A California bill that would allow Medical Assistants to perform certain medical tasks without the direct supervision of a doctor was approved by the Senate Committee on Business and Professions last week.* The proposed law would not change the scope of what MAs can do, but would allow them to perform certain duties under the supervision of registered nurses and physician assistants. As of now, without a doctor around, work must only be clerical in nature.
“This isn’t changing scope of practice,” said Sen. Fran Pavley, who authored the bill. “This bill simply expands the settings for what they’re already allowed to do.” According to Pavley, there are 82,000 Medical Assistants in California, a number that will increase as the demand for services increases. “Those Medical Assistants need to assist, not just do paperwork,” she said.
There is some concern that the shifting of responsibilities could affect patient care. For example, does this distance doctors from patients, or will these proposed supervision duties hinder an RN’s or physician assistant’s ability to function? While the bill may be modified to address these issues, in the end, it’s about better resource allocation, says Pavley. “Letting Medical Assistants help in the ways they’re trained to help just can’t be a bad idea,” she said.
The bill passed the business and professions committee on a 9-1 vote and now heads to the Senate Committee on Appropriations.
About Unitek’s Medical Assistant Program
If you’re considering Medical Assistant training, you may want to consider Unitek College as well. Unitek is a private, accredited institution with seven locations in the state of California. All of these locations offer a comprehensive Medical Assisting program which can be completed in as little as 9 months.
At Unitek, we provide an MA program that enables students to take charge of their future without spending years in school. Our educational approach features a combination of professional lectures, hands-on exercises, and a 160-hour supervised externship. While students utilize fully stocked lab rooms, the MA program also focuses on critical tenets like teamwork and communication.
Medical Assistant Courses at Unitek College
When selecting a Medical Assistant school, it’s important to pick one with a comprehensive curriculum. To give you a better idea of what our MA students study, we’re including specific course names within this section. These may seem daunting to some, but our instructors provide support and often go above and beyond for their students. It’s also important to remember that you can tackle anything if you set your mind to it!
Without further ado, our MA courses include the following:
+ Introduction to Medical Assisting & Medical Law
+ Pharmacology, Medication Administration, Diagnostic Imaging
+ Patient Assessment, Cardio-Pulmonary, Gastroenterology
+ Eyes, Ears, Nose, Throat, Nervous System
+ Stages of Life: Pediatrics, Ob/Gyn, Geriatrics
+ Computerized Medical Assisting
+ First Aid, Emergencies, Behavior in Acute Situations
+ The Medical Assisting Externship
To speak with a representative, please choose your desired campus and find their contact information here.
Follow your dreams with Unitek College!
*Source: California Healthline
This Unitek blog post was originally published on April 16, 2013.