How to Become a Medical Assistant in South Carolina

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As a medical assistant (MA), you get the benefit of helping physicians and other medical professionals care for patients.

You get to reap the reward of assisting patients and making their experience as pleasant as possible while playing a vital role in their healthcare.

Let’s discuss how you can become an MA in South Carolina and how much you can expect to earn.

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5 Medical Assistant Schools in South Carolina

You have countless options to complete an MA program in SC, but these are a few examples to help you compare.

1. East Coast Polytechnic Institute

East Coast Polytechnic Institute Logo

East Coast Polytechnic Institute (ECPI) can prepare you to work in a physician’s office, chiropractic office, or more.

You will learn both the clerical and clinical aspects of practicing as a medical assistant.

You will receive hands-on training to help you learn how to take vitals, administer injections, draw blood, and more.

You’ll also complete bookwork to help you learn the basics of human anatomy and pharmacology.

The program consists of 34 credit hours and 1,170 contact hours.

This is for the diploma program, though you may opt for the associate’s of applied science, which will take you longer.

With the diploma, you can earn sit for the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam from the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).

On the other hand, if you earn an associate’s, you will be eligible for the CMA exam or the Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) exam from the American Medical Technologists (AMT) organization.

The cost to earn the associate’s degree is $16,639, while the diploma program is less costly.

2. Piedmont Technical College

Piedmont Technical College Logo

At Piedmont Technical College, you may earn a diploma in medical assisting that will qualify you to take the CMT exam.

During your time in the program, you will complete coursework related to medical terminology, physiology, and psychology.

You will learn the hands-on skills you need to work with patients on a regular basis, such as test preparation, taking vitals, performing first aid, administering medications, performing certain diagnostics, and more.

The program will also include preparing you to complete medical documentation properly and fulfill other administrative duties.

It is a 47-credit-hour program.

At the end of the program, you earn a diploma in medical assisting, qualifying you for the CMA examination.

You can expect to pay $4,302 for tuition for the program.

3. Central Carolina Technical College

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After you complete a medical assisting program from Central Carolina Technical College, you will be able to sit for either the CMA or RMA examinations.

This particular program is a diploma program and provides you with 52-credit hours of training.

Throughout your time in the program, you will take basic biology and healthcare courses related to pharmacology and anatomy.

An individual who enrolls in this program will learn about medication administration and how to complete any documentation necessary to remain compliant with South Carolina law.

The tuition for this program is $9,483 in total.

4. Forrest College

Forrest College Logo

In Forrest College’s program, you will learn the basics of how a medical office runs, from scheduling to billing.

You will learn clinical skills to address patient care, including taking vitals, performing first aid, and administering CPR.

You will learn about infectious disease control, how to assist when examining a patient, and how to perform and prepare for various medical processes.

This is an associate degree program that’ll qualify you to take either the CMA or RMA. You’ll also receive a phlebotomy diploma. You can expect to pay $10,650 for the program.

5. Greenville Technical College

Greenville Technical College Logo

Greenville Technical College offers a certificate program in applied science for medical assisting.

It will give you 38 credit hours.

It covers all the topics you’ll need to know to help with administrative duties and clinical work.

For instance, you will learn about insurance and billing and scheduling, as well as taking vitals, preparing and assisting with physical examinations, and performing pulmonary function tests, EKGs, and various other tests.

Once you complete the program, you will be eligible for your CMA.

The cost of this program is $7,298.

Medical Assistant Schools in South Carolina – Summary Table

Top 5 Schools in South Carolina

School NameAddress
East Coast Polytechnic Institute4101 Doie Cope Rd. Raleigh, NC 27613
Piedmont Technical College620 Emerald Rd N, Greenwood, SC 29646
Central Carolina Technical College 506 N Guignard Dr, Sumter, SC 29150
Forrest College601 E River St, Anderson, SC 29624
Greenville Technical College506 S Pleasantburg Dr, Greenville, SC 29607

Salary for South Carolina Medical Assistants

Before you attend college for a medical assisting diploma or degree program, you may wonder what your earning potential is in the state.

The average you will earn depends on the city and facility where you work.

For example, the median wage for a medical assistant in Columbia is 35,133.

The top earners in the city make $40,490.

In Sumter, SC, the median wage is $33,903 annually, while the top earners receive $39,072.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Medical Assistants in South Carolina

City NameSalary
North Charleston$36,005
Rock Hill$37,319
Mount Pleasant$36,005
Hilton Head Island$35,396
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary in South Carolina

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Charleston-North Charleston, SC1,950$38,430$18.48$47,310$30,420
Columbia, SC1,870$35,260$16.95$43,510$28,620
Florence, SC920$30,980$14.89$36,380$27,160
Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, SC2,390$37,720$18.13$45,100$29,450
Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort, SC530$35,180$16.92$45,700$20,800
Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, SC-NC780$35,520$17.08$42,680$29,710
Spartanburg, SC730$36,870$17.73$44,900$29,410
Sumter, SC170$35,040$16.85$41,360$27,840
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Medical Assistants, OCC Code 31-9092, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Do You Have to Complete an Associate's Degree Program to Sit for the CMA Exam?

No, you do not need to complete an associate’s degree program in the state to become an MA.

You may complete a diploma or certificate program and still qualify.

However, you may want to complete an associate’s degree to be more marketable to prospective employers.

Do You Need a Formal Education to Become an MA in SC?

No, you do not need to complete any type of program to sit for the CMA test in SC.

You can take the examination if you have clinical, hands-on experience.

Technically, you do not even need a certificate to work as an MA in SC at all.

How Often Do You Need to Renew Your CMA in SC?

If you choose to get your CMA, it needs to be renewed every five years.

How Often Do You Need to Renew Your RMA in SC?

If you get an RMA, you will need to renew it every five years in SC.

Do I Need to Take Continuing Education Credits?

Yes, you will need to take continuing education credits when renewing your certification, particularly a child abuse course.

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