How to Become a Medical Assistant in Utah

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How to Become a Medical Assistant in Utah

The way old and ill people have been treated has significantly changed throughout recent years.

The proper treatment and medication play a very important role in their lives as they keep them alive, thus making their care and protection even more difficult and demanding.

That is why the number of healthcare facilities and doctors and medical assistants increases daily and the demand for them is growing.

At the same time, their job becomes of greater importance and significance.

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Job Description

Being that just a part of the job in medical clinics is entrusted to physicians themselves, medical assistants have their crucial role in dealing with patients and the other staff.

Because coming to a hospital is in itself kind of a stressful situation, a medical assistant is the first one who has to take care of the upset and frightened patient.

Although many people think that they are in charge of less important tasks like answering phones and scheduling appointments, their job is demanding, including preparing patients for surgery and sterilizing the equipment after it, helping doctors during the examination and looking after the patients while they are recovering.

Medical assistants spend their days providing medical and health care assistance to both patients and doctors.

Becoming a Medical Assistant in Utah

If you want to become a medical assistant with certification and valuable knowledge, you should start with your education.

You can either take a post-secondary training program at school or vocational college, or enroll in an online program, but whichever you choose, you will gain knowledge related to:

  • General subjects
    • Psychology,
    • Communication
    • Medical law,
    • Safety
    • Medical terminology
  • Administrative subjects
    • Medical reception and office finances
    • Medical business practices
    • Appointment scheduling
    • Creation and updating of medical records
  • Clinical subjects
    • Anatomy and physiology
    • Pharmacology
    • Infection control
    • Processing and collecting specimens
    • Diagnostic testing
    • Emergency management and first aid

The finishing of the classes is not the end of education, since even though, national certification is not required for Utah’s medical assistants, many of the students decide to sit for and pass the national certification exam which consists of 200 multiple-choice questions.

This exam can be taken at any Prometric testing center located in Utah:

  • In Orem at 350 South 400 West, Suite 250
  • In Salt Lake City at 201 South 1460 East, 490 Student Services Building
  • Near Salt Lake City in Taylorsville at 5500 South Redwood Road, Suite 201

Requirements

A medical assistant in Utah can be a person with a high school diploma or equivalent at least 18 years of age, with no significant criminal history.

Utah’s laws of medicine allow the unlicensed medical assistants to work under the indirect supervision of a licensed physician, but they may only be delegated tasks that are appropriate and should not perform diagnosing, advising, prescribing medication and administering non-localized anesthesia.

That is why, when it comes to qualifications, the employers require the fulfillment of at least one of the following qualifications:

  • Finished any of the medical assistant training programs in Utah
  • An associate’s degree
  • Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) credential
  • Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) credential
  • Nationally Registered Certified Medical Assistant (NRCMA) credential.

Each employer determines his/her preferences for medical assistants in Utah.

The accredited associations who offer these kinds of programs are:

  • Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)
  • Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES)

and there are at least eight programs that are accredited by these agencies in Utah.

Getting a Job

Across the State of Utah, various healthcare facilities employ medical assistants.

As the employers are those who determine the qualifications needed for the medical assistant position, the preference is given to the candidates with an official medical assistant certification, experience in a health care, possession of the national credential, proficiency in computers and electronic medical record systems and strong organizational skills.

The future medical assistants can work in private practices, doctor’s offices or clinics and hospitals throughout the state and a newly certified medical assistant can get the chance of choosing the clinic or hospital where he/she wants to work and even require a certain salary for his/her work.

Medical assistants may look for job opportunities in:

  • The Rocky Mountain Women’s Health Center in West Valley City
  • An urgent care center in Eagle Mountain
  • Specialty Surgery of Utah in West Valley City
  • The radiation oncology unit at the University of Utah Health in Salt Lake City
  • The company Provant

Salary

When it comes to a salary, medical assistant salaries, bonuses, and benefits differentiate throughout the cities in the state of Utah.

This depends on numerous factors that all affect the average salary, is that the lowest is in Lehi estimated at $31 202, while pay rates might rise to $35 393 in Saint George per year.

The salary also depends on the number of activities performed during the day and the difficulties that the assistant meets daily, as well as his/her education and experience.

The table below shows average salaries for medical assistants in major cities of Utah, presenting the difference from one place to another:

Annual Salary Range:
$31K
$33K
$35K
10%
50%
90%
Annual Salary by Location:
LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Layton,UT$31,786
Lehi,UT$31,202
Logan,UT$31,457
Ogden,UT$31,906
Orem,UT$31,352
Provo,UT$31,352
Saint George,UT$35,393
Salt Lake City,UT$32,750
Sandy,UT$32,660
South Jordan,UT$32,600
West Jordan,UT$32,630

Duties

The duties of a medical assistant are not at all naïve.

They involve preparing the treatment room for examination, verifying patient information, confirming the purpose of the visit.

furthermore, they perform preliminary physical tests, take blood pressure, weight, and temperature, report patient history summary to the doctor.

All these duties require being familiar with standard practices, and procedures within the medical field.

As they work together with the doctor and other healthcare staff,  this means that their services are crucial in the daily activities of a medical clinic.

Summary

Medical assistants are of great help when assisting doctors in providing medical care to patients. Besides the great side of this job, the job of a medical assistant indeed has the difficulties that he/she has to face and they should be respected.

If you want to become a medical assistant, your love and desire to help people who need you and a certificate program will be enough to gain the skills and knowledge you need and find a satisfying job.

USA Medical Assisting by State


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