Although medical assisting is a great healthcare career, you might want to do more in your career and advance to another position in healthcare. If that is the case, you have plenty of choices.
Medical Assisting (MA) is a great way to begin a career on the front lines of healthcare. It is a fulfilling position that gives you a chance to provide excellent care to patients and be a valuable member of the medical team. It is also an in-demand career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical assisting is expected to grow 18% between 2020-2030.
Although medical assisting is a great healthcare career, you might want to do more in your career and advance to another position in healthcare. If that is the case, you have plenty of choices. Here is a look at some of them:
Positions in healthcare administration are focused on administrator and managerial roles that do not involve patient care. Instead, you would have a chance to qualify for positions such as medical secretary, administrative support specialist, healthcare administrator and clinical manager. As a healthcare administrator or manager, you work closely with other healthcare professionals such as nurses, physicians, lab techs and others to facilitate and coordinate the delivery of healthcare services.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of medical and health service managers is expected to increase 32% from 2020-2030, much faster than the average across all U.S. occupations.
Herzing offers associate and bachelor’s programs in healthcare administration. The associate degree is ideal if you would like to qualify for entry-level administrative positions. A bachelor's degree would be an option for higher positions and you could decide at a later date to pursue an MBA in Healthcare Management.
Healthcare Information Management
Health information management is for career-focused individuals looking to make a behind-the-scenes impact in the delivery of healthcare, and a degree in healthcare information management can help you prepare for a position in that area.
Healthcare information management equips you with the knowledge and skills to qualify for management positions in hospitals, clinics, long-term care facilities, insurance companies, and much more, which makes it different than healthcare management. Herzing offers an associate degree as well as a bachelor’s program that could lead to an MBA.
A nursing career could be an option for medical assistants. While you need to go back to school to complete a nursing degree, MAs may see nursing as a viable career change because it allows you to play a greater role in patient care.
While some of an LPN’s daily tasks may resemble some of those performed by an MA, LPNs play a greater role in patient care. LPNs need to earn licensure through the NCLEX-PN exam. An LPN will often be tasked with basic patient care and diagnosis such as taking vital signs, changing bandages and ensuring patients’ comfort. The PN program could take about 12 months to complete at Herzing.
To go from medical assistant to RN, you need to earn at least an associate degree, although many health care organizations prefer a bachelor’s degree for RNs. There are several types of programs for people who want to earn a bachelor of science in nursing degree at Herzing, including online. RNs must pass the NCLEX-RN exam. An associate program takes about 2 years and BSN could last about 3 years.
Do I want a management position? You could become a manager in a variety of healthcare roles, but you might find that a degree in healthcare management is a quicker path to become a department leader.
Would I like to work more on my own? People in the healthcare information management field likely have more of a chance to work independently than in other healthcare roles. You might even be able to work from home, which isn’t likely in a patient care role.
Would I prefer to stay in a patient care setting? If so, you might want to take a closer look at options in nursing as well as other direct care roles.
Whatever you decide, make sure you first ask a lot of questions to people in a variety of healthcare roles so you can learn as much as possible about your options.
* Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2020. BLS estimates do not represent entry-level wages and/or salaries. Multiple factors, including prior experience, age, geography market in which you want to work and degree field, will affect career outcomes and earnings. Herzing neither represents that its graduates will earn the average salaries calculated by BLS for a particular job nor guarantees that graduation from its program will result in a job, promotion, salary increase or other career growth.