Medical assistants are not always certified. Indeed, some go straight into the profession when they leave high school. As such, all of their knowledge is based on things they learn on the job itself. However, it is generally recommended to become a certified medical assistant, even if there is no requirement for it. This is because it will teach you the necessary skills and knowledge to be the best medical assistant you can be. Additionally, it opens more and better job opportunities for you. However, even a certified medical assistant will find that there are certain things no school can teach you. Some things can only be learned on the job itself. Let’s take a look at the five things that you will start learning as soon as you start to work as a medical assistant.
1 – Patience
As a medical assistant, you will be swept off your feet with the various duties you will have to fulfill. You will answer phone calls, update charts, check on the various patients who are in and more. You will be busy from the moment you get into work until the moment you check out. Busy people make mistakes, which is inevitable. What you will need to learn is to be patient with yourself, so you don’t get frustrated. If you get frustrated, you will find that you make more mistakes as well. When you stop rushing yourself and take things slow, however, your work will be easier and more accurate.
2. Problem Solving
No matter how nice you are or how little you have had to do with a certain procedure, you are in a customer-facing role, which means you will be the one dealing with people who are upset. People can be upset for a variety of reasons, most of which have nothing to do with you. Perhaps they are simply having a bad day, maybe they got stuck in traffic, or perhaps their blood results have come back with bad news. Either way, you need to be able to listen and stay calm. Your role is to help them solve their problems, so that they leave feeling better than when they arrived. Increasing your problem solving skills has fantastic results that are likely to give you a lot of satisfaction in yourself as well.
Health care delivery is all about team work. There are patients, doctors, nurses, medical assistants, lab technicians and more. You must learn to work together with all of these people. One thing brings all of you together and that is improving outcomes for patients. Each member of the team has a clear role to play, yours is to do things such as checking in patients, ensuring their charts are up-to-date, arranging examinations and dressing wounds, for instance. Additionally, you need to be able to anticipate what is likely to happen next and preempt this.
Unfortunately, there is a sad side to being a medical assistant as well, and that is grief. You are working with people with very complex health needs and with illnesses and diseases. All these people will die at some point, but you may, at times, be directly involve in their cases when they pass away. It is impossible not to grieve about this and many say that the first time you see someone die is probably the hardest. It is at this point that you will find out whether or not you are cut out to make it in this field. Additionally, you need to be able to deal with the grief of surviving friends and relatives, for whom you will be almost a counselor.
Finally, you will build a great deal of self-confidence. You have so many responsibilities and so many things to think about that, if you can handle the job, you can know that you are multi-skilled and good at what you do. This is something you can, should and will be proud of.