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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Medical assistant career and educational opportunities abound in Grand Rapids, Michigan. There are currently 17,860 working medical assistants in Michigan; this should grow 30% to 23,200 working medical assistants in the state 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%. Medical assistants generally perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician.

Income for medical assistants is about $13 per hour or $27,920 annually on average in Michigan. Nationally, their income is about $13 hourly or $28,300 per year. Medical assistants earn less than people working in the category of Medical and Dental Assistance generally in Michigan and less than people in the Medical and Dental Assistance category nationally. People working as medical assistants can fill a number of jobs, such as: ophthalmic assistant, hospital clinic assistant, and optometric technician.

There are nineteen schools of higher education in the Grand Rapids area, including seven within twenty-five miles of Grand Rapids 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 you can expect to spend only a short time training to become 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 Grand Rapids 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

Baker College of Muskegon - Muskegon, MI

Baker College of Muskegon, 1903 Marquette Ave, Muskegon, MI 49442. Baker College of Muskegon is a medium sized college located in Muskegon, Michigan. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 5,214 students. Baker College of Muskegon has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Reception/Receptionist, one to two year which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, associate's degree which graduated 17 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated six and seventeen students respectively in 2008.

Grand Rapids Community College - Grand Rapids, MI

Grand Rapids Community College, 143 Bostwick Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503-3295. Grand Rapids Community College is a large college located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,403 students. Grand Rapids Community College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical Office Management/Administration which graduated one and one students respectively in 2008.

Muskegon Community College - Muskegon, MI

Muskegon Community College, 221 S Quarterline Rd, Muskegon, MI 49442-1432. Muskegon Community College is a small college located in Muskegon, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,747 students. Muskegon Community College has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, associate's degree.
  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, less than one year and associate's degree which graduated zero and two students respectively in 2008.
  • Medical Reception/Receptionist, one to two year which graduated 2 students in 2008.

Ross Medical Education Center-Grand Rapids - Grand Rapids, MI

Ross Medical Education Center-Grand Rapids, 3777 Sparks Drive SE Suite 125, Grand Rapids, MI 49546. Ross Medical Education Center-Grand Rapids is a small school located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 166 students and an admission rate of 46%. Ross Medical Education Center-Grand Rapids has a less than one year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated 126 students in 2008.

Davenport University - Grand Rapids, MI

Davenport University, 6191 Kraft Avenue S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49512-9396. Davenport University is a large university located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,773 students and an admission rate of 91%. Davenport University has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated ninety-eight and forty-one students respectively in 2008.
  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated zero and eleven students respectively in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated forty-one and fifty-seven students respectively in 2008.

Montcalm Community College - Sidney, MI

Montcalm Community College, 2800 College Dr, Sidney, MI 48885-9723. Montcalm Community College is a small college located in Sidney, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,119 students. Montcalm Community College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, associate's degree which graduated 48 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 14 students in 2008.

Everest Institute-Grand Rapids - Grand Rapids, MI

Everest Institute-Grand Rapids, 1750 Woodworth St NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525. Everest Institute-Grand Rapids is a small school located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 279 students and an admission rate of 54%. Everest Institute-Grand Rapids has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, less than one year which graduated 89 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 253 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.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Grand Rapids, Michigan
Grand Rapids, Michigan photo by Grguy2011

Grand Rapids is located in Kent County, Michigan. It has a population of over 193,396, which has shrunk by 2.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Grand Rapids, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Grand Rapids cost $98,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, forty-three new homes were built in Grand Rapids, down from ninety-two the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Grand Rapids are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 19 minutes. More than 23.8% of Grand Rapids residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Grand Rapids is 15.4%, which is greater than Michigan's average of 14.3%.

The percentage of Grand Rapids residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 52.9%, is more than both the national and state average. Church of Jesus Christ, Immanuel Church and Trinity Church are among the churches located in Grand Rapids. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Christian Reformed Church in North America and the Reformed Church in America.

Grand Rapids is home to the Kent Country Club and the Walker Juvenile Court as well as Comstock Riverside Park and Richmond Park. Visitors to Grand Rapids can choose from Hampton Inn Grand Rapids, Hampton Inn Grand Rapids/North- Mi and Hampton Inn Fax for temporary stays in the area.