Medical Assistant in New York Career Guide: Programs, Certifications, & More

Medical assistants are in high demand in New York. New York clinics pay medical assistants more than the national average, and projected job growth for New York medical assistants is also higher than the national average. 

Medical assistants work in doctor’s offices, hospitals, and outpatient clinics. They generally help with both administrative and clinical duties, working closely with doctors to provide high-quality healthcare to their patients. They help with scheduling appointments, billing, bedside procedures, and obtaining patient health histories. 

Medical assisting is a fulfilling career with decent pay and great job security. This guide will review education and certification requirements, medical assisting programs, and how to start your successful medical assisting career in New York. 

Medical Assistant Programs in New York & NYC

There are many different ways to become a medical assistant in New York and NYC. Certification is not strictly required, but most employers prefer to hire a certified medical assistant over someone who is not certified. 

You can become a certified medical assistant by completing an online program, a certificate program at a community college, or earning an associate medical assistant degree

After you complete one of these educational programs, you will have to pass an exam to earn your certification. 

Here are some medical assisting programs in New York:

Stepful’s Online Medical Assistant Program

  • Location: Online w/ externship in NY
  • Time to complete: 4 months
  • Cost: $1,999
  • Certificate: Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA)
  • Notes: 100% job placement guarantee after program completion

Mildred Elley Medical Assistant Programs

  • Locations: Albany, New York City
  • Time to complete: 2 years 
  • Cost: $10,000
  • Certificate: CCMA, CPT, CET, or CMAA
  • Notes: Mildred Elley offers both certificate and associate degree programs

New York School of Medical and Dental Assisting

  • Location: Queens
  • Time to complete: 16 months
  • Cost: $11,000
  • Resulting certification: RMA 
  • Notes: This is an associate degree program 

City College of New York 

  • Location: Hybrid – Online + NYC
  • Time to complete: 6 months 
  • Cost: $2,999
  • Resulting certification: CCMA
  • Notes: Hybrid program with online and hands-on learning 

New York Medical Career Training Center

  • Locations: NYC, Flushing, Garden City
  • Time to complete: 7.5 months
  • Cost: $12,000
  • Resulting certification: RMA
  • Notes: Includes 600 classroom and 300 externship hours 

Niagara County Community College 

  • Location: Online/Sanborn
  • Time to complete: 12 months
  • Cost: $18,000
  • Resulting certification: CMA, RMA, or NCMA
  • Notes: Hybrid and in-person classes available 

How to Find Medical Assistant Jobs in New York

One of the easiest ways to find a medical assistant job in New York is through an internet search engine like Google. 

Most employers will post their jobs on employment websites like Indeed or Monster. These websites allow you to quickly search through hundreds of jobs to find one that interests you. Here are some direct links that you can use to look for a medical assistant job in NY or NYC:

  • Indeed. This is one of the most popular job boards and as of the time of this writing has 2,727 medical assistant jobs available in New York.
  • Monster.com. Monster is a great place to look for jobs, and has tools like a resume builder that can help you stand out against other applicants. 
  • ZipRecruiter. This is another popular job search board with hundreds of medical assisting jobs posted for New York. 

Healthcare facilities often post job openings on their websites. If you have a particular office or hospital in mind, you can look on their site or give them a call. Arriving in person to hand in an application and discuss job opportunities will make a strong impression if you can make it to the office. 

Looking for a medical assistant externship is an excellent way to show off your strengths while getting to know a specific office workflow. An externship provides an opportunity for you and a potential employer to get to know each other before committing to a working relationship.  

Medical Assistants in New York Salary & Job Outlook

Salaries for medical assistants in New York are $41,200 on average. In New York City, the average is higher at $442,390. These are both higher than the national average pay for medical assistants of $37,190. 

There are an estimated 31,300 medical assistants in New York City. The demand for medical assistants is expected to grow by 16% through 2030 throughout the entire nation. In New York, job opportunities for medical assistants are expected to increase by 35% by 2026. 

This high rate of growth in New York is the result of an increase in primary care practices around the state. These offices need the expertise of medical assistants who can help with both clinical and administrative duties. 

Where Medical Assistants Work in NY

Medical assistants in New York typically work in doctor’s offices. In fact, over 60% of medical assistants work in a doctors office. 

Here is a full breakdown of where MAs work in NY:

  • Physician offices – 64%
  • Hospitals – 17%
  • Outpatient Care Centers – 10%
  • Chiropractic Offices – 9%

How to Become a Medical Assistant in NY

If you live in New York, there are some simple steps you can follow to become a medical assistant in your area. 

  1. Obtain your high school diploma or GED. Before you can begin work as a medical assistant or enter a medical assistant training program, you must graduate with a high school diploma or earn your GED. If you need to earn your GED, you can take a course and finish your exam in about 3 months.
  2. Get the necessary training & education. While it is not required to be certified to start working as a medical assistant in New York, it does help. You can choose an online medical assistant training program and finish in as little as four months, or choose an MA degree program that will last up to two years. 
  3. Complete an internship or externship. While this step is not required, completing an externship will help you get a feel for different offices and see what will be a good fit for you. It also gives you an opportunity to introduce yourself to the physician and other staff, giving you a leg up when you start to apply for jobs.
  4. Apply for jobs. With such a high demand for medical assistants, you can start applying to clinics and hospitals right away. Some medical assisting programs will help you build your resume and find a job. 
  5. Start your career. Now you are ready to start your career as a medical assistant. 

Certification & License Requirements for Medical Assistants in New York

There are no license or certification requirements to work as a medical assistant in New York. After earning your GED or high school diploma, you can legally start to work as a medical assistant in any clinic, hospital, or physician's office. 

Although not strictly required, most workplaces prefer certified medical assistants. Becoming certified shows that you have the knowledge and skills to care for patients safely and efficiently. 

Having your medical assistant certification helps the doctors you work with feel confident in your knowledge and prepares you for a successful entry into the workforce. 

What Medical Assistants Can & Can’t Do in New York

According to NY state laws, medical assistants cannot do the following: 

  • Triage
  • Draw up or administer vaccinations or immunizations
  • Draw up any medication in syringes
  • Administer medications 
  • Administer contrast dyes or injections of any kind
  • Place sutures and other forms of wound closure
  • Take x-rays 
  • Apply or remove casts
  • Insert  or remove IVs or catheters 
  • Teach self-injection of medications or self-catheterization
  • Performing EMGs or other nerve conduction studies

On the other hand, medical assistants in NY are allowed to:

  • Take measurements 
  • Measure and report vital signs 
  • Assist with bedside procedures 
  • Draw blood 
  • Perform and EKG 
  • Collect urine samples 
  • Obtain health history information 
  • Check blood sugar levels 

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