How Medical Assistant Training Can Help Keep Rural Hospitals Afloat
Posted by Emma Rose Gallimore on October 7, 2020
The challenge facing rural hospitals
Many factors influence whether a hospital is at risk including case mix, percentage of capital efficiency, changes in total revenue, and occupancy rates. Well-trained staff in the right place can impact several of these factors, causing ripple effects felt throughout the hospital.
With the right training, medical assistants and other support staff can learn to operate at the top of their license, which means they have the skills and confidence to perform all tasks allowed to them under the law. Medical assistants operating at the top of their licenses enable hospitals to achieve a higher percentage of capital efficiency. Since a medical assistant makes less than a physician assistant or registered nurse, they can perform the same procedure with less cost to the hospital. The result is a positive change in total revenue.
As the shortage of qualified frontline healthcare workers continues to grow amidst the pandemic, rural hospitals are poised to be the hardest hit. However, building up the skills of support staff like medical assistants can make a difference – effecting not only revenue, but quality of patient care.
Working at the top of their license
Check state requirements to understand what medical assistants are allowed to do in your state and whether credentialing is required. A non-credentialed medical assistant can do less than a certified medical assistant. They may need to be supervised more closely. On the other hand, the healthcare team can trust a trained and certified medical assistant to independently perform vital tasks like:
- Scheduling patient appointments
- Measuring and recording vital signs
- Updating electronic health records
- Preparing blood samples for the laboratory
- Other essential clinical and administrative tasks
How to train medical assistants
Penn Foster’s Medical Assistant Accelerated Career Diploma can prepare working learners to sit for one of four industry certifications:
- The Registered Medical Assistant certification (RMA) offered by American Medical Technologists (AMT)
- The Certified Clinical Medical Assistant certificate (CCMA) offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA)
- The National Certified Medical Assistant certificate (NCMA) offered by the National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT)
- The Clinical Medical Assistant Certification (CMAC) offered by American Medical Certification Association (AMCA)