailed information, try Payscale.com
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Medical Assistant Job Description
The medical assistant (certified or registered) position provides exceptional medical care that meets each patient’s physical, mental, and emotional needs. The person in this position generally works under general supervision. The person in this position is also responsible for various shifts, may be subject to over 40 hours per week and/or callback is required. In healthcare industries, such as hospitals, the medical assistant may also be required to remain on campus immediately before, during, and after severe weather and/or disasters.
What Does a Medical Assistant Do?
Some of the major job duties and responsibilities for a medical assistant includes; prepares patient for provider, maintains supplies, rooms, and medications. This person also performs and tracks tests and results, assists providers and nurses, performs chart documentation, review, and maintenance. The medical assistant role may also perform front office duties when required and completes miscellaneous duties as assigned. This role maintains patient flow in the clinical areas. Additional duties and responsibilities for the medical assistant may include:
- Administers treatments ordered by a provider.
- Responds to patient fill requests and phone calls in a timely manner.
- Performs drug screens, audiograms, pulmonary function tests, respirator fit tests, office based medical testing to include urinalysis, step screens, and flu screen ordered by the provider.
- Correctly completes appropriate forms, requests and requisitions per standard protocol and as per corporate client profiles.
- Cleans, packages, and sterilizes instruments and procedure supplies per OSHA standards. Cleans exam rooms and equipment per OSHA standards.
- Appropriately labels and provides insurance info for any referral to lab, x-ray, or specialist. Refers per insurance guidelines and protocol, records and reviews all services and supplies rendered on the superbill for accuracy and proper code selection. Completes work efficiently and accurately at the pace indicated by the flow of customers. During decreases in customers, utilizes time productively for the benefit of the clinics.
Medical Assistant Education and Qualifications
- High school graduate/(GED)
- Successful completion of a medical assisting program and/or other clinical training required
- One year experience in medical office setting preferred, specific specialty experience preferred
- Must become proficient in Walk in Care, Occupational Health and Wellness/On Site Services capacities
- Must become proficient in performing Drug Screening, Pulmonary Function Testing/Spirometry, Breath Alcohol Testing, Audiometry and Respirator Fit Testing as training is provided
Types of Medical Assistant Certifications
- Certified Medical Assistant (CMA)
- Registered Medical Assistant (RMA)
- National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA)
- Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA)
- Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA)
- Medical assistant certifications are not required for the occupation but some healthcare industries require one.
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