How to Become a Medical Assistant in Iowa – IA
Technically, only a high school degree is the educational background necessary to pursue a career in medical assisting; however, many potential medical assistants either enroll in a yearlong certification-training program or opt for a two-year associate degree medical assistant program in Iowa. While high school graduation is the only legal requirement to practice medical assisting in Iowa, success in this field greatly depends on a medical assistant’s enthusiasm for learning and gaining experience through on the job training, formal Iowa medical assistant programs, completion of a one or two-year post-secondary school degree, and national certification. Failure to complete formal training in this field will result in foregoing certification until five years of job experience is acquired. Often certification is a reflection of a medical assistant’s competency to responsibly navigate through the health care system from the clinical to the clerical duties therein.
With additional training and education, a medical assistant can achieve advancement into the medical field whether through teaching, nursing, or more administrative positions. Also, many medical assistants eventually decide to narrow their focus to a more specialized field, like pediatrics, and therefore engage in further education accordingly. As always, volunteer and internship experiences greatly enhance your career potential.
Societies & Professional Organizations
On a state specific level, the Iowa Society of Medical Assistants (ISMA) has created a forum of support by inviting all medical assistants and students thereof to interact through seminars, professional networking functions, certification information, and continuing education opportunities. The ISMA includes eight local chapters in Ames, Fort Dodge, Des Moines, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, Marshalltown, Mason City, Spencer, Burlington, and a “Members at Large” chapter encompassing further reaching regions and populations. All ISMA officers can be contacted at http://firstname.lastname@example.org.