The Medical Assistant program is designed to prepare men and women to function as members of the health care delivery team and perform administrative and clinical procedures. This most often occurs in ambulatory settings such as medical offices and clinics.
NIACC’s classrooms include the latest in computers, office, and laboratory equipment. The NIACC Medical Assistant Diploma program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (www.caahep.org), 25400 US Highway 19 North, Suite 158, Clearwater, FL 33756 (phone: (727) 210-2350), upon the recommendation of the Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB) of the American Association of Medical Assistants Endowment (AAMAE). According to the MAERB 2016 Annual Report, North Iowa Area community College’s 5 year placement percentage for this program is 88.98%.
Students are encouraged to meet with the counselor prior to program enrollment to arrange for assessment in keyboarding, reading, writing, and math to determine if additional course work is required to promote success. A minimum requirement of 35 wpm keyboarding is required to enter the program. A preadmission test will be administered to assist in eligibility to the program. Basic Life Support (BLS) certification is required upon acceptance to the program. A physical examination providing evidence of current immunization and sound physical and mental health is also required prior to Clinical Procedures I. Criminal background checks and adult/dependent abuse checks will be required. Drug testing may also be required by individual agencies. Results of these checks will be used by contracted clinical facilities to determine clinical eligibility. Costs for requirements will be the responsibility of the student.
Students must attain a grade point average of 2.00 (C) in program courses to proceed to the practicum. (A minimum grade of C- is allowed in Medical Office Procedures, Clinical Procedures I and II, Body Structure and Function (or Anatomy and Physiology I and II), and a minimum grade of C is required in Medical Terminology I and II.)* All first term courses must be successfully completed as stated above prior to entering into the second term. In addition, students must meet all course requirements prior to beginning the practicum. The student may be required to travel a distance for the practicum. Practicums are randomly assigned to the student and available sites are dependent on the permission of the specific agency. No remuneration is provided during the practicum experience.
Further information regarding progression in the program and specific program policies is provided to the MA student in the individual program handbook. Students are provided this handbook during the first MA class day. Students are referred to this handbook throughout the program.
Medical Assistant is one of the nation’s fastest growing careers through 2018, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. This can be attributed to a predicted surge in the number of physicians’ offices and outpatient care facilities. Technological advancements and the growing number of elderly Americans who need medical treatment are also factors for the increased demand for medical assistants.
Administrative duties include scheduling and receiving patients, preparing and maintaining medical records, performing basic secretarial skills and medical transcription, handling telephone calls, writing correspondence, serving as liaison between the physician and other individuals, and managing practice finances.
Clinical duties include asepsis and infection control, taking patient histories and vital signs, performing first aid and CPR, preparing patients for procedures, assisting the physician with examinations and treatments, collecting and processing specimens, performing selected diagnostic tests, and preparing and administering medications as directed by the physician.
Medical Assistants work in offices for:
Medical Assistants work with:
- Medical equipment such as x-ray and EKG machines
- Lab samples and equipment
- Telephones, computers, and other office equipment
- Patient medical records
- Insurance forms and other papers
Upon successful completion of the Medical Assistant curriculum with a grade point average of 2.00 (C) or higher and a minimum overall cumulative college grade point average of 2.00 (C), the student is awarded a Diploma. In addition, the student is eligible for the national certification examination to become a CMA-AAMA (Certified Medical Assistant).
Beginning with the January 2001 administration of the Certification Examination, a student with a felony record may not be eligible for Certification Examination unless the AAMA Certifying Board grants a waiver based on one or more of the mitigating circumstances listed in the Disciplinary Standards. The student can verify certification eligibility prior to entering the program by contacting the AAMA Certifying Board at the following address: AAMA (American Association of Medical Assistants), 20 North Wacker Drive, Ste. 1575, Chicago, IL 60606-2903.