If you are considering entering the medical field but are unwilling or unable to spend four or more years on education, you should definitely consider becoming a medical assistant. Not only is the demand for this career expected to rise exponentially as the Baby Boomer generation continues to age, but it is also a highly-adaptable certification that can pave the way for other opportunities.

Medical assistant jobs are in high demand due to a number of factors. Medical assistants (MAs) are trained in both clerical and clinical tasks. This means that they are able to multi-task which is a big plus for employers, especially for small practices. Certified medical assistants are also preferred by employers due to the danger of medical malpractice suits if they employ workers who have no formal training or certification. These are all excellent reasons why medical assistant jobs are in such high demand today.

In fact, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical assistant employment are projected to grow 34 percent through 2018. The BLS states that the U.S. health care industry is expanding due to the growth and aging of the population as well as the increasing prevalence of health conditions such as diabetes and obesity. This growing need for quality and cost-effective health care explains why medical administrative or assistant jobs are expected to increase in number the near future.

As previously noted, there are plenty of positions that can be filled by a medical assistant in both the clinical and clerical aspects of medicine. Clinical positions exist in nearly every specialty in medicine, such as orthopedics, pediatrics, urology, podiatry and cardiology, just to name a few. While your education as a medical assistant will cover the basics, you have the opportunity to learn a wide range of new skills in a variety of specialties. If you love to learn, this is a serious boon that makes you more valuable to employers the older you get and also stymies boredom.

The clerical side of medical transcription also offers up a lot of possibilities. Chart and record keeping, transcription, handling patient correspondence and scheduling bustling practices with multiple physicians are all jobs usually handled by medical assistants. If you like office work and have a mind for medical terminology and procedures, clerical medical assisting is an avenue you may want to explore.

Medical assistant jobs are increasing in number not just because MAs are trained to handle many different tasks. The real reason why they are important to a practice is because they provide emotional support and the “human touch” in a medical environment. They put people at ease at the doctor’s office. Physicians are busy people and patients are often afraid of asking them “silly” questions even when they do not fully understand the medical terminologies that the doctor uses. MAs help bridge the communication gap between doctors and patients which is why medical assistant jobs are in high