The South Dakota Department of Health clearly explains that medical assistants are professional multi skilled persons who assist in all aspects of medical practice under the responsibility and direct supervision of a person licensed to practice medicine in the State of South Dakota. They describe their work as helping with patient care management, executing administrative and clinical procedures, and performing managerial and supervisory functions over unlicensed personnel. The South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners is to protect the health and welfare of the state’s citizens by ensuring that only qualified healthcare providers. State law is quite clear that “No person may practice as a medical assistant unless that person is registered with the Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners.”
Furthermore, the person planning to take this step needs to look at the cost of this investment with respect to time, energy level, and tuition. Careful planning and thoughtful decision making will yield a higher level of long term success in this field. In preparing to enter this profession, it is important to look at areas such as quality educational programs, and recognized credentialing which differ depending where you will practice. Beginning the process of becoming a medical assistants starts with finding an academic setting to get the basics and practice the necessary protocols.
The three national federations of medical assistants have separate requirements. The title certified medical assistant is awarded by the American Association of Medical Assistant (AAMA) while the title registered is given by the American Medical Technologists (AMT). Both of these groups are recognized by the American Medical Association (AMA). The National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) requires continual in-service to maintain their national registration, which is not as well known as the other titles. Furthermore the AAMA has established curriculum requirements for education programs that guarantee that the student has every opportunity for success. Look for this recognition when you are choosing the program that will prepare you as a medical assistant.
The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) recognises the programs at Colorado Technical University in Sioux Falls, Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown, Mitchell Technical Institute in Mitchell, National American University in Sioux Falls, Rapid City, Watertown, and Ellsworth AFB, and Presentation College in Aberdeen.The Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) recognizes Globe University in Sioux Falls. Rasmussen College in Fargo has yet to apply for these credentials. Remember, only your careful planning will ensure successful employment in this emerging career. While this summary focuses on getting your training at a traditional school, take a look at the increasing number of schools across the country that are developing online programs to prepare you as a medical assistant.
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