Becoming a Medical Assistant in Minnesota
A Medical Assistant is often the first person patients encounter at hospitals, doctors’ offices and clinics. As the people who schedule appointments, arrange billing, assist with insurance forms, weigh patients, take blood pressure measurements and administer many medications, medical assistants have the opportunity to use both their analytical and people skills to make patients comfortable while working in a vital caregiving profession. [Leer en español]
Requirements for Working as a Medical Assistant in Minnesota
While medical assistants are not required to obtain a certificate under Minnesota law, applicants will find many Minnesota employers require a certificate. Both the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) and Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) certifications are recognized in Minnesota, but because the Minnesota Society of Medical Assistants is affiliated with the American Association of Medical Assistants, CMA certification is the most widely recognized qualification in the state. Once you’ve graduated from a CAAHEP– or ABHES-accredited medical assisting program, you can apply to take the CMA exam.
Minnesota Schools for Medical Assistants
Studying to become a medical assistant at an accredited school is the best route to achieving CMA certification, which is more widely recognized in Minnesota than RMAs. High school graduates or GED-equivalent applicants should ensure their communications and math skills are at least average.
Looking fora school that offers an externship may be a smart move, as it gives a potential employer a chance to evaluate both your skills and your work ethic, and may lead to employment right out of school. Whether you choose a year-long certificate program or an associate’s degree, becoming a medical assistant should provide you with both career flexibility and mobility as well as a great deal of satisfaction.
- Lake Superior College, Duluth. LSC’s one-year program delivers coursework in communication, anatomy and physiology, medical office, laboratory and clinical skills, with a short internship at the end of the program. It’s designed to prepare students not only for work in clinics, hospitals and doctors’ offices, but also for national CMA certification. The hands-on clinical experience acquired in this program should give students an advantage after graduation.
- Minneapolis Business College, Roseville. This program spans two-and-a-half semesters and includes an extensive, eight-week externship. It can be completed in 10 to 16 months. The college provides individualized access to faculty committed to helping students succeed. MBC offers both a Medical Assistant Diploma Program and a Medical Assistant A.A.S. Program, both of which boast five-year placement rates in excess of 80 percent.
Career Outlook and Salary Expectations
Medical assistant careers in Minnesota won’t be going away anytime soon. As the U.S. population ages, the need for medical assistants to provide front-line care so doctors can see more patients on less routine matters will only increase. There were almost 9,320 medical assistants working in Minnesota in 2020, for an average $22.56 per hour or $46,920 annually, significantly higher than the national hourly and annual wage for medical assistants. The number of jobs for medical assistants is expected to grow by just over 16 percent by 2030.
Working as a Medical Assistant in Minnesota
While the majority of jobs for medical assistants will naturally be found in the largest urban centers of St. Paul, Minneapolis, Duluth, Rochester or Bloomington, Minnesota, work is available throughout the state in a variety of settings, including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics and doctors’ offices. You can qualify as a medical assistant in a year or year and a half, and be assured of ongoing, varied work anywhere in Minnesota.
How much do medical assistants earn in the state of Minnesota?
According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical assistants in the state of Minnesota made an average of $46,920 per year in 2021. Entry-level medical assistants earned around $36,590 and some experienced professionals earned salaries as high as $48,510.