The Medical Assurance Company of Mississippi, a sponsored carrier of the Mississippi State Medical Association, reports that medical assistants in the State are not licensed. Still – their work is required to be supervised by a physician and guided by the policies of the Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure.
The Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure outlines the responsibilities of physicians, including their responsibility when supervising medical assistants. Specifically, when a medical assistant’s actions result in a liability claim, the focus will be on the physician’s delegation of the medical assistant’s responsibility.
Although a medical assistant in Mississippi is an unlicensed professional, it is always beneficial to complete a formal education. If you want to become a medical assistant in Mississippi, it is beneficial to complete the following steps:
|Complete a Medical Assistant Education Program|
|Consider Pursuing National Certification|
|Look for a Job in Medical Assisting in Mississippi|
Step 1. Complete a Medical Assistant Education Program
Becoming a medical assistant in Mississippi begins with a comprehensive education program in medical assisting that is accredited by either the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), both of which accredit hundreds of medical assisting programs throughout the U.S. Accredited medical assisting programs meet the eligibility requirements for voluntary national certification, and will adequately prepare you to perform the duties required of an entry-level medical assistant.
Medical assistant programs may be diploma, certificate, or associate degree programs. Diploma and certificate programs are generally shorter in duration (about one year), while associate degree programs (A.S. or A.A.S.) take about two years to complete. The completion of an associate degree program may be an ideal choice if you anticipate pursuing more advanced degrees in the healthcare field, such as nursing or medical administration.
To date, there are 2 programs accredited by CAAHEP and 4 programs accredited by ABHES in Mississippi.
Step 2. Consider Pursuing National Certification
National certification in medical assisting has become, void of any state licensing or registration, a symbol of advanced aptitude and competency. As such, it is common for employers and physicians to seek medical assistants who hold one or more national credential. The two most commonly sought after credentials in medical assisting are the Certified Medical Assistant credential through American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) and the Registered Medical Assistant credential through American Medical Technologists. Both the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) and the Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) credential must be earned through the completion of a certification examination.
Other recognized national certifications in medical assisting include:
- The Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel In Ophthalmology: Certified Ophthalmic Assistant
- The American Society of Podiatric Medical Assistants: Podiatric Medical Assistant, Certified
- National Healthcare Association: Certified Clinical Medical Assistant
- National Center for Competency Testing: The National Certified Medical Assistant
Step 3. Look for a Job in Medical Assisting in Mississippi
According to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security, there were 3,020 medical assistants employed in Mississippi in 2010. During the ten-year period ending 2020, this number is projected to increase to 3,370, an increase of 350 medical assistant jobs, representing a job growth rate of 11.6 percent. On average, there are 80 openings for medical assistant jobs in Mississippi.
Once you have completed training and education in medical assisting, you can begin searching for a medical assisting job in Mississippi. Because the majority of medical assistant jobs in any state are typically found in large hospital systems and physician groups, you may choose to begin your job search by identifying these organizations:
- University of Mississippi Medical Center
- University Physicians Pavilion, Jackson
- University Physicians, Grants Ferry, Flowood
- University Physicians, Lakewood Medical Center, Jackson
- University Physicians, Women’s Specialty Care at Mirror Lake, Flowood
- University Physicians, Northeast Jackson
- Jackson Medical Mall, Jackson
- Keesler Medical Center at Keesler Air Force Base
- Baptist Memorial Hospital, Southaven
- Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
- Southwest Mississippi Medical Center, McComb
- Dominic Hospital, Jackson