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1. The Profession of Medical Assisting. Learning Outcomes. 1.1 Describe the job responsibilities of a medical assistant. 1.2 Discuss the professional training of a medical assistant. 1.3 Identify the personal characteristics a medical assistant needs.

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The Profession of Medical Assisting

Learning outcomes
Learning Outcomes

1.1 Describe the job responsibilities of a medical assistant.

1.2 Discuss the professional training of a medical assistant.

1.3 Identify the personal characteristics a medical assistant needs.

1.4 Define multiskilled health professional.

Learning outcomes cont
Learning Outcomes (cont.)

1.5 Explain the importance of continuing education for a medical assistant.

1.6 Describe the process and benefits of certification and registration.

1.7 List the benefits of becoming a member of a professional association.


  • Fast-growing occupation

  • Generalist

    • Someone trained in all departments of the facility

  • Medical assistant

    • Graduate of accredited institution

    • Multitasking skills

A multitasking professional is someone who is able to work in the administrative area, the clinical areas, and the financial areas.

A successful student key factors
A Successful Student – Key Factors

  • Organizational skills – prepare in advance

  • Study habits

    • Quiet area

    • Study “buddy”

  • Set goals

Growth of the ma profession
Growth of the MA Profession

  • According to U.S. Department of Labor - Bureau of Statistics, medical assistants will hold 565,000 jobs by 2016; an increase of 35% from 2006

    • 60% in physicians’ offices

    • 14 % in hospitals

    • Almost 10% in nursing homes and offices of other health-care practitioners

    • Remainder in outpatient care centers, laboratories, and other health-care-related services

Knowledge base needed
Knowledge Base Needed

  • Administrative and clinical skills

  • Patient insurance product knowledge

  • Compliance: Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)

Knowledge base needed cont
Knowledge Base Needed (cont.)

  • Provide exceptional customer service

  • Practice management

  • Current patient treatments and education

Apply your knowledge

What are the key factors to your success as a student?

Apply Your Knowledge

ANSWER: Developing good organizational skills and good study habits, and setting goals.

Good Job

American association of medical assistants aama
American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA)

  • Established: 1956

  • Purpose of the organization is to raise the standard of medical assisting to a more professional level

  • The Code of Ethics of AAMA

    • Sets forth principles of ethical and moral conduct as they relate to the medical profession and the particular practice of Medical Assisting

Importance of medical assistant credentialing
Importance of Medical Assistant Credentialing

  • Malpractice

    • Having credentialed personnel or staff will lessen the likelihood of legal challenges of the quality of care

  • Managed Care Organizations (MCO)

    • Place great importance on professional credentials for employees

  • Meet components of state and federal regulations

Certified medical assistant cma

CMA(AAMA) credential is awarded by the Certifying Board of the AAMA

Certification examination evaluates mastery of medical assisting competencies

Recertify every 5 years

60 contact hours

10 each in clinical, administration, general areas

30 additional hours in any area

Certified Medical Assistant (CMA)

American medical technologists amt organization
American Medical Technologists (AMT) Organization the AAMA

  • Credentials medical assistants as Registered Medical Assistants (RMA)

  • Education and experience requirements

    • High school diploma or equivalent

    • Graduation from an accredited program

    • Pass the AMT examination

American medical technologists amt organization cont
American Medical Technologists (AMT) Organization (cont.) the AAMA

  • Educational and practical requirements

    • High school graduate or acceptable equivalent

    • Graduate from accredited program

    • Pass the AMT exam

  • If certified after 2006, 30 contact hours of continuing education is required every three years to recertify

Rma amt cma aama examinations
RMA(AMT)/CMA(AAMA) Examinations the AAMA

  • General medical knowledge

  • Administrative knowledge

  • Clinical knowledge



Medical Records




Medical assistant associations
Medical Assistant Associations the AAMA

  • Set standards for quality and performance

  • Define tasks and functions for an occupation

  • Provide opportunities for networking

  • Further the profession

  • Assist members to achieve career goals

Cma aama member benefits
CMA(AAMA) Member Benefits the AAMA

  • Professional publications

  • Educational opportunities

  • Group insurance

  • Legal information

  • Networking

  • Legislative monitoring

  • Website:

Rma amt member benefits
RMA(AMT) Member Benefits the AAMA

  • Professional publications

  • AMT Institute for Education

  • Group insurance programs

  • Legislature legal representation

  • Annual meetings and educational seminars

  • Student membership

  • Website:

Apply your knowledge1

What are two reasons why credentialing the AAMAis important?

Apply Your Knowledge

ANSWER: The likelihood of a legal challenge to quality of care decreases when employees are certified, and Managed Care Organizations place importance on credentials for employees.


Apply your knowledge2
Apply Your Knowledge the AAMA

  • List three things professional medical assistant associations do or provide.


  • ANSWER: Medical Assistant Associations

  • Set standards for quality and performance for the profession

  • Define tasks and functions for an occupation

  • Provide opportunities for member networking

  • Assist members to achieve career goals

Formal training and educational programs
Formal Training and Educational Programs the AAMA

  • Vocational-technical high schools

  • Postsecondary vocational schools

  • Community and junior colleges

  • Four-year colleges and universities

Accreditation the AAMA

  • The process by which programs are officially authorized

  • Two recognized entities for accrediting MA programs

    • The Commission for Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP )

    • Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES)

  • Must meet minimum standards

Graduating from an accredited program
Graduating from an Accredited Program the AAMA

  • Greater career options

    • Completion of a program that meets national standards

    • Provides recognition of your education by professional peers

    • Makes you eligible for registration

Externships the AAMA

  • Obtain practical work experience

  • Required by accredited programs

  • Duties will be planned to meet your program’s requirements

National healthcare association nha
National Healthcare Association (NHA) the AAMA

  • Established in 1989 as an information resource and network

  • Offers certification exams and continuing education

  • Services:

    • Continuing education

    • Program development

    • Education, career advancement, and networking

    • Registry of certified professionals

National center for competency testing ncct
National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) the AAMA

  • Certifies the validity of competency and knowledge of the medical profession through examination

  • Designations:

    • National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA)

    • National Certified Medical Office Assistant (NCMOA)

Volunteer programs
Volunteer Programs the AAMA

  • Experience in a variety of settings

    • Practical experience

    • Help you make career decisions

    • Include on résumé

Multiskill training
Multiskill Training the AAMA

  • Reduces health care costs

    • Personnel are cross-trained for more than one position

  • Expands your career opportunities

    • Office manager

    • Certified Office Laboratory Technician

    • Medical lab technician

    • ECG technician

    • Medical biller

    • Hospital admission coordinator

Apply your knowledge3
Apply Your Knowledge the AAMA

What is the purpose of accreditation for medical assistant programs?

List two advantages of multiskill training.

ANSWER: Accreditation ensures that the program meets nationally accepted standards.

ANSWER: Multiskill training reduces health care costs and expands your career opportunities.


Daily duties of a medical assistant
Daily Duties of a Medical Assistant the AAMA

  • Duties will vary based on

    • Type and size of practice setting

    • Whether you are at entry level or advanced practice

      • Governed by state law

    • Advanced duties generally require additional training and certification.

Daily duties administrative examples
Daily Duties – the AAMAAdministrative Examples

  • Entry level

    • Greet patients

    • Handle correspondence and answer telephone

    • Schedule appointments

    • Create and maintain patient medical records

  • Advanced

    • Develop and conduct public outreach programs

    • Participate in practice analysis

Daily duties clinical examples
Daily Duties – Clinical Examples the AAMA

  • Entry level

    • Assist the doctor during examination

    • Asepsis and infection control

    • Give medications and explain treatments to patients

  • Advanced

    • Initiate IVs and administer IV medications

    • Report diagnostic study results

Daily duties laboratory examples
Daily Duties – Laboratory Examples the AAMA

  • Entry level

    • Perform Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) – waived tests

    • Collect, prepare, and transmit laboratory specimens

    • Teach patients to collect specimens

  • Advanced

    • Perform as Occupational Health and Safety (OSHA) compliance officer

    • Perform moderately complex laboratory tests

Apply your knowledge4
Apply Your Knowledge the AAMA

True or False:

Your duties will never vary.

Advanced duties never require additional training.

State laws regulate medical assistant practice.

You must have the appropriate training to perform a procedure.

Duties vary based on practice setting, state law, level of practice.



Advanced duties require advanced training and certification.




Personal qualifications
Personal Qualifications the AAMA

  • Critical thinking skills

  • Attention to detail

  • Empathy

  • Willingness to learn

  • Flexibility

  • Self-motivation

  • Professionalism

Personal qualifications cont
Personal Qualifications (cont.) the AAMA

  • Neat appearance

    • Uniform clean

    • Shoes

    • Hairstyle

    • Nails

      • Avoid acrylic nails

  • Jewelry

  • Tattoos

  • Piercings

  • Hygiene

  • Health

Personal qualifications cont1
Personal Qualifications the AAMA(cont.)

  • Attitude

    • Positive and caring

    • Respond to criticism as a learning experience

    • Take direction from authority without question

    • Function as a vital member of a medical team

Improve your attitude
Improve Your Attitude the AAMA

  • If you can answer “yes” to any of these questions

    • Do I have repeated conflicts with people?

    • Have I had a conflict at work that has resulted in termination?

    • Do I have conflicts with authority figures?

    • Do people make comments about my attitude?

Personal qualifications cont2
Personal Qualifications (cont.) the AAMA

  • Integrity and honesty

    • Everything you do and every task you complete should be performed with a goal of excellence

    • These characteristics are key to providing superior customer service

    • You must be dependable and reliable

    • Your office staff and physician must be able to trust you and the decisions you make

Other attributes
Other Attributes the AAMA

  • Diplomacy

  • Proper judgment

  • Communication skills

  • Remaining calm in a crisis

  • Willingness to work as a team member

  • Ethical behavior


Team Dynamics

Team dynamics
Team Dynamics the AAMA

  • Assist each other with required duties

  • Avoid interpersonal conflict with team members

  • Perform extra responsibilities without questioning or complaining

  • Be considerate of other team members’ duties and responsibilities

Aama occupational analysis
AAMA Occupational Analysis the AAMA

  • Areas of competence for entry-level medical assistants

  • Provides the basis for medical assisting education and evaluation

  • Three areas of competence

    • Administrative

    • Clinical

    • General

Scope of practice
Scope of Practice the AAMA

  • No single definition of the Scope of Practice for medical assistants

  • Varies by state of employment

  • Resources

    • AAMA

    • AMT

    • AMAA Occupational Analysis

Apply your knowledge5
Apply Your Knowledge the AAMA

  • List any four personal qualifications you should have to be an effective medical assistant.

  • ANSWER: List any four of these personal qualifications that medical assistants should display:

    • Critical thinking skills Attention to detail

    • Empathy Willingness to learn

    • Flexibility Self-motivation

    • Professionalism

Apply your knowledge6
Apply Your Knowledge the AAMA

  • When should you take action to change your attitude?

  • ANSWER: When you can answer “yes” to any of the following questions:

    • Do I have repeated conflicts with people?

    • Have I had a conflict at work that has resulted in termination?

    • Do I have conflicts with authority figures?

    • Do people make comments about my attitude?


In summary
In Summary the AAMA

1.1 Responsibilities will vary from administrative to laboratory duties

1.2 Professional training includes formal training in a variety of educational settings

1.3 Personal characteristics include flexibility and good communication skills

1.4 Cross-training/being multiskilled is important for marketability

In summary cont
In Summary (cont.) the AAMA

1.5 Continuing education keeps you abreast of changes in health-care and governmental regulations.

1.6 Certification and registration provide peer recognition and career advancement.

1.7 Professional membership affiliations provide networking opportunities.

End of chapter 1
End of Chapter 1 the AAMA

Participating in any aspect of healing is an awe-inspiring experience.

—Carol Jackson, The Healer’s Art