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How to become a certified medical assistant in Virginia, VA

Learn how to become a certified medical assistant in Virginia, VA using our guide on skills, requirements and salary in this career.?

To become a certified medical assistant in Virginia, VA, there are several steps that need to be followed. Firstly, it is important to complete a medical assisting program that is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). These programs typically take one to two years to complete and cover topics such as medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, and clinical procedures.

After completing the program, the next step is to take the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). This exam tests the knowledge and skills required to perform the duties of a medical assistant and is a requirement for certification.

To be eligible to take the CMA exam, candidates must have completed a medical assisting program within the past five years or have two years of full-time work experience as a medical assistant. They must also be a member of the AAMA.

Once the exam is passed, the candidate will receive their certification as a CMA. This certification must be renewed every five years through continuing education and professional development activities.

In addition to the CMA certification, some medical assistants may choose to pursue additional certifications in specialized areas such as phlebotomy or EKG. These certifications can enhance their skills and make them more marketable in the job market.

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Key skills and competencies

To become a certified medical assistant in Virginia, it is important to possess key skills and competencies required for the job. These include strong communication skills, attention to detail, ability to multitask, and proficiency in medical terminology and procedures. Medical assistants are responsible for a variety of tasks such as taking patient histories, preparing patients for exams, administering medications, and performing basic laboratory tests. They also need to be proficient in electronic health records and have knowledge of medical billing and coding. In addition, medical assistants must have a compassionate and empathetic nature, as they often work with patients who may be in pain or distress. By possessing these skills and competencies, individuals can become successful certified medical assistants in Virginia.

Local salary expectations or estimates

As a certified medical assistant in Virginia, you can expect to earn an average salary of $36,000 to $40,000 per year. However, this can vary depending on your level of experience, the type of healthcare facility you work in, and the location of your workplace. For instance, medical assistants working in larger cities like Richmond or Virginia Beach may earn higher salaries compared to those working in smaller towns. Additionally, those with specialized skills or certifications may also earn more. Overall, becoming a certified medical assistant in Virginia can be a rewarding career choice with competitive salary prospects.

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