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MEDICAL ASSISTANT

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Designed to respond to the ever-increasing need for well-trained, skilled personnel to fill positions in the allied healthcare industry as medical assistants. Today’s healthcare industry demands a higher level of thinking and performance skills than ever before. The medical office professions programs prepare students for careers as administrative or clinical medical assistants, medical billers and coders, medical interpreters or as medical office managers.

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Medical Assistants perform administrative and clinical tasks to keep the offices of physicians, podiatrists, chiropractors, and other health practitioners running smoothly.

The duties of Medical Assistants vary from office to office, depending on the location and size of the practice and the practitioner's specialty. In small practices, medical assistants usually do many different kinds of tasks, handling both administrative and clinical duties and reporting directly to an office manager, physician, or other health practitioner.

Those in large practices tend to specialize in a particular area, under the supervision of department administrators.

Career Options

The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics has placed medical offices and healthcare facilities among the top ten industries expected to generate the largest number of new jobs. Employment in health services is expected to grow quickly during the coming decades because of the expanding healthcare needs of an aging population. Few fields are as immune to recession as healthcare. Potential employers include, but are not limited to, hospitals and doctors’ offices, urgent care, outpatient surgery, industrial and sports medicine clinics; insurance companies, skilled nursing facilities, state and federal health agencies, and medical research institutions.

Career options available for the medical office professions major include medical assistant-administrative or clinical, office clerk, medical secretary, medical transcriptionist, medical records clerk, medical records coder, medical records technician, registered records administrator, health insurance specialist, health information administrator, medical office manager, quality assurance specialist, and medical interpreter. Some careers require a certificate of achievement and most require an associate in science degree or higher degree.

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