A Guide to Medical Assisting Education in South Dakota
You might be surprised to learn about the exciting career opportunities available to you in the state of South Dakota today. As one of many with an astonishing growth rate in the field of healthcare, this state can expect to see hires some 40 Medical Assistants every single year.
A 16 percent increase in this occupation is expected through 2022, according the Bureau of Labor Statistics, making medical assisting an excellent choice for anyone interested in a rewarding career in healthcare. [Leer en español]
What they do
Medical Assistants are the bedrock of any health care facility, from small clinical practices to large hospitals. The current demand on health care systems in the United States is a cause for expansion, as physicians act quickly to accommodate increasing patient numbers.
They help to build a structure of procedure and organization that allows a clinic or office to run smoothly. Their unique set of skills makes it possible for physicians and nurses to focus on the clinical aspects of their jobs, and to see as many patients as possible.
They are positioned uniquely in the field, since the typical assistant carries out both administrative and clinical tasks. Often, in small clinical settings, they are the ones responsible for the collection of information doctors will use to make their diagnoses and treatment recommendations. They do this by talking with patients, gathering and testing specimens, operating diagnostic equipment, documenting and reporting results. They may even advocate for patients, and carry out treatment recommendations prescribed by the physician.
Administrative tasks include calibrating equipment, entering special codes used in billing and lab paperwork, updating and maintaining the patient database, answering phones, and responding to patient refill requests, under the supervision of a doctor.
They cannot provide any diagnoses and they cannot prescribe treatments or drugs. This position is not to be confused with that of physician’s assistant, who carry licensure and are able to prescribe and treat. Medical Assistants on the other hand, are restricted to the scope of their training, and can be delegated to perform any tasks that do not require a medical license.
What they earn
The position itself is highly flexible, and it has many variations. Some Medical Assistants work under different job titles, so they are underrepresented by the data here. They may be Care Coordinators or Patient Access Specialists, or even Medical Social Workers in some contexts. They may be CNAs, or LPNs, phlebotomists or lab technicians. They can work in any setting where healthcare services are needed or delivered, and can specialize in optometry, podiatry, or physical therapy for example.
If you are interested in this exciting career, you will need to keep these variations in mind, because these contexts influence earning potential, along with other factors, such as their region and level of experience. The Bureau of Labor Statistic reports that they earn an average of $13.33 per hour, and ranges from about $10.00 to $17.00 hourly.
Salaries by Metropolitan Area in South Dakota
|Area||Total Employed||Mean Hourly Wage||Mean Annual Salary|
|Rapid City, SD||140||$12.28||$25,550|
|Sioux Falls, SD||500||$13.19||$27,430|
Uniquely, there is no state-mandated education, training, or credential required for the work; anyone with the aptitude can be trained on-the-job. However, it is becoming increasingly rare for Medical Assistants to obtain jobs without any credentials in the current job market, as most clinics now require their candidates to be certified in order to be considered.
If you’re interested in pursuing the career in medical assisting, it is strongly recommended to pursue certification. You will want to check out the requirements, listed on the AAMA website. The American Association of Medical Assistants is one of two major, recognized organizations, which confer awards in medical assisting. Usually, the incumbent will need to graduate from a program of 1-2 years in length, and pass a standard examination in order to receive certification.
College and University Listings
1500 N Main, Aberdeen, South Dakota 57401-1280Medical Assisting – Associate Program
The Associate’s program at Presentation College is imparted at their campus in the town of Aberdeen in Brown County, South Dakota. The college, which has a Roman Catholic religious affiliation,, which has a Roman Catholic religious affiliation, has roughly 791 students in total, with most students on 4-year programs. The school is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission.* Tuition fees are around $18,358 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,200, although this will depend on the program.
1800 E. Spruce Street, Mitchell, South Dakota 57301Medical Assisting – Associate Program
The Associate’s degree program at Mitchell Technical Institute is imparted at their campus in the town of Mitchell in Davison County. The majority of of the school’s 1,203 students are on 2-year programs. Mitchell Technical Institute has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission.* The cost of tuition is likely to be in the order of $5,880 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $950, although this will vary with the program.
Western Dakota Technical Institute offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. All programs are based at their campus in Rapid City in Pennington County, SD. Most of the school’s 1,030 students are on 2-year programs. The school is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission.* Tuition fees are around $6,200 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $2,450, although this will depend on the program.
3901 W 59th St, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57108-2272Medical Assistant – Associate Program
Colorado Technical University’s Associate-level Medical Assistant program is based at their Sioux Falls campus in the city of Sioux Falls, SD. Of the 276 students, about 12% are postgraduates.
5101 S Broadband Ln, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57108Medical Assistant – Associate Program
Globe University’s Associate program in Medical Assisting is taught at their Sioux Falls campus in Sioux Falls City, SD. This private, for-profit college has about 171 students in total, with most students on 4-year programs. Globe University-Sioux Falls has institutional accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, while the program itself is accredited by Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools.* Fees for tuition are generally about $14,040 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,152, although this will depend on the program.
5801 South Corporate Place, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57108-4293Medical Assisting – Associate Program
National American University’s Associate program in Medical Assisting is based at their Sioux Falls campus in Sioux Falls in Lincoln County, SD. This private, for-profit college has round 659 students in total, with the majority of students on 4-year programs. The school has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission.* Tuition fees are around $12,999 annually, while books and supplies may cost around $1,350, although this varies from program to program.
Lake Area Technical Institute offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Watertown in Codington County, South Dakota. Most of the school’s 1,559 students are on 2-year programs. Lake Area Technical Institute has institutional accreditation from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission.* Fees for tuition are about $5,056 annually, while study materials may cost around $1,300, depending on the program.
* Tuition fees and accredition status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college before applying.
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