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How to Become a Medical Assistant in Kansas

As the backbone of the state’s health care sector, medical assistants are permitted to offer their services as outlined in the state’s Healing Arts Statute. This permits licensed medical practitioners to develop their own employment requirements for the medical assistants they choose to hire. The law also states that all medical assistants must perform their services under the supervision, order, or referral of a licensed medical practitioner.

To this extent Kansas law does not maintain licensing or certification requirements for medical assistants. However health care professionals will nevertheless choose the most qualified medical assistants when looking to fill job vacancies. Your employment prospects depend on your demonstrable competencies.

To become a competitive candidate for medical assistant jobs in Kansas you will need to follow these steps:

Obtain an Education in the Field of Medical Assisting
Consider Earning a Medical Assistant Certification
Learn About the Medical Assistant Career Field in Kansas
Maintain and Improve Your Medical Assistant Qualifications

 


 

Step 1. Obtain an Education in the Field of Medical Assisting

Those who employ medical assistants in Kansas often state the following three qualifications as either preferences or requirements for hire:

  • Completion of a medical assistant associate’s degree or certificate program
  • Completion of a medical assistant national certification program
  • Prior experience working as a medical assistant or in a medical office setting

By earning a medical assistant degree in Kansas or graduating from a specialized training program, you will open yourself up to specialized certifications and medical assistant credentials. One credential in particular – the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) – requires that you graduate from a medical assistant certification program accredited by one of the following agencies:

  • Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP)
  • Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES)

There are at least five such medical assistant schools in Kansas.

As you complete your education in this field you will take courses such as:

  • Patient care and medical assistant clinical procedures
  • Emergency preparedness and response
  • Insurance billing and coding
  • Disorders, diseases, and diagnostic procedures
  • Medical assistant career strategies
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Medical terminology, interpersonal communication, and psychology
  • Pharmacology for medical assistants
  • Aspects of the administration of a medical office
  • Advanced procedures for medical assistants
  • Medical assistant practicum or internship

 


 

Step 2. Consider Earning a Medical Assistant Certification

The next best qualification after a solid educational foundation in the medical assisting field is a nationally recognized credential. These are offered by a variety of national organizations that each maintain their own requirements:

  • Graduate from a medical assistant school that is accredited by CAAHEP or ABHES
  • Pass the Certified Medical Assistant Exam:
    • 160 minutes to complete
    • 200 multiple-choice questions covering three main topics areas of:
      • Medical assistant general subjects
      • Medical assistant administrative subjects
      • Medical assistant clinical subjects

  • Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) – this credential is offered by the American Medical Technologists (AMT). You will need to pass the RMA Exam, and there are several routes to eligibility for this credential:
    • Graduation from a medical assisting academic program
    • Graduation from an equivalent medical assistant training program in the US Military
    • Work at least five years in the medical assisting field
    • Teach for at least five years in the medical assisting field
    • Earn an equivalent medical assisting certification

  • Nationally Registered Certified Medical Assistant (NRCMA) – this credential is offered by the National Association of Health Professionals (NAHP). To earn this you will need to apply to take the NRCMA Exam and meet one of these routes of eligibility:
    • Graduate from an approved medical assistant school
    • Have trained and worked as a medical assistant equivalent in the US Military for at least two years
    • Have worked as a medical assistant for at least two years and obtain a recommendation from your employer

  • Medical Assistant (NCMA) – this credential is sponsored by the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT). To earn the NCMA you must pass the NCMA Exam and be able to qualify under one of the following routes to eligibility:
    • Be a current student or graduate from an NCCT-approved medical assistant school
    • Have worked full-time at least two years as a medical assistant
    • Complete a medical assistant equivalent education or training in the US Military
    • Earn a comparable medical assisting credential from another professional organization
    • Be a doctor or nurse in a foreign country

  • Have worked at least 10 years as a medical assistant instructor

 


 

Step 3. Learn About the Medical Assistant Career Field in Kansas

There are approximately 4,560 medical assistants offering their services at location across Kansas. This includes:

  • 3,440 medical assistants in the greater Kansas City area
  • 1,370 medical assistants in Wichita
  • 370 medical assistants in Topeka
  • 160 medical assistants in the Saint Joseph area
  • 120 medical assistants in Lawrence
  • 60 medical assistants in Manhattan

A recent sampling of employment ads seeking medical assistants throughout Kansas included the following specifications:

  • The Anderson County Hospital in Garnett was recently seeking a medical assistant who had the minimum requirements of both a medical assistant certification and previous related work experience.
  • Providence Medical Group in Kansas City recently posted a medical assistant job description that specified professional certification as a minimum requirement for hire.
  • Saint Francis Health in Topeka was recently seeking a medical assistant who possessed the following minimum qualifications:

    • Medical assistant certification
    • Completion of a medical assistant academic course of study
    • Basic Life Support (BLS) certification
    • High school diploma or equivalent

  • The Via Christi Clinic in Wichita was recently seeking a medical assistant who had one of the following qualifications:
    • Completion of a medical assistant training program and three years of work experience
    • Five years of work experience as a medical assistant

While researching how to become a medical assistant in Kansas you should also keep an eye on the State Legislature for any changes to laws affecting the practice of medical assistants. Professional organizations that sponsor medical assistant credentials will also monitor any legal developments in Kansas.

 


 

Step 4. Maintain and Improve Your Medical Assistant Qualifications

If you need to maintain a medical assistant credential you will need to meet the sponsoring agency’s specific maintenance requirements:

Your employer may also determine a different set of maintenance requirements you will need to meet, which can often include continuing education. Because participating in relevant continuing education is one of the maintenance requirements for many professional certifications, medical assistants often choose to study for more advanced degrees. Earning a bachelor’s degree in the medical sciences or in healthcare administration is a great way to maintain your professional credentials while also improving your educational qualifications.

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