Do Medical Assistants Make More Money Than CNAs?

Medical assistants and CNAs both provide important caregiving services, but which one earns more money? We compare their salaries to find out.

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Job descriptions: What do Medical assistants and CNAs do?

Medical assistants and certified nurse assistants (CNAs) both provide vital support to patients and nursing staff in healthcare settings. But what exactly do these roles involve, and does one pay more than the other?

Medical assistants typically have a more patient-facing role than CNAs. They may take medical histories, measure vital signs, prepare patients for examination, give injections or perform other similar duties. In some states, they may also be able to dispense medication under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist.

CNAs, on the other hand, generally have more direct patient care duties. They may help with bathing, dressing and grooming; transferring patients; providing basic nursing care; and taking vital signs.

So which job pays better? According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median hourly wage for Medical Assistants was $16.03 in 2018, while CNAs earned a median hourly wage of $13.72. Therefore, medical assistants do tend to earn more money than CNAs on an hourly basis.

Education and training requirements

Medical assistants and CNAs (certified nursing assistants) are both important members of the healthcare team. They both provide basic patient care and help with administrative tasks, but there are some key differences between the two roles. Medical assistants typically have more formal education and training than CNAs, and they often make more money as a result.

CNAs must complete a state-approved training program and pass a competency exam, but medical assistants usually have at least a certificate or associate degree from an accredited MA program. Many medical assistants also choose to become certified, which requires passing an exam administered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA).

In terms of pay, medical assistants typically earn more than CNAs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for medical assistants was $33,610 in May 2018, while the median annual wage for CNAs was $28,530.

Salary comparisons

Salary comparisons between medical assistants and CNAs can be difficult to find because of the way these positions are classified by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Medical assistants are considered to be part of the healthcare support occupation, while CNAs are included in the larger category of healthcare practitioners and technical workers.

The median annual salary for medical assistants was $33,610 in May 2016, according to the BLS. This is lower than the median annual salary for all healthcare support occupations, which was $36,880.

The median annual salary for CNAs was $28,530 in May 2016, according to the BLS. This is lower than both the median annual salary for all healthcare practitioners and technical workers ($66,590) and the median annual salary for all occupations ($37,040).

Job outlook

Job outlook for medical assistants is excellent. They are expected to grow much faster than average for all occupations, adding about 183,600 new jobs between 2018 and 2028. This growth is largely due to the increasing number of older adults and their need for health care services. Medical assistants are predicted to have good job prospects, especially those who have completed postsecondary education programs and have certification.

Pros and cons of each job

Medical assistants and CNAs both provide important healthcare services, but there are some key differences between the two roles. Medical assistants typically have more formal training than CNAs, and they perform more clinical tasks, such as taking medical histories and administering injections. CNAs, on the other hand, provide more hands-on care, such as bathing and dressing patients.

So which job is right for you? That depends on your interests and skills. If you want a job that will give you more opportunities to interact with patients and provide direct care, then becoming a CNA might be the better choice. If you’re interested in a healthcare career that offers more responsibility and a higher salary potential, then becoming a medical assistant is a better option.

What’s the difference between medical assistants and CNAs?

There are a few key differences between medical assistants and CNAs. Medical assistants generally have more responsibilities, and therefore may earn a higher salary. CNAs typically provide basic patient care, while medical assistants may also perform administrative and clinical tasks. Medical assistants may work in a variety of settings, while CNAs are most often employed in hospitals or long-term care facilities.

What’s the best job for you?

There are pros and cons to both careers, and ultimately the best job for you depends on your specific goals, skills, and interests. If you’re looking for a career in healthcare that offers job security, good pay, and opportunities for growth, then becoming a medical assistant is a great choice. If you’re more interested in working directly with patients and providing hands-on care, then working as a CNA might be a better fit.

How to become a medical assistant or CNA

There are many paths you can take to become a medical assistant or CNA. You can earn certification through a vocational school, community college, or online program. Alternatively, you can complete on-the-job training to learn the necessary skills. Some states also require certification or licensure in order to work as a medical assistant or CNA. In general, medical assistants earn more money than CNAs. However, both roles offer competitive salaries and benefits packages.

FAQs about medical assistants and CNAs

In order to become a medical assistant, you will need to complete an accredited medical assistant program and pass a certified medical assistant exam. A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) is a nurse who has successfully completed an accredited nursing program and passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

Medical assistants can make more money than CNAs, but the salary difference will depend on several factors, including geographical location, years of experience, and type of employer. In general, medical assistants tend to have more opportunities for career advancement than CNAs.

Resources for medical assistants and CNAs

There are many resources available for medical assistants and CNAs. The most important thing to do is research the different options and make sure you are getting the most accurate information.

The internet is a great resource for this. You can find websites that specialize in medical assistant and CNA salary information. These websites will often have up-to-date information on the average salary for each position in your state.

Another great resource is your local library. Many libraries have books on careers in the medical field, including medical assisting and CNA positions. These books can give you an idea of the duties of each position, as well as the average salary you can expect to earn.

Talking to people who are already working in the medical field is also a good way to get accurate information about salaries. Ask your friends or family members if they know anyone who works as a medical assistant or CNA. If you know someone who works in this field, ask them about their experience and what they think of their job.

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