Differences Between CNA and Medical Assistants

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You are interested in a medical career but you do not understand what the difference is between medical assistants (MA) and certified nursing assistants (CNA), so we are here to help you.

Both of these health-care professionals work with patients who can be in various physical conditions and ages.

Their main duty is to provide them with extraordinary health care.

It can be achieved by assisting doctors, nurses, and other health-care.

They are in charge of treatments, procedures, and tests, meaning that you need to possess a certificate as well as a state license if you want to practice any of these two careers.

Besides the similarities, CNA and Medical Assistants have many characteristics that differentiate them.

While a medical assistant is more focused on patient assessment, evaluation, and helping doctors, CAN’s job duties include more direct patient care.

It is worth mentioning that direct patient care is related to a bed-bath, assisting with mobility, or cleaning a patient.

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Training

MA Training – We will first start with a difference in the training you need to possess so as to reach the MA position.

The completion of an accredited medical assisting program is obligatory.

You can choose whether you want to attend an on-line and traditional classroom program, but in the majority of cases, medical assisting programs can be finished in one to two years’ time.

It is possible to enroll in numerous medical assisting programs available at community colleges, technical schools, and universities.

The whole education consists of lectures and hands-on experience, so students are obliged to do a set amount of clinical time during which they will perform patient assessment and provide care.

CNA Training – CNA training is quite shorter as it takes from six weeks to several months to be completed.

Also, students can choose to attend programs on-line, at a community college or technical school.

During their studies, students will be instructed on how to perform direct patient care, they will learn about patient safety and documentation.

Clinical time is also required.

Scope of Practice

MA Scope of Practice – Another difference between these two professions is the scope of practice.

The MA scope is determined by each state and it depends on the skills and knowledge gained during training.

It includes the specific protocols, that is, detailed instructions on how to perform specific care and procedures.

We will provide you with examples so as to make it clearer.

Drawing a blood sample, a preliminary physical exam, and instructions for obtaining vital signs are types of procedures listed within the MA scope of practice.

CNA Scope of Practice – Just like the MA scope of practice, the CNA scope is also determined by each state.

That is a list of all care and treatments provided by certified nursing assistants and this list is made based on the skills and knowledge achieved during the CNA training program.

It is worth mentioning that examples included within the protocols are bathing, feeding, and toileting.


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