Medical Assistant Definition

A "medical assistant" may be certified or registered, or maybe loosely defined. The occupation should not be confused with physician assistants, who are licensed professionals trained to practise medicine and perform surgical procedures in collaboration with a physician. According to the International Standard Classification of Occupations, medical assistants normally require formal training in health services provision for competent performance in their jobs. Formal education is generally received from post secondary institutions such as vocational schools, technical institutes, community colleges, proprietary colleges, online educational programs or junior colleges. Medical assistant training programs most commonly lead to a certificate or a diploma, which take around one year to complete, or an associate degree, which takes around two years. Medical Assistants are trained on several topics which include medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, and programs may include a clinical internship, sometimes referred to as "externship", wherein the student works as a medical assistant in a medical clinic.

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