Respected certified programs in the medical field?

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Sarahsuu in Phoenix, Arizona

13 months ago

Hello currently I work in retail and I think it's about time for a change. I didn't wanna just rush into an associate program without even getting into the medical field to see if it would be something I would be interested in. Therefore I was curious as to what certified programs are out there, and which ones are in higher demand then others? I live near Mesa, Arizona. So maybe if you needed a location as a reference. Any opinions?

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Riot in Massachusetts

13 months ago

I'm not in allied health, but I did tutor Biology and Chemistry at a community college, where I did come into contact with a lot of people in these types of programs. These are the conclusions I've come to by talking to people (and reading on the internet):

1) Radiologic Technician (X-Ray) is almost completely saturated. If this field interests you, plan on learning several other modalities and still have trouble finding your first job.
2) Certified Nursing Assistant (usually a short course through the Red Cross or similar) is in demand, but pay is extremely low and you almost certainly end up at a nursing home wiping butts.
3) Medical Coding is in the "don't bother" category. The beginning certifications are very easy to get, so everyone and there mother has them, making it almost impossible to find the first job without knowing someone. This field is also highly offshorable.
4) Health Information Management is a little more desirable than just a Medical Coding certificate and you can make some decent money, but, again, due to offshoring, you may be looking for another field in 10 years or less.
5) Pharmacy technician is another relatively easy field to get into, but pay will start out low and pharmacies seem to be very stressful work environments.
6) Medical Assistant seems to be a viable alternative to CNA. Pay is a bit better and chances of landing a job seem good, but there isn't much room for advancement.
7) LPN/LVN (where you live depends on what it's called) positions are being squeezed out in favor of Medical Assistant, CNA, and full RN.
8) Registered Nurse is still the "gold standard" for 2-year allied health programs. Your chance of finding a job is still generally high, though people have been told to go into nursing pretty heavily for years now, so some markets are already saturated. Look for this trend to continue.

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Riot in Massachusetts

13 months ago

I don't know as much about PTA or OTA, but I think that these are the "new, popular" 2-year allied health programs to get into.

Also, I'm not trying to scare you off from allied health. I just wanted to give you some idea of difficulties you may come across. Ultimately, what you need to do is pick a field, scout out programs near your location, and determine if the program graduates find jobs and pass certifications after graduation. Remember, though, that you'll be entering the workforce 6-36 months from when you start your program, depending on what path you choose. If a field is saturated today, it's not likely to get better on that short of a timescale.

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Bluetea in Texas

13 months ago

Sarahsuu in Phoenix, Arizona said: Hello currently I work in retail and I think it's about time for a change. I didn't wanna just rush into an associate program without even getting into the medical field to see if it would be something I would be interested in. Therefore I was curious as to what certified programs are out there, and which ones are in higher demand then others? I live near Mesa, Arizona. So maybe if you needed a location as a reference. Any opinions?

You might have gotten up a little late. Many of the medical fields are already saturated because they have a 2 year head start on you.

Whatever field you choose, stay on the patient care side of things. Medical administration is being automated and you need experience not just a certificate now.

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Sarahsuu in Phoenix, Arizona

13 months ago

Bluetea in Texas said: You might have gotten up a little late. Many of the medical fields are already saturated because they have a 2 year head start on you.

Whatever field you choose, stay on the patient care side of things. Medical administration is being automated and you need experience not just a certificate now.

Well I'm only 21 so I didn't try to be late... I mean I know even at 21 I could have 2 years of schooling done by now however college is a huge step. I don't want to make the wrong decision.

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Almost Suicidal in San Antonio, Texas

13 months ago

I have a friend who got an OTA done about 5 years ago ( I helped her with her essay, it was great). She's been steadily employed with the same practice ever since.

She's actually looking to get into some specialized cognitive behavioral courses for dealing with autism.

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Bluetea in Texas

13 months ago

Sarahsuu in Phoenix, Arizona said: Well I'm only 21 so I didn't try to be late... I mean I know even at 21 I could have 2 years of schooling done by now however college is a huge step. I don't want to make the wrong decision.

Any of the physical therapies are good. Another field that isn't saturated is any kind of eldercare.

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Riot in Massachusetts

13 months ago

For some reason I missed that you were looking purely at certificate programs. Sorry for the extra information above.

The community college that I went to offered a 9-month Medical Assistant certificate. I have a friend who did this and has been employed with no gaps since finishing in 2010. I believe that she makes around $15/hr. If your local CC offers Medical Assistant as a certificate program, I think this is probably your best option. Other allied health programs that are typically certificates are Pharmacy Technician, Medical Coding and Billing, etc. These probably won't be as good for you as MA for the reasons I described above. If you are really looking for the quickest way to get involved in allied health though, CNA is it. You can take a Red Cross CNA class in 2 months.

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Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona

13 months ago

What about clinical lab assistant? A college offers a program. I'm just curious if anyone knows about the program?

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Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona

13 months ago

Offers the program here****

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Riot in Massachusetts

13 months ago

Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona said: What about clinical lab assistant? A college offers a program. I'm just curious if anyone knows about the program?

I think that if you want to go this route, that you should see how many courses overlap with Medical Laboratory Technologist (MLT) degree programs near you. These may instead be called "Clinical Laboratory Sciences" and would be an Associate's Degree. You'll want the AS program to accredited by NAACLS, or else you'll have to go through extra hoops to sit for ASCP certification, which is what hospitals look for.That might be looking too far into the future, but it's something to consider. I mention this because I looked at 5 hospital systems around me, and only one was hiring Clinical Lab Assistants, so unless things are different around you, it may be difficult for you to find a job. All 5 systems were hiring MLT/MLS though.

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Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona

12 months ago

How about dental assistants?

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Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona

12 months ago

I'm afraid though because I have kinda.... not so great teeth. Would I not get hired because of that?

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Almost Suicidal in Cypress, Texas

12 months ago

can't be that bad if you're working in retail.

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Sarahsuu in Scottsdale, Arizona

12 months ago

Almost Suicidal in Cypress, Texas said: can't be that bad if you're working in retail.

I suppose that's true. If you can handle retail you can handle anything. :p

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