Medical Assisting (MAT)
The Medical Assistant is a professional, multi-skilled individual trained to assist physicians in the many aspects of medical practice. Duties of the Medical Assistant vary from performing administrative tasks to assisting with examination and treatment of patients. Students learn to measure and record vital signs, take medical histories, administer medications, sterilize instruments, assist with minor office surgeries, and handle emergencies. Students also learn to obtain blood samples, perform routine office laboratory procedures and electrocardiograms, and instruct patients in preparation for laboratory procedures. In the administrative area, students learn to schedule and receive patients; handle telephone calls; type correspondence, reports, and manuscripts; perform medical transcription; process insurance forms; and handle office accounts, fees, and collections. Prior to completion of an area of concentration, a 225-hour practicum in a medical setting is required.
The Medical Assisting AAS degree program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP), on the recommendation of the Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB), 2020 N. California Avenue #213, Suite 7, Chicago, Illinois 60647, (312-392-0155). Contact CAAHEP at 9355 113th Street, North, #7709 Seminole, Florida 33775, (727-210-2350), www.caahep.org.
Program requirements for health programs offered within the Alabama Community College System may be reviewed and revised between publication deadlines for this and future College Catalog and Student Handbook documents. Admission requirements below were in effect at the time this document was published and may or may not be current. Prospective students should contact the program office to obtain requirement updates.
Students entering the program must be high school graduates or possess a GED® certificate. Applicants must meet all College admission requirements, including appropriate placement testing. To aid in program success, it is advisable that any identified developmental needs be completed prior to enrollment in an MAT prefix program course. The Medical Assisting student must provide health information to the College and complete a physical examination by a licensed physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner. To progress successfully through the curriculum and function as a practicing member of the health care team after graduation, the following physical attributes are needed: visual acuity with corrective lenses, if required; hearing ability with auditory aids to understand the normal speaking voice without viewing the speaker’s face; sufficient physical ability to question the client and relay information about the client verbally to others; and manual dexterity to provide safe, effective procedures in delivery of health care. Admission is conditional and depends on the student’s ability to perform the essential functions identified for this program. A copy of the essential functions is available from the MAT program office and published on the College Web site, www.wallace.edu. Reasonable accommodations will be considered.
The student who is in need of additional academic background will be scheduled in courses to improve deficient areas. This will require additional time to complete the program, as technical courses are sequential and designed to facilitate the learner’s progress from relatively simple to complex tasks.
An associate in applied science (AAS) degree in Medical Assisting or a short certificate in Phlebotomy may be earned through the Medical Assisting program. To receive an AAS degree in Medical Assisting, students must complete General Education core requirements and all courses in the Medical Assisting field of concentration. Students desiring a short certificate in the area of Phlebotomy will be required to meet only requirements listed in the corresponding fields of concentration. Students who desire to receive an AAS degree in Medical Assisting with a Phlebotomy short certificate must complete all Medical Assisting AAS courses and MAT 239.
On completion of degree requirements for the AAS degree in Medical Assisting and compliance with the Disciplinary Standards of the American Association of Medical Assistants, graduates are eligible to apply for the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) examination offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants, CMA (AAMA) and the Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) examination offered by the America Medical Technologists (AMT). Students completing all courses required for the short certificate in a Phlebotomy concentration are qualified to sit for the Phlebotomy Technician (ASCP) and Registered Phlebotomy Technician (AMT) certification examinations.
Contractual agreements between the College and clinical agencies may impose additional requirements on students enrolled in health programs. These requirements include, but are not limited to, the areas of attire, confidentiality, criminal background check, liability insurance, and substance abuse screening. Health insurance coverage is strongly recommended as the expense for treatment of injury suffered during training is the responsibility of the student. Any student denied clinical privileges or having clinical privileges revoked by a healthcare facility due to positive background findings or clinical misconduct is not eligible for program admission or readmission.
Each term, students are allowed to progress in the Medical Assisting program as they meet the following criteria:
- Receive a grade of C or above in all MAT prefix courses.
- Receive a score of 70% or higher in all clinical and administrative skills components.
- Receive a score of 90% or higher on the MAT 216 drug calculation test and drug calculation final and on the MAT 215 Venipuncture test.
In order to progress to practicum, students must:
- Submit a completed health packet prior to end of the semester preceding practicum placement.
- Successfully complete all core curriculum competencies established by the MAERB
Students are restricted to a total of two attempts at any MAT course before becoming ineligible to continue in the Medical Assisting program. Withdrawals are allowed according to College policy. A grade of W will be recorded as a withdrawal. Grades of F and D will be considered unsuccessful attempts. Receipt of four grades of W, D, or F, in any combination, will result in dismissal from the Medical Assisting program.
Students who are not enrolled in the Medical Assisting program for two or more consecutive terms, excluding summer terms, are required to meet current admission criteria and to comply with the current program of study. Previous work is subject to reevaluation under the policies and program requirements in effect at the time of the student’s readmission to the Medical Assisting program.
Effective September 12, 2012 there shall be no auditing allowed for any Health Science classes.
Students who have been enrolled in other programs are evaluated individually to determine appropriate placement. Validation exams may be required.
Area I: Written Composition
Area II: Humanities and Fine Arts
Area III: Natural Sciences and Mathematics
Area IV: History, Social and Behavioral Sciences
Area V: Career and Technical Courses
Current certification in Basic Cardiopulmonary Life Support (BCLS) at the health care provider level is required for all students participating in practicum experiences (MAT 229 and MAT 239). Certification may be obtained at the College through enrollment in EMS 100 or from any other approved agency or facility.
Medical Assisting Associate in Applied Science Degree Suggested Course Sequence—Year One FIRST SEMESTER
*ORI 101 or ORI 105 or transfer credit for an orientation to college course is required for all students.
Medical Assisting Associate in Applied Science Degree Suggested Course Sequence—Year One SECOND SEMESTER
Medical Assisting Associate in Applied Science Degree Suggested Course Sequence—Year One THIRD SEMESTER
Medical Assisting Associate in Applied Science Degree Suggested Course Sequence—Year Two FIRST SEMESTER
*EMS 100 OR current certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation at the health care provider level. Online certification without hands-on skills session is not acceptable.