When it comes to Medical assistant vs. LPN duties, education and job prospects, keep reading to learn more. Reach out to an Admissions Advisor with any questions or to schedule a virtual tour.
MedQuest College offers both Medical Assisting and Practical Nursing diplomas to students in Lexington and Louisville.
What is a Medical Assistant?
Comprehensive Medical Assistants are a vital part of any healthcare team providing both direct patient care and support to physicians and healthcare professionals.
Click here to hear from Danesha Winfield, a recent Medical Assisting Graduate of MedQuest College. She’s using her Medical Assisting diploma to gain real-world experience before returning to school and becoming a pediatric nurse.
What is a Practical Nurse?
A Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) is an important part of any healthcare team. Many LPNs work in conjunction with an RN or independently providing essential care to patients.
LPNs provide support to RNs and Doctors to ensure records are up-to-date, the communication between doctor and patient is clear, and educate patients and their families to understand procedures.
Where do Medical Assistants work?
There’s a continued need for preventative medical care with the country’s growing population. Physicians require more staff to perform routine administrative and clinical duties that allow doctors to see more patients.
Typical graduates work in:
- Primary Care Facilities
- Obstetrics and Gynecology
- Clinical Labs
- Chiropractors Office
- Retirement Communities
- Pain Management Centers
- Outpatient Clinics
- Diagnostic Laboratories
- Nursing Care Facilities
Where does a Licensed Practical Nurse work?
Employment of LPNs is projected to grow by 9% from 2019-2029, much faster than the average for other occupations. This tremendous growth is due, in part, to people living longer and requiring more medical attention.
Graduates often work in:
- Long-Term Care Facilities
- Correctional Facilities
- Public School Systems
- Physician’s Office
- Nursing Facilities
- Home Health Care Services
What does a Medical Assistant do?
The Medical Assisting program at MedQuest College, offered in both our Louisville and Lexington campus, provides students with hands-on instruction at an accelerated pace.
Courses are completed both online and in our fully operational clinical labs. Graduates:
- Set up and administer EKGs (Electrocardiogram)
- Phlebotomy (drawing blood and giving injections)
- Collect specimen for blood and urine analysis
- Coordinate laboratory samples and pharmacy prescriptions
- Prepare exam rooms for visit
- Take, record and confirm patient vitals
- Manage electronic medical records
What does a Practical Nurse do?
The accelerated Practical Nursing program at MedQuest College provides our graduates with a diploma in Practical Nursing and the knowledge needed to take the National Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) to become licensed.
Licensed Practical Nurses have a variety of responsibilities from administrative tasks to patient care, including:
- Maintain records of patients’ history
- Provide routine patient care
- Observe and document the patient’s health such as vital signs and overall condition
- Assisting doctors and registered nurses
- Assemble, use and sterilize medical equipment
- Start IV drips or give injections
- Consulting with registered nurses on patient care plans
- Communicating with patients and their families
Medical Assistant vs. LPN
Check out information here on the typical differences in duties between medical assistants and LPNs. Both often have overlapping tasks like:
- Checking patient vital signs
- Collecting patient symptoms and medical information
- Administering medications, vaccinations
- Collecting samples (blood, urine, etc.)
However, the key difference when it comes to a medical assistant vs. LPN roles is that a Licensed Practical Nurse provides more extensive patient care, often for individuals requiring longer term care, like nursing homes or hospital stays.
The Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) track is a 12-month diploma program. The Medical Assistant track is a 10-month diploma program. According to PracticalNursing.org, the average annual salary in Kentucky for a medial assistant is $29,900 and the average annual salary for a Licensed Practical Nurse is $39,460.
Medical Assistant Program Objective
The Comprehensive Medical Assisting Program is designed to prepare students for successful careers as Medical Assistants with knowledge in pertinent aspects of the healthcare field. Students will learn skills that prepare them to perform administrative and clinical duties required in the daily operation of a healthcare facility. Upon completion of the program and meeting all of the course requirements, students will receive a Comprehensive Medical Assisting diploma and will be prepared and eligible to submit their diploma and transcript to apply to take the national certification examination through The American Medical Technologists (AMT). Upon successful completion of the national examination, students will obtain the credential RMA (AMT).
Practical Nursing Program Objective
The Diploma of Practical Nursing program is designed to prepare students for successful careers as a Licensed Practical Nurse with knowledge in pertinent aspects of the healthcare field. Students will learn skills that prepare them to perform patient care pertinent to entry-level into the nursing profession. Students have the ability to apply in various healthcare facilities from physicians’ offices, education or corrections systems, home health, and short-term and long-term care facilities.
Upon completion of the program and meeting all of the course requirements, students will receive a Practical Nursing diploma and will be prepared and eligible to submit their diploma and transcript to apply to take the national certification examination through the National Council for State Boards of Nursing (NCLEX-PN®). Successful completion of the national examination allows students to apply for licensure in their respective state.