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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in Thousand Oaks, California

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for medical assistants in the Thousand Oaks, California area. Currently, 59,500 people work as medical assistants in California. This is expected to grow by 31% to 77,800 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for medical assistants are expected to grow by about 33.9%. In general, medical assistants perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician.

A person working as a medical assistant can expect to earn about $14 hourly or $29,650 annually on average in California and about $13 hourly or $28,300 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for medical assistants are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Medical and Dental Assistance in California and not quite as good as general Medical and Dental Assistance category earnings nationally. Medical assistants work in a variety of jobs, including: optometric technician, visual training aide, and health unit clerk.

There are fourteen schools of higher education in the Thousand Oaks area, including five within twenty-five miles of Thousand Oaks where you can get a degree to start your career as a medical assistant. Medical assistants usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so it will take only a short time to learn to be a medical assistant if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Medical Assistant

Medical Assistant video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, medical assistants perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician. They also administrative duties may include scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records, billing, and coding for insurance purposes.

Medical assistants ready treatment rooms for patient examinations, keeping the rooms neat and clean. They also interview clients to obtain medical data and measure their vital signs and height. Equally important, medical assistants have to show clients to examination rooms and ready them for the physician. They are often called upon to help physicians examine and treat patients, handing them instruments and materials or performing such tasks as giving injections or removing sutures. They are expected to record patients' medical history, vital statistics and data such as test results in medical archives. Finally, medical assistants greet and log in patients arriving at office or clinic.

Every day, medical assistants are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for medical assistants to inventory and order medical, lab, or office supplies and apparatus. They are often called upon to change dressings on wounds. They also contact medical facilities or departments to schedule patients for tests or admission. They are sometimes expected to run routine laboratory tests and sample analyses. Somewhat less frequently, medical assistants are also expected to greet and log in patients arriving at office or clinic.

Medical assistants sometimes are asked to keep financial reports and execute other bookkeeping duties. They also have to be able to execute general office duties such as answering telephones, taking dictation or completing insurance forms and clean and sterilize instruments and dispose of contaminated supplies. And finally, they sometimes have to authorize drug refills and furnish prescription data to pharmacies.

Like many other jobs, medical assistants must be thorough and dependable and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Thousand Oaks include:

  • Dental Assistant. Assist dentist, set up patient and equipment, and keep records.
  • Medical Equipment Technician. Prepare, sterilize, or clean laboratory or healthcare equipment. May perform routine laboratory tasks and operate or inspect equipment.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Medical Assistant Training

Ventura College - Ventura, CA

Ventura College, 4667 Telegraph Rd, Ventura, CA 93003-3872. Ventura College is a large college located in Ventura, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,456 students. Ventura College has less than one year, associate's degree, and two to four year programs in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary which graduated two, one, and zero students respectively in 2008.

CET-Oxnard - Oxnard, CA

CET-Oxnard, 761 South C St, Oxnard, CA 93030. CET-Oxnard is a small school located in Oxnard, California. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 173 students. CET-Oxnard has a one to two year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated thirty-three students in 2008.

Ventura Adult and Continuing Education - Ventura, CA

Ventura Adult and Continuing Education, 5200 Valentine Rd, Ventura, CA 93003-0000. Ventura Adult and Continuing Education is a small school located in Ventura, California. It is a public school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 74 students. Ventura Adult and Continuing Education has a less than one year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated twelve students in 2008.

Santa Barbara Business College - Ventura, CA

Santa Barbara Business College, 4839 Market Street, Ventura, CA 93003. Santa Barbara Business College is a small college located in Ventura, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 296 students and an admission rate of 45%. Santa Barbara Business College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated thirty and twenty-five students respectively in 2008.

Pacific Coast Trade School - Oxnard, CA

Pacific Coast Trade School, 1690 Universe Cir, Oxnard, CA 93033. Pacific Coast Trade School is a small school located in Oxnard, California. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 60 students. Pacific Coast Trade School has a less than one year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated 130 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Medical Assistant: The CMA (AAMA) is considered the gold standard of medical assisting professionalism.

For more information, see the American Association of Medical Assistants website.

Registered Health Information Technician: With experience, the RHIT credential holds solid potential for advancement to management positions, especially when combined with a bachelor's degree.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Certified Coding Associate: American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) recognizes that the demand for coders has never been greater, and this need is expected to continue for some years to come.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Medical Assistant: A Medical Assistant (MA) is an integral member of the health care delivery team, qualified by education and experience to work in the administrative office, the examining room and the physician office laboratory.

For more information, see the American Medical Technologists website.

Medical LabTechnician: All laboratory professionals, including Medical Technologists, Medical Laboratory Technicians and Medical Laboratory Assistants have long played a vital role in the diagnosis and prevention of disease.

For more information, see the American Medical Technologists website.

Donor Phlebotomy Technician: This certification is for current Phlebotomy Technicians who take blood from patients for testing or for a blood bank, prepare samples for testing, and carry out those tests.

For more information, see the American Society for Clinical Pathology website.

Corporate Certified Opthalmic Assistant: A certification for employees of companies that supply products and services to the.

For more information, see the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology website.

Certified Provider Credentialing Specialist: The Certified Provider Credentialing Specialist (CPCS) is typically employed or contracted by a health care organization including, but not limited to, health plans, group practices, credentialing verification organizations or hospitals (health systems).

For more information, see the National Association of Medical Services Staff website.

Certified Medical Coder: Experienced medical office professionals with exceptional coding skills are eligible to sit for the Certified Medical Coder (CMC) exam.

For more information, see the Practice Management Institute website.

LICENSES

Medical Assistant

Licensing agency: Department of Consumer Affairs
Address: Medical Board of California, Licensing Operations Unit, 1426 Howe Avenue, Suite 54, Sacramento, CA 95825

Phone: (916) 263-2382
Website: Department of Consumer Affairs Medical Board of California Licensing Operations Unit

LOCATION INFORMATION: Thousand Oaks, California

Thousand Oaks, California
Thousand Oaks, California photo by Tdv294

Thousand Oaks is situated in Ventura County, California. It has a population of over 123,091, which has grown by 5.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Thousand Oaks, 133, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Thousand Oaks are priced at $499,900 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, ten new homes were built in Thousand Oaks, down from seventy-one the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Thousand Oaks are educational services, health care, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, construction, and finance and insurance. The average commute to work is about 26 minutes. More than 42.2% of Thousand Oaks residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 15.6%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Thousand Oaks is 8.6%, which is less than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Thousand Oaks residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 44.6%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. King of Glory Lutheran Church, Kingdom Hall of Jehovahs Witnesses and Temple Adat Elohim are all churches located in Thousand Oaks. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Thousand Oaks is home to the Rockwell International Science Center Library and the Lang Ranch as well as Joel McCrea Wildlife Preserve and Evenstar Park. Shopping centers in the area include Jeffries Center Shopping Center, Evergreens Shopping Center and Westoaks-Hampshire Shopping Center. Visitors to Thousand Oaks can choose from Best Western Oaks Lodge, Best Western Thousand Oaks Inn and Best Value Inn - Thousand Oaks for temporary stays in the area.