Working World

July 2017

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6 July, 2017 l Working World l FEATURED ARTICLE by Working World Staff A ccording to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistants are in high demand, and that demand is expected to keep growing (source). These talented professionals are the backbone of medical facilities across the country. They work hard to ensure the business side of a medical practice runs smoothly, and that patients receive the best possible care. There are many reasons to enter this great profession including a relatively short training period, great working hours, a professional environment, and a nice salary. Those looking for a good career that will provide a decent living may find medical assisting to be the perfect job. HOW MUCH DO MEDICAL ASSISTANTS MAKE? The medical assistant salary is one of the best when it comes to the amount of education and training involved in preparing for the job. After earning only a certificate from a medical assisting program, graduates earn an average of almost $30,000 a year. In addition, medical assistants can expect to receive bonuses and benefits that can easily add as much as $15,000 to their overall earnings. These benefits include social security benefits, retirement plans, healthcare insurance, disability benefits, pension, and paid time off. This brings the total value of salary and benefits to around $45,000 a year; quite a nice salary for so little time spent in training. To make the field even more attractive, there is a growing demand for well- trained medical assistants across the country. This demand is creating an upward trend in wages and benefits, according to a Medical Assisting Salary Survey taken in 2011 (source). This study, conducted by the American Association of Medical Assistants, shows that around 5% percent of medical assistants receive a salary, while the rest earn hourly wages. Of those earning hourly pay, the average salary is almost $50,000 a year, and just over 15% earn almost $65,000 a year. The hourly wage received by medical assistants is determined by level of experience and certification. Generally, the hourly wage for those with 0-2 years of experience is around $13.00 per hour, but increases to more than $17.00 an hour for those with 16 years of experience or more. In addition, Certified Medical Assistants, those who have received certification through the AAMA, receive a higher hourly rate. This is due to the fact that employers prefer CMAs because they fear that improperly trained assistants may lead to malpractice suits and other issues. Certification ensures that candidates have met rigorous training standards, demonstrated knowledge through testing, and are capable of providing high quality services. MEDICAL ASSISTANT JOB GROWTH OUTLOOK The career outlook for medical assistants is very promising. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics lists medical assisting as one of the occupations expected to see the fastest growth over the next decade. Employment opportunities in this field are expected to grow by at least 34% through 2018. As the field of healthcare advances and Medical Assistant Career Review

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