medical assistant working

What does a Medical Assistant do?

Disclaimer: The information on our website is provided for general information purposes only. We make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information contained on our website for any purpose. Any reliance on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk and we are not liable for any damages or losses arising out of or resulting from your reliance on any information contained on our website.

Medical assistants work in a variety of clinical settings and help document a patient’s history and personal information. They may also schedule patients appointments, answer phones, and even check a patient’s vitals. Some medical assistants are certified, which means they are trained in medical services as well as associated administrative tasks.

Watch a video to learn how to become a medical assistant:

How to Become a Medical Assistant

To become a medical assistant, you can either gain on-the-job training or attend a medical assistant training program. In many states, there is no legal requirement for a specific educational qualification or training to become a medical assistant. Though a training program or certification is not imperative, it could be beneficial when applying for jobs. Obviously, one benefit of becoming a medical assistant is the short training entry to gaining your first position in the medical field. But there are also several other benefits also: job satisfaction in knowing you’re helping others, the many job opportunities available, and the fast-paced day so your day is never dull or boring.

Job Description of a Medical Assistant

medical assistant working

A medical assistant is often the first point of contact for patients. There are many administrative duties that medical assistants conduct ranging from compiling reports, bookkeeping, appointment setting, and managing financial transactions. Medical assistants may also check the patient’s vital signs and record a patient’s medical history. Other duties may vary with the location, specialty, and size of the practice. Most medical assistants have computers to conduct their duties.

Medical Assistants may experience better work-life balance than other medical professionals as they may not have to work as long of hours. These professionals also earn competitive wages and benefits if working for an employer full-time. In conclusion, becoming a Medical Assistant is a smart step towards a rewarding healthcare career. With educational requirements that typically involve completing a one-year diploma or certificate program, you can quickly gain the skills needed to thrive in the healthcare field. Medical Assistants enjoy a wide range of benefits, including competitive salaries, job stability, and versatile job opportunities.

Medical Assistant Video Transcript

When patients arrive for a medical appointment, it’s the medical assistant who has prepared the treatment room and made sure equipment is ready for the doctor. With both patient care and administrative responsibilities, they help keep medical establishments running smoothly. Medical assistants often perform several tasks during an appointment. They may measure vital signs before the doctor arrives, assist with the examination, and enter patient information into medical records. Sometimes they may give patients medications. At the end of the appointment, they dispose of contaminated supplies or sterilize instruments for future use.

In smaller practices, medical assistants may also schedule appointments and prepare samples for lab work, whereas many large practices encourage specialization in either administrative or clinical work. Medical assistants work in doctors’ offices, hospitals, and clinics. Most work full-time, including on holidays, nights, and weekends. Requirements to enter the field vary; some medical assistants hold a high school diploma, and learn their duties on the job. However, job applicants who have completed a short-term medical assistant certificate program, and passed a certification exam may have better opportunities. Regardless of where medical assistants work, they make life easier for the medical staff and their patients.

Article Citations

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Medical Assistants.

National Center for O*NET Development. 31-9092.00. O*NET OnLine.

Scroll to Top