Arizona offers one of the highest rates of employment for medical assistants in the United States. With a nice mixture of urban, rural and metropolis areas, Arizona offers many opportunities for the trained medical assistant. With many hospitals, ambulatory care centers and clinics, like the renowned Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale and Phoenix, medical assistant schools in Arizona are plentiful.
Researching medical assistant schools takes time and diligence. You’ll want to make sure you find a program that fits your location needs, education budget and learning objectives. Some medical assisting schools in Arizona offer online learning via the Blackboard system, as well as in-class instruction. Arizona medical assisting schools may offer programs at multiple locations throughout the state, as well. Likely, you’ll be able to find a medical assisting program close to you.
The type of medical assisting degree you earn varies based on the school you choose. Certificate, diploma and Associate of Applied Science degrees in medical assisting are available. Certificate and diploma programs tend to be shorter-about nine to twelve months in length-than A.A.S. degrees. If you plan to further your education beyond medical assisting, an A.A.S. degree offers credit transfer opportunities.
Additionally, consider cost and learning objectives when interviewing schools, to be sure they meet your needs. Accreditation is also important. The MA program you choose must be accredited by either the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). Accreditation is important as it allows you to sit for the certified medical assistant exam (CMA) or registered medical assistant exam (RMA). These certifications are earned after successful program graduation, and help identify you as a competent medical assistant. Employers often seek medical assistants with either the CMA or RMA designation.
Arizona Medical Assisting Schools:
1) Lamson College
Lamson College offers a diploma in medical assisting. The program combines both clinical and administrative instruction and takes about 33 weeks to complete. Lamson College states that about 68% of its graduates find employment as a medical assistant after graduation. Program costs run about $14,000 and graduates are eligible to sit for the CMA exam.
2) Central Arizona College
Central Arizona College offers an Associate of Applied Science-Medical Assisting degree. This 66 credit course is accredited and graduates may sit for the CMA exam. Program fees for this course depend on credit transfer and residency status.
3) Carrington College
Carrington College offers both a certificate in medical assisting and an Associate’s degree. Students may choose to take the one year certificate course, or continue on for an additional year to earn the A.A.S. degree. Medical assisting programs at Carrington College are broken into clinical, administrative and externship sections. This fully accredited program costs between $14,000 and $26,000, depending on the program chosen. Graduates are eligible to sit for the CMA exam.
4) Anthem College
Anthem College offers an Associate of Applied Science-Medical Assistant degree, which takes about two years to complete. This program is accredited via the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). Graduates may sit for the RMA exam upon program completion. Anthem College states that its medical assisting program costs about $27,000, depending upon credit transfer and amount of courses needed for graduation.
5) Pima Medical Institute
Pima Medical Institute offers a nine-month certificate program in medical assisting. This 34 credit program is tightly focused on the exact skills and knowledge a medical assistant needs to gain an entry-level position. This program costs about $11,000 and graduates are eligible to sit for the CMA exam.
6) Arizona College of Allied Health
Arizona College of Allied Health offers both a diploma and Associate of Applied Science of Medical Assisting. Students may choose to complete one year to earn a diploma, or continue an additional year to complete an Associate’s degree. Program fees start at about $15,000 and graduates are eligible to sit for the RMA examination.
Sanford-Brown offers a diploma in medical assisting at the Phoenix location. This program is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). Graduates may sit for the RMA exam upon program completion. The Sanford-Brown medical assisting program costs about $15,000 to complete.