The National Healthcare Association (NHA) offers certification as a certified clinical medical assistant. It is a nationally recognized certification program that will show you are dedicated to the profession, will help you stand out in your job search and can lead to better pay, benefits and more job security.
It is becoming more apparent every day that employers are looking for the most qualified individuals in today’s job market. Becoming certified is the best way to stand out in the market as a well trained competent professional in the healthcare field.
Duties of a Certified Clinical Medical Assistant
As the name implies, the clinical medical assistant’s duties tend to be more heavily focused on the clinical side of healthcare delivery as opposed to a medical administrative assistant whose focus is on the administrative tasks necessary to keep a practice office functioning smoothly.
The clinical assistants will perform all or some of these activities:
Interview patients and assist them in preparing for exams
- Measure and record patient vital signs
- Make sure exam rooms are prepared and ready for use
- Make sure all equipment is cleaned and sterilized
- Administer injections, as well as other medications directed by a physician
- Draw blood and other point-of-care testing
How to Get Certified
Individuals who pass the certification exam will be designated as a certified clinical medical assistant. To be eligible to take the exam you must have a high school diploma or GED. You must have completed a training program or have at least one year of experience in the medical assisting field. Candidates will be required to provide evidence of completed training or work experience.
Applicants who are still in school can receive a provisional certification if they sit for the exam with 12 months of graduation. For further information on provisional certification you should check with the National Healthcare Association.
You can register for the exam on line. Once registered, you will be sent instructions for scheduling your exam as well as testing location details. Results are usually available online within 24-48 hours. If the exam is successfully passed, your credentials will be sent by mail. Certification is good for two years.
Preparing for the Exam
In preparing for the exam, make sure you make use of the study guides and practice exams that can be purchased. Go through the material carefully. The practice exam will give you feedback on where you need additional study.
If you prepare properly you should have no trouble passing the certification exam. You should feel confident when you take the exam that you have done your home work and are ready to do your best.
Once you are certified you must complete continuing education to keep the certification valid. As a certified clinical medical assistant you must complete 10 CE credit hours every two years. The NHA now has an online CE program that provides all you need to keep your certification valid.
You can go the NHA website to see the various ways to meet the CE requirement. If your certificate expires it can also be reinstated if you do so within 12 months of its expiration and on completion of the required CE credits.