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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Assistants in Arlington, Virginia

For those living in the Arlington, Virginia area, there are many career and education opportunities for medical assistants. The national trend for medical assistants sees this job pool growing by about 33.9% over the next eight years. Medical assistants generally perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of physician.

Income for medical assistants is about $13 hourly or $28,030 per year on average in Virginia. Nationally, their income is about $13 hourly or $28,300 per year. Earnings for medical assistants are better than earnings in the general category of Medical and Dental Assistance in Virginia and not quite as good as general Medical and Dental Assistance category earnings nationally. Medical assistants work in a variety of jobs, including: visual training aide, chiropractic assistant, and certified ophthalmic technician .

There are eighteen schools within twenty-five miles of Arlington where you can study to be a medical assistant, among eighty-seven schools of higher education total in the Arlington area. The most common level of education for medical assistants is a high school diploma or GED. 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 Arlington 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

Medix South - Landover, MD

Medix South, 4351 Garden City Drive, Landover, MD 20785. Medix South is a small school located in Landover, Maryland. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 243 students. Medix South has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder, one to two year.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year.

Everest College-Arlington - Arlington, VA

Everest College-Arlington, 801 N Quincy St-Ste 500, Arlington, VA 22203. Everest College-Arlington is a small college located in Arlington, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 285 students and an admission rate of 65%. Everest College-Arlington has a less than one year program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties which graduated 118 students in 2008.

Anne Arundel Community College - Arnold, MD

Anne Arundel Community College, 101 College Pky, Arnold, MD 21012-1895. Anne Arundel Community College is a large college located in Arnold, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,149 students. Anne Arundel Community College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated twenty-one and seven students respectively in 2008.
  • Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties, one to two year which graduated 8 students in 2008.

Georgetown University - Washington, DC

Georgetown University, 37th and O St NW, Washington, DC 20057. Georgetown University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 15,318 students and an admission rate of 19%. Georgetown University has a one to two year program in Opthalmic Technician/Technologist.

Prince George's Community College - Largo, MD

Prince George's Community College, 301 Largo Rd, Largo, MD 20774-2199. Prince George's Community College is a large college located in Largo, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,005 students. Prince George's Community College has a one to two year program in Medical Office Management/Administration.

TESST College of Technology-Alexandria - Alexandria, VA

TESST College of Technology-Alexandria, 6315 Bren Mar Dr, Alexandria, VA 22312. TESST College of Technology-Alexandria is a small college located in Alexandria, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. TESST College of Technology-Alexandria has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year which graduated 19 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 39 students in 2008.

Heritage Institute - Manassas, VA

Heritage Institute, 8255 Shoppers Square, Manassas, VA 20111-2176. Heritage Institute is a small school located in Manassas, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 320 students. Heritage Institute has an associate's degree program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties which graduated twenty-two students in 2008.

ACT College - Arlington, VA

ACT College, 1100 Wilson Blvd, Suite M780, Arlington, VA 22209-2297. ACT College is a small college located in Arlington, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 331 students. ACT College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated twenty-six and fifteen students respectively in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated 156 and thirty-seven students respectively in 2008.

Americare School of Allied Health - Wheaton, MD

Americare School of Allied Health, 11141 Georgia Ave #418, Wheaton, MD 20902. Americare School of Allied Health is a small school located in Wheaton, Maryland. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 150 students and an admission rate of 86%. Americare School of Allied Health has a one to two year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated thirty-two students in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Vienna, VA

Sanford-Brown College, 1980 Gallows Rd, Vienna, VA 22182. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Vienna, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 736 students. Sanford-Brown College has an associate's degree program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated forty-seven students in 2008.

Northern Virginia Community College - Annandale, VA

Northern Virginia Community College, 4001 Wakefield Chapel Rd, Annandale, VA 22003-3796. Northern Virginia Community College is a large college located in Annandale, Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 41,870 students. Northern Virginia Community College has a one to two year program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties.

Everest College-McLean - McLean, VA

Everest College-McLean, 1430 Spring Hill Rd Suite 200, McLean, VA 22102-3000. Everest College-McLean is a small college located in McLean, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 413 students and an admission rate of 56%. Everest College-McLean has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, one to two year which graduated 6 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, one to two year which graduated 38 students in 2008.

Centura College - Alexandria, VA

Centura College, 6295 Edsall Rd Ste 250, Alexandria, VA 22312. Centura College is a small college located in Alexandria, Virginia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 20 students. Centura College has a less than one year program in Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services, Other Specialties.

TESST College of Technology-Baltimore - Baltimore, MD

TESST College of Technology-Baltimore, 1520 S Caton Ave, Baltimore, MD 21227-1063. TESST College of Technology-Baltimore is a small college located in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 1,075 students. TESST College of Technology-Baltimore has a one to two year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated 218 students in 2008.

TESST College of Technology-Beltsville - Beltsville, MD

TESST College of Technology-Beltsville, 4600 Powder Mill Rd, Beltsville, MD 20705. TESST College of Technology-Beltsville is a small college located in Beltsville, Maryland. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 641 students. TESST College of Technology-Beltsville has a less than one year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated ninety students in 2008.

College of Southern Maryland - La Plata, MD

College of Southern Maryland, 8730 Mitchell Rd, La Plata, MD 20646-0910. College of Southern Maryland is a medium sized college located in La Plata, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,240 students. College of Southern Maryland has a one to two year program in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary.

Sanford-Brown Institute - Landover, MD

Sanford-Brown Institute, 8401 Corporate Dr Ste 155, Landover, MD 20785. Sanford-Brown Institute is a small school located in Landover, Maryland. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 788 students and an admission rate of 74%. Sanford-Brown Institute has a less than one year program in Medical/Clinical Assistant which graduated 191 students in 2008.

Sanz School - Washington, DC

Sanz School, 1720 Eye St NW, Washington, DC 20006. Sanz School is a small school located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 792 students. Sanz School has 2 areas of study related to Medical Assistant. They are:

  • Medical Office Management/Administration, less than one year which graduated 45 students in 2008.
  • Medical/Clinical Assistant, less than one year which graduated 319 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: Arlington, Virginia

Arlington, Virginia
Arlington, Virginia photo by Postdlf

Arlington is located in Arlington County, Virginia. It has a population of over 209,969, which has grown by 10.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Arlington, 126, is far greater than the national average.

The top three industries for women in Arlington are professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and educational services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and construction. The average commute to work is about 27 minutes. More than 60.2% of Arlington residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 30.6%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Arlington residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 29.2%, is less than both the national and state average. Church of the Convenant Presbyterian, Abundant Life United Holy Church and Advent Lutheran Church are among the churches located in Arlington. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Episcopal Church.

Arlington is home to the Clarendon Metro Station and the Virginia Square-GMU Metro Station as well as Arlington House-Robert E Lee Memorial and Doctors Branch Park. Shopping centers in the area include Lee-Harrison Shopping Center, Ballston Common Shopping Center and Lucas Market Shopping Center. Visitors to Arlington can choose from Econo Lodge National Airport, Crystal Gateway Marriott and Hilton Arlington & Towers for temporary stays in the area.