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What Is a Medical Clinical Assistant?

Medical clinical assistants are a vital part of the healthcare industry. They act as an assistant for the primary physician and help ensure things are running smoothly during  patient appointments. Medical clinical assistants are often the liaison between patients and physicians in addition to handling patient-specific administrative tasks or general healthcare office duties.

In this blog, you will learn the day-to-day activities of a medical clinical assistant and how they are an essential link in healthcare. We’ll outline what a career as a medical clinical assistant can look like and help you decide if it is something you are interested in pursuing. South Texas Vocational Technical Institute’s (STVT) Medical Clinical Assistant program might be a great choice for you as you learn more about their role in healthcare.

The Day-to-Day of a Medical Clinical Assistant

A medical clinical assistant,  may be principally responsible for seeing patients prior to the physician and preparing them for examinations. Other clinical skills include but are not limited to the following: assisting the physician during the exam, taking health histories, collecting and preparing laboratory specimens, and drawing blood.

In addition to patient-facing tasks, medical clinical assistants could be responsible for a number of other things throughout the day. These might be related to either administrative tasks, general office duties, or clinical laboratory work. Medical clinical assistants’ day-to-day work is varied and can include several skill sets. When acting as the liaison between the patient and attending physician, it is important to note that the role can require wearing many hats and being involved in several types of projects simultaneously.

Why Choose a Career as a Medical Clinical Assistant?

Choosing a career as a medical clinical assistant has many benefits. To name a few: it’s a rewarding job where individuals can specialize in a field they enjoy; the training program typically does not require  a huge time commitment; there may be government-provided financial aid available to those who qualify; and it’s an opportunity to advance your education. Within the job, there can be  room for growth in healthcare. Many people move into nursing after a few years as a clinical assistant. After gaining invaluable experience as a medical clinical assistant, people have the ability to continue in their desired field in healthcare.

The Education

The general responsibilities of medical clinical assistants encompass multiple facets and involve the ability to transition smoothly between various  projects while providing excellent patient care. Medical clinical assistant programs typically consist of around one year of schooling and training.  Upon completion of  the program, candidates may sit for a certification exam.

The program offered at the STVT’s McAllen and Corpus Christi campuses includes  training  in both administrative and clinical, to prepare students for a certification exam. Our curriculum focuses on helping prepare students for common tasks and situations in the healthcare workplace, and the externship portion of the program provides valuable real-world experiences. Students have the opportunity to train within these skill sets: body systems, pathology, insurance billing, clinical foundations, allied health office systems, introductory coding, clinical specialties, clinical laboratory, and practical computer applications. Our program emphasizes hands-on learning for patient and workplace safety while preparing you to be a skilled healthcare team member. The program includes 60 credit hours and takes 13 months to complete.

What Makes a Successful Medical Clinical Assistant?

Common skills for  candidates pursuing a career as a medical clinical assistant are being a great communicator, especially in a potentially high-stress environment, and  maintaining  attention to detail. As a liaison between  healthcare team members and the patient, it is very important for the medical clinical assistant to be able to clearly and concisely communicate information between both parties. Additional attributes include organizational skills and the ability to switch between projects, for example, between administration work for one patient while also attending to another patient waiting to get their healthcare history taken before an examination. Technical proficiency in medical office programs is also a quality of a successful medical clinical assistant.

Begin Your Future Today as Texas Medical Clinical Assistant

Medical clinical assistants are valuable players in healthcare. They are the people who patients first see when going to a healthcare facility, and provide quality care before, during, and after an appointment.  Starting as a medical clinical assistant may lead to several other paths within healthcare. The educational programs available to become a medical clinical assistant are a short-time commitment but a life-long investment towards a career in healthcare. Our Medical Clinical Assistant program at STVT can provide you with the starting pieces for this future investment as a medical clinical assistant in Texas today. Learn more about our program and your future as a clinical medical assistant.

Information within this blog is for general information purposes only. STVT does not assume or guarantee certification/licensures, specific job/career positions, income earning potential or salary expectations based on the programs offered at STVT. Career and program information statements in this blog do not guarantee that programs or other information mentioned are offered at STVT.