Medical Assisting in Alabama
It is not a legal requirement for medical assistants in Alabama to have any official training or education other than a high school diploma or GED. Nor is there any law to say that medical assistants should be licensed. In practice, however, most employers prefer to hire medical assistants who have completed their training on a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program.
To put yourself ahead of the competition by increasing your chances of getting the best job, it is worth considering becoming certified after completing your training program.
So long as your diploma or degree program is accredited, when you graduate you can apply to sit an exam to become either Registered (a RMA) or Certified (a CMA).
The average annual salary for medical assistants in Alabama is $26,740, or an hourly rate of $12.86. The pay tends to be slightly higher in metropolitan areas than rural areas. You can also expect to earn more as you gain experience.
The Alabama state society of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) has five local chapters:
North Central Alabama
Alabama Medical Assistant Schools and Programs
Wallace State Community College runs a CAAHEP accredited medical assistant Associate in Applied Science degree program. Students will learn to perform a range of administrative and clinical duties, such as receiving patients, maintaining medical records, assisting with examinations and treatments, performing routine lab procedures and diagnostic tests. Some courses are offered online, but all laboratory classes must be attended on campus. Students are required to complete an unpaid, supervised medical assisting practicum prior to graduation. Graduates of this program are eligible to apply to take the national certification exams to earn the title of RMA (Registered Medical Assistant) or CMA (Certified Medical Assistant).
Located in Birmingham, Virginia College offers two types of hands-on training program: a medical assistant diploma and an Associate of Science degree. Both programs include practical work experience in a real world setting on an 11 week supervised externship. On completion of their education, students will be eligible to take any or all of the nationally recognised Certification examinations to earn any of these titles: Certified Medical Assistant (CMA), Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) and Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA).
- Length: 55 weeks
- Cost: $23,320
- Job Placement Rate: 65%
South University offers an Associate of Science in Medical Assisting degree program at its Montgomery campus. Students will receive instruction in the various range of both clinical and adminstrative skills necessary to begin a medical assisting caeer. Coursework includes classes in medical terminology, medical law and ethics, and clinical procedures.
Fortis College offers a medical assistant diploma program at its campuses in Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile, Foley and Dothan. It also offers an Associate degree program in Birmingham. Students will gain the knowledge and competencies required to work as an entry level medical assistant, with the focus on both clinical and adminstrative aspects of the role.
- Length: 36 weeks
- Cost: $13,281
- Job Placement Rate: 71%
With a campus in Birmingham, Brown Mackie College offers an undergraduate medical assistant certificate program. Coursework includes theoretical classes on topics such as anatomy and physiology, practical lessons in clinical procedures such as taking a patient’s vital signs and medical office tasks such as billing.
At its Homewood, Birmingham campus Herzing University runs a diploma in Medical Assisting Services and an Associate’s degree program. The diploma program aims to equip students with the knowledge and abilities to work in an entry level role. The degree includes general education courses with the aim of giving students improved career advancement prospects. Both programs include externship experience.
- Length: 48 weeks
- Cost : $19,635
- Job Placement Rate: 72%
- Length: 80 weeks
- Cost: $31,975
- Job Placement Rate: 88%