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Steps to Become a Licensed Medical Assistant in Washington State

Published: May 7, 2018 | Updated: January 23, 2020
 

Once you’ve decided that a career as a Medical Assistant might be the right healthcare career for you, there will be steps you need to take before you can land your first job. Each state has its own requirements for licensing.

1. Get the Right Medical Assistant Education and Training

To become a medical assistant in Washington state, you will need to be certified or registered by the Washington Department of Health, Medical Assisting Credentialing. You will need to complete an apprenticeship or an accredited training program like the medical assistant program at Charter College, which is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).

What You Need to Learn to Become a Medical Assistant

In your training, you will learn clinical and administrative duties including how to:

  • Take patient histories
  • Maintain electronic medical records
  • Schedule appointments, tests and procedures
  • Prepare patients for exams and procedures
  • Measure patient vital signs
  • Clean and prepare exam areas
  • Sterilize tools and equipment
  • Assist the doctor with exams
  • Administer injections and take blood

2. Pass the Washington State Medical Assisting Exam 

Before you can officially apply for your medical assisting certification with the state of Washington, you need to pass an exam. Once you do, you will need to apply for your certification within five years.

If you meet all other requirements but don’t pass an exam, you can qualify for the Medical Assistant Interim Certification. The interim certification is treated like a full certification for one year or until you pass an exam, whichever happens first.

What Exams Are Required for the Medical Assisting Certificate in Washington?

To apply for your medical assisting certification in Washington, you must pass one of the following:

3. Send Your Medical Assistant Transcripts and Official Documents to Washington State

Once you’ve completed your training and are ready to apply for your license, you will need to have your transcripts or other official documents sent directly from the school or other organization to the state. The documents that you submit must show the date that you completed the program.

4. Prove Applicable Medical Assistant Competencies and Provide Documents

You will need to prove that you completed seven hours of HIV/AIDS training. In addition, you’ll have to provide proof that you finished high school or received your GED and that you can read, write and converse in English.

5. Verify Any Other Washington State Licensing

As you apply for your certification, the state will require you to list any other states where you have, did have or tried to receive credentials. You will need to tell them when you applied for the credential, even if it wasn’t granted. That other jurisdiction where you applied for certification will have to complete the verification form and send it directly to the Washington State Department of Health.

6. Apply for Your Medical Assistant License in Washington

Once you’re confident that you have fulfilled the necessary requirements to apply for a medical assisting license, it’s time to actually apply! You can do so online or download documents and apply on paper, and you’ll have to pay a fee.

A credentialing specialist will review your application, verify that it meets all the requirements, and the state will complete a background check. You will be formally notified upon licensure. Once you are credentialed, you’ll have to renew your license every two years.

 

Are you ready to get started on the road toward your career in medical assisting? Contact Charter College today to learn about our accredited medical assistant program that you could complete in as little as 10 months.