Have you been wondering about pursuing a career in medical assisting? If so, there are variety of programs available in Arkansas —including certificates, diplomas and degree programs.
Medical assistants, not to be confused with physician assistants, work in clinical or administrative settings or perform a variety of both. They schedule patients’ appointments, change bandages, use electronic health records (EHRs) software, and record patients’ vitals. Before we get into education information for medical assistants in Arkansas, we thought you’d be interested to learn some general education information about the state...
Arkansas General Education Information and Data[vii]
- There are 27 four year institutions in Arkansas, compared to the national average of 56.
- There are 24 two year institutions compared to the national average of 33.
- The national average for total male fall enrollment is 171,951 and Arkansas has 68,943.
- The total female fall enrollment in Arkansas is 99,409 while the national average is 228,592.
F.A.Q.'s for Medical Assistants in Arkansas
What are the medical assisting job and earning statistics from Arkansas?
- There are currently 2,320 medical assistants employed in Arkansas[i]
- There are 2,480 projected jobs by 2022, which is a 23% increase and approximately 90 annual job openings[ii]
- The annual mean 10th percentile wage for medical assistants in Arkansas is $19,790[i]
- The hourly mean 10th percentile wage is $10.23[i]
Where do medical assistants work?
Medical assistants usually work in physician's offices, hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities. They perform administrative and clinical tasks that involve working with patients, doctors, and other healthcare professionals. Did you know Arkansas boasts several hospitals ranked by U.S. News and World Report? The CHI St. Vincent Infirmary is even ranked as high performing for 3 specialties, including orthopedics and urology.
Top 3 Regionally Ranked Hospitals in Arkansas:
- CHI St. Vincent Infirmary
- Arkansas Surgical Hospital
- Washington Regional Medical Center
Lowest 10th% Salary
Highest 90th% Salary
|Fort Smith, AR-OK||$17,920||$30,440|
|Hot Springs, AR||$22,190||$34,250|
|Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR||$19,320||$35,580|
|Pine Bluff, AR||$17,860||$34,600|
What is the annual mean 10th percentile wage for other health related fields in Arkansas?
Medical Billing & Coding: $21,060[iii]
Pharmacy Technician: $20,000[v]
CNA (certified nursing assistant): $16,540[vi]
How do I earn a medical assistant certification in Arkansas?
Are you passionate about pursuing a career as a medical assistant? If so, you may want to look into earning your medical assisting certification or degree, since many employers tend to prefer employees who are certified. There are a variety of medical assisting programs in Arkansas to choose from within technical or vocational schools, colleges, universities, and even community colleges. The National Commission for Certifying Agencies accredits five certifications for medical assistants.
Below are a few related fields that do require state licensure:
- CAN (Certified Nurse Assistant):[viii] Requires certification via the Arkansas Department of Human Services. You must take an initial exam and then renew your certification every two years. Experience requirements for the initial certification also include 90 hours of classroom and clinical training and an Arkansas state background check.
- Emergency Medical Technician:[ix] Requires certification via the Arkansas Department of Health. Requirements for initial certification include successfully passing the NREMT certification exam (CBT), successfully completing an Arkansas criminal history background check, completion of an approved National EMS Educational Standards course, and successfully passing the State Psychomotor (Skills) exam. License renewal is every two years.
- Registered Dental Assistant:[x] Requires certification via the Arkansas State Board of Dental Examiners. Must complete on-the-job training through an Arkansas-licensed dentist using the Educational Packet provided by the board or must be a graduate of an American Dental Association Commission on Dental Accreditation accredited school. Completion of a nitrous oxide administration and monitoring course approved by the board and an additional course for sedation monitoring is also required.
What medical assisting professional organizations are there in Arkansas?
If you are serious about medical assisting and are a recent graduate, then becoming part of a professional medical assistant organization may open the door to great opportunities for you. In the state of Arkansas, the Arkansas Society of Medical Assistants has information about continuing education, meetings, and networking for members. By visiting their website at http://www.arsma.org, you can find out more details about this organization.
If you are thinking about pursuing a career in medical assisting in the state of Arkansas and are excited to learn more, then the list of schools below could help. Keep in mind that, although certification or a degree may not be mandatory to become a medical assistant, many employers may want to hire medical assistants who have their certification or degree.