If you want to start a career as a medical assistant, you are probably wondering if there are any chances for you to move forward into new roles after gaining some experience in the field.
The short answer is yes- there are plenty of advancement opportunities for medical assistants who are willing to perfect their skills.
For instance, after gaining a few years of experience, they can apply for management positions or even start teaching.
If you want to start a career in this field, this article will provide you with more information about the tools needed for career advancement.
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Advancement Opportunities
- 2 Becoming Specialized
There are many areas where medical assistants may find advancement opportunities.
Experienced workers can apply for positions as:
- lead medical assistants
- clinical team leaders
- medical office managers
- medical assistant instructors
- healthcare administrators
- clinical office managers
- executive medical office secretaries
- transcription supervisors
If you’re already working in the field, it’s best to ask your employer about the advancement opportunities available in your organization.
One way to improve your advancement opportunities is to choose a specialty.
You will usually need more knowledge and skills before becoming specialized but specialization also comes with better pay.
There are many medical specialties you can choose from:
If you are a medical assistant student, you can choose a medical specialty for your externship.
There are several options available.
If you are interested in learning more about the heart and the cardiovascular system, a specialization as a cardiology technician may be a right fit for you.
EKG technicians are responsible for performing electrocardiography but they may also learn how to work with Holter monitors and stress testing procedures.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for cardiovascular technologists and technicians is projected to grow 5 percent from 2019 to 2029.
Becoming a certified EKG technician will improve your employment opportunities.
Medical assistants who specialize in podiatry assist physicians who treat and diagnose injuries and medical conditions of the foot.
They may trim nails, care for wounds, and provide post-surgical care.
After completing specialized training in podiatry, medical assistants can apply for a credential offered by the American Society of Podiatric Medical Assistants.
Medical assistants who specialize in ophthalmology perform a variety of duties, such as:
- performing diagnostic testing
- assisting physicians who provide eye treatments
- educating patients
- administering eye medication
- assist in minor eye surgery
The credentialing institute for this specialization is the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology.
Chiropractic Medical Assistant
Chiropractors care for the human body using a holistic approach that includes hands-on treatments, massage, and body manipulation.
Medical assistants who work in a chiropractor’s office may perform front-office duties but they may also assist chiropractors with treatments and patient education.
When training for this profession you will also have the occasion to learn hands-on in a chiropractor’s office.
Although there aren’t separate certifications for this specialization, hands-on training is usually required if you want to specialize as an OB/GYN medical assistant.
Those who specialize in this fieldwork work with women from young adulthood through their senior years.
They assist physicians when performing procedures such as Pap testing, breast exams, caring for pregnant women, and gynecological surgery.
If you want to specialize in this field you may need certification through the Americal Association of Medical Assistants.
Pediatric Medical Assistants
Pediatric medical assistants work with physicians who provide care for infants, children, and teens under 18 years of age.
Medical assistants who work in a pediatrician’s office may work at the front desk or in the back office.
If you want to specialize in pediatric medical assisting you will need to learn about childhood diseases, routine well-child care, and immunizations.
If you want to specialize in administrative tasks, you may need to take additional classes but you will learn about the basic administrative procedures in regular medical assisting training.
Medical Billing And Coding
Those who specialize in medical billing and coding are responsible for handling charge sheets and submitting them to insurance companies.
Physicians charge patients by using a charge sheet that indicates the procedures that were performed during the visit.
Insurance companies then use these documents to determine how the physician will be paid for that procedure.
Medical coders work directly with Medicare and need a thorough knowledge of this platform.
The institution that provides credentialing for this profession is the American Academy of Professional Coders and the Board of Medical Specialty Coding.
Medical Administrative Assistants
Medical administrative assistants collaborate with the management team or the administrator of the clinic or medical facility.
The duties performed by medical administrative assistants include:
- taking meeting notes
- working on office policies
- creating documents and spreadsheets
You may need specialized training and some years of experience before being ready to work in medical administration.
Medical assisting specializations usually include additional responsibilities and training.
If you’re currently working in an entry-level medical assisting position, becoming specialized can improve your advancement opportunities.
Experienced medical assistants who have worked in a clinical specialty for a few years are very valuable.
Specialization also involves the ability to keep up with the latest advancements in that specialty so if you want to start a career as a medical assistant you should be willing to learn throughout your career.