Healthcare Career Options You Can Train for in Two Years or Less

Posted On July 9,2021

If you’re interested in a healthcare career but worry it will take several years of schooling to achieve, here’s some good news. There are plenty of incredible medical related career options that don’t require a bachelor’s degree and can be completed in two years or less. The best part is, you’ll still be able to work directly with patients or behind the scenes.

Young college student studying to become a medical assistant.

Medical Assistant

One great option is to become a certified medical assistant (CMA). Certified medical assistants play a key role in the medical industry as they’re trained to perform a wide variety of both clinical and administrative skills and tasks. Their skill set makes them a versatile and extremely vital member of any healthcare team. 

As a medical assistant, you’ll provide clinical care to patients in addition to performing some administrative duties. Clinical tasks may include taking patient vital signs, preparing patient exam rooms, interviewing patients and documenting medical histories, collecting lab specimens and performing lab testing, administering injections, and assisting with examinations and medical procedures. 

Administrative tasks may include answering phones and scheduling appointments, updating and filing medical records and charts, processing insurance payments, arranging for hospital admissions and laboratory services, and medical billing and coding. 

As if you needed another reason to become a certified medical assistant, the job outlook for a CMA is very promising as well, and the demand for qualified medical assistants is growing faster than average compared to all other occupations. 

Nursing Assistant 

In order to become a nursing assistant, you’ll need a high school diploma or GED, followed by enrollment in a certified nursing assistant program that is typically designed to be completed in 12 weeks or less. Nursing assistants work directly with a registered nurse to provide basic care for patients in a variety of settings. 

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A phlebotomist draws blood from patients. It’s fairly easy to become a phlebotomist and start working with patients, as the training takes less than a year in most cases. Some states require certification, while others do not. Certification can land you a better job and more money, so it’s worth the extra effort to become certified. 

Medical Coding and Billing Specialist 

Medical coding and billing specialists typically work in an office setting versus providing direct patient care, but it’s still an important job in the healthcare field. Medical coders take notes and diagnoses from physicians and assign a code that is used by insurance companies to determine which costs will be covered. Training to become a coding and billing specialist is usually completed in one year or less. While certification isn’t required in all states, many employers prefer it. 

How Long are Medical Assistant Programs?

Medical assisting programs usually take about a year to complete, but the total length of time will vary depending on the school and program you choose. For example, Athena Career Academy’s CMA program is taught in just under 8 months, with an additional 6-week externship. Most programs include classroom and lab participation along with an externship where students are able to practice the skills they learned in class in a real-working environment. 

Upon completion of the CMA program at Athena, students receive a certificate of completion and are eligible to take the National Certification Exam, which greatly increases their career options. 

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If you’re looking for a fast path into the healthcare field, contact Athena Career Academy to learn more about our exciting certified medical assistant program. We offer flexible class schedules and there’s no wait list! Learn more today.