The Allen School of Health Sciences has an internship component that can set you apart from the crowd. We offer an 11- week internship which provides our students with 275 hours of clinical based training. You can learn a lot in the classroom, but you can’t learn everything, especially if you are studying to be a medical assistant. It’s a job that requires extensive medical knowledge as well as skills and professional attributes that can only be gained through hands-on experience. We want to prepare our students for all aspects of the job. As such, we have developed an outline of what to expect from your Medical Assistant internship.
Working under Supervision
The greatest benefit of a medical assistant internship is the opportunity it provides to practice skills and duties while being supervised. In your classes, you’ll learn what and why medical assistants do what they do. However, the moment you apply that knowledge in the real world with real patients, even the simplest tasks like taking blood pressure can be daunting. The good news is that you are not alone.
Your supervisor will work with you closely, especially at the beginning, to ensure you remember everything you’ve learned in class. This will enable you to feel comfortable administering your duties. In addition to acting as a guide, of sorts, your supervisor may also serve as your safety net to ensure you don’t miss anything. This aspect of supervision can and should relieve a lot of pressure. It is common to feel nervous before you’ve gained your skill, practice, and habits, but a supervisor’s presence should assuage your fears.
You will also be able to observe others perform procedures that you will eventually do yourself. It’s one thing to read about medical assisting in a textbook and quite another to witness it in a working environment. The example your supervisor and others set will give you more opportunities to gain experience before you perform a task yourself.
Asking a Thousand Questions
Your medical assistant internship should be a time to unleash your curiosity. The 275 hours may be training hours, but they are also an opportunity to learn all aspects of a job from the professionals who are doing the job. In class, you will learn about best practices and may have already asked why different medical procedures are done a certain way. In your internship. you can ask the less technical questions such as “How do you help nervous patients calm down?” and “Why do we put away the files like this?”
Asking questions that interest you will make all aspects of the work more personalized and will help the answers stick.
Learning the Role
A major part of the job is all about communication. The authority with which you carry yourself and the empathy you bring to patient interactions can’t be taught in a lecture. They are skills, critical to the position, that you can only learn in your medical assistant internship. As you practice and watch the professionals around you, you’ll understand the interpersonal aspects of the work and you will excel at them. When you begin your internship, you may feel like a student. Ideally, by the time you leave, you can expect to feel like you fit the role of medical assistant.
At the end of your internship, you can expect to feel confident in your abilities to be a medical assistant. Self-confidence is a huge part of any healthcare job. This can be challenging for educators as it cannot be learned in a textbook or seminar. Gaining confidence in your ability to perform administrative and clinical duties requires practice, real life experience, and supportive supervision. It requires, in other words, an internship. You won’t just learn how to be a medical assistant: You can become one.
At the Allen School of Health Sciences, we are committed to preparing our medical assistant students for employment as soon as they graduate. This is the reason why internships are such a critical component of our curriculum. If you are interested in becoming a medical assistant, you can earn your certificate in less than a year. We are enrolling now for classes starting soon. As always, we would love to hear from you! Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more about an exciting career as a Medical Assistant.