Medical Assisting in Alaska
There are a small number of medical assistant degree, diploma and certificate programs available in Alaska. Due to the vast distances that many students would have to travel to reach a school, several of the Alaskan training programs provide online classes, allowing students to study from home. Practical experience can be obtained through an externship at a healthcare facility near to where the student lives.
Although the Alaska State Medical Board doesn’t license medical assisants or require them to be certified, the only educational requirement being a high school diploma or GED, it does have standards regarding the duties that medical assistants working in Alaska can perform. See the guidelines regarding delegating to medical assistants for more details.
Medical assistant pay in Alaska is the second highest in the country, with the average yearly salary being $38,800. This is the equivalent to an hourly wage of $18.65, so Alaska is a good state to work as a medical assistant, in terms of earnings. The highest paid jobs are in the nonmetropolitan areas, paying an average salary of $42,230. The mean wage in Anchorage is $36,910 and in Fairbanks $41,840.
If you’d like more information on how to become a medical assistant, or scholarships, in Alaska, the Alaska Medical Assistant Society (AMAS) is the state society of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). It is based in Anchorage and has local chapters in:
Alaska Medical Assistant Schools and Programs
The University of Alaska in Fairbanks offers both a medical assistant certificate program and an Associate of Applied Science degree. The focus is on small class sizes so that students can benefit from the best training from the instructors and faculty. Both programs are CAAHEP accredited, so students can apply to become Certified by sitting for the CMA examination upon successful completion of their studies.
- Length: 30-42 credits
- Cost: $165/credit hour
- Job Placement Rate: 85%
At its Anchorage campus, the University of Alaska offers an AAS degree program that includes a 40 credit preparation course for the CMA exam. Students will receive training in both adminstrative aspects of medical assiting and clinical procedures such as sterilizing instruments. Students will be required to complete an externship placement in a medical office before completing this program.
Alaska Career College in Anchorage offers a medical assistant diploma program that has a flexible study schedule of both day and evening classes. Courswork involves a combination of classroom instruction and hands on practical training. On completion of their education, students will be equipped to begin their career in an entry level position.
Charter College runs a diploma in medical assisting program in Anchorage and Wasilla, to teach students the practical clinical and administrative skills required for entry level jobs in medical assisting. As part of their training, students will have the opportunity to undertake an externship at a local doctor’s office, clinic or other healthcare facility.
- Length: 10 months
- Cost: $42,000
- Job Placement Rate: 73%