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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in McAllen, Texas

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for medical assistants in the McAllen, Texas area. About 34,790 people are currently employed as medical assistants in Texas. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 54% to 53,500 people employed. This is better than the national trend for medical assistants, which sees this job pool growing by about 33.9% over the next eight years. In general, medical assistants perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician.

Income for medical assistants is about $12 hourly or $25,800 annually on average in Texas. 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 Texas and less than people in the Medical and Dental Assistance category nationally. Jobs in this field include: doctor assistant, morgue attendant, and medical billing coder.

There are six schools within twenty-five miles of McAllen where you can study to be a medical assistant, among nine schools of higher education total in the McAllen area. 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 McAllen 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.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Medical Assistant Training

Southern Careers Institute Inc-South Texas - Pharr, TX

Southern Careers Institute Inc-South Texas, 1414 N. Jackson Rd, Pharr, TX 78577. Southern Careers Institute Inc-South Texas is a small school located in Pharr, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 251 students and an admission rate of 91%. Southern Careers Institute Inc-South Texas has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, one to two year which graduated 66 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 112 students in 2008.

South Texas College - McAllen, TX

South Texas College, 3201 W Pecan, McAllen, TX 78502-9701. South Texas College is a large college located in McAllen, Texas. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 22,066 students. South Texas College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, less than one year which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year and associate's degree which graduated ten and eight students respectively in 2008.

South Texas Vo-Tech Institute - Weslaco, TX

South Texas Vo-Tech Institute, 2419 E Haggar Ave, Weslaco, TX 78596. South Texas Vo-Tech Institute is a small school located in Weslaco, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 266 students. South Texas Vo-Tech Institute has a less than one year program in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary which graduated thirty students in 2008.

Valley Grande Institute for Academic Studies - Weslaco, TX

Valley Grande Institute for Academic Studies, 345 S. Texas Blvd., Weslaco, TX 78596. Valley Grande Institute for Academic Studies is a small school located in Weslaco, Texas. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 397 students. Valley Grande Institute for Academic Studies has a less than one year program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties which graduated forty-four students in 2008.

South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-McAllen - McAllen, TX

South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-McAllen, 2400 Daffodil Ave., McAllen, TX 78501. South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-McAllen is a small school located in McAllen, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 222 students. South Texas Vocational Technical Institute-McAllen has a less than one year program in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary which graduated fourteen students in 2008.

San Antonio College of Medical and Dental Assistants-McAllen - McAllen, TX

San Antonio College of Medical and Dental Assistants-McAllen, 1500 S. Jackson, McAllen, TX 78503-1625. San Antonio College of Medical and Dental Assistants-McAllen is a small college located in McAllen, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 1,073 students. San Antonio College of Medical and Dental Assistants-McAllen has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, one to two year which graduated 274 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 332 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: McAllen, Texas

McAllen, Texas
McAllen, Texas photo by L1CENSET0K1LL

Mcallen is located in Hidalgo County, Texas. It has a population of over 129,776, which has grown by 22.0% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Mcallen, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Mcallen cost $174,400 on average, which is near the state average. In 2008, five hundred seventy-three new homes were constructed in Mcallen, down from seven hundred fifty-four the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Mcallen are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, educational services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 19 minutes. More than 23.6% of Mcallen residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Mcallen is 7.4%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.

The percentage of Mcallen residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.4%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Emmanuel Baptist Church, Family of Faith Fellowship Church and First Missionary Baptist Church are some of the churches located in Mcallen. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Mcallen is home to the Sam and Marjorie Miller House and the McAllen Memorial Library as well as Schupp Park and Archer Park. Shopping centers in the area include Las Tiendas Plaza Shopping Center and La Plaza Shopping Center.