Texas Medical Assistant Guide

Career Description

Medical assistants in Texas perform basic medical tasks and a range of administrative duties.  They do so at the direction of either a doctor or a licensed nurse.  Any given day, medical assistants perform the following duties.

  • Answer patients questions
  • Make reminder calls
  • Schedule follow-up visits
  • Assist during exams
  • Give immunizations
  • Update patient records

Certified Medical Assistants in Texas

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    Medical assistants in Texas have the option to pursue certification as:

    Finding employment without certification is possible, but certified assistants have an advantage over uncertified assistants.  For those interested in certification, this is the path to follow.  These five steps will help people become a certified medical assistant (CMA) with the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA), which is the most respected title in the industry.

    1.  Training

    There are schools that train CMAs throughout Texas.  They are located in Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston, as well as smaller towns.  Programs can also be found online.  Students pursing certification with the AAMA should only consider CAAHEP classes, or else their schoolwork will be for naught.

    Medical assistants that have completed a quarter of their classroom studies and have a minimum 3.0 CMA-related GPA are qualified to apply for the Maxine Williams Scholarship.  The winner of this national scholarship receives $1,000 from the AAMA.

    2.  Applying

    When students are ready to take the CMA certification test, they should submit the appropriate application.  They will also have to pay a $125 exam fee.

    Once the AAMA receives an application, they send a communication within 30 days.  Their final verdict, however, comes 20 days after an application is approved.  If approved, applicants will receive a test permit.

    3.  Setting Up the Test

    Students have 90 days after receiving the permit to schedule and take the certification exam.  This can be done at any of the testing facilities in Texas.

    4.  Studying

    As with any test, especially a cumulative certification test, students must study.  Local chapters (listed below) and schools can provide review materials and practice tests to use.

    5.  Testing

    All this preparation boils down to a single exam.  Applicants who pass are certified by the AAMA.  They will soon be listed on among the AAMA’s CMAs online.

    Texas CMAs: Employment Prediction

    United States

    Employment

    Percent
    Change

    Job Openings 1

    2010

    2020

    Medical Assistants

    527,600

    690,400

    +31%

    24,380

    Texas

    Employment

    Percent
    Change

    Job Openings 1

    2008

    2018

    Medical Assistants

    40,640

    54,870

    +35%

    1,880

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

    (CareerInfoNet.org)

    Texas, which boasts the strongest economy in the Union, is seeing a tremendous increase in demand for CMAs.  The field is growing everywhere in the country.  Few states, however, are adding 14,000 medical assistant jobs in 10 years and have nearly 2,000 openings annually.

    Texas CMAs: Salaries

    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

    Texas Hourly

    $8.99

    $10.66

    $12.97

    $15.57

    $18.11

    Yearly

    $18,700

    $22,200

    $27,000

    $32,400

    $37,700

    (CareerInfoNet.org)

    CMAs earn less in Texas than they do in other states.  While some start out at $9.00 an hour, that wage can quickly be increased by working hard, gaining valuable experience and being certified with the AAMA.

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics has data that shows how much CMAs made in different parts of the state during 2011.

    • Dallas, TX: $30,060 (yr.) / $14.45 (hr.)
    • Austin, TX: $30,700 / $14.79
    • Houston, TX: $30,030 / $14.44
    • San Antonio, TX: $26,510 / $12.74

    Recertifications / Transfers

    The AAMA’s certification is valid for five years, after which CMAs are recertified.  To recertify, they must pay $125, take an exam and complete some continuing education units (CEUs).  Specific details are found here.  The Texas Society of Medical Assistants (TSMA) offer several CEUs.

    The AAMA allows CMAs to transfer from any state to any state.  To do so, they should contact their local chapter.

    Local AAMA Chapters in Texas

    • Bay Area
    • Bexar County
    • Dallas County
    • Gregg County
    • Northeast Harris County
    • Rio Grande
    • Southwest Harris County

    The Texas Society of Medical Assistants (TSMA) is the state-wide organization of CMAs.

    Sources: