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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in Charlotte, North Carolina

Medical assistant career and educational opportunities abound in Charlotte, North Carolina. About 9,420 people are currently employed as medical assistants in North Carolina. By 2016, this is expected to grow 49% to 14,050 people employed. This is better than 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.

The income of a medical assistant is about $13 hourly or $27,660 yearly on average in North Carolina. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $13 per hour or $28,300 yearly on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Medical and Dental Assistance, people working as medical assistants in North Carolina earn more. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Medical and Dental Assistance nationally. People working as medical assistants can fill a number of jobs, such as: morgue technician, doctor assistant, and hospital clinic assistant.

There are forty-three schools of higher education in the Charlotte area, including ten within twenty-five miles of Charlotte where you can get a degree to start your career as a medical assistant. Given that the most common education level for medical assistants is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying 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 Charlotte 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

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College - Salisbury, NC

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, 1333 Jake Alexander Blvd, Salisbury, NC 28146-1595. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College is a medium sized college located in Salisbury, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,876 students. Rowan-Cabarrus Community College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Medical Office Management/Administration which graduated eight, twelve, and twenty students respectively in 2008.

King's College - Charlotte, NC

King's College, 322 Lamar Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28204. King's College is a small college located in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 604 students and an admission rate of 82%. King's College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties which graduated 102 and forty-six students respectively in 2008.

Gaston College - Dallas, NC

Gaston College, 201 Hwy 321 S, Dallas, NC 28034. Gaston College is a medium sized college located in Dallas, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,557 students. Gaston College has 3 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, less than one year and associate's degree which graduated twenty-eight and thirty-five students respectively in 2008.
  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, associate's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, associate's degree which graduated 13 students in 2008.

Mitchell Community College - Statesville, NC

Mitchell Community College, 500 W Broad Street, Statesville, NC 28677-5293. Mitchell Community College is a small college located in Statesville, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,911 students. Mitchell Community College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated seven and three students respectively in 2008.

York Technical College - Rock Hill, SC

York Technical College, 452 S Anderson Rd, Rock Hill, SC 29730. York Technical College is a medium sized college located in Rock Hill, South Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,094 students. York Technical College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, less than one year which graduated 15 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 67 students in 2008.

TechSkills-Charlotte - Charlotte, NC

TechSkills-Charlotte, 4421 Stuart Andrew Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28217. TechSkills-Charlotte is a small school located in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 71 students. TechSkills-Charlotte has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, less than one year which graduated 52 students in 2008.
  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, less than one year which graduated 3 students in 2008.

Central Piedmont Community College - Charlotte, NC

Central Piedmont Community College, 1201 Elizabeth Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28204. Central Piedmont Community College is a large college located in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 16,536 students. Central Piedmont Community College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, associate's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree which graduated two, ten, and three students respectively in 2008.

Catawba Valley Community College - Hickory, NC

Catawba Valley Community College, 2550 Hwy 70 SE, Hickory, NC 28602-0699. Catawba Valley Community College is a small college located in Hickory, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,011 students. Catawba Valley Community College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical Office Management/Administration which graduated eleven and fifteen students respectively in 2008.

Brookstone College - Charlotte, NC

Brookstone College, 10125 Berkeley Place Drive, Charlotte, NC 28262. Brookstone College is a small college located in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 180 students and an admission rate of 100%. Brookstone College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, one to two year which graduated 13 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 43 students in 2008.

Cabarrus College of Health Sciences - Concord, NC

Cabarrus College of Health Sciences, 401 Medical Park Drive, Concord, NC 28025. Cabarrus College of Health Sciences is a small college located in Concord, North Carolina. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 372 students and an admission rate of 46%. Cabarrus College of Health Sciences has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated eleven and one students respectively 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: Charlotte, North Carolina

Charlotte, North Carolina
Charlotte, North Carolina photo by Alaskan Assassin

Charlotte is located in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. It has a population of over 687,456, which has grown by 27.1% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Charlotte, 86, is well below the national average.

The three big industries for women in Charlotte are health care, finance and insurance, and educational services. For men, it is construction, finance and insurance, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average commute to work is about 25 minutes. More than 36.4% of Charlotte residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.5%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Charlotte is 9.7%, which is less than North Carolina's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Charlotte residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 48.0%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. New Hampton Church, New Emmanuel Church and New East Stonewall Church are all churches located in Charlotte. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.

Charlotte is home to the Crown Point Plaza and the Providence Square as well as Kilborne District Park and Little Rock Road District Park. Shopping malls in the area include Heckinger Shopping Center, Hampshire Hills Shopping Center and Providence Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Charlotte can choose from American Motel, Extended Stay America - Charlotte/Tyvola and Drury Inn and Suites Charlotte for temporary stays in the area.