A medical assisting career is a great option for anyone looking to get into the medical field. Medical assisting pays a decent salary and provides fantastic job security. If you love a fast-paced environment where you get to help people every day, medical assisting might be the job for you.
To become a medical assistant, you can choose to get your medical assisting certification or try to find a job that does not require it. Most states do not require you to be certified, but many employers prefer to hire certified medical assistants.
If you choose the certification route, you can finish an accelerated medical assistant training program in as little as 6 weeks. If you choose to pursue a medical assistant degree, plan for 1 to 2 years of schooling.
If you do not wish to be certified, you can start looking for a medical assisting job right away, but your choices will be limited.
Is it Possible to Become a Medical Assistant in 6 Weeks?
It is possible to become a medical assistant in 6 weeks, but it will take a lot of focus and organization. There are some self-paced and accelerated medical assistant programs available that can be completed in 6 weeks, however, most people do not finish these courses that quickly.
Finishing an entire program in 6 weeks takes tremendous discipline and fantastic study habits. You’ll also want to check the accreditation of any school that offers a 6 week certification course—especially online programs.
You can also become a medical assistant in 6 weeks or less by finding an employer that does not require certification or who is willing to hire you while you work towards your certification. This is possible because there are no education requirements for medical assistants besides having a high school diploma or GED.
Average Length of Medical Assistant Programs
The length of medical assistant programs varies based on the type of program you prefer. The shorter 6-week option requires a lot of independent work, and the longer 2-year programs offer more assistance.
Average length of medical assistant programs:
- Online program: 4 months
- Trade school: 12 months
- Community college certificate programs: 12 months
- Associate degree programs: 2 years
Shortest Medical Assistant Training Program Currently Available
The fastest medical assisting program available is offered through Phlebotomy Carreer Training. They offer a self-paced online course that advertises a 6 week timeline.
While it can be finished in as little as 6 weeks, this program requires both course instruction and 204 hours of clinical instruction. This means you would have to spend 34 hours per week in clinical work in addition to the course work in order to finish in the 6-week timeline.
It also requires you to find your own clinical instructor at a facility near you. Most people finish the course in 6 months.
An online medical assistant program like Stepful’s is much more realistic. It is a 4-month long program that includes all instruction, an externship, and job-placement assistance.
How You Can Become a Medical Assistant in Under 6 Weeks by Not Getting Your Certification
It is possible to get a medical assistant job with no experience or certification. You will need to be a fast learner and feel comfortable with on-the-job training. You’ll have better chances of being hired if you have other certifications like phlebotomy or EKG training.
If you are in a hurry to start work right away, ask employers if they would be willing to train you while you complete a certification program. Medical assistants are in high demand, and offices might be willing to hire you before you finish a certification program.
Only Washington requires certification for all medical assistants. Otherwise, you can legally work as a medical assistant right after high school graduation or obtaining your GED.
How Stepful Can Help You Become a Medical Assistant in Just 4 Months
The program includes an externship for you to get some real life experience in addition to the educational courses.
Stepful’s course content includes anatomy and physiology, healthcare systems, infection control, phlebotomy, medical law and ethics, and customer service. We help you feel confident as you enter into the workforce.
Taking an online medical assistant certification program allows for flexibility for people with busy schedules. You can choose daytime or evening courses and complete most of your work during times that work well for you. Even though it is online, you’ll work with attentive teachers and a supportive community of people who want to see you succeed.
After graduation, Stepful assigns you a career coach to help you find a job. We offer a 100% job placement guarantee and 80% of graduates are working as medical assistants within 3 months of graduation.
Timeline of Becoming a Medical Assistant
The timeline for becoming a medical assistant depends on whether you decide to become certified, and the type of program that you choose. Steps for becoming a medical assistant include:
- Get your high school diploma or GED (4 years). Medical assisting programs require a high school diploma or GED to get started. You can take a GED exam whenever you feel ready.
- Enroll in a medical assisting course (4 months to 2 years). If you choose an online certificate program, you can have your medical assisting certificate in as little as 4 months. If you would prefer to graduate with a diploma, you’ll spend about 2 years in school.
- Get work experience. You can take a CCMA or RMA exam and become certified by gaining work experience instead of going through a program. You’ll need at least one year of work experience to be eligible to take the CCMA or RMA exam.
- Apply for jobs & interview. Check out jobs boards and local hospitals for medical assistant position openings. Remember to prepare for your interview by looking up sample medical assistant interview questions and preparing answers.
- Start work. You can begin working right away without becoming certified if you would like.
- Get a job as a certified medical assistant. Since medical assistants are in such high demand, you should be able to find a job quite quickly. This is especially true if you are certified.
FAQs on Becoming a Medical Assistant in the Shortest Time Possible
Is it possible to become a medical assistant in 6 weeks?
It is possible to become a medical assistant in 6 weeks with a self-paced program or by starting work without becoming certified.
Is it possible to become a medical assistant in 8 weeks?
To become a medical assistant in 8 weeks, you can try to finish a self-paced program quickly or start working without a certification.
Is it possible to become a medical assistant in 4 weeks?
You can become a medical assistant in as little as 4 weeks if you do not plan to get a certification. You will have to look for a job that does not require certification or prior experience.
Can I become a medical assistant online?
There are many online medical assisting programs available to choose from. It is wise to choose a program that includes some kind of externship to help you feel comfortable working with patients. Most of the cheapest medical assistant programs are online.
What is the fastest way to become a medical assistant?
You can start your career as a medical assistant right away if you already have a high school diploma or GED. Most states do not require certification or experience to start working as a medical assistant.
What is the quickest medical assistant program?
The quickest medical program is a 6 week course offered through Phlebotomy Career Training. Keep in mind that this course requires you to find your own internship opportunities in addition to full-time coursework.
How long does it take to get a medical assistant certification?
A typical online certification course takes 4 months to complete. A community college certification course or trade school takes about 12 months, and a degree program takes about 2 years.
If you would rather substitute work experience for a certification course, you will need at least one year of experience before you can take either the RMA or CCMA exam. The CMA exam does not allow work experience as a substitute for a medical assisting program.
>> Read More: Medical Assistant vs CMA vs RMA vs CCMA