13 responses

  1. Christopher Johnson
    January 27, 2011

    Hi! My name is Christopher Johnson and I am a Register Medical Assisant, the people here in Oklahoma say that I am over qualifed to work in the Nursing Home setting. You would think that if a CMA and a RMA is one in the same then I would be able to work in any Nursing Home setting but they say I not. What do I do since I got my degree for noting if I can’t use them?

    Reply

    • Karo
      March 1, 2011

      I think to work in a nursing home u need to have at least a CNA certification to care for the residents, and an LPN to deal with the meds n stuff. Thats why they say you are over qualified. You should look into maybe CNA certification.

      Reply

    • Suzanne Ashmore
      May 2, 2011

      I think this is a matter of confusion over the initials of CMA and RMA. When it comes to the field of medical assisting, RMA stands for Registered Medical Assistant and CMA stands for Certified Medical Assistant.

      However, CMA can also stand for Certified Medication Aide, which is a certified nursing assistant (CNA) who has completed an additional course to be able to pass meds in a long-term care faciltiy. And this is where the confusion starts. Some states have stopped using the designation Certified Medication Aide (CMA) because it was becoming confused with Certified Medical Assistant (CMA). Oklahoma also has used the term Medication Administratin Technician (MAT). See the problem with initials only being used?

      A medical assistant and a nursing assistant are not the same. MA’s are trained to work in physician offices while nursing assistants are trained to work in long-term care facilities and hospitals. The MA actually has more education than a nursing assistant.

      In a physician office, the MA can administer medications (including injections), change dressings, draw blood, perform simple lab tests, take x-rays, and even perform some medical procedures like irrigating eyes and ears. A nursing assistant would never be allowed to do these things.

      The individual who takes a short course to become a nursing assistant can also take an additional course that would allow them to pass certain medications in a long-term care facility. These medication and nursing assistants need a license in most states, since they do not work DIRECTLY under the supervision of a physician. And this is another big area of confusion—as an unlicensed worker, a medical assistant can give meds in a physician office, but not in a long-term care faciltiy. Well, if you are trained to do it, why can’t you? It all depends on who is supervising the person passing the meds.

      Nursing assistants work under the supervision of a Registered Nurse and the duties of a nursing assistant are outlined by a particular state’s Nurse Practice Act. The NPA also includes what duties an RN may “delegate” to a licensed or unlicensed person.

      Very few states have any laws that specifically address medical assistants, who work DIRECTLY under physician supervision. A physician is bound by that state’s Physician Practice Act, not the Nursing Practice Act. The physician practice act states something like “The physician can delegate any duty to those under his/her direct supervision unless specifically prohibited by law.” This gives the doctor a lot of leeway on what can be delegated to others.

      A doctor can have you assist in surgery if he so directs you, even if you have no training in that area. But, a doctor cannot give you the responsibility of diagnosing or prescribing medication, since the law specifically prohibits doctors from delegating these particualr responsibilities. Hence, a physician can delegate medication administration duties to an unlicensed medical assistant because that MA is directly under physician supervision. Most state nursing practice acts prohibit a nurse from delegating passing medications to an unlicensed worker. A medical assisant may be “certified”, but they are not “licensed.”

      Christian, you were probably told you were “overqualified” because you have more training than a nurse aid. Besides, in Oklahoma, if you wish to work as a nursing assistant in a long-term care facility that receives Medicare payments, you will need to take the CNA state licensure exam that is required by federal law. And also, if you were applying for a job in a nursing home, CMA usually refers to a medication aide and not a medical assistant.

      Reply

  2. Patricia
    July 19, 2011

    HI===
    I FEEL YOU ARE WASTING YOUR TIME AND SKILLS IN A NURSING HOME SETTING. YOU REALLY SHOULD THINK ABOUT WORKING FOR A GROUP MD’S,MD OR HOSPITAL. THERE IS MORE OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU TO USE THE SKILLS YOU HAVE LEARNED IN SCHOOL IF YOU WERE TO WORK OUTSIDE A NURSING HOME SETTING. DON’T MAKE IT YOUR COMFORT ZONE JUST BECAUSE IT IS REPETITIVE ALL THE TIME. AT LEAST OUTSIDE THE NURSING HOME SETTING IT IS DIFFERENT IN CHALLENGES EVERYDAY…..GOOD LUCK IN YOUR CAREER.

    Reply

    • Dan’lanae
      August 22, 2011

      i totally agree with patricia because some day you going to get bored doing the same thing , when working in a hospital you see more and do more and makes you want to be more also , and dont ever settel down for less.

      Reply

  3. Sade
    August 23, 2011

    Hi,

    Dont waste your time trying to work as a CNA(Cert Nursing Asst). They are kind of beneath us in the medical field. Where as an RMA, you have the opportunity to work for a physician or lab. Your more respected and do more as a allied health worker. Once you get some experience as MA then you can easily become a Allied Health teacher.

    Reply

    • elle
      January 29, 2012

      This comment is for sade, why would you ever make the comment “they are beneath us” who the hell do you think you are? we all need each other! and dirt is the only thing beneath us;furthermore I would not want to hire someone like you you my dear pathetic creature are beneath human decency.

      Reply

      • tish
        February 28, 2012

        I agree with Elle. I’ve been a CNA for 13 years & about to graduate with my associates in medical assisting. I still work as a CNA & after I graduate, I’m going to work as both! Sade, I can’t believe you would put CNA’s down like that! It takes a special person 2 be a great CNA, unfortuately you are not; you couldn’t even be my CMA! If an employer seen your comment, you probably wouldn’t have a job or nobody else wouldn’t hire you! Thaxs Elle 4 standing up 4 us CNA’s. Ima be a CNA 4 life, with the rest of my degrees! Cause my patients adore me! 😉

        Reply

      • Daniel
        January 12, 2013

        To:Sade

        For everything that a CNA has to put up with and is expected to do on a day to day basis they may be the most underpaid position in healthcare. Before I transferred to the MA program where I am currently going to school I was originally in the LPN program. During a clinical excursion we were performing the role of a CNA and I will say I have never been more tired or stressed than when I worked at that nursing home for a few weeks. A GOOD CNA is so invaluable to a long term care facility and well-being of the residents there that to say that they are beneath anyone is complete and utter BS. With CNAs NOONE would be able to do anything.

        Reply

      • Daniel
        January 12, 2013

        Without rather:)

        Reply

    • TRACY
      December 29, 2013

      all I have to say is omg…what a fool you are to even say such a thing. it seems to me that you are in the wrong field cause you just don’t seem to have a caring heart to be taking care of people. i’m a CNA for 13 and a half years and I must say if it was not for us you would not be doing what your doing cause we are the back bone for you the one who is afraid to get there hand dirty…shame on you.

      Reply

  4. Mrs. G
    July 15, 2012

    I agree with you both Ella & Tish. I got my medical assistant (CMA) degree in 08 and it was hard for me to find work because I was fresh out of high school with a degree and no experience. To over qualified for non-medical jobs and under-qualified for my field. I recently went and got my CNA licenses in April and im working in my field right now as a CNA and I love it! it really does take a Strong Loving person to be a CNA! and depending on where u work you make just as much money as a CMA! Now I have a job offer as a CMA on the table making more money just because i got my CNA licenses n gained experience! So chris never give up on your degree and sade you are ignorant for your responds!

    Reply

  5. Erin
    January 13, 2015

    Curious.. I’m switching jobs and I need to become certifed. They are aware that I’m currently not. I graduated about 8 years ago, is it too late to become certified? SHould I become registered instead? Any suggestions? Thank you for any help

    Reply

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