The Medical Assisting Program at Tennessee Technology Center at McMinnville (TTC-M) has been in place since 1998. According to Deborah Womack, Program Coordinator, "medical assistants are the backbone of the physician’s office since they are trained to perform administrative as well as clinical tasks." Students learn electronic medical records, administrative tasks like insurance and billing; clinical tasks such as giving injections, performing ECGs and laboratory testing. These competencies are learned in a one year period.
The program has over an 80% job placement rate. The American Association of Medical Assistants website (AAMA) sites the United States Department of Labor report that medical assisting is a fast growing field for medical careers. This can be attributed to a predicted surge in the number of physician offices and out-outpatient care facilities. Technological advancements ans the growing number of elderly Americans who medical treatment are also factors for the increased demand for medical assistants.
Students can take the medical assistant certification exam from the AAMA or American Medical Technologist (AMT) before or after graduation. Passing the certification exam gives the students the right to use the CMA(AAMA) or RMA(AMT) credentials. Many physicians are now requiring certification upon employment.
Students of the program help the Warren County Schools Health Services screen several thousand children each year for hearing, vision, height weight and blood pressure. The students get the hands-on skills of working to help detect childhood diseases like obesity.
Students in the Medical Assistant program (currently 16 total) at TTC-M are currently working toward a 4th Presidential Volunteer Service Award. This award, given at SkillsUSA National Convention every year in Kansas City, MO, involves the students completing over 1000 community service hours each year as a group. The students also help with the Academics Inspiring Minds (AIM) after school program by collecting much needed items for use by the students in the after school programs. Students also collect food items for the F.U.E.L. project of the county schools. These are nutritious foods students in need can take home. Christmas and Thanksgiving are 2 holidays medical assistant students also assist with by collecting food and toys for needy families.
Students learning how to read medical records
One year to a certificate program recognized by physicians in hiring;
Qualified for a job in a fast growing healthcare career sector;and
Students volunteer their skills in their community.
Deborah Womack, Program Coordinator, with students at Skills USA in Kansas City. The medical assisting studens are working on the 4th Presidents Volunteer Award to the program for a 1000 hours of service to their community.