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Drake State Launches Medical Assistant Program


  (Huntsville, Alabama)- Drake State Technical College is now offering an Associate in Applied Technology - Medical Assistant. The college will begin enrolling students into the new program for the fall 2010 term. The Medical Assistant Program is intended to prepare students to provide patient care in physician’s offices, minor emergency centers, long-term care facilities, and other types of free-standing medical clinics. In the clinical role, the medical assistant provides assistance to the physician during assessment and examination of patients, treatment interventions, and in-office diagnostic protocols. Students in this program will learn to perform physical assessments, take medical histories, take and record vital signs, administer medications, assist with diagnostic pro­cedures, take electrocardiograms, interpret life-threatening arrhythmias, perform venipuncture, and interpret basic laboratory results.

According to the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook publication, employment for Medical Assistants is expected to grow 34% from 2008 to 2018. The annual report cites the increasing prevalence of conditions, such as obesity and diabetes and an aging population, as factors contributing to the demand for healthcare services and medical assistants. Utilizing multi-skilled medical assistants allows doctors to care for more patients and will further stimulate job growth for this sector of the medical field. Also driving the growth in this field is the increasing number of medical practices, clinics and other healthcare facilities that utilize a high proportion of support personnel, particularly medical assistants, who can handle both administrative and clinical duties.

Drake State will offer the Associate in Applied Technology for those students who complete the required 76 credit hours. The college will also offer two certificate options for the program: Career Entry Certificate requiring 59 credit hours and a Career Skills Certificate requiring 26 credit hours. To enroll in the Medical Assistant program or for more information, contact the Pre-Admissions Coordinator at 256.551.3110 or visit


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