Louisiana Medical Assistant Guide

Career Description

Without medical assistants, Louisiana’s healthcare system would likely breakdown.  Medical assistants keep doctors’ offices and other healthcare facilities running smoothly, by performing basic clinical and administrative tasks.  Some of the responsibilities medical assistants take on include:

  • Communicating with patients and other doctors’ offices
  • Administering shots and drawing blood
  • Recording medical histories
  • Assisting with patient exams
  • Cleaning and sanitizing medical equipment
  • Preparing medical rooms

Certified Medical Assistants in Louisiana

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Programs:

  • Clinical Medical Assisting - Diploma
  • Health Information Management, Billing and Coding - Diploma
Locations: Houma

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McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann) has a history of helping students succeed through hands-on education and career training.  Our faculty and staff work to ensure that when you’ve completed your program, you’re truly ready to begin your career.

Programs:

  • Medical Assisting - Associate in Occupational Studies
  • Medical Office Assistant - Diploma
  • Medical Billing and Coding - Diploma
Locations: Monroe

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Programs:

  • Medical Assisting
  • BS in Health and Wellness
  • Medical Billing and Coding Certificate

Fortis Institute can give you the skills you need to train for a career in the healthcare field.

* Programs vary by location

* Please contact each individual campus for accreditation information


Programs:

  • Medical Assisting
  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Medical Billing and Coding
Locations: Baton Rouge

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Programs:

  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Office Specialist
  • Dental Assistant
  • And more...
Locations: Beaumont
Penn Foster offers affordable, self-paced career-focused distance education programs in fields like business, criminal justice, health services, technology, engineering, paralegal studies and more.

Programs:

  • Pharmacy Technician
  • Veterinary Assistant
  • Medical Coding and Billing
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Programs:

  • Veterinary Assisting
  • Physical Therapy Aide
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    Programs:

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        The following for associations certify medical assistants or comparable positions.

        Certification is not required by law for medical assistants; however, people with certification are often preferred by employers.  In addition to certification, many medical facilities only hire medical assistants who have a GED or high school diploma.

        The American Association of Medical Assistants, which goes by the AAMA, is one of the most recognized certifying agencies.  The AAMA’s certification process contains six steps.

        Step 1:  Find a School

        AAMA-sanctioned schools are located in almost every Louisiana city.  The tuition of the courses and their durations varies.  From all of the programs available, students should be able to find one that meets their budget and schedule.

        Step 2:  Consider a Scholarship

        The AAMA offers a national scholarship to medical assistant students who maintain at least a 3.0 GPA during the first quarter of their training.  This scholarship is based on academic merit, as well as financial need.  The recipients receive a $1,000 award.

        Step 3:  Send In the Test Application

        The AAMA test application must be sent in, before students can schedule a time to take the exam.  When mailing it to the AAMA, applicants should also enclose the exam fee.  They can expect to hear from the AAMA in about a month of applying.

        Step 4:  Find a Testing Center

        There are several AAMA-approved testing centers in Louisiana.  Students must contact one of these centers to schedule a time for their test.  On the day of the exam, they must bring the testing permit.  This is sent via email by the AAMA within three weeks of approval to take the exam.

        Step 5:  Study

        Two (sometimes dreaded) words describe the final step in the certification process: “test” and “exam.”  Just as with any other test, students must study for the CMA certification exam.  Course instructors can provide students with practice materials.

        Step 6:  Pass the Exam

        All applicants that pass the test are certified to work as medical assistants.  They will be listed on the AAMA’s page of certified medical assistants.

        CMA Employment Outlook in Louisiana

        The following chart comes from CareerInfoNet.org, which run by the U.S. Department of Labor.

        United States

        Employment

        Percent
        Change

        Job Openings 1

        2010

        2020

        Medical Assistants

        527,600

        690,400

        +31%

        24,380

        Louisiana

        Employment

        Percent
        Change

        Job Openings 1

        2008

        2018

        Medical Assistants

        4,530

        6,080

        +34%

        210

        1Job Openings refers to the average annual job openings due to growth and net replacement.

        The need for CMAs in Louisiana is growing at a faster rate than the national average of 31 percent.  A 34 percent increase in the demand for CMAs within Louisiana would result in more than 200 open jobs across the state each year.

        CMA Salary Outlook in Louisiana

        CareerInfoNet.org also has a chart that shows wage information for CMAs in Louisiana.

        Location Pay
        Period

        2011

        10%

        25%

        Median

        75%

        90%

        United States Hourly

        $10.04

        $11.86

        $13.99

        $16.87

        $19.62

        Yearly

        $20,900

        $24,700

        $29,100

        $35,100

        $40,800

        Louisiana Hourly

        $8.82

        $10.35

        $12.54

        $14.63

        $17.24

        Yearly

        $18,300

        $21,500

        $26,100

        $30,400

        $35,900

        Most CMAs who worked in Louisiana during2011 earned between $11.86 and $16.87 an hour, which is a decent wage for an occupation that does not require a college degree.

        The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) breaks this information down by region and city.  Here is what CMAs earned in some of Louisiana’s cities during 2011 (hourly wage / annual salary).

        • Lake Charles, LA: $21,670 / $10.42
        • New Orleans, LA: $28,780 / $13.84
        • Baton Rouge, LA: $27,180 / $13.07
        • Monroe, LA: $23,690 / $11.39

        Recertify and Transfer

        Since the AAMA handles medical assistant certification throughout the United States, it is easy to transfer from one state to another.  Nearly every state has the same certification process.  CMAs interested in transferring should visit the AAMA’s page.

        Recertification is required every five years.  It is also handled by the AAMA.

        Louisiana’s AAMA Chapters

        Louisiana does not have any local chapters, so CMAs must contact the national offices with any questions.

        Sites Used: