How Much, on Average, Does a Certified Medical Assistant Make?

Posted On May 8,2020


Certified Medical Assistants (CMA’s) provide a wealth of invaluable services in a variety of healthcare facilities, making medical assisting one of the fastest growing occupations today.

As the demand for healthcare services increases, so does the need of more qualified medical assistants. They help manage healthcare facilities and provide quality care to patients, making a career in medical assisting a solid choice with no signs of slowing down in the future.

How Much Does a Certified Medical Assistant Make?

As of April 2020, the average hourly pay for a certified medical assistant in the United States is $15 an hour or $30,667 annually. This number by no means offers a complete picture though, as there are multiple factors that can affect salary such as location, job duties, experience, and work setting.

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Obtaining a certification as a medical assistant is important when it comes to determining salary. Medical assistants who hold a certification make more money than those who don’t. While the average pay for a certified medical assistant may be $15/hour, for those without certification, the pay is significantly less at approximately $10/hour.

While it isn’t necessary to be certified in order to work as a medical assistant, it is now being required in many hospitals and physician’s offices. Plus, those without the proper training and certification will likely experience very limited job opportunities as a medical assistant. Therefore, it goes without saying that certification definitely matters.

Job Duties

The job duties of a certified medical assistant can vary greatly depending on the job. Often the salary a CMA earns is based on their required job duties. When determining a CMA’s salary, the level of skill, type of care, and difficulty are all taken into account. For example, medical assistants who only perform administrative or clerical duties might make a little less than a CMA who can perform both administrative and clinical tasks. Typically, the more responsibilities a CMA is given, the higher the pay.

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The level and years of experience is also a factor used in determining a CMA’s salary. Average CMA salaries are broken down and based on years and types of work experience, meaning the number of years an individual has worked as a CMA. Those with more experience earn larger salaries compared to newer medical assistants with less experience.


Location can also play a role in how much money a CMA earns per year. Areas with a greater demand for medical assistants will likely pay higher than areas with a larger number of medical assistants. Annual salaries not only vary from job to job, but state to state.


One of the most common ways for a certified medical assistant to increase their salary is by specializing in a particular area, or even in multiple areas. There are a lot of options when it comes to specialties, such as surgery, cardiology, obstetrics, oncology, pediatrics, and many more.

Benefits Beyond Salary

In addition to a good salary, there are also numerous benefits to take into consideration as well, such as health insurance, paid vacation days, sick days, and retirement plans. While these benefits might not apply to all certified medical assistants, the majority of CMA’s receive benefits, and this can be extremely valuable. For example, employee provided health insurance can be much cheaper than purchasing through a health insurance exchange, possibly saving a medical assistant thousands of dollars a year.

If you are interested in becoming a certified medical assistant, contact Athena Career Academy for more information about our accredited medical assistant program. We can train and prepare you for a great healthcare career. Talk to our admissions team today!

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