Wondering what the requirements and duties of a Certified Medical Assistant are?

Read on to learn about this highly needed and fast paced field. 

A Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) provides both clinical and administrative support to health care professionals, usually in a clinical setting. You can train to become a CMA in as little as nine months by attending an accredited course in a nearby junior or vocational college.

There’s a growing demand for properly accredited medical assistants across the United States and North America, so this is a career where you can expect to find employment with relative ease. It’s also a portable skill, so if you decide to work overseas then you can take your career with you. Please do bear in mind that becoming a CMA is not the same as becoming a registered nurse – you will be under the direct supervision of a trained medical professional when performing any of your clinical duties.

Medical Assistant Duties

Your duties as a CMA are probably more broad than anyone else you might work with, but are dictated by the laws within the jurisdiction you’ll work in. You could, for example, work on the front desk, as part of the medical billing team, update patient records, or even scheduling surgeries from one day to the next.

There’s also the clinical side of the role which can include any of the following tasks:

  • Drawing blood/blood transfusions (Phlebotomy)
  • Prepare or collect laboratory samples
  • Basic x-ray assistance
  • Disposing of medical waste
  • Record vital signs, including blood pressure
  • Changing or applying wound dressings
  • Change dressings
  • EKG (electrocardiogram) test records
  • Record patient’s vital signs
  • Assistant in minor medical procedures
  • Prepare or sterilize medical equipment
  • Dietary or medication advice for patients

What Are The Requirements?

You must complete an accredited CMA training program, which can be completed in as little as nine months for a certificate or diploma. The educational requirements for being accepted to this type of course is a High School Diploma, or a High School Equivalency Diploma.  You must also be at least 18-years of age con commencement of your CMA training.


Once you’ve completed your basic CMA certification or diploma course, you can then further your career as a medical assistant by undertaking an associate’s degree, which will take up to 24 month to complete successfully. There is also a requirement for a CMA to rectify after they’ve worked in the field for five years.

Salary Expectations

Salary expectations can be found on many government websites such as www.bls.gov and www.salary.com and may vary depending on the type of work sought after such as private or public business, self- employment, this may also vary depending on experience and your client base.


Our Training Program

At Central Oklahoma College we offer a highly-focused Medical Assistant training program which fully prepares you for you future career as a healthcare professional. Students who successfully complete our CMA course can then sit the Registered Medical Assistant exam offered by the AAMP (American Association of Medical Personnel), and also the Registered Phlebotomist exam, if you feel it’s a necessary career step for you.