Medical Assistant Requirements in Massachusetts
Is any prior education or training required?
Medical assistants in Massachusetts are not required to have any prior education or training. Completion of an accredited medical assistant program, however, is required by most employers and is necessary if a medical assistant wants to become certified. You can find a list of programs accredited by The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or The Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) on each website.
Are medical assistants required to be certified?
Massachusetts law does not require medical assistants to be certified. Yet Massachusetts recognizes national certification. You can be nationally certified as a Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).
How can a medical assistant become certified by AAMA?
The American Association of Medical Assistants requires the successful completion of a certification exam. AAMA lists study resources to help prepare for the exam. To apply for certification by AAMA, you must:
- Graduate from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program
- Maintain a current CPR certification
- Fill out and mail the application, supporting documents, and application fee
- Schedule the certification exam once the application is processed.
Is continuing education necessary?
Yes, to maintain membership in the AAMA, you must recertify every 60 months. In addition to completing either continuing education credits or a recertification exam, medical assistants will be required to show proof of a current CPR certification. The current recertification requirements are listed on the AAMA website.
What tasks is a medical assistant legally allowed to perform?
Assistants work under the supervision of a physician or nurse, typically in a doctor’s office or hospital. A physician or nurse is allowed to delegate to a medical assistant any medical tasks that do not require a professional license. Medical assistants working in clinics are never allowed to administer injections, but if they are working in a private office they are allowed to administer injections.
The Massachusetts Society of Medical Assistants, a professional organization, provides additional resources.