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Medical Assistant Vs Phlebotomist

What are the Differences Between a Medical Assistant and a Phlebotomist?

Medical Assistant vs PhlebotomistMedical assisting and phlebotomy are wonderful healthcare careers. Both allow you to work with patients and to help make sure the patients get the treatment and attention they need. Both careers also have a very promising future and offer nice salaries and benefits. So which career is best for you? Medical assistants and phlebotomists can be found working in many of the same types of healthcare facilities, but they perform vastly different jobs. Before you choose one of these rewarding careers, familiarize yourself with every aspect of each job. That will allow you to choose a career that will bring you years of happiness and satisfaction.

Training Requirements

Medical assistants may be able to find positions that offer on-the-job training, but increasing numbers of employers and states are requiring medical assistants to have formal training through an online or traditional school. Medical assistants may choose training that ranges from the certificate to the degree level and that specializes in administrative, clinical, or general medical assisting. Training includes such courses as billing, office procedures, medical terminology, and anatomy and takes around one to two years to complete, depending upon the program chosen. Anyone who wishes to become a Certified Medical Assistant must be sure to complete a program that is CAAHEP or ABHES accredited in order to be eligible to sit for the certification examination after graduation.

Phlebotomists must complete a certificate or diploma program in phlebotomy in order to work in this field. These programs include both laboratory and classroom instruction and cover such topics as anatomy, physiology, and medical terminology. Nearly all employers prefer phlebotomists who are certified. Certification can be attained through the National Center for Competency Testing, the American Medical Technologists, or the American Society for Clinical Pathology. While certification is not mandatory in all areas, California, Nevada, and Louisiana currently require that all phlebotomists be certified.

Duties and Responsibilities

The duties of a medical assistant may vary from employer to employer and depend upon the type of training the medical assistant has completed. Some duties may include clinical components such as collecting and recording patient medical histories and vital signs, assisting in tests and minor procedures, and providing patient instructions. In addition, medical assistants may be required to complete administrative tasks that include such things as answering phone calls, scheduling appointments, managing inventory, performing billing operations, and more.

Phlebotomists are primarily responsible for drawing blood. The daily responsibilities of this job include taking blood from patients and donors, talking with individuals to relieve nerves before drawing blood, verifying patient or donor identity, labeling blood samples, entering patient information into a database, and assembling and maintaining medical instruments, including test tubes, needles, and blood vials.

Employment & Salary

Both career fields promise excellent future growth that is guaranteed to provide many new job openings. In addition, professionals in both fields can choose to work in a wide variety of healthcare facilities, depending upon preference. Finally, the average salary for medical assistants and phlebotomists is around $30,000 annually for both professions, meaning that they are very competitive in today’s job market.

Both medical assisting and phlebotomy are rewarding and fulfilling career choices. You may choose the career that best fits your interests and skills, or you may choose to become a medical assistant with phlebotomy training for the best of both worlds.