The medical assistant program at Iowa Lakes Community College in Spencer, Iowa has been granted continuing accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). The Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB) in conjunction with CAAHEP’s Board of Director’s, conducted the peer review which found the program to be compliant with the national accreditation standards. Accreditation qualification is based on the program meeting or exceeding the medical assisting program core curriculum.
The medical assistant program at Iowa Lakes Community College was first accredited in 1991, again in 1998 and 2008. The program will be reevaluated for accreditation again by fall of 2024. Val Curry CMA, program coordinator, reiterated the importance of the accreditation. “Recognition and accreditation through MAERB and CAAHEP adds credibility to our program,” he said.
Thomas Skalko, President of CAAHEP, commended the college for its continuous commitment to provide a quality education.
The college has invested in the medical assistant program by expanding the simulation lab and classrooms, allowing students the ability to practice the skills needed to successfully work in a medical office. For the past three years, the program has boasted a 100 percent pass rate on the AAMA certification exam by its graduates. A large number of graduates are successfully employed as medical assistants within northwestern Iowa.
Medical assistants face a strong job-outlook. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 23 percent growth rate from 2014 to 2024. This is well above average for all other occupations. The Bureau sites the aging of baby boomers as one of the top reasons for the exponential growth in demand for medical assistants over the next decade. Medical assistants will be called upon more and more to perform routine clinical and administrative tasks to give doctors the ability to see a higher number of patients.