How Can a Medical Assistant Advance Their Career?

Gaining experience, becoming proficient in skills and widening your medical knowledge base are all tools you’ll need to advance in your career as a Medical Assistant. You may decide to aim for a management job, work in a competitive area of medicine or go into teaching. No matter your goals for career advancement, a few extra tools may help you successfully work toward advancement opportunities.

Different Career Specialties in Medical Assisting

Whether you work in medical administration or clinical practice, choosing a specialty can be a wise choice for future career advancement opportunities. Some medical specialties require more knowledge and skills than others and may offer more opportunities for growth. Healthcare is a multi-dimensional field; The vast array of medical specialties and subspecialties can provide the certified Medical Assistant with limitless employment opportunities. Though you may begin your career in a clinic or out-patient center, you may want to specialize in another area of Medical Assisting at some point. Luckily, Medical Assistants are able to work in tons of specialties.

Clinical Specialties

Medical Assistants have many medical specialties to consider as a career. Some specialties allow you to earn additional certification, while others rely on experience and hands-on training. If you’re currently a Medical Assisting student, consider working in a medical specialty during your externship.

Administrative Specialties

If you feel that administrative Medical Assisting is more your taste, you can specialize in non-clinical areas as well. Opportunities for branching out into administrative areas may come as you gain more work experience. You may be required to take additional classes, however, the administrative procedures you learned during Medical Assisting school will be a good foundation to build on.

Medical specialties like these can be demanding and have a higher learning curve. Because of the demands, employers may have a harder time finding qualified Medical Assistants to fill open positions. If you’re currently working in an entry-level Medical Assistant position, moving into a medical specialty may offer better opportunities. The longer you work in a specialty practice that you enjoy, the more valuable your skills and knowledge will become to your employer. Remember that because Medical Assisting is so versatile, opportunities to specialize will continue to grow. The more experience and continuing education you have, the more doors may open for you.

At the Allen School of Health Sciences, we are devoted to fostering positivity, empathy, professionalism, and integrity in our future Medical Assistants. In order to protect our community during the COVID-19 crisis, The Allen School of Health Sciences is offering virtual campus tours for enrollment for our classes starting soon. Contact the Allen School today! We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more. -Allen School


The Future Begins Here! Medical Assistant Skills & Attributes

The Future Begins Here! Medical Assistant Skills & Attributes

Medical Assistants are held to a higher standard of professionalism than employees in other industries. The way the Medical Assistant approaches the job and interacts with patients is critical to the success of the patient’s initial experience, physician’s practice, hospitals, outpatient clinics and other healthcare facilities. Patients expect professional behavior and put trust and confidence in those who are professional in demeanor.

Some Specific Skills and Attributes that shape a Medical Assistant into a professional:

Loyalty, dependability, courteousness, being initiative driven, having flexibility, being credible, confidential, and optimistic.

Loyalty – Medical Assistants should be devoted to the success of the medical practice and hold the belief that being a Medical Assistant at the medical practice is in their best interest. Loyalty should be reciprocal and if a medical practice is offering equal pay for equal work, the Medical Assistant will feel like the medical practice is doing its best for them as well. Medical Assistants can go one step further and be committed to the medical practice if they support the employers’ strategy and objectives.

Dependability – A dependable Medical Assistant not only shows up for work on time but also produces consistent work. They must follow through when the physician gives an order and will be counted on and given more responsibility the more dependable, they prove to be.

Courtesy – The Medical Assistant should be friendly and kind to patients at the medical practice. Attention should be given to the patient as they arrive at the medical facility and a warm smile and friendly attitude should be presented to the arriving patient.

Initiative – The Medical Assistant should be self-motivated and ambitious. An MA that shows initiative has a take charge attitude. They should observe a need and make themselves available, rather than wait for a supervisor to direct them to an area that needs attention.

Flexibility – The Medical Assistant should have the willingness and ability to respond to changing situations and expectations. A flexible MA will modify their approach to tasks based on the unique demands of each situation, especially in an emergency. In a medical facility the patient comes first so an MA should lend a hand wherever needed.

Credibility – Trust is a vital component of the Medical Assistant and patient relationship, and the credibility of the MA should be strong. The information that is given to patients must be accurate as the patient may see you as an agent of the physician.

Confidentiality – Patients are entitled to privacy under the HIPAA act. Confidentiality extends to the home and other environments outside of the medical office. The Medical Assistant is prohibited from discussing confidential patient information to family and friends. Consequences will be enacted if patient privacy is breached.

Medical Assistant Professional Attributes

The Medical Assistant will need specific attributes to be a professional while working with colleagues and dealing with patients. These attributes include teamwork, time management, prioritization, and goal setting.

Teamwork – Medical staff must work together for the benefit of the patient. The Medical Assistant should accept the tasks given to them by their supervisor unless they are illegal, unethical, or place patients in danger.

Time Management -The Medical Assistant should use their time efficiently and concentrate on the most important duties first. They should make a schedule, prioritizing tasks and allowing for emergencies along the way. The key to time management is prioritizing.

Prioritizing – A form of triage should be used by the Medical Assistant to sort tasks into the must, should and could categories. Of course, an MA needs to attend to emergencies, but they also must anticipate what will do the best and in what order those tasks should be completed to benefit the most.

Setting Goals – If the Medical Assistant doesn’t set goals, they will never know when the goals have been achieved. Setting goals can also help an MA accomplish what they want or need each day, giving them more motivation to achieve those goals.

Learning never ends as a Medical Assistant and that is what makes this career so rewarding.

Interested in learning more about developing the skills and attributes of a medical assistant? Don’t let your old career keep you down? Contact the Allen School today! We are enrolling now for our classes starting soon and cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more.

-Allen School


Expectations of a Medical Assistant Externship.

Expectations of a Medical Assistant Externship.

You can learn a lot in the classroom, but you can’t learn everything, especially if you’re 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. At the Allen School of Health Sciences this comes in the form of an externship, consisting of 275 hours in a healthcare facility. We want to ensure our students are prepared for all aspects of this career. To assist you, we have written an outline of what to expect from your Medical Assistant externship.

Working under Supervision

The greatest benefit of a Medical Assistant externship is opportunity to practice skills and duties while being supervised. In your classes, you’ll learn what and why Medical Assistants do what they do. When you take that knowledge into the real world with real patients, however, some tasks can be daunting. The good news is that you’re not alone, and there is a huge support system.

Your supervisor will work with you closely, especially at the beginning, to ensure you remember everything you’ve learned in class, and you feel comfortable administering your duties. In addition, your supervisor may also serve as your safety net to ensure that you don’t miss anything. This aspect of supervision can and should relieve a lot of pressure. It’s common to feel nervous before you’ve gained your skills, practice, and habits, but a supervisor’s presence should assuage most of these fears.

You’ll also be able to watch your supervisor and others perform procedures that you’ll eventually perform yourself. It’s one thing to read about Medical Assisting in a textbook and quite another to witness it in a working environment. The examples of your supervisor and others will give you opportunities to gain experience before you must perform a task yourself and provide you with confidence to do so.

Asking a Thousand Questions

Your Medical Assistant externship should be a time to unleash your curiosity. These 275 hours of training provide an opportunity to learn all aspects of a job from the professionals who are doing it every day. In class, you’ll learn about best practices and may have already questioned different medical procedures are done a certain way. In your externship, you can ask the less technical questions such as “How do you help nervous patients calm down?” or “Why do we put files away like this?”

Asking questions that interest you will make all aspects of the work more personal and will help the answers stick.

Learning the Role

A big part of the job is all about communication. The authority with which you carry yourself, and the empathy you bring to patient interactions cannot be taught in a lecture. They’re skills, critical to the position, that you can only learn in your Medical Assistant externship. As you practice and observe the professionals around you, you can understand the interpersonal aspects of the work- and become good at them. When you begin your externship, you will feel like a student. However, by the time you leave, you can expect to feel like you fit the role.

Gaining Confidence

As a result of this experience, you can expect to feel confident in your abilities in becoming a Medical Assistant. Self-confidence is a huge part of any healthcare job and is often challenging for educators since it can’t be learned in a textbook or seminar. Gaining confidence in your ability to perform administrative and clinical duties requires practice, life experience, and supportive supervision. It requires…an externship! Here, you won’t just learn how to be a Medical Assistant, you can become one.

At the Allen School of Health Sciences, we’re committed to preparing our Medical Assistant students for work as soon as they graduate, which is why externships are such a critical portion of our curriculum. Contact the Allen School today! We are enrolling now for our classes starting soon! We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more.

-Allen School


Scrubs: Why the Color of Your Scrubs Matter.

Scrubs: Why the Color of Your Scrubs Matter.

One of the main benefits of being in the medical field is getting to wear the comfiest work uniform known to man, scrubs! But with so many styles to choose from, how do you pick? The truth is the color or pattern of your scrubs can say a lot about your personality, so it is important to get a pair that shows the world the kind of person you are. While it can be easy to get caught up in the details, picking out the perfect pair of scrubs is easier than you think; Focus on something that feels like you!

Plain Blue

Blue is the most common scrub color, and for a good reason. Plain blue scrubs give off a calming, professional vibe. They tell your patients that you have the necessary qualifications, making you appear more trustworthy. Wearing blue can tell others that you take your work seriously. Blue scrubs may also be a requirement as part of the dress code in some medical facilities.

Fancy Pocket Scrubs

Fancy pocket scrubs give a fashion-forward appearance. Wearing the same thing every day doesn’t have to be boring. Decorative pockets add a touch of style to your look while remaining a mostly solid color. If you sometimes feel stifled by your uniform, fancy pocket scrubs can be a fantastic way to branch out and try something new.

Patterned Scrubs

Wearing patterned scrubs can help patients see you as more open and friendly, helping them relax when you walk into the room and can allow you to express your personality. You may find that patients open up more when you’re wearing patterned scrubs, so be prepared to talk! The vibe your scrubs give off can help you feel confident and put your patients at ease.

Holiday Themed Scrubs

If you like patterned scrubs, celebrating the holiday, or both, you’ll love holiday-themed scrubs. Holiday-themed scrubs let everyone know that you’re the life of the party, ready to spread holiday cheer. Wearing holiday scrubs can help brighten your patient’s day and help you feel in the holiday spirit even while working.

Other Scrub Colors

Certain scrub colors are sometimes a requirement by the medical facility where you work. Other times, you can choose the color you want to wear. It is important to know that the color scrubs you choose may say something about your personality. Here are some common scrub colors and what they may tell others about you.

White

White scrubs are seen on physicians, nurses, and surgeons. White represents cleanliness and purity. Unfortunately, white is often hard to keep clean, staining easily. This struggle can make white an unpopular choice in certain situations. From a patient’s perspective, white can be too bright, making it uncomfortable to look at and causing eye strain. While white scrubs can work in certain settings, it is important to think carefully before choosing this color.

Purple

Purple scrubs tend to be easier on the eyes. They are similar to blue, making you look professional and confident. Purple scrubs are also a popular color in pediatrics. If you plan to work with children, purple can be a great color to help you relate more to the children if you decide to choose a solid color over a pattern.

Green

Green is associated with peace, healing, and tranquility, making it an excellent color for scrubs. Green has been shown to lower blood pressure and can decrease eye strain for patients. There aren’t any downsides to green, making it an excellent choice for scrubs.

Yellow and Red

Both yellow and red are eye-catching colors, but their heart rate increases when people look at these colors. Neither are popular choices for scrub colors for this reason. On the other hand, yellow can represent happiness, making it a potentially great option for pediatrics and hospice care.

Pink

While red tends to strike negative emotions, pink tends to have a more calming effect. Pink scrubs can show patients that you are a fun, calm provider. Pink scrubs can be great for various fields, making them a smart choice that allows you to express yourself.

Start Your Healthcare Career Today!

If you’re interested in starting your healthcare career, enroll in a school you can trust. For over 60 years, the Allen School of Health Sciences has assisted and trained thousands of people for their new careers in healthcare. Ready to start working towards a new career? Contact the Allen School today! We are enrolling now for classes starting soon. We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more.

-Allen School


Phlebotomist Scrubs: Why the Color Matters

One of the main benefits of being in the medical field is getting to wear the comfiest work uniform known to man, scrubs! But with so many styles to choose from, how do you pick? The truth is, the color or pattern of your scrubs can say a lot about your personality, so it is important to get a pair that shows the world the kind of person you are. While it can be easy to get caught up in the details, picking out the perfect pair of scrubs is easier than you think. Just focus on something that feels like you!

Plain Blue

Blue is the most common scrub color, and for a good reason. Plain blue scrubs give off a calming, professional vibe. They tell your patients that you have the necessary qualifications, making you appear more trustworthy. Wearing blue can tell others that you take your work seriously. Blue scrubs may also be a requirement as part of the dress code in some medical facilities. 

Fancy Pocket Scrubs

Fancy pocket scrubs give a fashion-forward appearance. Wearing the same thing every day doesn’t have to be boring. Decorative pockets add a touch of style to your look while remaining a mostly solid color. If you sometimes feel stifled by your uniform, fancy pocket scrubs can be a fantastic way to branch out and try something new. 

Patterned Scrubs

Wearing patterned scrubs can help patients see you as more open and friendly, helping them relax when you walk into the room. Patterned scrubs can allow you to express your personality. You may find that patients open more when you’re wearing patterned scrubs, so be prepared to talk! The vibe your scrubs give off can help you feel confident and put your patients at ease. 

Holiday Themed Scrubs

If you like patterned scrubs, celebrating the holiday, or both, you’ll love holiday-themed scrubs. Holiday-themed scrubs let everyone know that you’re the life of the party, ready to spread holiday cheer. Wearing holiday scrubs can help brighten your patient’s day and help you feel in the holiday spirit even while working. 

Other Scrub Colors

Certain scrub colors are sometimes a requirement by the medical facility where you work. Other times, you can choose the color you want to wear. It is important to know that the color scrubs you choose may say something about your personality. Here are some common scrub colors and what they may tell others about you.

White

White scrubs are seen worn by physicians, nurses, and surgeons. White represents cleanliness and purity. Unfortunately, white is often hard to keep clean, staining easily. This struggle can make white an unpopular choice in certain situations. From a patient’s perspective, white can be too bright, making it uncomfortable to look at and causing eye strain. While white scrubs can work in certain settings, it is important to think carefully before choosing this color. 

Purple

Purple scrubs tend to be easier on the eyes. They are more similar to blue, making you look professional and confident. Purple scrubs are also a popular color in pediatrics. If you plan to work with children, purple can be a great color to help you relate more to the children if you decide to choose a solid color over a pattern. 

Green

Green is associated with peace, healing, and tranquility, making it an excellent color for scrubs. Green has been shown to lower blood pressure and can decrease eye strain for patients. There aren’t any downsides to green, making it an excellent choice for scrubs. 

Yellow and Red

Both yellow and red are eye-catching colors, but their heart rate increases when people look at these colors. Neither are popular choices for scrub colors for this reason. On the other hand, yellow can represent happiness, making it a potentially great option for pediatrics and hospice care. 

Pink

While red tends to strike negative emotions, pink tends to have a more calming effect. Pink scrubs can show patients that you are a fun, calm provider. Pink scrubs can be great for various fields, making them a smart choice that allows you to express yourself. 

Start Your Healthcare Career Today!

If you’re interested in starting your healthcare career, enroll in a school you can trust. For over 60 years, the Allen School of Health Sciences has assisted and trained thousands of people for their new careers in healthcare. Ready to start working towards a new career? Contact the Allen School today! We are enrolling now for classes starting soon. We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more.   -Allen School

Featured Image:  pixelheadphoto digitalskillet/Shutterstock


Expectations during a Medical Assistant Externship

Expectations during a Medical Assistant Externship

Updated August 17, 2021

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. At the Allen School of Health Sciences, as in most medical assistant programs, that comes in the form of an externship that is made up of 275 hours in a health care facility. We want to prepare our students for all aspects of the work.  As such, we have developed an outline of what to expect from your Medical Assistant externship.

Working under Supervision

Probably the greatest benefit of a medical assistant externship 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 her as well as 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 learn before you perform a task yourself.

Asking a Thousand Questions

Your medical assistant externship should be a time to unleash your curiosity. These 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 externship, you can ask 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 externship and you will learn them. 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 externship, you may feel like a student. Ideally, by the time you leave, you can expect to feel like you fit the role of a medical assistant.

Gaining Confidence

At the end of your externship 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 externship.  You won’t just learn how to be a medical assistant: You will 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 externships 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 our summer classes.  As always, we would love to hear from you!  Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more about an exciting career as a medical assistant.

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Make Your Phlebotomist Happy by Drinking Plenty of Water Before Giving Blood

The American Red Cross estimates that someone receives a blood transfusion every two seconds. This means that donating blood is an essential way to support the health of others who require donated blood to recover from an accident or illness. Giving blood is rewarding, but it can also be intimidating. One way to make the process easier for both yourself and the technician drawing your blood is to make sure that you are hydrated before your donation.

What Is It Important to Stay Hydrated Before Donating Blood?

Hydration makes donating blood easier for both the donor and the phlebotomist. If that were not enough incentive, drinking enough water is also essential to your overall mental and physical well-being. While fruits, vegetables, and other beverages can contribute to your hydration, water is usually the best choice. Avoid beverages like soda or other drinks that contain caffeine, as these can be less hydrating and offer little to no nutritional benefit.

What Is It Important to Stay Hydrated Before Donating Blood?

Hydration makes donating blood easier for both the donor and the phlebotomist. If that were not enough incentive, drinking enough water is also essential to your overall mental and physical well-being. While fruits, vegetables, and other beverages can contribute to your hydration, water is usually the best choice. Avoid beverages like soda or other drinks that contain caffeine, as these can be less hydrating and offer little to no nutritional benefit

Preventing Dehydration

Your veins become plumper and easier for your phlebotomist to find and access when you are well-hydrated. Phlebotomists are trained in finding veins even when they are not in this state, but drinking plenty of water ahead of time can reduce the time and discomfort involved in giving a blood donation.

Lowering Blood Pressure

Your blood becomes thicker when you are dehydrated, and your blood pressure decreases. While lower blood pressure is often healthier, this is not the case for donating blood. Thicker blood is more difficult to draw, and low blood pressure can increase the risk of fainting during your donation. This complication can make recovery more challenging and limit your ability to donate in the future.

How Much Water Should I Drink Before Donating Blood?

Determining how much water you should drink daily can be challenging. A good place to start is drinking half the amount of water in ounces as your body weight in pounds. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, you should drink at least 75 ounces of water each day. Additional factors, like participating in intense exercise, spending time outdoors in hot weather, and living at a high altitude, can increase your dehydration.

Make sure to drink the recommended amount of water in the days leading up to your blood donation. Shortly beforehand, have a 16-ounce glass of water to ensure that your donation process goes smoothly. 

After Donating Blood

There are many things you can do to ensure a quick recovery from donating blood:

  • If you feel dizzy after donating, lay or sit down and put your head between your knees. Wait until you feel better before getting up again. If you experience this while still at the donation center, let your technician know right away. 
  • In the first few hours after you donate, make sure to eat a light meal and drink more water than the normal recommended amount. 
  • After a few hours, you can remove your bandage, but make sure to keep the venipuncture site clean and dry to promote healing. If you experience bleeding when you remove the bandage, raise your arm, and put light pressure on your inner bicep. 
  • You should avoid drinking alcohol or smoking for around 24 hours after your donation. If you still feel unwell a few days to a week later, check in with your physician to rule out an underlying issue.

Learn More About Medical Assistant Careers 

Blood donation is a vital component of effective medical care across the country and staying hydrated as a donor can make the process easier for everyone. If you are interested in medical assistant careers, contact Allen School of Health Sciences to discuss your opportunities. Classes are starting soon!  

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What Causes Bruising After a Blood Draw

Nurse drawing blood from patient

It is normal to have some bruising after having your blood drawn. A bruise occurs when a blood vessel is damaged and blood escapes into the tissue under your skin. The pooling of blood causes a discoloration that is usually darker than the surrounding skin. Blood collects in the capillaries and leaks out slowly to cause the characteristic black-and-blue (or purple) mark. A bruise may also form if medical professionals fail to apply enough pressure to a needle when withdrawing it from a vein. This guide discusses why bruises appear after blood extraction and how to reduce the chance of bruising.

Reasons Why Bruising Occurs After a Blood Draw

During blood drawing, a phlebotomist inserts a small hollow needle into the vein in your arm to remove a blood sample. This temporarily damages the blood vessel wall lining, causing blood from the damaged vein to settle under the skin. Some causes of bruising include:

 
  • Vitamin C and Vitamin K deficiency
  • A history of alcoholism and liver damage
  • Damaged blood vessels
  • Medical conditions such as hemophilia, Cushing syndrome, thrombocytopenia, von Willebrand disease, and kidney or liver disease
  • Small and hard to find veins
  • Lack of enough pressure after the blood draw
  • Consumption of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like naproxen and ibuprofen or anticoagulants like aspirin, clopidogrel, or warfarin.

How to Prevent Bruising After a Blood Draw

While some bruising during blood donation or blood tests is normal after blood draws, there are ways to reduce it. However, it is worth noting that different people tend to bruise more easily than others. If you are scheduled to have your blood drawn, you can follow these simple steps to avoid bruising:

 
  • Request a small butterfly needle for the procedure. These needles are more gentle and less likely to cause bruising than larger ones; WHO recommends butterfly or 22-gauge needles from drawing blood in the elderly.
  • Apply firm pressure with your fingers after blood drawing and leave the bandage intact for at least six hours.
  • Avoid wearing tight clothing as tight clothes can prevent proper blood flow and constrict blood vessels, increasing the risk for bruising.
  • Refrain from strenuous activities and lifting heavy objects for a few days. This will allow your body to recover from venipuncture without unnecessary strain.
  • Avoid taking pain relief drugs such as aspirin or ibuprofen several days before having your blood drawn and 72 hours after. NSAIDs have a blood-thinning effect that causes excessive bleeding.
  • Apply a cold press using an ice pack on the injected region for pain relief and elevate your arm to reduce discomfort and speed up the healing process.

When to See a Doctor

It is important to know when to consult your doctor if you are worried about bruising after a regular blood draw process. In a few cases, a bruise may indicate an underlying problem such as internal bleeding, blood clot, or blood disease that requires medical attention. You may need to see a doctor if you:

 
  • Experience large unexplainable bruises
  • Suddenly, begin bruising after starting a new medication
  • Have acute pain or inflammation at the blood draw area
  • Develop a lump on or near the area where blood was drawn
  • Have a history of excess bleeding during medical procedures such as surgery
  • Have a family history of bleeding problems

Learn More About Phlebotomy at Allen School

Bruising after a blood draw is a common occurrence, and while bruising is normal, some individuals tend to bruise more easily than others. It is important to know how to prevent bruising after a blood draw and be aware of when it becomes a cause for concern.

  Ready to start learning more about phlebotomy in one of our programs? Working towards a new career? Contact the Allen School today! We are enrolling now for classes starting soon. We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu to learn more.

 

 

Image Source: Soonthorn Wongsaita / Shutterstock


Medical Assistant Interview Tips: Appearance

You don’t get a second chance at a first impression, and at job interviews, first impressions are vitally important. In just an hour, employers will get an idea of who you are, what your work ethic is, and whether you’ll fit their team, and it all comes down to how you carry yourself, and how you look. One of the most important aspects of job interviews is looking the part, and dressing in a manner that makes you look like the competent, professional person you are, and someone your potential employer would be proud to have in their workforce. Remember to dress for the job you want. Here are some tips on how:

Appearance

First off, it’s important to be clean and fresh overall. Make sure there are no visible stains or tears on your clothing, and that you’ve showered before the interview. Make sure your hair is well-brushed and in place. For an interview at a health facility, one of the best strategies is to go for business or business casual. This can mean a full three-piece suit, or at the very least, a crisp button-up and tie. Another take on business casual can mean a pants/skirt suit, or a dress with a conservative neck and hemline. Your hem should be no shorter than knee-length. Go for neutral colors like black, gray or navy. Avoid flashy colors or patterns. For jewelry, go for studs or small hoops with a small, non-distracting gem, or a tasteful chain and small pendant.

What to Avoid

Stay away from heavy colognes or perfumes. You want to smell clean, but avoid smelling like a department store! If you wear makeup, a bit of will make you appear fresh and well-groomed, however, stay away from the outrageous lip and eye colors that are more suited for a night out. Neutral shades like peach and tan will give you the perk you need. If you have removable facial jewelry, it might be best to take it out for the interview process. Make sure to cover any outlandish tattoos, if possible. Avoid jeans, sneakers, flip-flops, overly high heels and t-shirts at all costs, for these are all overly casual and will not give your interviewer a good impression.

Interviewing properly is the first step to a promising career in the healthcare field, and the first step to a successful interview is looking the part. When you look your best, you’ll feel your best, and be able to answer all questions with confidence and ease, and prove that you’ll be a valuable member of any facility you interview with!  The Allen School of Health Sciences is offering virtual campus tours for enrollment for our classes starting soon. Contact the Allen School today! We cannot wait for you to become part of the Allen School family. Visit www.allenschool.edu​ to learn more.

-Allen School


25 Fascinating Facts About the Health Sciences

Learning about the breakthroughs and discoveries of the health and sciences field can hold one’s attention for hours at a time. It can seem like there is no limit to the number of interesting facts that health-science researchers and scientists have compiled throughout history. This is one of the major reasons The Allen School has passionately taught health science for over 60 years. Let these fun and incredible facts stoke your interest and deepen your knowledge in the study of the health sciences.

Interesting Facts About Health Sciences:

  1. The Hippocratic Oath, which still unites doctors around the world to a common ethical code, was written over 2,000 years ago. (Source: “Hippocratic Oath.” Encyclopedia Britannica, edited by Adam Augustyn.)
  2. Myofascia – like that tough casing around a steak – is found in and around all tissues of the human body, and it adapts to the particular musculoskeletal movements unique to each person. (Source: Cleveland Clinic.)
  3. Now cliché, the slogan “You are what you eat” achieved widespread popularity after a 1923 beef advertisement, which claimed: “Ninety percent of the diseases known to man are caused by cheap foodstuffs. You are what you eat.” (Source: Martin, Gary. “You are what you eat.” The Phrase Finder.)
  4. Everyone knows that the rich green color of most plant life is due to chlorophyll. What is not widely known is that its molecular structure is almost identical to the hemoglobin contained in the blood. (Source: Oregon State University.)
  5. The vagus nerve, which plays an integral role in regulating the entire nervous system, connects to every organ of the human body except the adrenals. (Source: Dr. Mark Sircus.)
  6. A study reviewed by the NIH proved that slow, deep breathing reduces one’s heart rate, increases vigor, boosts alpha brain waves, and activates the parasympathetic nervous system. (Source: Zaccaro, Andrea et al [2018]. How Breath-Control Can Change Your Life […]. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.)
  7. As far back as the early 1930s, scientists working for John Hopkins University were able to clearly see and identify living microscopic organisms even smaller than bacteria by using extremely advanced microscope technology. (Source: Johnson, Hal. “Newest Microscope Will Trail Unknown Germs to Their Lairs.” San Diego Union, Dec. 12, 1931.)
  8. During experiments aimed at discovering what was responsible for slowed decay rates in certain plant tissues, Nobel Laureate Albert Szent-Gyorgyi conclusively identified what we now know as vitamin C. (Source: Science History Institute.)
  9. In the mid-1800s, people ridiculed the suggestion by Hungarian doctor Ignaz Semmelweis to wash one’s hands before delivering childbirth or conducting surgery. (Source: The Washington Post.)
  10. The electromagnetic field of the human heart is over 100 times more powerful than the brain and can be detected by magnetometers up to three feet away. (Source: “Science of the Heart.” 2022. HearthMath Institute.)
  11. A study concluded that “self-awareness” and “targeting emotional processes” (e.g., journaling) significantly reduced pain and improved the physical functioning of patients suffering from chronic pain. (Source: Hsu, Michael C., MD et al [2010]. “Sustained Pain Reduction Through Affective Self-awareness in Fibromyalgia […].” Journal of General Internal Medicine, 25, 1064–1070.)
  12. Spending at least two hours in nature per week creates health improvements comparable to meeting common exercise guidelines as well as overcoming socioeconomic barriers to health. (Source: White, Matthew P. et al [2019]. “Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing.” Scientific Reports, 9 [Article no. 7730].)
  13. The Medical Assistant field was officially recognized in 1956 with the founding of the American Association of Medical Assistants. (Source: American Association of Medical Assistants.)
  14.  Since 1961, The Allen School of Health Sciences has assisted and trained thousands of people for their new careers in healthcare. Learn more at one of our Allen School of Health Sciences campuses.
  15. The human body generates approximately 3.8 million new cells every… single… second! (Source: Starr, Michelle. “Your Body Makes 3.8 Million Cells Every Second […].” 2021. ScienceAlert.com.)
  16. Laughter has been repeatedly proven to stimulate organs, relieve stress, and improve immunity. (Source: Mayo Clinic.)
  17. Unlike the circulatory system, the lymph system doesn’t have a constantly pulsing network of tubes to keep it moving. The body’s solution? Movement! Exercise stimulates lymph nodes, drains cellular waste products, and enhances natural immunity. (Source: MD Anderson)
  18. Fingernails grow faster on one’s dominant hand. (Source: American Academy of Dermatology Association.)
  19. A study on how taking photos affects memory suggests that taking a picture of something actually reduces one’s memory for it. (Source: Soares, Julia S. & Storm, Benjamin C. [2018]. Forget in a Flash […], Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition, 7(1), 154-160.)
  20. Yarrow and mallow were some of the earliest known medicines, used as far back as 60,000 years ago to heal internal and external surface barriers of the body. Today, people use them for the same reasons. (Source: Applequist, Wendy L. & Moerman, Daniel E. [2011]. “Yarrow […]: A Neglected Panacea? […].” Economic Botany, 65(2), 209-225.)
  21. Knowledge and use of medicinal mushrooms go back thousands of years. Even the 5,300-year-old Ice Man “Ötzi” had finely preserved mushroom specimens tucked in his pouch. (Source: Stamets, Paul E. et al [2018]. “Extracts of Polypore Mushroom Mycelia Reduce Viruses in Honey Bees.” Scientific Reports 8 [Article no. 13936].)
  22. Mycoremediation – the use of fungi with toxin-remediating properties – is becoming a popular method for quickly breaking down environmental pollutants and improving public health. (Source: Permaculture Magazine.)
  23. Legacy pollutants continue to be phased out of modern industrial use since lead was removed from paint in 1978 and from gasoline in 1995 – making our environment a safer and healthier place. (Source: Department of Ecology State of Washington)
  24. The next time you feel a sneeze coming on when you don’t have a tissue, simply rub the middle of your forehead up and down. It has a mitigating effect on the sneeze reflex.
  25. When sprouted, seeds and nuts boast higher levels of nutrients, reduced digestion-inhibiting anti-nutrients, and increased levels of enzymes that aid in digestion. (Source: SFGATE.)
  26. The placebo effect is getting measurably stronger over time. (Source: Tuttle, Alexander H. et al [2015]. “Increasing placebo responses over time […].” The Journal for the International Association for the Study of Pain, 156(12), 2616-2626.)

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