Medical Assistant Programs in Arkansas

If you are interested in a career as a medical assistant in Arkansas, your first step is to find a school in your area that offers a medical assisting course. Arkansas, just like other states, does not require graduates to be certified in this field, but employers prefer certified practitioners to non-certified employees.

What specific medical assisting program should you take to get into this field?

A high school diploma is enough to get you started as a medical assistant even if you have had no previous working experience. Some even learn the ropes on the job working as a volunteer in a hospital or clinic. However, if you want employers to see how serious and passionate you are about your career, then consider completing either a certificate course or an associate's degree.

A certificate course can be completed within a period of one year, while an associate's degree can be completed in two years. Both programs require that you undergo on-the-job training after finishing the core subjects and clinical practice. The difference between the two is the depth of instruction and clinical experience you will gain with an associate's degree. In addition, if you have plans of pursuing higher education, most of your subjects will be credited to the bachelor's degree. Thus, the decision as to which course to take will largely depend on your career and educational plans.

Medical Assisting Schools in ArKANSAS

There are only a few accredited schools in Arkansas that offer medical assistant training to aspiring students. Enquire about scholarship and funding options from the list of colleges below as well eligibility requirements, placement history, accreditation and career placement services.

Matching School Ads

Charter College

Charter College is a private, independent institution of higher education that follows a new direction. Charter College is neither a liberal arts college, a university, nor a vocational school. Instead, Charter College borrows certain elements from each of those respected educational institutions to create a unique and innovative experience for our students.

We offer career training programs in the growing fields of health care, business, law, criminal justice, information technology, and select trade careers. We strive to provide our students with a career-focused education that is both relevant in today’s workspace and cutting-edge in technology and focus.

  • Anchorage
  • Wasilla
  • Certificate - Medical Assistant
  • Certificate - Medical Office Administrative Assistant
Matching School Ads

Other schools you might consider:

  • Arkansas Tech University (Associate's degree) – CAAHEP certified
  •  Bryan College (Diploma)
  • Heritage College (Associate's degree)
  • Cossatot Community College of the University of Arkansas (Associate's degree)
  • Eastern College of Health Vocations – Little Rock (Diploma) – ABHES certified
  • Remington College – Little Rock Campus (Diploma)

What are the advantages of becoming a certified medical assistant?

Becoming a certified medical assistant opens a wide range of employment opportunities for you. As doctors rely more on medical assistants in ensuring that their clinics run smoothly, the more the doctors can focus on their jobs as healthcare practitioners. This means that more jobs will open for medical assistants. In addition, doctors find it more practical to hire assistants with formal academic training and who have passed the certification tests for medical assistants.

How do you become certified in this field?

If you want to become a certified medical assistant, you have to ensure that the program you will apply to is accredited by one of the certifying agencies, the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) or Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). Only graduates from accredited educational institutions are eligible to take the certification exam.

Arkansas and National Salaries for Medical Assistants

Location Pay Period 2011
10% Median 90%
United States Hourly

Table 1 Salary Data Source: U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Outlook for Medical Assistants in Arkansas

Based on the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the medical assisting industry, in general, is expected to grow by 31% of its current number of practitioners from now until 2020. There are about 528,000 active practitioners in the United States alone and the government projects up to 163,000 positions to fill up until 2020.

On the other hand, with less than 1,800 medical assistants practicing in Arkansas and low wages offered to practitioners (around $15 an hour), finding jobs in the state could be a bit difficult. However, with Arkansas becoming a popular retirement destination of retirees, the need for more medical assistants will grow as well. With the government's thrust on improving the healthcare benefits and services to people, more job opportunities will arise for would-be medical assistants in Arkansas.

Medical Assistant Programs by State

Alabama Georgia Maine Nevada Pennsylvania Washington
Alaska Hawaii Maryland New Hampshire Rhode Island West Virginia
Arizona Idaho Massachusetts New Jersey South Carolina Wisconsin
Arkansas Illinois Michigan New York South Dakota Wyoming
California Indiana Minnesota North Carolina Tennessee  
Colorado Iowa Mississippi North Dakota Texas  
Connecticut Kansas Missouri Ohio Utah  
Delaware Kentucky Montana Oklahoma Virginia  
Florida Louisiana Nebraska Oregon Vermont