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Medical Assistant

Medical assistants complete administrative and clinical tasks in the offices of a variety of healthcare practitioners. They may also be employed in hospitals, outpatient clinics and long-term care facilities. The duties of a medical assistant varies with locations, specialty and size of the practice.

Most medical assistants work full-time during the day. Some may work evenings or weekends in medical facilities that are always open.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills: Medical assistants must be able to understand and follow medical charts and diagnoses. They may be required to also code a patient’s medical records for billing purposes.

Detail-orientated: Medical assistants must be precise when taking vital signs or recording patient information. Physicians and insurance companies rely on accurate records.

Interpersonal skills: Medical assistants need to be able to discuss patient information with other medical personnel. They often interact with patients who may be in pain or in distress, therefore need to be able to act in a calm and professional manner.

Technical skills: Medical assistants should be able to use basic clinical instruments so they can take a patient’s vital signs or give immunizations.

Course Length:

  • Career-Readiness Training: 1 week
  • Pre-Training: 1 week
  • Medical Assistant Course Training: 44 weeks
  • Total Training Length: 46 weeks (11 months)

Potential Starting Wage: $11 to $15 per hour

Average Total Number Employed^: 1,963

Average Number of Openings Each Year^: 95

^Wage and employment estimates for the Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA), was accessed using the Oklahoma Wage Network (OWN) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, [April 26, 2015] [].

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HPOG-Grantee-Badge_3.png#asset:465This document was supported by Grant 90FX0045-01-01 from the Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS. HPOG is a study funded by the federal government which is being conducted to determine how these training opportunities help improve their skills and find better jobs. During the study, all new eligible applicants will be selected by lottery to participate in these training opportunities. Not all eligible applicants will be selected to participate in these opportunities. Learn more about HPOG.