The medical assistant profession is a critical factor in all aspects of the healthcare field. The medical assistant (MA) must be a driven individual that is able to adapt to situations that range from easy-going to high-stress in a matter of moments. The MA profession is one that demands versatility in every aspect of healthcare.
Because a lot of medical practices tend to be on the smaller side, medical assistants must jump between the administrative and clinical aspects of their job constantly. The MA is responsible for administrative responsibilities such as admissions, billing, filing procedures for patient documentation, interacting with pharmacies over the telephone, and an involvement with health insurance. This profession places you as the first contact with the patients a majority of the time, so having a pleasant personality that can get along with all types of people is a definite plus. The clinical portions of the job entail everything that happens behind the scenes in the medical offices. The MA is responsible for taking patient histories, recording vital signs, and making preliminary patient assessments. Once the physician has had an opportunity to touch base with the patient, the physician may require you to perform the more intricate areas of the scope of practice. These can include lab work, taking cultures, performing ECG’s, administering breathing treatments, venipuncture for blood work or intravenous fluid balancing, or giving intramuscular injections of different medications.
The performance of the MA is one that requires a vast amount of precision. From drawing medications, to setting up lab work for desired test results; the job requires you to have a steady hand and an ever watchful eye for the details. The medical assistant holds the patient in their care for the time they spend in the medical facility. This responsibility necessitates a deserved respect.
The MA’s only consideration is not the patient however. The medical assistant must be ever-mindful to keep themselves safe. There are going to be situations where you will be exposed to different types of contagions, and you must be informed enough to take the proper standard precautions in every potentially hazardous situation. The medical assistant may come into contact with body fluids, airborne and droplet contagions, and blood during certain patient encounters and exams. This not only requires the appropriate protection during each exam, such as gloves and masks, but great discipline with hand hygiene. This ensures that you will not spread the bacteria to other patients, or to yourself once your patient interaction has come to a close.
It is critical that you become familiar with all phases of a patient’s healthcare as well. This allows you to properly educate the patient, and make them comfortable with the care being performed on them. This also gives them a sense of self advocacy, so that they feel as if they can take care of themselves once they have left your facility. You have that opportunity to empower someone else with information, and it can be a very rewarding feeling.
Taking care of people, educating patients, and making sure they are in a position to take care of themselves are the cornerstones of healthcare. The medical field is one that demands a lot of you, but gives a sense of fulfillment every day. If any of these sounds like an interest of yours, and you like challenging yourself every day, then you have chosen well. Welcome to a career as a Medical Assistant.ma8416155