A rising senior population has given way to outstanding opportunities for Pennsylvania’s medical assistants.
About 18.2% of Pennsylvania’s population was over the age of 65 in 2018 according to the American Community Survey, ranking it eighth in the nation. This aging population has put unprecedented demands on Pennsylvania’s healthcare system which. Even as the single largest employment sector in the state, accounting for nearly one in five jobs, this has put a lot of pressure on industry and government to stack the bench with talented healthcare providers and support staff.
The sheer size and continued growth of the Commonwealth’s healthcare sector is reflected in job growth projections published by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry. According to the Department, there were 27,640 medical assistants here in 2019; by 2021, this number is projected to increase by more than 1,300 – an impressive 4.8% growth rate in just a few short years.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistants in Pennsylvania earned an average hourly wage of $15.85, or $32,970 annually, as of 2019. Once you’ve put a few years of experience on your resume and earned a recognized certification, your paycheck will more closely reflect the top 10% here, who earned an average hourly wage of $20.59, or $42,830 annually that year.
Average Hourly Wages for Medical Assistants in Pennsylvania’s Metro Areas
The Philadelphia metro area comes out on top in PA in terms of both the number of medical assistants that work here and the earning power of these healthcare support professionals.
The BLS reported the following average hourly wage ranges (median – top 10%) for medical assistants in Pennsylvania’s largest metro areas:
- Erie: $14.37 – $18.60 (approximately 550 medical assistants)
- Harrisburg (greater metro area includes Carlisle): $15.82 – $19.38 (approximately 1,680 medical assistants)
- Johnstown: $15.18 – $20.74 (approximately 280 medical assistants)
- Philadelphia (greater metro area includes Camden, Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD): $16.93 – $22.54 (approximately 15,360 medical assistants)
- Pittsburgh: $15.36 – $19.52 (approximately 5,580 medical assistants)
- Reading: $16.06 – $19.90 (approximately 820 medical assistants)
- State College: $15.37 – $19.72 (approximately 220 medical assistants)
- Williamsport: $14.95 – $19.85 (approximately 150 medical assistants)
- York (greater metro area includes Hanover): $16.60 – $21.94 (approximately 1,100 medical assistants)
Average Salaries for Medical Assistants in Pennsylvania’s Metro Areas
The following BLS stats indicate what medical assistants are earning in the median – top 10% salary range in Pennsylvania’s largest metro areas:
- Erie: $29,890 – $38,690
- Harrisburg (greater metro area includes Carlisle): $32,900 – $40,300
- Johnstown: $31,570 – $43,130
- Philadelphia (greater metro area includes Camden, Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD): $35,200 – $46,890
- Pittsburgh: $31,950 – $40,610
- Reading: $33,410 – $41,380
- State College: $31,970 – $41,030
- Williamsport: $31,100 – $41,300
- York (greater metro area includes Hanover): $34,530 – $45,630
Salary and employment data compiled by the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics in May of 2019. Figures represent accumulated data for all employment sectors in which medical assistants work. BLS salary data represents average and median earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries.
2019 job growth projections from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry are aggregated through the U.S. Department of Labor-Sponsored resource, Projections Central. Employment conditions in your area may vary.
All salary and employment data accessed May 2020.