OBGYN medical assistants work under gynecologists and perform clerical duties, prepare patients for exams and record vital signs. These professionals need a high school diploma or its equivalent but certification or an associate's degree are fairly common.
Obstetrics and gynecology (OBGYN) medical assistants are specialized clinical and administrative technicians who assist and work under the direction of a gynecologist. Their duties may include performing clerical tasks, preparing patients for examinations or recording vital signs such as blood pressure and temperature. Some hold just a high school diploma or GED certificate, but many medical assistants earn certificates or associate's degrees in the field. Professional certification is not required but may help with employment.
|Required Education||High school diploma or the equivalent may suffice; certificate or associate's degree in medical assisting commonly held|
|Certification||Optional medical assisting certification|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)||23% for all medical assistants|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$30,590 all medical assistants|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
OBGYN Medical Assistant Duties
OBGYN medical assistants help gynecologists with clinical and clerical tasks such as patient education, examination preparation, taking vital numbers, recording patient medical histories, performing electrocardiograms (EKGs), drawing blood, patient intake and minor surgery. They are not to be confused with physician's assistants; medical assistants do not perform diagnoses, treat patients or write prescriptions.
OBGYN Medical Assistant Salary
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for general medical assistants in 2015 was $30,590. Career outlook was projected to be very good overall throughout the 2014-2024 decade, with 23% job growth. As physician's practices expand and more baby boomers seek care, medical assistants will increasingly be used to perform some of the duties currently performed by more expensive employees, such as nurses.
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OBGYN Medical Assistant Requirements
A high school diploma is the base education requirement to become a medical assistant. Those seeking employment in this field should have a strong foundation in mathematics and science courses such as biology and chemistry. No formal medical assistant training is required, but the BLS advised that those candidates with a combination of training, experience and certification may have the best job prospects.
Students seeking to become OBGYN medical assistants may enroll in formal medical assistant training programs. Coursework for these programs is divided into administrative, clinical procedures and laboratory procedures. Students can also take human anatomy and physiology with medical terminology. Some programs allow the student to earn a certificate. There are also 2-year programs that offer an Associate of Applied Science Medical Assistant.
Currently, certification is not required for general or OBGYN medical assistants; however, certification shows potential employers that a certain skill level has been achieved, and these credentials can be used in salary negotiations.
The American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) awards the Certified Medical Assistant to individuals who complete an accredited medical assisting program and pass an exam. Certification through American Medical Technologists is available for candidates who have completed an accredited medical assisting program and have a minimum of five years of work experience.
As an OBGYN medical assistant you can expect to make just over $30,000 a year and with the healthcare industry booming in terms of employment it's a safe, solid career choice.