Who Can Take the CMA (AAMA) Exam

Q. Who is eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Exam?

A. The only individuals eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and become CMAs (AAMA) are graduates of CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting programs.

About Donald A. Balasa

Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA, executive director and legal counsel for the American Association of Medical Assistants, keeps his eye on what is happening in the profession.
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246 Responses to Who Can Take the CMA (AAMA) Exam

  1. Stacee Timbrook says:

    Hello, I’m looking for information to become certified as a Medical Assistant. I have been told that even though i haven’t taken a CMA class, that with my experience and as long as I have been a Medical assistant (around 12 years)I could probably just take the test. Is this true? And if so, how/where do I get the info to study and take the test? I would greatly appreciate any info you have. Thank you for your time and expertise on this.

    S.T.

    • Thank you for your question.
      Only medical assistants who have graduated from CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting programs are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. I will e-mail some steps you can take.
      I hope this is helpful.

      • Melinda cairns says:

        Can you email me the steps to take also so i can take the test with my experience.

      • Greeny Valbuena says:

        I have my Diploma in Medical Assistant, in Sandford Brown Institute, and i wold like to have CMA certification, and i want know the steps.

        Tanks in advance,

        Greeny Valbuena.

      • AAMA Administrator says:

        Ms. Valbuena,

        Your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is much appreciated. Here are the steps to follow:

        STEP 1. VERIFY THAT YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR THE EXAM
        Before applying make sure that your medical assisting program at Sanford Brown Institute is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If you’re not sure about your program’s accreditation, call 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the AAMA Certification Staff.

        STEP 2. REVIEW THE EXAM APPLICATION
        You may download the application at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/apply_CMA.aspx. When you submit your application you are certifying that you have reviewed and accept all provisions under “Application agreement” and that you will abide by all the policies set forth in this document, so it is important to read them thoroughly.

        STEP 3. GATHER YOUR DOCUMENTATION
        Gather the appropriate documentation for your eligibility category as outlined under “Required documentation.”

        STEP 4. DETERMINE THE START DATE YOUR 90-DAY TESTING PERIOD
        Select the date that you wish your 90-day testing period to begin. This will determine when you should apply for the exam. (Refer to “Ninety-day testing period” and “Application timelines and processing.”)

        STEP 5. APPLY FOR THE EXAM
        Complete the application form. Verify that you have written your first, middle, and last name as they appear on the government-issued photo ID that you must bring to the test center. Mail the application fee with your candidate fee and include any documentation you gather.

        I hope this is helpful. Further information about applying for the exam is available on the AAMA website under “FAQs on CMA (AAMA) Certification” at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/faqs_certification.aspx.

        Anna L. Johnson, CAE
        Director of Certification

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook
        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

      • my question is if someone has ever been a convicted felon can the person still be certified if its 10 yrs old

      • Janine Todd says:

        Can you also email me the info, I have been a medical assistant and a phlebotomist , and a home health care manager for 27 years with no certificate. What can I do? No one wants to hire me with no Certificate and I am 50 years young. How can I get health facilities to consider me? My email address is jtodd612@hotmail.com. Thank you, Janine Todd

      • Thank you for your request. I would be happy to discuss your situation by e-mail and/or telephone. Could you please e-mail me more details of your situation? My e-mail address is dbalasa@aama-ntl.org Please also indicate in what state you are working as a medical assistant.

        I look forward to hearing from you.

        Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
        Executive Director, Legal Counsel

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

      • Lynn says:

        I have a Comment . I have more than 20 yrs experience in the Medical Field, I have also taken Medical Terminology, I believe that someone with that much experience should be able to take The exam, for a education that you can complete in a year. I couldn’t afford it and I was working Full time at a Internal Med. Office and taking care of family. I am more qualified than most that have went to school for years.

      • dana says:

        Please e-mail me the steps. Thank you

      • Joan Francis says:

        I have been a Medical Assistant for 25 years and have never been certified. I have not taken CMA classes but would like to be certified. Can my experience be counted as training so I can take the test? I work In Pennsylvania. The small practice I work for has been bought by a large hospital/medical organization and they require that all Medical Assistants be certified. I would appreciate any information you can send me.

      • Chasity Sirk says:

        I am also in the same boat as stacee. Can you email the same information?

      • Toyia says:

        Hello I’m just became cerfied in the state of Georgia as a medical assistant..But I want to no can I carry my license to Denver Colorado?

      • Thank you for your question. The CMA (AAMA) is a national credential, not a state credential. Your CMA (AAMA) is valid as such in Colorado just as much as it is in Georgia.

    • lue mayora says:

      can you email me the steps also i have taken the classes but its accredited through ACCSCT that was 11 yrs ago

      • LindaFlenaugh says:

        To Whom It May Concern:

        I graduated from Heald Business College in 1999 as a Medical Assistant. I also had a LVN license which I sat for the Exam in 1974. At present I’d like to take the exam for certification as a medical assistant. Is there any way possible I can take the exam? I did graduate from Heald with an AA degree.
        Thank You,
        LindaFlenaugh

      • Thank you for your question.

        If the medical assisting program from which you graduated was CAAHEP or ABHES accredited, you would be eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. I have copied one of my colleagues in the Certification Department, who will let you know whether the program was so accredited at the time of your graduation.

        Please let us know whether we can be of assistance in any other way.

        Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
        Executive Director, Legal Counsel

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  2. DeShana Fitch says:

    I am currently a student in the medical asisting program and I was wondering as a student can I sign up for the AAMA, or take the certification test?

    • Thank you for your question.

      We are always happy to have medical assisting students become student members of the AAMA! I am requesting my colleague David Knight, Director of Membership and Continuing Education, to forward you information about joining the AAMA as a student member.

      You are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination if you graduate from a medical assisting program that is accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES. I would suggest you go to the website of these two accrediting bodies to determine whether your program is accredited by one of them. The websites are caahep.org and abhes.org

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  3. Robert Allen says:

    I would like to take the exam to become an certified medical assistant and have already graduated from school as an ma could you let me know where to take the test

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you very much for your interest in becoming CMA (AAMA) certified. Before answering where you can test, let me first clarify that only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. You may call the AAMA at 1/800/228-2262 to inquire about the accreditation status of the program you completed.

      If you are eligible to be registered for the exam you would receive an exam scheduling permit to use to schedule an appointment online at a test center in your area. For more information about the CMA (AAMA) Certification exam read the FAQs at: http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/faqs_certification.aspx#schedule.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson, Director of Certification

    • Minerva Villanueva says:

      I WAS JUST WONDERING IF YOU CAN HELP ME AND TELL ME HOW TO GO ABOUT SITTING FOR MY CERTIFICATION I GRADUATED IN 1979 NOW I NEED TO TAKE THE TEST TO CONTINUE WORKING AS A MEDICAL ASSISTANT AFTER 30 YEARS.

      THANK YOU

      • AAMA Administrator says:

        Your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is much appreciated. Before applying make sure that your medical assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If you’re not sure about your program’s accreditation, call 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the AAMA Certification Staff.

        If your medical assisting program attendance meets the eligibility requirements you will need to submit a copy of your official transcript verifying your program completion with your application for the exam.

        I hope this is helpful.

        Anna Johnson, CAE
        Director of Certirfication

  4. Dawn says:

    I am a medical assistant. The college I had graduated from became an accredited school 2 years later. I have been out of the medical field raising children for 10 years and was looking forward to returning. I went back to the college interested in the surgical tech program. Do you know anything about this position because I only found 1 listing for this job description. The college is suggesting to retake the medical assisant program so I can get the CMA but I was also informed that the AAMA may want to change it to a license within 2 years. Do you have any info on this? I dont want to retake this and then have it changed again. What is the difference, hourly wages?

    • Thank you for your questions.

      I would suggest that you contact the Association of Surgical Technologists to find out more about the surgical technology profession. The AST website is ast.org

      If your medical assisting program became CAAHEP or ABHES accredited within 36 months of your graduation, you are already eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. If this is the case, you need not go through the program again, although you may find it helpful to do so.

      Licensing of medical assistants can only be done by the legislature of each state. In order to protect the public from substandard medical assisting services, the AAMA seeks to have the CMA (AAMA) credential incorporated into any licensing requirements.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  5. Antonella Sabatini says:

    I would like to receive information about how to become a student member of the AAMA. Thank you.

  6. dawn says:

    I am enrolled in a medical assistant program,completed my externship,and currently waiting on my graduation,Am i still considered a student?

    • Anna Johnson says:

      You are wise to check. It sounds like you have completed all your program requirements in addition to your externship. Since you are just waiting to graduate you would qualify as a Category 1 applicant for the exam and your candidate fee would be $125. Before applying make sure that your medical assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If you’re not sure about your program’s accreditation, call 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the AAMA Certification Staff.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson
      Director of Certification

  7. Patricia says:

    Can you become a medical assistant if you have a felony?

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for question. Generally, individuals who have been convicted of a felony or pleaded guilty to a felony are not eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) exam. However, the Certifying Board may grant a waiver depending on the mitigating circumstances and written evidence that the felony conviction or plea should not prevent the individual from taking the CMA (AAMA) exam. A form for requesting a waiver is attached.

      It is important to note, however, that you must also be exam-eligible based on your educational background. Thus, I am also providing you with information about the educational eligibility requirements for the exam.

      Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. So, it is quite possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification.

      Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson
      Director of Certification

      • Veronica says:

        I am a Medical Asistant student preparing for my externship. I have been convicted of a felony about 23 years ago. How can I obtain a Request for Waiver Form from AAMA?

      • AAMA Administrator says:

        Thank you for question. Generally, individuals who have been convicted of a felony or pleaded guilty to a felony are not eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) exam. However, the Certifying Board may grant a waiver depending on the mitigating circumstances and written evidence that the felony conviction or plea should not prevent the individual from taking the CMA (AAMA) exam. A form for requesting a waiver may be requested by calling the AAMA at 800-228-2262 and asking to speak with a Certification staff assistant or by e-mailing me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

        It is important to note, however, that you must also be exam-eligible based on your educational background. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted. You may also ask the Certification staff assistant to look up your program to see if it is CAAHEP or ABHES accredited.

        Except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. So, it is quite possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification.

        Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

        Sincerely,

        Anna Johnson
        Director of Certification

  8. Karon says:

    I have been a certified MA for 5 years but I was not aware of the credentials, actually I forgot. I think my certification runs out soon. What do I need to do? I have been in the nursing class for 1 1/2 years and have taken some health classes like A&P 168 & 169 plus others. If I have to take the exam again that’s fine, I just need my certification.

    • Thank you for your comment. I will direct it to the Certification Department. You will receive an e-mail about recertification options.

      I know you will find it helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Recertification of the CMA (AAMA) credential is required every five years. All Certified Medical Assistants (AAMA) practitioners or educators must have current status in order to use the CMA (AAMA) credential in connection with employment. Certification status is a matter of public record and may be released.

      CMAs (AAMA) must submit proof of provider level current CPR certification from an entity whose provider level CPR certification course meets or exceeds the provider level course offered by the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association in order to recertify either by continuing education or retesting. CMAs (AAMA) with physical limitations preventing them from performing CPR shall be exempt from this requirement. Such limitations must be documented by a statement signed by a physician.

      The American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) provides three documents that serve as useful guidelines for identifying relevant topics to study for recertification.

      1. The Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination (http://aama-ntl.org/resources/library/ContentOutline.pdf ) is a comprehensive list of everything that a CMA (AAMA) must know, organized by topic category.

      2. The Occupational Analysis of the CMA (AAMA) (http://aama-ntl.org/resources/library/OA.pdf) is based on an AAMA survey in which medical assistants listed the tasks that they performed on a daily basis and expected to perform in the future.

      3. The Advanced Practice of Medical Assisting (http://aama-ntl.org/resources/library/AAMA_AdvancedPractice.pdf ) defines advanced medical assisting skills and areas of knowledge.

      Reactivation fee. Any CMA (AAMA) not recertifying on or before the expiration date of their credential will be considered as having an expired credential and will be required to pay a $50 reactivation fee in addition to the recertification fee in order to recertify. This applies to recertification by continuing education
      or examination.

      Reactivation by exam. If it has been longer than 60 months since a CMA (AAMA) has recertified, the credential has expired and cannot be reactivated by continuing education. However, recertification can be achieved by passing the CMA (AAMA) Exam. Payment of a $50 reactivation fee plus the recertification by examination fee will be required.

      RECERTIFYING BY CONTINUING EDUCATION
      Point Total Requirement: A total of 60 Recertification points is necessary to recertify the basic CMA (AAMA) credential. At least 30 of the 60 points must be AAMA CEUs. A minimum of 10 points is required in each of the general, administrative, and clinical content areas. The remaining 30 points may be accumulated in any of the three content areas.

      Time limits for recertification points: Points toward recertification are valid only if earned after initial certification or after the most recent recertification. Credits must be earned in the calendar year in which the application is submitted and/or in the six calendar years prior.

      AAMA CEU Credits: Applications for Recertification by the continuing education method must include at least 30 points accumulated from AAMA CEUs. AAMA credits are defined as continuing education programs that have been approved for CEU credit by the AAMA. These credits are available through our magazine, CMA Today; state society and local chapter programs; Annual Conference sessions, AAMA self-study courses, independent continuing education sponsors approved by the AAMA, etc. Credit received for CPR certification will count as AAMA CEU credit.

      For additional options for obtaining AAMA CEU credits go to http://www.aama-ntl.org/recertified/how.aspx.

      Non-AAMA Credits: A maximum of thirty (30) recertification points may be accumulated from other sources than AAMA CEUs. These may include CEUs acquired outside the AAMA, college or university credit, physician CME credits and contact hours. A contact hour is defined as a typical 50-minute classroom instructional session, or its equivalent.

      Calculating Recertification Points:
      • 1 Continuing Education Unit (CEU) = 1 recertification point
      • 1 Continuing Medical Education (CME) Credit = 1 recertification point
      • 1 Contact Hour = 1 recertification point
      • 1 College credit Hour = 15 recertification points

      Documenting Non-AAMA Recertification Points

      Official documentation issued by the sponsor granting the credit must be attached to the application. The documentation must indicate:

      a. Applicant’s name
      b. Date when credit was attained
      c. Name of sponsor issuing credit
      d. Subject content of educational activity (a course description or content outline)
      e. Amount of credit awarded
      f. A certificate of completion or attendance bearing the number of contact hours awarded.

      Non-AAMA credits will be accepted towards recertification as long as they relate to the tasks and responsibilities listed on the Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination, the Occupational Analysis of the CMA (AAMA) or the Advanced Practice of Medical Assisting document.

      The AAMA CMA Recertification by Continuing Education Application

      After you have obtained the 60 required recertification points you will need to submit a completed Recertification by Continuing Education Application and the required application fee. To download this application from our website, click on http://www.aama-ntl.org/recertified/apply_recert.aspx and select the Recertification by Continuing Education Application to download.

      NOTE: Review of recertification applications can take up to 90 days. If all criteria are met recertification is granted.

      Information about AAMA membership is available at http://www.aama-ntl.org/join.aspx.

      RECERTIFYING BY EXAMINATION
      A copy of the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination Handbook and Application can be found at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/apply_CMA.aspx. The deadline to apply for the exam is based on the earliest date that you wish to sit for the examination.

      Should you need additional assistance, please contact the AAMA at 1/800/228-2262. Please indicate whether you wish to recertify by continuing education or by examination so that we can direct you to a staff member who can best assist you.

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  9. Susie Stephens says:

    I have been working in the medical field for over 2 years. Someone told me that I could take the MA exam through proxy without taking the classes. Is that true?

    • Thank you for your question.

      Only medical assistants who have graduated from a postsecondary medical assisting program accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and become CMAs (AAMA). There are other medical assisting credentials that have eligibility pathways other than graduation from a CAAHEP or ABHES medical assisting program.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let me know whether you have any follow-up questions.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  10. We have medical assistants in our employ who have their associate’s degree or certification, but did not become certified. Is there a time limit as to how long after graduation they can sit for the exam (know that they do need to have graduated from a CASHEP or ABHES program)? Thank you! Lani Franklin, Employment Coordinator at Logansport Memorial Hospital

    • Thank you for your questions.

      Medical assistants who have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program after January 1, 2010, have sixty (60) months (five (5) years) after the date of graduation to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      Medical assistants who have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program prior to January 1, 2010, are permitted to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination at any time. In other words, there is no 60-month-after-graduation requirement for those medical assistants who graduated before January 1, 2010.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

      • Jennifer says:

        This was very helpful I graduated and never sat for test. I ended up moving to another state and after 9 years I want to go further and get certified, I have my school info and transcripts and will be sending in application with fee. But I need a refresher class would you have any suggestions in East Tennessee. I live in the Johnson city area 37615. Thanks again for your help.

      • I am glad this was helpful!

        If you are a graduate of a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program and are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination, I would suggest that you check with the CAAHEP and ABHES accredited medical assisting programs in your area to see whether any of them offer a refresher course in preparation for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. You can go to their respective websites: http://www.caahep.org and http://www.abhes.org

        Once again, I hope this is helpful.

        Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
        Executive Director, Legal Counsel

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  11. Michelle Carter says:

    Hi,

    I graduated from a MA school in Michigan 22 yrs. ago when MA were not really recognized/noticed. Since then I have become a CENA here in Michigan and would I would like to take the certification for an MA. Do you know if I can take the certification here in my state even though I had graduated so long ago? I have purchased a new set of textbooks to study and refresh, and I still have my skill technique down pat. Please advise, I would appreciate your opinion. Also if so where would I apply for the exam and how much does it cost?

    Thank you,
    MC

    • Thank you for your questions. I am happy to be of assistance.

      If the medical assisting program from which you graduated 22 years ago was accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES, you are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. You can go to caahep.org or abhes.org to find out whether the program was/is accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES.

      The CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is a national examination, not a state examination. It does not matter in what location/state you take the test. Those who pass the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination are awarded the CMA (AAMA) credential.

      I have copied my colleague Anna Johnson, CAE, Director of Certification, who will forward you information about applying for the examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

      • Anna Johnson says:

        Dear Ms. Carter:

        Please call our toll-free number (1/800/228-2262) and ask to speak with a member of the Certification staff. Then, give them the name of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program as well as the city and state where it was located. This will help the staff determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. If you are eligible, please note that, in order to verify that you successfully completed all of the program, you will be required to submit a copy of your official transcript requirements with your application.

        Sincerely,

        Anna Johnson

        Anna L. Johnson, CAE
        Director of Certification

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  12. orlando says:

    I have a Bcom degree in business. I am very much interested to do the cma course, will i be eligible to go for it.

    • Thank you for your question.

      The only medical assistants who are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination are those who have graduated from a postsecondary medical assisting program accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES. You can go to caahep.org and abhes.org to find out what medical assisting academic programs are currently accredited by CAAHEP or ABHES.

      I hope this is a helpful initial response. Please let me know whether you would like clarification or amplification of my response.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  13. KEVIN CRISP, CMA(AAMA) says:

    I am woking for Mercy Hospital in Maine. I am working with individuals who have not been to a Medical Assistant program and are wearing badges indentifying themselves as Certified Medical Assistants. I have been told that these employees are going to be given the “Fast Track” to become certified. My question is how can they be given a short cut of any kind to certified when they are not medical assistants to begin with. I look forward to your input.

    Sincerely,
    Kevin

    • Thank you for your post, Mr. Crisp. I am sorry to hear about this development at Mercy Hospital in Maine.

      Only those medical assistants who have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program and who hold a current CMA (AAMA) credential awarded by the Certifying Board of the AAMA are permitted to call themselves (or be called by others) “CMAs” or “CMAs (AAMA).”

      If you would be kind enough to provide me with more specific details, and contact information for the appropriate staff management at Mercy Hospital, I will happy to initiate contact and attempt to rectify this situation.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  14. kimberly john says:

    hi, i’m intrested in taking the CMA exam. Would you happend to know what the type of things the test covers.

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. The exam is offered by the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). The National Board of Medical Examiners—responsible for many national examinations for physicians—serves as test consultant for the examination. As a result the reliability, validity and security of the examination are of the highest order and greater numbers of employers are preferring, even demanding, that the medical assistants they employ be CMA (AAMA) certified.

      Areas of knowledge and topics covered in the examination are listed in the “Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination.” You may download the Content Outline at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/exam_outline.aspx.

      It is recommended that examinees become familiar with the subject matter and topics listed in this document. Reviewing current books and publications that cover administrative and clinical content for medical assisting and anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and laboratory textbooks will also help candidates prepare for the exam. Search on phrases such as “medical assisting textbooks” or “books in print.” Medical assisting textbooks can also be found on commercial sites such as http://www.amazon.com. If you use a public or school library, ask a librarian for the reference, Books in Print, publisher volume. This listing is published annually and contains a complete listing of United States publishers.

      To help you test your knowledge in the areas of anatomy and physiology and medical terminology, please click on the following links:

      http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_anatphys.aspx

      http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_term.aspx

      I hope this is helpful.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

  15. heather tucto says:

    I attented intellitec medical institute in colorado springs,colorado in 2005.I graduated but then moved back to dallas tx shorly after,and just never took my test. is it possible to still take the test now or do i have to take the classes over? is there a certain time in which you have to take the test?

    • Thank you for your question.

      If the medical assisting program you graduated from in 2005 was CAAHEP or ABHES accredited, you are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Those medical assistants who graduate from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program after January 1, 2010, must take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination no later than sixty (60) months after graduation. For those (such as you) who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program prior to January 1, 2010, there is no time limit for taking the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel
      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 1575
      Chicago, IL 60606
      800/228-2262
      dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

  16. Anna Johnson says:

    Thank you for checking. As long as the program you completed at IntelliTec Medical Institute was the medical assisting program you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination at this time. You will be required to submit a copy of your official transcript verifying your program completion with your application and payment for the exam.

    Anna L. Johnson, CAE
    Director of Certification

    American Association of Medical Assistants
    Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

    The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  17. antoinette kyer says:

    I’m a student who will be done with my classes in december. I start my externship this quarter. I will graduate with an associate degree in Applied Science/medical assisting. I live in the state of virginia and was wondering where do I go to take the certification exam in my state.

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is much appreciated. Before applying make sure that your medical assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If you’re not sure about your program’s accreditation, call 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the AAMA Certification Staff.

      The exam may be taken throughout the year at a Prometric testing center (open 8 to 10 hours per day, five to six days a week) of your choice. Each candidate is allowed a 90-day period in which to take the exam based on the testing period start date you indicate on your application.

      You can get more information about the exam by reviewing the FAQs on CMA (AAMA) Certification at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/faqs_certification.aspx#schedule. Or, call 1/800/228-2262 and as to speak to a member of our Certification Staff.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson
      Director of Certification

  18. Chelsea says:

    I looked on the CMA (AAMA) website and I saw that there are 200 questions for the exam, but what is considered Passing. How many questions do you have to get correct?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Each candidate’s score is based on the number of correct responses on the total examination, however it is not reported as one point per question. The majority of scores lie between 200 and 800. The minimum passing score for the examination is 425.

      • If the score received is equal to or greater than 425, the candidate passes.
      • If a candidate receives a score less than 425, the candidate fails.

      The score report includes percentile ranks for the total examination and the three major content areas of the exam (General, Administrative, and Clinical). These ranks are obtained by ranking the candidates from highest to lowest score. The percentile rank then indicates what percentage of the reference group scored lower than the candidate in that content area. For example, if a candidate’s percentile rank in Clinical was 70, then 70% of the reference group scored less on the clinical items. Percentile ranks are given for educational purposes only. They are not used in determining a candidate’s pass/fail status.

      If you need any further clarification, please call the AAMA at 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the Certification staff or to me.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

  19. Michael J. Gurrola says:

    I graduated from an accredited Medical Assistant College on 8-14-2009 But due to moving straight over to another College to train as an x-ray tech I missed the one year dead line to take the Certification test for M.A. by 2 months as of this writting.
    The college I went to said that this is not ture and I should still be able to take the Examination. Could you please tell me if I can still take the test or what do I need to do at this point to be able to?
    Thank you Michael J.

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is much appreciated. There is no one-year deadline to apply for the exam; however, the following policy became effective on January 1, 2010:

      Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam who graduate on or after January 1, 2010 will have 60 months from the date of graduation to sit for and pass the exam. If the candidate does not pass within this time frame, the candidate is not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) credential. (This policy does not affect candidates graduating before January 1, 2010.)

      Before applying double-check that your medical assisting program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). If you’re not sure about your program’s accreditation, call 1/800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the AAMA Certification Staff.

      The exam may be taken throughout the year at a Prometric testing center (open 8 to 10 hours per day, five to six days a week) of your choice. Each candidate is allowed a 90-day period in which to take the exam based on the testing period start date you indicate on your application.

      You can get more information about the exam by reviewing the FAQs on CMA (AAMA) Certification at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/faqs_certification.aspx#schedule.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  20. Elizabeth says:

    I am currently a WA state Certified Nurse Assistant and a WA state Certified Health Care Assistant, im addtion tot hat I am a graduate of an LPN equivalent college course done in Mexico….I have worked over 20 years in all aspect of health care including as an MA for a Health department which did not require certification….Will all this qualifications, can I take the exam to become a medical assistant??

    • Thank you for your question.

      Only those medical assistants who have graduated from a postsecondary medical assisting academic program accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and become CMAs (AAMA). I would suggest that you approach a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program and see whether your education, credentials, and experience would permit you to obtain some sort of advanced standing in the program. Whether you can will vary from program to program, and from school to school.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  21. Scott says:

    How does the AAMA apply to the medical assistant field?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Thank you for your e-mail. If you are asking about becoming CMA (AAMA) certified, let me clarify that only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. You may call the AAMA at 1/800/228-2262 to inquire about the accreditation status of the program you completed.

      If you are eligible to be registered for the exam you would receive an exam scheduling permit to use to schedule an appointment online at a test center in your area. For more information about the CMA (AAMA) Certification exam read the FAQs at: http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/faqs_certification.aspx#schedule.

      If I have misunderstood the intent of your question, please e-mail me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org and I will assist you further.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson, Director of Certification

  22. Mounira says:

    How many questions are there on the CMA exam? I’ve been told some many things, please help. :)

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Thank you for checking with us. The CMA (AAMA) Certification Examinatoin Application states the following: “The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions. Of these, 180 questions will be scored and 20 will be pretested. The pretest questions are included for evaluation and possible use as scored questions on future exams. These pretest questions are randomly placed throughout the exam and cannot be identified by the candidates. A candidate’s score is based on the number of correct responses to scored questions only. The pretest questions are not counted towards a candidate’s score.” The application also states that “upon completion of the optional 15-minute tutorial, the exam will be administered in four 40-minute segments. You will have an optional 20-minute total for breaks between segments. Your test time will not be extended if you decline the tutorial or the optional break time. You will have 160 minutes to answer all the exam questions. The maximum time allowed for your exam appointment will be three hours and 15 minutes (195 minutes).

      A copy of the application may be downloaded at http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/apply_CMA.aspx.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

    • Thank you for your question. Here is some information from the AAMA website:

      Q: What is the exam like?

      A: The computerized exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions covering topic areas that are listed in the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination Content Outline.

      Before the exam begins, there will be an optional tutorial that shows how to navigate through the exam. The maximum time allowed for the tutorial is 15 minutes. The time used for the tutorial is not counted as part of the exam time and will not affect your score.

      Following the tutorial, the exam will be administered in four 40-minute segments. You will have an optional 20-minute total for breaks between segments. You will have 160 minutes to answer all the exam questions. The maximum time allowed for your exam appointment will be 195 minutes (i.e., three hours and 15 minutes).

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

      • Mera says:

        Thank you for the info! I have a question on this too. What is the passing score for the CMA test? I have tried to google it but there’s nothing on it, thank you in advance!

  23. Bonny Harrison says:

    I have been in the medical field for 7 years now but I do not have any certification or classes except my Bachelors in Healthcare Management. I really want to get my certification as a medical assistant then become a CMA….. can you guide me in the first step with selecting a few good online schools that are CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program to start to get my diploma for a medical assistant degree first. You help is greatly appreciated.

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Thank you for your interest in becoming CMA (AAMA) certified. Ms. Harrison. Individuals whose previous education does not provide eligibility for the exam may wish to contact the ABHES or CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs in their area to learn which institutions offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience. If an institution does offer advance placement and the individual is able to enroll in its medical assisting program, the individual may not be required to complete the entire medical assisting curriculum in order to graduate.

      To find a listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs, click on the following link: http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on: http://www.abhes.org. Both websites identify which programs offer distance or online education. It is a conflict of interest for us to recommend any particular program so you would need to make your own choice.

      Don’t rule out brick and morter programs in your area. They may be able offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience and perhaps will work to accommodate your schedule.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

  24. gloria says:

    i obtain my RMA with AMT should i get my CMA? Am I elgible?

  25. LRich says:

    I have completed a Medical Assitant program. I took the CMA exam twice with no luck…I was wondering how many times am I allowed to take the exam after I have failed it and do you have any studying tips about this Exam…

    • Liz says:

      I read you can take it up to 3 times. I’m not sure what happens if you don’t pass it the third time. Go to http://www.aama-ntl.org/index.aspx. You’ll find plenty of info about the exam on this site. Hope this helps you.

      • AAMA Administrator says:

        We appreciate your checking with us. The following policies pertain to your inquiry:

        1. Window of exam eligibility. Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam who graduate on or after January 1, 2010 will have 60 months from the date of graduation to sit for and pass the exam. If the candidate does not pass within this time frame, the candidate is not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) credential. (This policy does not affect candidates graduating before January 1, 2010.)

        2. Three attempts for initial certification. A candidate for initial certification is allowed three exam attempts to obtain CMA (AAMA) certification. If the candidate does not pass on the third attempt, the candidate is not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) credential.

        Areas of knowledge and topics covered in the examination are listed in the “Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination.” It is recommended that examinees become familiar with the subject matter and topics listed in this document. Reviewing current books and publications that cover administrative and clinical content for medical assisting and anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and laboratory textbooks will also help candidates prepare for the exam.

        Information is available through the Internet and at any public library. Search on phrases such as “medical assisting textbooks” or “books in print.” Medical assisting textbooks can also be found on commercial sites such as http://www.amazon.com. If you use a public or school library, ask a librarian for the reference, Books in Print, publisher volume. This listing is published annually and contains a complete listing of United States publishers.

        To help you test your knowledge in the areas of anatomy and physiology and medical terminology, please click on the following links:

        http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_anatphys.aspx

        http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_term.aspx

        The CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination is offered by the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) organization. The National Board of Medical Examiners—responsible for many national examinations for physicians—serves as test consultant for the examination. As a result the reliability, validity and security of the examination are of the highest order and greater numbers of employers are preferring—even demanding—that their medical assistants be CMA (AAMA) certified.

        I hope this is helpful.

        Anna L. Johnson, CAE
        Director of Certification

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  26. Meagan Romero says:

    Hi,
    I’m wondering what would happen if you don’t pass the CMA certification exam on the third try?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Dear Ms. Romero:

      According to AAMA Certifying Board policies a candidate for initial certification is allowed three exam attempts to obtain CMA (AAMA) certification. If the candidate does not pass on the third attempt, the candidate is not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) credential.

      If you have any additional questions, please let us know.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  27. Carlos Estrella says:

    Hello !!

    Im an international medical graduated from Dominican Republic , Can I take the exam to work like a Medical Assitang in the USA?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Thank you for contacting us. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Individuals whose previous education does not provide eligibility for the exam may wish to contact the ABHES or CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs in their area to learn which institutions offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience. If an institution does offer advance placement and the individual is able to enroll in its medical assisting program, the individual may not be required to complete the entire medical assisting curriculum in order to graduate. To find a listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs, click on the following link: http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on: http://www.abhes.org.

      Greater number of employers are preferring (or even insisting) that their medical assistants be CMAs (AAMA); however, except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. Thus, it is possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification.

      If you have any further questions or if I can be of additional assistance, please e-mail me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  28. Cthyrene86 says:

    Hi,I just want to know if i can still take exam in order to be a Certified Medical Assistant even though i finished the program in August 2009?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      We appreciate your interest in the CMA (AAMA) exam. If you graduated from a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) you are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      Call the AAMA at 800/228-2262 and ask to speak with a member of the Certification Staff. Be prepared to tell them the date of your graduation, the name of the school you attended and the city and state where the school is located. They will be able to tell you if the program you attended qualifies you as a CMA (AAMA) exam candidate.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  29. I have a question if i have been a medical assistant for years, can i challenge the test , so i can become certified and if so how do i go about this thank you.

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Your questions about CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination eligibility is appreciated. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Individuals whose previous education does not provide eligibility for the exam may wish to contact the ABHES or CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs in their area to learn which institutions offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience. If advance placement is available you may not need to complete the entire medical assisting curriculum in order to graduate. A listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs can be reviewed at http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on http://www.abhes.org.

      Greater number of employers are preferring (or even insisting) that their medical assistants be CMAs (AAMA); however, except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. Thus, it is possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification.

      If you have any further questions or if I can be of additional assistance, please e-mail me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  30. ChechenaJireh Barnett says:

    I am a certidied Phlebotomist but I have worked as a medical assistant for the past 2 years. I would like to know if I can take the to become a certified medical assistant.

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Thank you for contacting us. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Individuals whose previous education does not provide eligibility for the exam may wish to contact the ABHES or CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs in their area to learn which institutions offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience. If advance placement is available you may not need to complete the entire medical assisting curriculum in order to graduate. A listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs can be reviewed at http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on http://www.abhes.org.

      Greater number of employers are preferring (or even insisting) that their medical assistants be CMAs (AAMA); however, except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. Thus, it is possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification.

      If you have any further questions or if I can be of additional assistance, please e-mail me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  31. I was wondering, if yoy could help me. I recently graduated from Medical Assistant program in October of 2010, But they didn’t follow threw with helping me with the exam. Am i able to apply without them? Also, I am moving to another state in March 2011, Can i take the test in any city or do i have to take it where i graduated school. also, last thing, Is there any study guides that you would suggest for the exam?
    Thank you for your time…

    Sincerly,
    Breyona Johnson
    Fayetteville, GA

    • Thank you for your questions. I will answer one of them, and will refer the others to Director of Certification Anna Johnson.

      The CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination is a national examination. Thus, it does not matter where you take the test. Your CMA (AAMA) credential will be valid as a voluntary national credential regardless of the state or other American jurisdiction in which you will be working.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Dear Ms. Johnson:

      Thank you for contacting us. You may apply for the exam without permission from the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. Prior to applying, however, make certain that your medical assisting program has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Otherwise, you are not eligible for the exam.

      If you will send me an e-mail (ajohnson@aama-ntl.org) listing the name, address, city and state of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program I can tell you if the program carries ABHES or CAAHEP accreditation.

      Areas of knowledge and topics covered in the examination are listed in the “Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination.” It is recommended that examinees become familiar with the subject matter and topics listed in this document. Reviewing current books and publications that cover administrative and clinical content for medical assisting and anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and laboratory textbooks will also help candidates prepare for the exam.

      Information is available through the Internet and at any public library. Search on phrases such as “medical assisting textbooks” or “books in print.” Medical assisting textbooks can also be found on commercial sites such as http://www.amazon.com. If you use a public or school library, ask a librarian for the reference, Books in Print, publisher volume. This listing is published annually and contains a complete listing of United States publishers.

      To help you test your knowledge in the areas of anatomy and physiology and medical terminology, please click on the following links:

      http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_anatphys.aspx

      http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_term.aspx

      The CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination is offered by the Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) organization. The National Board of Medical Examiners—responsible for many national examinations for physicians—serves as test consultant for the examination. As a result the reliability, validity and security of the examination are of the highest order and greater numbers of employers are preferring—even demanding—that their medical assistants be CMA (AAMA) certified.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  32. Joy says:

    I finished my school as a Medical Office Assistant, are we given the same kind of test as those in Medical Assistant? Thank You.

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      You are wise to ask, Joy. Some institutions use the title “Medical Office Assistant” instead of “Medical Assistant” while others use this title to designate a program that is limited to education and trainnig that is limited to the administrative tasks that medical assistants perform.

      If you are interested in taking the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination you would need to provide us with the name of the institution where you completed your program, the address of the institution and the date of your graduation. You may e-mail this information to me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  33. Rachelle says:

    April 2002 I graduated as a Medical Assistant in Lexington, KY. I completed and passed the CMA exam. I have since moved from KY and have not kept up on CEU’s. I have been working in CA as a medical biller for a hospital system. I am currenlty looking for a new job and was wondering if my degree as a Medical Assistant is recognized in and accepted in CA. I was told my certification would not transfer. Thoughts- thank you

    • The CMA (AAMA) credential is recognized in California law. Please note the following from the CA law:

      Cal. Admin. Code tit. 16, § 1366.3

      BARCLAYS OFFICIAL CALIFORNIA CODE OF REGULATIONS
      TITLE 16. PROFESSIONAL AND VOCATIONAL REGULATIONS
      DIVISION 13. MEDICAL BOARD OF CALIFORNIA [FNA1]
      CHAPTER 3. AFFILIATED HEALING ARTS [FNA1]
      ARTICLE 2. MEDICAL ASSISTANTS
      This database is current through 1/4/08, Register 2008, No. 1
      § 1366.3. Administration of Training.

      (a) Training required in Sections 1366, 1366.1 or 1366.2 may be administered in either of these settings:
      (1) Under a licensed physician or podiatrist, who shall ascertain the proficiency of the medical assistant; or under a registered nurse, licensed vocational nurse, physician assistant or a qualified medical assistant acting under the direction of a licensed physician or podiatrist who shall be responsible for determining the content of the training and the proficiency of the medical assistant except that training to administer medication by inhalation shall be provided by a licensed physician or respiratory care practitioner; or

      (2) In a secondary, postsecondary, or adult education program in a public school authorized by the Department of Education, in a community college program provided for in Part 48 of Division 7 of the Education Code, or a postsecondary institution accredited by an accreditation agency recognized by the United States Department of Education or approved by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education under Sections 94130 or 94311 of the Education Code. A licensed physician or podiatrist shall serve as advisor to the medical assistant training program. The instructor in a public school setting shall possess a valid teaching credential issued by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. The instructor in a private postsecondary institution shall meet the requirements of Sections 94310 and 94311 of the Education Code and any regulations adopted pursuant to those sections.

      (b) The supervising physician or podiatrist, pursuant to subsection (a)(1) or the instructor pursuant to subsection (a)(2) shall certify in writing the place and date such training was administered, the content and duration of the training, and that the medical assistant was observed by the certifying physician, podiatrist, or instructor to demonstrate competence in the performance of each such task or service, and shall sign the certification. More than one task or service may be certified in a single document; separate certifications shall be made for subsequent training in additional tasks or services.

      (c) For purposes of this section only, a “qualified medical assistant” is a medical assistant who:
      (1) is certified by a medical assistant certifying organization approved by the division;

      (2) holds a credential to teach in a medical assistant training program at a community college; or

      (3) is authorized to teach medical assistants in a private postsecondary institution accredited by an accreditation agency recognized by the United States Department of Education or approved by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education.

      And note the list of the medical assistant certifying organizations approved under California law:

      Medical Assistants – Certifying Agencies

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      20 N. Wacker Drive, #1575
      Chicago, IL 60606-2963

      http://www.aama-ntl.org/

      (312) 899-1500
      ________________________________________
      American Medical Technologists
      710 Higgins Road
      Park Ridge, IL 60068

      http://www.amt1.com/

      (847) 823-5169
      ________________________________________
      California Certifying Board of Medical Assistants
      P.O. Box 462
      Placerville, CA 95667

      http://www.cmaa-ca.org/

      (866) 622-2262 or
      (530) 622-1850
      ________________________________________

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  34. camille says:

    Ids there a time limit to take the exam for certification after completion of a MA program?

    • AAMA Administrator says:

      Effective January 1, 2010 every candidate for the exam is allowed three attempts to pass the exam. Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam who graduate on or after January 1, 2010 will have 60 months from the date of graduation to sit for and pass the exam. If the candidate does not pass within this time frame, the candidate is not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) credential. (This policy does not affect candidates graduating before January 1, 2010.)

      I hope this is helpful.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna L. Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  35. Rachel says:

    hello, i read where it was said in a precious answer to another question on this site that .. “Except in a very few states, the CMA (AAMA) and other medical assisting credentials are all voluntary national credentials, not mandatory states licenses or required state board examinations. So, it is quite possible that you would be able to work as a medical assistant without certification” & i was just wondering which few states is it not just voluntary , or perhaps REQUIRED to take the test to recieve the credentials? Also, i was wondering how do i as a student become a member of the AAMA ? thanks again, Rachel

    • Rachel says:

      oops, a typo i meant to say a ‘previous’ posting, not a ‘precious’ posting… lol

    • Thank you for your questions. I am copying my colleague David Knight, Director of Continuing Education and Membership, who will respond to your question about becoming a student member of the AAMA.

      The medical assisting laws in some states are complicated. Here is my simplified summary.

      According to New Jersey law, a medical assistant must have a certain amount of medical assisting education delineated in a regulation of the NJ Board of Medical Examiners, and a medical assisting credential recognized by the NJ BOME, in order to be delegated by a physician certain types of injections specified in the regulation.

      South Dakota law requires a medical assistant to be a graduate of a medical assisting program meeting the requirements of the SD Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners and the SD Board of Nursing in order to be registered by the SD Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners. A medical assistant must be registered in order to work as a medical assistant in South Dakota.

      These are the two states that most clearly require medical assistants to have met educational prerequisites (SD and NJ) and testing/credentialing requirements (NJ) in order to practice medical assisting, or a certain part of medical assisting.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let me know how I can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  36. Irina says:

    Hi,
    Can an international medical school graduate sit for the AAMA exam? I graduated with a MD from a university in Ukraine. My education is accepted by the ECFMG (Educational Commision for Foreign Medical Graduates), and the Medical Board of California, meaning that I am eligible to enter a medical residency. It would seem that after passing the United States Medical Licensing Exams I should be qualified to become a certified medical assistant. Thanks for your reply.

  37. Cris says:

    My daughter graduated ma school with As and Bs. She has already taken the CMA test twice failed by only 4 pts the first time, but did worse the second time. The hardest part of the test is the admin part. Can you make any suggestions as to what she should do now?

  38. jack samawi says:

    can i ask how much does it cost CMA in US ..?

  39. Janet says:

    I have recently finished my MA classes and have started my externship. I have been working 32 hrs. a week at this site. The career counselor at school has informed me that each week only 18 hours of the 32 are being applied towards my 180 hrs. She stated that I am only allowed to do 18 hrs. a week. I was told that I had to do a minimum of 18 hrs. Is there a limit on the number of hrs an MA can work towards her externship in a week in the state of Maine?

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      I am not aware of any Maine law that limits the number of practicum/externship hours a medical assisting student can put in each week. I believe the 18 hours per week is the policy of your school and its medical assisting program. It is legally permissible for a school/medical assisting program to establish this type of limit for its externing students.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  40. Shelia Mitchell says:

    I am a Medical Assistant, graduated in 2003. I quit working to be a stay at home mom in 2005. I let all of my certifications expire. Can I just retake the tests and get recertified?
    shelia.mitchell.91@gmail.com

  41. see says:

    I took the CMA test 3years ago but didn’t pass. It’s been 3years now. Is it too late to retake the test.? What’s the time limit.?

  42. Amanda says:

    I have been a MA for 15 years and graduated from a non credited school that long ago, which is not recognized by AAMA or the other. I have interest in certification and it Is obvious I don’t follow within the requirements to taking the exam because of the accrediting. In one of the caterogories it does mention Non members. What does that mean? The fee’s are vary between the two. $125 post graduating from a accredited and $220 non member. One would assume that you could pay the higher exam fee if it was not meeting the critieria. It would be nice to find out if MA’s would be eligible to taking the exam having working in a hospital / clinical setting experience from a non creditied school and be recognized as healthcare workers. Long ago employers were grandfathered to having employees be eligible to take the exam for certification and that had stopped. Please advise your thoughts and I look forward to your response and advise.

  43. ronika says:

    I have been a MA for 4 years with 2 years experience in back office in an internal medicince/family practice office, the school I graduated from is ACCET accredited I havent seen the eligible accreditations for the school. I want to get certified but it does not seem I am eligible? Is there anyway I can become certified with my being graduated 4 years ago from a different accreditated school? Thank you.

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      As you are aware, only graduates of CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting programs are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. I would suggest that you approach a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program in your area and ask whether you can be given credit for the courses you took in the ACCET accredited school from which you graduated. (Only CAAHEP and ABHES accredit medical assisting PROGRAMS. ACCET, ACICS, and other accrediting bodies accredit SCHOOLS which offer medical assisting programs.) If such is the case, you may be able to graduate from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited program without having to duplicate all of your previous academic work.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  44. Connie Whipper says:

    Hi my name is Connie and I am a CMA looking to be registerd (RMA), how may I claim that oppurtunity????

  45. Rachel says:

    Hi,
    I am going online for my Associates for Medical Assisting and I am going through Penn Foster. How do I found out if it is CAAHEP OR ABHES accredited?

    • Thank you for your question. I would suggest that you go to the respective websites for CAAHEP and ABHES–www.caahep.org and http://www.abhes.org You can determine which programs are CAAHEP or ABHES accredited.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  46. Pearl Denise Nichols says:

    I’ve been a medical Assistant for over 11 years but I took and passed my CMA(AAMA) test today. I would like to know what happens next. I know they said I will receive the official notice in the mail but what else will I receive?(paper certification, wallet card, lapel pin)? also, I will be moving to another state in 8 months but I would like to become a member of the AAMA. What if anything will I need to do when I move?

  47. Excellent post. I used to be checking constantly this weblog and I am inspired! Very helpful info specially the final part :) I deal with such information much. I used to be seeking this certain information for a long time. Thanks and best of luck.

  48. lori says:

    I have a question. I went to star institute in 2007 passed all the courses for honors..but when I went to do my extership my father had a stroke and I couldnt do my externship…now I have the time to finish up my ma degree…do I have to do all the courses over…I just finished paying off my student loans and hate to have more debt. Please tell what I can do I am now working as a cna but I would like to do ma work. thanks.

    • Thank you for contacting us. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted. Unfortunately, we have no record that the medical assisting program at Star Institute has been CAAHEP or ABHES accredited.

      Individuals whose previous education does not provide eligibility for the exam may wish to contact the ABHES or CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs in their area to learn which institutions offer advanced placement opportunities for previous educational or work experience. If advance placement is available you may not need to complete the entire medical assisting curriculum in order to graduate. A listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs can be reviewed at http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on http://www.abhes.org.

      We hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  49. eric ihnen says:

    I am a Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Petty Officer of the United States Navy. I have worked in a hospital for 2 years under Naval Nurses. I also deployed during OEF and would like to challenge for my medical assistance license for the state of illinois. How do i go about doing this?

    Thank you

    HM3(FMF) Ihnen, Eric

    • Thank you for your question, Mr. Ihnen. Most importantly, thank you for your service to the United States of America!

      Medical assistants are not licensed in Illinois, or in almost every other state. The CMA (AAMA) credential awarded by the Certifying Board of the American Association is a voluntary national credential, not a mandatory state credential. However, increasing numbers of employer insist on hiring CMAs (AAMA), and there are legal advantages in doing so. I will e-mail you my article on this subject.

      My colleague Director of Certification Lee Rumpel will also e-mail you about how you can become eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      Please let us know how we can be of further assistance, Mr. Ihnen.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  50. eric ihnen says:

    Mr. Balasa,

    Thank you for your fast response. I was informed that I would be able to get my Medical Officer to write a letter or fill out some form so i did not have to take an examination. Is there any truth in this matter?

    HM3(FMF) Ihnen, Eric

    • You are welcome, Mr. Ihnen. WE are happy to be of assistance.

      There are no educational or testing requirements for medical assistants in Illinois, so you may work as a medical assistant without your Medical Officer writing a letter or completing a form. A letter from your Medical Officer would most likely increase employment opportunities, however.

      Only medical assistants who have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. However, some of these programs may give you credit for your training and experience.

      Once again, I hope this is helpful, Mr. Ihnen.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  51. Jessica H. says:

    Hello, I completed a Medical Assistant diploma program, back in 2009 in Raleigh N.C. and they are accredited by ACCET, which is suppose to be a national accrediting agency. My question to is can I sit for the exam or would i be able to take one of those medical assistant refresher courses at my local community college to sit for the exam.

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      ACCET is a national accrediting agency, but it offers institutional (school) accreditation, not programmatic accreditation of postsecondary medical assisting programs. The only accrediting bodies that programmatically accredit postsecondary medical assisting programs are CAAHEP and ABHES, and only graduates of CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting programs are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and be awarded the CMA (AAMA) credential. Therefore, you are not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      If you want to become eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination, I would suggest that you contact a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program and find out whether they would accept any of the credits you earned during your diploma program. You would then have to enter and complete this CAAHEP or ABHES program to be eligible to become a CMA (AAMA).

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  52. jessica says:

    Can I apply to take the test without my official transcript? I graduate this month from an accredited school and was just informed I won’t recieve my official transcript unless I pay my balance off that I owe the school. I wont have the money for a while and would like to test so I can start working as a CMA asap!

  53. Jodi says:

    I have taken the LPN program and graduated but have not succeeded in passing the state boards. Was wondering if I am eligible to take the CMA exam in the mean time?

    • Thank you for your question.

      The only individuals who are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination are those who have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program.

      Therefore, you are not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  54. Vivian Wu says:

    Hi, I graduated in 2007 from ASA college in medical Assisting, can I take the CMA exam now? Or What should I do if I want to take the CMA exam? Thanks

  55. Terra says:

    I graduated in Spring of 2009 with an associate’s degree in Medical Assisting from Sanford-Brown College (ABHES ID# MA-011).
    I started work immediately for an Ophthalmologist who didn’t require me to get certified since I would be working as an Ophthalmic Assistant. Since then, I have regretted not getting my certificatation and am looking for a job as a CMA.
    Someone told me that in order to get certified as a CMA, I would of had to take the certification exam within a year of graduating. Is this so? Is there another way I can become certified now since that year has passed? I have over 20,000. in tuition debt and would prefer not to take the program over again, but might consider taking another course or similar in order to requalify for the exam.

    Your reply is greatly appreciated,

    Thank-you

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      The Certifying Board of the AAMA policy states that, for students graduating after January 1, 2010, the individual must take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination within 60 months of graduation. First of all, because you graduated before January 1, 2010, this policy does not apply to you. Secondly, even if the policy did apply to you, you would not be adversely affected because the permissible time frame for testing is 60 months after graduation, not twelve months.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  56. erica roberts says:

    I was just wondering if I am able to take the cma test even though I graduated from my medical assisting program nearly 6 years ago if not what steps can I take to bee eligible?

    • Thank you for your question.

      If you graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program prior to January 1, 2010, you may take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination at any time. However, an individual who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program after January 1, 2010, must take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination no later than 60 months after the date of graduation.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  57. Dana says:

    I graduated from Star Technical Institute in NJ back in 2006 from their Medical Assistance/Multi Skilled Tech program. I was hired right out of school as an MA and have been working since. None of the Doctors that I worked for in the past has ever required a certification so I never took the test.
    I was recently laid off and I am finding that a lot of practices are requiring a certification.
    Unfortunately the school I attended has changed hands. How can I find out if they were accredited back then in order for me to take the certification test?
    Thank you

  58. Just wondering what a perfect score for the CMA exam is. I scored a 619. Passing is 425.

  59. tara says:

    I graduated from medical assisting school 2 years ago. I never did the externship . Can I still take the exam? My school was accredited by the ACCSC.

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      Only those who have graduated from a medical assisting program accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Students who have graduated from a medical assisting program in a school that is ACCSC accredited are not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful. If you have follow-up questions, please do not hesitate to send them to me at dbalasa@aama-ntl.org

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  60. Daphne says:

    If i have not worked as a medical assitant in two years can i challange the test and recertify?

  61. valerie says:

    Hello

    I wanted to know if I am elgible to take the CMA exam. I graduated in December 2008. Will I qualify since it’s been a few years. Also, I graduated from San Joaquin Valley College and I got my Associates of Science. I went to college for Medical Assistant, but never persued a certification. I believe my college is accredited by WASC?

  62. ally says:

    hi. im about to finish my extern and i was planning on moving out of state. i was wondering where the testing centers are so i can plan accordingly.

  63. Susan says:

    HI, I just completed my extern as a MA but will return to school for 4 months for my AAs. Is it possible to take the CMA while i am Still in school for my AAS MA ?

  64. Tamesha says:

    Hi I have taken the medical assistant course I have graduated but never received my diploma. How do I get a copy of my diploma? To all to all this, the school in which I graduated from has closed.

  65. susana says:

    hello i took a vocational nursing program but i was wondering if i can work as a medical assistant?

  66. Charlene Levant says:

    How many times can I take the certification exam?

  67. jess mateu says:

    i went to school to medical administration, i took all of my my classes but i didnt graduate. i got certified by the state in 2010 can i still recertify with out my diploma??

  68. Diane Van Gelder says:

    Is the AAMA and ABES the only certifying agency?

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      The only entities that accredit medical assisting academic programs are the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES). The Medical Assisting Education Review Board (MAERB) is a committee on accreditation (CoA) of CAAHEP and makes accreditation recommendations to CAAHEP.

      The Certifying Board of the American Association of Medical Assistants offers the CMA (AAMA) credential. American Medical Technologists (AMT) offers the registered medical assistant (RMA) credential. There are other bodies that offer examinations for medical assistants.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let me know whether you have other questions.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

      • Diane Van Gelder says:

        What is the difference between the Nsational Healthcare Association and the AAMA? I spoke to their office and they said if I take and pass the exam then my considered a certified medical assistant. Is this correct?

      • The National Healthcareer Association (NHA) does offer certification examinations for medical assistants. However, those who pass the NHA tests are not permitted to use the “CMA” designation. The credentials that the NHA offers are the “Certified Clinical Medical Assistant” (CCMA) and the “Certified Medical Administrative Assistant” (CMAA). Those who are given these credentials by the NHA are only permitted to use the CCMA or CMAA designations.

        Once again, I hope this is helpful.

        Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
        Executive Director, Legal Counsel

        American Association of Medical Assistants
        Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

        Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

        The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  69. lai says:

    hi! i just wanna ask if i’m a graduate of nursing in other country, how do i take the exam for the medical assistant? should i need to take the exam or can i apply for a job directly. im a graduate since march 2009.

  70. Sekeena Johnson says:

    Hi I took & graduated the medical assistant program from UEI in 2001, took the test to become certified & failed by three questions. I never got a job in the medical field & would love to but I’ve been out of school many years with no experience. I would like to know how I could go about re-taking the certified MA test & if there are any refresher courses offered in Houston Tx where I now reside that I can take?

  71. Sekeena Johnson says:

    Thank you it will be greatly appreciated.

  72. Laura says:

    Hi. I graduated from a technical college in 1988 and received a diploma for medical office assisting. I worked in the field “without certification” until 1997. I then pursued a home career after birth of my 2nd child in medical transcription and have done so until now. The medical industry has pretty much eliminated my job with electronic medical records and I am trying to get back into the field and apply for jobs as a medical office assistant as I pursue my associate degree in nursing. I think “certification” is what is preferred now days. Is it possible or how is it possible to obtain my certification after 24 years after graduating?

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      If you graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program, you would be eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Could you please tell us the name and address of the school from which you graduated?

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  73. Robin Green says:

    Just trying to get some info on how to take my state boards. I graduated from Medical Assistant school in 2004 but never took my test. Can I still take my test?

  74. Crystal says:

    Could u also Send me the info about taking the CMA test for someone with 10years experience but no certification.. I live in KY

  75. Brenda Hedges for Shawnda Sosbe says:

    name is Shawnda, i compketed cma class but i did not take the test as i was offered a jobin a drs office doing the same thing as a cma without certification. i graduated in May of 2011 but now i want to be certified. i live in paris Ky.how do i find out where to take the exam and how much will it cost. thank you. im using my mothers email address.

  76. Patti pale says:

    I finished a medical assurance school in 1995
    And need a copy of my certificate of completion.
    The school is closed. How can I get a copy

  77. Teresa says:

    I graduated from brandford hall in longisland ny over a year ago i was wondering if i there is an expiration on how long i have to take my test before i would have to re take the schooling again

  78. Lorena says:

    I graduated from remington college in 2008 as an Ma and was certified within months. I had a hard time finding work and gave up after a year. My question is, what can I do to go into the field again with no experience after so long! Is this common, or am I alone in this. Would anyone really hire me after so long?

    • Thank you for your question. I am sorry to hear about the difficulties you have been having.

      The demand for CMAs (AAMA) varies significantly from one area of a state to another. There are many factors and variables that determine the availabilities of jobs for CMAs (AAMA).

      I would suggest that you see whether you can find an exclusively front office/administrative position. That could be a good jumping off point for pursuing a clinical medical assisting position, or a combined clinical/administrative position.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  79. Sareatha Baker says:

    I have graduated from Florida Career College for Medical Assistant for about 6 years can I still take the stateboard exam

  80. Shenique says:

    Hi, I received a medical assistant diploma about 9 years ago but never took the test to become certified. Is it possible that I can take the test now or do I have to go back to school and take a refresher course first?

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to help.

      If you graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program prior to January 1, 2010, you are eligible to register for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination, regardless of how long ago you graduated.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  81. Tamesha b says:

    Hi ii went to meric college in 07 but never received my diploma . I completed the course am ii eligible to take the cma exam!?

  82. brittany says:

    I have a few questions.
    1. do graduates of an accredited medical assistant program HAVE to sit for a national exam in order to be certified inthe state if WA under the Health Care Assistant Act?

    2. does the Health Care Assistant Act only cover non-licensed health care workers.

    3. are medical assistants licensed

    4. is it possible to be certified as a health care assistant before I get a job in the state of WA

    5. is it legal for me to preform invasive procedures in the state of WA for years after I graduate without being certified as a Health Care Assistant?
    6. do I need to send in my fee prior to looking for a job?

    7. what categories are medical assistants certified in?

    • Thank you for your question. The Washington State law is in a state of flux because of legislation passed earlier this year that eliminates the health care assistant categories and establishes categories for medical assistants. The rule making process is underway, and the Washington State Society of Medical Assistants and the American Association of Medical Assistants continue to have significant input into the process.

      I will send you the bill that was enacted in the Washington legislature, as well as the information page from the Washington State Department of Health.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  83. evelyn says:

    hello, i graduated the medical assistant course in 2002 & got my diploma from Concorde Career College here in CA. i never took the certification nor worked in the medical office as an MA. is there a refresher course you can recommend to me so i can take the Certification for MA? i need a syllabus type to help me go back to the medical field. my email address is Evelyn.Apud@gmail.com. please send me anything that would help & also the steps on how to take the certification test. thank you sooo much!!!

  84. Frances says:

    I graduate from medical assistant program in 2005 but I have took my certified test yet . I was wondering can I taking it and if I what do I have to do . Please help me with some information that will be very helpful for me. Thank you very much.

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      If the medical assisting program from which you graduated was CAAHEP or ABHES accredited, you are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I am copying Director of Certification Anna Johnson who will provide you information on registering for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  85. danielle says:

    Hi I graduated from a medical assistant program in 2009 I’ve never found work I’m now being told that my certificate is no longer valid because its been more than 2yrs is this true? Do I have to take the program all over again?

  86. Ashley Johnson says:

    I completed the medical assistant program in 2009 but i neva took the certification test. Is it to late for me to take the test?

  87. LoganH says:

    I’m currently in an MA program, I was denied eligability to the CNA and RN program because of a felony i got when I was 14. (Im now 20)
    Am I able to become certified or registed when I finish my program?

  88. jen burno says:

    Ive been a RMA for 12 years can i sit for the CMA exam?

    • Thank you for your question. Even though you hold an RMA credential, you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination only if you have graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program.

      Sent from my iPhone

  89. tiffany says:

    Can I take the cma exam 2yrs after I recieve my certificate?

  90. Patrice says:

    I went to school for medical assisting and graduated in 2007 can I still take the exam to be certified? If not what do I need to do to get certified?

  91. Corrie says:

    I graduated at a school that says they are ACICS. does this mean I cannot take he certification examination?

    • Thank you for your question. I am happy to respond.

      Only medical assistants who have completed a medical assisting program accredited by either CAAHEP or ABHES are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and earn the CMA (AAMA) credential. Medical assistants who graduate from a program that is in a school that is ACICS accredited are not eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  92. phil says:

    I have been working as a nurse for 30 years. I train the MA’S AND LPN’S that come to work fresh out of school. isnt there anyway with all that experience, that I can just take the test? Please advise Thanks

  93. frenalie says:

    I completed MA program and got a diploma at Kaplan college in 2008 and didn’t take the certification exam. I want to ask if I’m eligible to take the certification exam?

  94. Bob Allen says:

    I am a healthcare professional. And, I recently hired a new administrator for my office. She has a son who is a medic in the U.S. Army who will be completing his ‘hitch’ in about 10 weeks. He will be returning to Seattle with his wife. He has expressed interest in becoming a ‘Medical Assistant’ to his mom. Could you have someone email to me the names of any schools in the Seattle area that provide the training he would need in order to qualify to take this exam? Thank you.

    • Thank you for your question. The medical assisting law in Washington is in a state of flux. I and the public policy leaders of the Washington State Society of Medical Assistants testified at a hearing on the proposed medical assisting rules May 7 in Tumwater, WA.

      I will send to your e-mail the proposed rules. They should be final by July 1, 2013.

      I hope you will find this helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  95. frenalie says:

    I completed medical assisting at Kaplan college, Las Vegas, Nv on Nov.2008 and didn’t take any certification exam, I want to know if I’m still eligible/qualify to take the certification exam? and where I can take it?.. Thank you!

  96. Damara Klentz says:

    I graduated from medical assisting school in Oct 2003. Can I still take the MA test?

  97. Sharon says:

    I’ve been working as an MA four over 18 years. Could send me the information you mentioned in earlier comments about how I might go about getting the CMA. I really don’t have the time or money to go back to school but have a lot of experience.

    Thanks for any help

  98. Valarie says:

    There are so many responses that say what to do if your school IS an accredited school. But Sanford Brown is NOT. What can graduates of that CMA program do when jobs insist they be certified?? Do they all need to go BACK to ANOTHER school and RE-TAKE the same classes at another school? There has to be another way. Please help.

  99. Kristina Valdes says:

    I have been working as MA for over ten years and want to know how I can get my MA certificate I have an associate’s in science fron a surgical technology program that I did can you please respond to me thanks

  100. Maggie brechun says:

    Hello…
    I have been working as a medical assistant for over 10 years & would like to find out how I can get certified. Please e mail me @ m_rejch@yahoo.com

  101. Latonya says:

    Hi,
    I graduated from an accredited college with my Medical Assistant Diploma in 2009 and was registered to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination but didn’t get a chance because I gave birth and started a new job shortly after. What steps do I need to take to receive my certification since I graduated in 2009?

  102. Michelle Jones says:

    I took the class for MA back in 2007 I never got certified would it be okay to still try to get certified???

  103. mary tatum says:

    I would like to no what can i do to get certified as a medical assistant. i already graduated from college just never took my state test please email with information please

  104. Denise Gomez says:

    I would like to know if I can still take my state exam for medical assistant I graduate from the class in march of 2009 but I just have my school diploma never got to take the state exam

  105. amanda says:

    Hi I have a question.. I graduated Lincoln tech for medical assist and in 2007 and I didn’t pass my boards.. can I take them now even tho its been 6 years?

    • Thank you for your question. To simplify, if the medical assisting program from which you graduated in 2007 was CAAHEP or ABHES accredited at the time of your graduation, or at any time during which you attended the program, you are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  106. carmen says:

    i graduated as a medical assistant 5 years ago, i took the cma test but failed, i have never worked as a medical assistant, but i am planning on taking the test and get a job on the field. can i still take the test regarless of the fact that i have never worked as a medical assistant?

    • Thank you for your question. Because you were eligible to take the test in 2008 you are a graduate of a CAAHEP or ABHES program. Because you graduated before 2010 you may take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination again. Work experience is not a prerequisite.

      Sent from my iPhone

  107. Amanda says:

    I went to a medical assistant school ( aci) completed all my classes with a 3.4 GPA. I didn’t do my externship due to my financial situation so time passes and the school ended up closing down. I now work for a cardiologist and I want to get certified. Is there a way for the practice I work for to use the yr that I have been there as part of an externship so I can be certified. I did everything but the externship but now have been working as an MA for a yr. is there anything I can do to get certified?

  108. yese says:

    What if i graduated in 2008 and never took the certification test and only worked a couple of months as an medical assistant is there a way i can go back and get the certification

    • Thank you for your question. Medical assistants who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program after January 1, 2010, must take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination within 60 months of graduation. If they do not do so, they forfeit the opportunity to ever take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination and receive the CMA (AAMA) credential.

      However, according to current Certifying Board policy, those medical assistants who graduated before January 1, 2010, are not subject to the 60-month-after-graduation requirement. You and other individuals who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program before January 1, 2010, are eligible to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination any time in the future.

      I hope this is helpful.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

  109. Patience Gardner says:

    I graduated from Kaplan Career institute in 2008 as an medical assistant i was wondering is it to late to get certified

    • Thank you for your question. According to current policy of the Certifying Board of the AAMA, those who graduate from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program on or after January 1, 2010, have 60 months from the month of graduation to take and pass the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Those who graduated before January 1, 2010, are not subject to the 60 month provision. Therefore, if the Kaplan medical assisting program from which you graduated in 2008 was CAAHEP or ABHES accredited at any time when you were enrolled in the program, or became CAAHEP or ABHES accredited within the 36 months after your month of graduation, you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

      I hope this is helpful.

  110. Rebecca says:

    I have taken an MA course twice just 2 classes shy of externship. …I currently am a phlebotomy tech but work as a MA uncertified just shy of a month…wondering if 4 years of MA programs two different schools and current job will qualify me to sit for the exam

  111. ron says:

    Cds convition 23 years ago, case has been expunged, I completed my MA program in 2012 with honors. Never sat for the certification. Since the case has been expunged, do I have to check yes on the application to take the certification exam?

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  113. nancy says:

    I was a graduate of Westwood college back In 2006 Westwood is accredited by acics. I’m the fort worth tx area. my question is can I take the cma exam to certify? I see that only graduates of a caahep or abhes can take the test.

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for checking, Nancy. May I assume that you graduated from the Westwood medical assisting program in Ft. Worth, Texas? If so, and you graduated in 2006, you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) exam because the program was CAAHEP accredited on September 22, 2006. You would be eligible under this policy: “Candidates who graduate from a CAAHEP or ABHES program that was accredited at any time during the student’s enrollment, or who graduated within the 36 months prior to the program becoming CAAHEP or ABHES accredited are eligible to apply for the CMA (AAMA) Exam under Category 1 or 2.” You will need to submit an official transcript with your application to verify your successful completion of the medical assisting program and your graduaiton date. I hope this helps.

      Anna Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

  114. Terry says:

    I went to school at National Institute of Technology, Corinthian Schools, Inc. and got my Diploma in Medical assisting Sept. 2003. Their accreditation is through ACCSC. I am needing to become a CMA now or risk not having a job.
    1) Where can I test in Michigan
    2) Can I test?
    3) If I can not test, what can I do so I can test? I will not/can not afford to retake the course, I have been an MA since 2003.
    Thank you for your assistance

  115. Anna Johnson says:

    Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

    My e-mail is ajohnson@aama-ntl.org. Please e-mail me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

    Sincerely,

    Anna Johnson

    Anna Johnson, CAE
    Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

    American Association of Medical Assistants
    Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

    Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

    The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  116. Candice says:

    I graduated MA school in 2005 but never sat for the exam. Am I still eligible to take the CMA exam? or do I have to retake the whole program. Thanks

  117. Anna Johnson says:

    Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

    Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

    My e-mail address is ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

    Sincerely,

    Anna Johnson, CAE
    Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

  118. Brenda says:

    I would like to know where to go to sign up for the test and when do they give the CMA test.

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

      More information about the exam and how to apply can be found under the CMA (AAMA) Exam tab on the AAMA website.

  119. garina tankersley says:

    On the CMA exam, how many questions can i miss to still pass?

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you very much for asking. National certification examinations are not scored quite like classroom examinations. The best explanation I can provide in regard to scoring for the CMA (AAMA) exam is the following:

      Scores
      The pass/fail decision is based on a single scaled score representing performance on the entire examination. The minimum scaled score required to pass the exam is currently 425.

       If a candidate receives a score equal to or greater than 425, the candidate passes.
       If a candidate receives a score less than 425, the candidate fails.

      Scaled scores are not the number of items answered correctly, although they are based on that number. They have a wide range of distribution between 200 and 800.

      Percentile Ranking
      The percentile rank shows each candidates’ relative position to other exam candidates for initial CMA (AAMA) certification. Studying these rankings can help determine strengths and weaknesses and provide guidance for improving student exam performance.

      These ranks are obtained by ranking the candidates from highest to lowest score. The percentile rank then tells you what percentage scored less or more in the three content areas. For example, if a candidate’s percentile rank in Clinical is 55, then 55% of the other candidates performed equal to or lower than the candidate on the clinical items. And, if the candidate’s percentile rank in Administrative was 94, then only 6% performed equal to or better than the candidate on Administrative items.

      Another point to remember is that you should answer ALL the questions on the exam. It is better to “guess” at the answer to a question than to skip it entirely.

      I hope this is helpful.

  120. Courtney Burnette says:

    I was just wondering if you could email me that same information on getting my CMA. I worked for Baptist Pediatrics for 3years and due to a injury had to stop working. I’m having a difficult time and I’m hoping that taking the exam would help. Thanks

  121. Courtney Burnette says:

    I just asked a question and realized that it’s a little vague. I graduated in 2007 from Sanford Brown Institute in Jacksonville Florida. I’m currently on disability and would really like to go back to work. I don’t live off of a lot of money and I’m trying to find out the best and easiest way to get my certification. Thanks

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Hello, I’m not certain I replied to you. If so, I apologize for this late response. If you completed the medical assisting program at Sanford Brown Institute in Jacksonville Florida you would be eligible for the exam because that program was ABHES accredited until 6/28/2013. Please note that, because you graduated more than a year ago, you will need to submit an official transcript along with your application and payment.

      I hope this helps.

      • Courtney says:

        I appreciate the response. I finally got a answer from someone at my school. I have another question.. I have a study guide and review book from 2008-2009 for the NCCT certification test.. I’m just trying to figure out if I should get a updated book and has it changed alot since then. I’m taking my test in September and I want to be as prepared as possible. Thanks again, Courtney

      • Anna Johnson says:

        Because it is a conflict of interest for the AAMA Certifying Board to recommend any particular textbooks, study guides, etc., I cannot specifically address your question. I can, however, provide you with the following suggestions:

        Areas of knowledge and topics covered in the examination are listed in the “Content Outline for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination.” It is recommended that examinees become familiar with the subject matter and topics listed in this document. Reviewing current books and publications that cover administrative and clinical content for medical assisting and anatomy and physiology, medical terminology and laboratory textbooks will also help candidates prepare for the exam.

        Go to http://www.aama-ntl.org/cma-aama-exam/study to review or download a copy of the Content Outline.

        Contact information for the publishers listed below is for ordering books and other educational materials which may be useful in studying for the CMA (AAMA) Certification/Recertification Examination. In some cases, the city listed may be different than that which appears on the book itself because orders are filled from a location separate from the editorial offices.

        This list is not comprehensive nor should it be considered to be an endorsement of any of these publications. In some cases the company names may have changed. Information is available through the Internet and at any public library. Search on phrases such as “medical assisting textbooks” or “books in print.” Medical assisting textbooks can also be found on commercial sites such as http://www.amazon.com. If you use a public or school library, ask a librarian for the reference, Books in Print, publisher volume. This listing is published annually and contains a complete listing of United States publishers.

        PUBLISHERS

        Elsevier
        Customer Service Department
        11830 Westline Industrial Drive
        St. Louis, MO 63146
        800/545-2522, fax: 800/535-9935

        http://www.elsevier.com

        FA Davis Company
        1915 Arch Street
        Philadelphia, PA 19103
        800/523-4049; 215/568-2270
        http://www.fadavis.com

        Delmar
        Thomson Learning
        3 Columbia Circle, PO Box 15015
        Albany, NY 12212-5015
        518/464-3500; fax: 518/464-0358

        http://www.delmarlearning.com

        Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
        A Wolters Kluver Company
        351 W. Camden St.
        Baltimore, MD 21201-2438
        Fax: 301/714-2320
        http://www.lww.com

        To test your knowledge in the areas of anatomy and physiology and medical terminology, please use the following links:

        http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_anatphys.aspx

        http://www.aama-ntl.org/becomeCMA/practice_term.aspx

        Finally, you can review the number and percent of questions by major content areas at: http://www.aama-ntl.org/docs/default-source/other/content-outline-number-percentage-chart.pdf?sfvrsn=2.

        I hope this is helpful.

        Sincerely,

        Anna Johnson

      • Courtney says:

        I appreciate the feedback. I was told by NCCT that they updated the book in 2010. I went ahead and bought the book and it’s the exact same book from 2110. False advertising.

  122. velma thomas says:

    I graduated from Husson College in 1988 with a associates degree for medical assisting. I was informed I was not able to take the test until I worked a year.. When my year was Uo I did not take the test because it is not required in state of maine.. However now the office wanted it. So I contacted Husson.. $20,000 later I have found Out I can not take a test because there program was not accredited and they dropped it 2 years after I graduated.. Now I am out of money and cant not get the job in my field that I went to school for.. as for being registered.. i ave been put of school for too long… SO make sure that the course it accredited not just the school….

  123. Jessica Maskell says:

    I graduated 6/2008 from Indiana Business College and I was wondering if I could still take my CMA test even though it has been over 5 years? I was really wanting to get it this year!

    • Thank you for your question. Any individual who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited medical assisting program prior to January 1, 2010, is not impacted by the 60-month eligibility period established by the Certifying Board of the AAMA. The 60-month eligibility period only applies to those individuals who graduated from a CAAHEP or ABHES accredited on or after January 1, 2010.

      Therefore, because you graduated before January 1, 2010, you are able to take the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination any time in the future, under current Certifying Board policy.

      I hope this is helpful. Please let us know how we can be of further assistance.

      Donald A. Balasa, JD, MBA
      Executive Director, Legal Counsel

  124. Linda says:

    I recently attempted my test & failed. I get 3 attempts at the test, do i have to pay the fee for each attempt???

  125. Anna Johnson says:

    Thank you for checking. The examination fee applies to each exam attempt. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

    You might want to visit the AAMA website (www.aama-ntl.org) and review the “Study for the Exam” page under the CMA (AAMA) Exam tab. Some people have found the tips to be helpful.

    Sincerely,

    Anna Johnson, CAE
    Director of Certification

  126. Jehara says:

    Im currently attending Ross Medical for training as a Medical Assistant in Michigan will I be able to take the test.

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for checking. The answer is “probably”. However, we can give you a more accurate answer if you will please provide the address and city where the institution is located since there are several Ross Medical Education Centers across the country.

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  128. Kimmie Howard says:

    Do those who have went to college for cma, do they sit for the certification test or graduate first?

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you very much for your interest in CMA (AAMA) certification. Completing students may take the CMA (AAMA) Exam prior to graduation but may not take the exam more than 30 days prior to completing their formal education and practicum.

      Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted. A listing of CAAHEP accredited medical assisting programs can be reviewed at http://www.caahep.org. For ABHES accredited medical assisting programs click on http://www.abhes.org.

      I hope this is helpful.

  129. melinda says:

    I graduated from a medical assistant program in 1993. The school has since then been closed. How can I get my transcript or proof that I attended so that I sat sit to get recertified? Please help!

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

      When schools close, the generally accepted practice is for the school to make arrangements with the state-licensing agency to store their records.

      For information on a state-licensing agency one can go to the following websites: http://www.nasasps.org/listing-of-regular-members and http://www.dpinnell.com/ApprovalandLicensureAgencies.htm

      Unfortunately, I can’t really guide you any further on this process. You may have to do some investigation on your own.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  130. Jazmon Lawrence says:

    i graduated and recieved my diploma in Medical assisting in Nov.2009, however i never got certified. What would I have to do toget certified?

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

      American Association of Medical Assistants
      Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

      Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

      The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  131. Kathryn Evans says:

    I graduated from Davenport University in 2010 in Medical Assistant. But I have never been certified or worked ad a medical assistant. I have worked as a resident assistant for a year . Can I still be become a certified medical assistant?

  132. Anna Johnson says:

    Thank you very much for your interest in applying for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination.

    There is more than one Davenport University. Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination. You can send this information or any questions to me at ajohnson@aama-ntl.org.

    IMPORTANT NOTICE:
    Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam who graduate on or after Jan. 1, 2010, have 60 months from the date of graduation to sit for and pass the exam. The candidate is allowed three exam attempts.

    Candidates whose 60 months are about to expire must sit for the exam before the end of their 60-month period. Thus, they must apply for a testing period that ends prior to the end of their 60-month period. For example, to take the exam by the end of December 2014, a candidate must request an Oct. 1, 2014, testing period start date and should apply by no later than July 1, 2014.

    Sincerely,

    Anna Johnson

    Anna Johnson, CAE
    Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

    American Association of Medical Assistants
    Ph: 800/228-2262 | Fax: 312/899-1259 | http://www.aama-ntl.org

    Visit us on Facebook! http://www.aama-ntl.org/facebook

    The CMA (AAMA): Health Care’s Most Versatile Professional

  133. Cindy MAYES says:

    I went to CMA school and have worked as a MA . But, I never took the test . Please help me figure out how to go take my CMA test

    • Anna Johnson says:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

  134. Patricia paynes says:

    I graduated in 2011 from Remington college . I wanted to know could I still take the the medical assistant test to become certified.

  135. Michelle Sawyer says:

    I have been working as a medical assistant for several years but my office is requesting that I now get certified, can I please get information about taking the test without having to go through schooling. My doctor said she thinks I can get certified through work experience and just take the exam. Thank you so much!

    • Thank you for your question. This reply is from Anna Johnson, CAE, Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director:

      Thank you for your interest in the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. Only individuals who have successfully completed a medical assisting program that has been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) or by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) are eligible to sit for the CMA (AAMA) Certification Examination. No exceptions to the eligibility requirements for the examination are granted.

      Please send me the name and location (address, city and state) of the institution where you completed your medical assisting program. This, along with your actual graduation date, can help us determine if you are eligible for the CMA (AAMA) examination.

      Sincerely,

      Anna Johnson

      Anna Johnson, CAE
      Director of Certification/AAMA Associate Executive Director

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