Popular Careers

Career Development

Career development resources for aspiring professionals.

Career Change Center

Career change guides, tutorials and resources for professionals in transition.

Job Search Resources

Job search resources, websites, guides and directories for job seekers.


Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in St. Louis, Missouri

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for medical assistants in the St. Louis, Missouri area. Currently, 6,960 people work as medical assistants in Missouri. This is expected to grow 23% to 8,560 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%. Medical assistants generally perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician.

Medical assistants earn about $12 hourly or $25,770 yearly on average in Missouri and about $13 per hour or $28,300 yearly on average nationally. Incomes for medical assistants are not quite as good as in the overall category of Medical and Dental Assistance in Missouri, and not quite as good as the overall Medical and Dental Assistance category nationally. Jobs in this field include: optometrist assistant, health unit clerk, and medical billing coder.

There are seventy-one schools of higher education in the St. Louis area, including seventeen within twenty-five miles of St. Louis 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 St. Louis include:

  • Certified Nursing Aide. Provide basic patient care under direction of nursing staff. Perform duties, such as feed, bathe, or move patients, or change linens.
  • 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.
  • Psychiatric Aide. Assist mentally impaired or emotionally disturbed patients, working under direction of nursing and medical staff.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Medical Assistant Training

Missouri College - Brentwood, MO

Missouri College, 1405 South Hanley, Brentwood, MO 63144. Missouri College is a small college located in Brentwood, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 749 students. Missouri College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, associate's degree which graduated 18 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 167 students in 2008.

Hickey College - Saint Louis, MO

Hickey College, 940 Westport Plaza, Saint Louis, MO 63146. Hickey College is a small college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 442 students. Hickey College has an associate's degree program in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary which graduated fourteen students in 2008.

CALC Institute of Technology - Alton, IL

CALC Institute of Technology, 235a E Center Dr, Alton, IL 62002. CALC Institute of Technology is a small school located in Alton, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 114 students. CALC Institute of Technology has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, less than one year which graduated 20 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 42 students in 2008.

Allied College North - Maryland Heights, MO

Allied College North, 13723 Riverport Drive, Maryland Heights, MO 63043. Allied College North is a small college located in Maryland Heights, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 395 students. Allied College North has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated eleven and forty-two students respectively in 2008.

Everest College-Earth City - Earth City, MO

Everest College-Earth City, 3420 Rider Trail South, Earth City, MO 63045. Everest College-Earth City is a small college located in Earth City, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 249 students and an admission rate of 79%. Everest College-Earth City has a less than one year program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties which graduated 125 students in 2008.

Midwest Institute - Kirkwood, MO

Midwest Institute, 10910 Manchester Rd, Kirkwood, MO 63122. Midwest Institute is a small school located in Kirkwood, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 133 students and an admission rate of 96%. Midwest Institute has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, associate's degree which graduated 7 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 46 students in 2008.

Vatterott College - Sunset Hills, MO

Vatterott College, 12970 Maurer Industrial Dr, Sunset Hills, MO 63127-1516. Vatterott College is a small college located in Sunset Hills, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 603 students. Vatterott College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year which graduated 12 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, associate's degree which graduated 9 students in 2008.

Lewis and Clark Community College - Godfrey, IL

Lewis and Clark Community College, 5800 Godfrey Rd, Godfrey, IL 62035. Lewis and Clark Community College is a medium sized college located in Godfrey, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,016 students. Lewis and Clark Community College has an associate's degree program in Medical Office Assistant/Specialist which graduated two students in 2008.

Southwestern Illinois College - Belleville, IL

Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Ave, Belleville, IL 62221-5899. Southwestern Illinois College is a large college located in Belleville, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,308 students. Southwestern Illinois College has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, associate's degree which graduated 3 students in 2008.
  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, less than one year which graduated 15 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated thirty-one and two students respectively in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Fenton, MO

Sanford-Brown College, 1345 Smizer Mill Road, Fenton, MO 63026-3400. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 885 students. Sanford-Brown College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated sixty-one and twenty-two students respectively in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Collinsville, IL

Sanford-Brown College, 1101 Eastport Plaza Drive, Collinsville, IL 62234-6108. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Collinsville, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 597 students. Sanford-Brown College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, one to two year which graduated 84 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 129 students in 2008.

St Louis College of Health Careers - Saint Louis, MO

St Louis College of Health Careers, 909 South Taylor Avenue, Saint Louis, MO 63110. St Louis College of Health Careers is a small college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 285 students. St Louis College of Health Careers has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 78 students in 2008.
  • Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties, associate's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Hazelwood, MO

Sanford-Brown College, 75 Village Square, Hazelwood, MO 63042. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Hazelwood, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 722 students. Sanford-Brown College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated eighty-six and thirty-seven students respectively in 2008.

St Louis College of Health Careers - Fenton, MO

St Louis College of Health Careers, 1297 North Highway Drive, Fenton, MO 63026. St Louis College of Health Careers is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 85 students. St Louis College of Health Careers has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 33 students in 2008.
  • Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties, associate's degree.

Allied College South - Fenton, MO

Allied College South, 645 Gravois Bluffs Blvd, Fenton, MO 63026. Allied College South is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 424 students. Allied College South has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated twenty-six and fifty-five students respectively in 2008.

Vatterott College - Berkeley, MO

Vatterott College, 8580 Evans Avenue, Berkeley, MO 63134. Vatterott College is a small college located in Berkeley, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 971 students. Vatterott College has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year which graduated 41 students in 2008.
  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, associate's degree which graduated 17 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, associate's degree which graduated 10 students in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Saint Peters, MO

Sanford-Brown College, 100 Richmond Center Blvd, Saint Peters, MO 63376. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Saint Peters, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 813 students. Sanford-Brown College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, one to two year which graduated 44 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 74 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: St. Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis, Missouri photo by Dschwen

St. Louis is located in St. Louis City County, Missouri. It has a population of over 354,361, which has grown by 1.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in St. Louis, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in St. Louis are priced at $111,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred fifty-seven new homes were built in St. Louis, down from two hundred sixty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in St. Louis are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is accommodation and food services, construction, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 19.1% of St. Louis residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in St. Louis is 10.9%, which is greater than Missouri's average of 8.9%.

Nativity of Our Lord Church, Church of the Good Shepard and Church of the Holy Communion are among the churches located in St. Louis.

St. Louis is home to the Terminal Railroad Association Building and the Memorial Home as well as Washington Park and Willmore Park. Shopping malls in the area include Hampton Village Shopping Center and Loughborough Shopping Center.