How to Become a Medical Assistant in Washington

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A medical assistant is a professional who works alongside a physician or nurse with patient care.

If you are interested in this area of healthcare, consider you will most likely be expected to have a certified nursing assistant (CNA) degree or training to be eligible for a job in WA.

This is because the medical assistant position is an advanced level of care that requires giving IVs, checking vitals, and performing wound care.

You may be able to work in home health, with a health agency, or in a clinic with this type of training.

Consider these schools as you train for medical assisting in the Pacific Northwest.

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Get information on Medical Assistant programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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5 Medical Assistant Schools in Washington

Pima Medical Institute

Pima Medical Institute Logo

In Seattle and Renton, Pima Medical Institute offers a medical assistant program.

Become a professional medical assistant in nine months with a hybrid learning environment of on-campus and online classes.

The program grants students a certificate in medical assisting.

Students get real-world and hands-on experience through an externship while in the program.

This is in addition to four professional sequences.

Students must be interviewed and pass an entrance exam before being accepted into the program.

Pricing is not disclosed for the course.

Health Professionals Institute

Health Professionals Institute Logo

The Health Professionals Institute (HPI) has a location in Seattle where students can take a medical assistant program.

The total tuition is $17,000 and a $100 registration fee.

Students earn a medical assistant certificate in nine months following 800 credit hours.

Charter College

Charter College Logo

In Lacey, just south of Tacoma, is Charter College for students interested in medical assisting there are several opportunities.

The college provides a medical assistant certificate in 10 months.

The training requires a 180-hour externship.

Eligible individuals must be registered with the Medical Assisting Credentialing department at the Washington Department of Health to apply to the program.

At this school, students can also earn an associate of applied science (AAS) degree as a medical assistant.

In 30 weeks, students gain a certificate in the medical assistant program.

A computer is included in the training for every student.

To be eligible, individuals must have a certificate as a medical assistant.

Royal College of Medical Training

Royal College of Medical Training Logo

In Tukwila, WA, outside of Seattle, is the Royal College of Medical Training.

Individuals can be admitted to the medical assistant program if they have a GED or high school diploma and pass a background check.

There are also several health screening requirements for potential students.

The program includes 70 credit hours and four quarters.

Additional general education course requirements if you want to pursue an associate of applied science degree in medical assisting.

The AAS track is 90 credits and takes six quarters to complete.

The cost for tuition is $133.05 a credit hour if you are a Washington resident, and $148.27 if you are out of state.

International students pay $316.12 per credit hour.

Carrington College

Carrington College Logo

In Spokane Valley, there is Carrington College for those interested in training in medical assisting.

The program provides a certificate in nine months–just like most of the other programs for medical assisting in WA.

Tuition is $16,123 for the total program in Spokane, WA, along with $715 for books and supplies.

Medical Assistant Schools in Washington – Summary Table

Top 5 Schools in Washington

School NameAddress
Pima Medical Institute9709 3rd Ave NE #400, Seattle, WA 98115
Health Professionals Institute33305 1st Way S B -100, Federal Way, WA 98003
Charter College3700 Pacific Hwy E, Tacoma, WA 98424
Royal College of Medical Training1035 Andover Park W #210, Tukwila, WA 98188
Carrington College10102 E Knox Ave #200, Spokane Valley, WA 99206

Salary for Medical Assistants in Washington

The median salary for medical assisting jobs in Seattle, Washington is $41,455 a year.

This is based on a range from $35,276 to $47,776.

Incomparable Spokane, in the eastern part of WA, the median salary is $36,549, which stems from the $31,101 to $42,122 salary range.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Medical Assistants in Washington

City NameSalary
Federal Way$40,205
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary in Washington

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Bellingham, WA470$45,550$21.9$55,340$37,700
Bremerton-Silverdale, WA550$48,480$23.31$62,400$38,380
Kennewick-Richland, WA660$44,880$21.58$55,590$38,130
Longview, WA190$47,100$22.64$55,430$39,060
Mount Vernon-Anacortes, WA280$47,550$22.86$58,380$37,670
Olympia-Tumwater, WA660$48,270$23.21$59,000$38,100
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA10,360$54,010$25.97$63,340$44,410
Spokane-Spokane Valley, WA1,530$44,510$21.4$55,060$37,340
Walla Walla, WA70$43,710$21.01$50,270$37,880
Wenatchee, WA400$42,950$20.65$49,160$38,630
Yakima, WA640$41,430$19.92$47,920$35,630
* 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.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of certification exams are required for WA medical assistants?

In WA, medical assistants must be certified by the WA Department of Health (WA DOH) medical assisting credentialing division.

You also have to pass the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) certified medical assistant exam or one other similar exam on a national scale.

What is the process for Medical Assisting Credentialing in WA State?

In Washington, graduates from a school program for medical assisting must send sealed transcripts to the WA DOH.

The program must include at least 720 credit hours of coursework and an externship of a minimum of 160 hours.

The applicant must also pass one of the national certification exams for being a medical assistant, such as the National Certified Medical Assistant Exam by the National Center for Competency Testing.

How long will a medical assistant program take in Washington on average?

According to the Nursing Process, it can take eight to 18 months to earn a certificate in WA for medical assisting.

A diploma requires 10 to 18 months, as well, and an associate degree in applied science (AAS) is a two-year program.

Do Washington medical assistants need to get credentials recertified?

Yes, you will need to recertify your accreditation with the WA DOH every two years.

What additional requirements are there for medical assistants in Washington State?

You must be able to read and speak in English.

Also, all eligible medical assistants applying for credentialing must have a GED or high school diploma.

Otherwise, besides the application, sealed transcripts from the MA program, and a successfully passed examination are the only requirements for individuals getting approved to work in WA for medical assisting jobs.

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