Schools for Aspiring Dermatologist's Assistants: How to Choose
A dermatologist assistant performs clinical and administrative duties in dermatology offices or other medical facilities. Duties include client interviewing, record keeping and assisting with minor procedures. The occupation is a type of medical assisting, and training is received through medical assistant programs.
How to Select a Dermatologist Assistant School
Because dermatology assisting is not taught independently, often the only dermatology-specific instruction occurs during internships. Almost all medical assisting certificate and degree programs include internships. A program that permits or offers internships in dermatology hospital departments or offices will provide individuals with experience working in the field. Those interested in working as a dermatologist assistant should therefore consider the placement and length of a program's internship component.
Also important is whether the program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). These organizations establish educational regulations and determine whether school programs conform to their guidelines. Graduates from accredited programs are eligible to sit for the CAAHEP Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam. Earning this designation is generally preferred by employers.
Credits earned in some certificate and associate's degree programs may transfer to bachelor's degree programs, thereby reducing the amount of time required to earn the degree. Associate's degrees are awarded as an Associate of Applied Science or an Associate of Science in Medical Assisting. Credits earned in applied science degree programs typically don't transfer, except for general education credits. Students interested in continuing their education should determine whether program credits are transferable.
Dermatologist Assistant Program Overviews
Medical Assisting Certificate
Consisting of approximately 30 credit hours, students in these programs learn documentation processes, medical insurance billing procedures, insurance coding, medical terminology, biology and pharmacology. Credits include internships and field experiences at local hospitals and physicians' offices.
Medical Assisting Associate's Degree
Students in these 2-year programs complete general education and field-specific coursework. Clinic-focused classes include pathophysiology, phlebotomy biology, nutrition and anatomy. Administrative classes teach students medical ethics and laws, records management, transcription techniques and medical insurance basics. Students also complete several internships and field experiences, which could be in dermatologists' offices.
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