New, One-year Medical Assistant Program Announced

John Wood to Launch New, One-Year Medical Assistant Program this Fall

John Wood Community College will launch a one-year, Medical Assistant (MA) program this Fall as part of its healthcare career pathway.  The program fills a need expressed by regional healthcare providers.

 Medical Assistants perform administrative and clinical duties and work primarily in outpatient settings. MAs explain procedures, take vitals, prepare patients for exams, take lab specimens, perform tests, remove sutures and change dressings.

 JWCC’s program includes classroom and laboratory experience and a practicum in an ambulatory care clinic. Courses include basic human structure and function, medical terminology, clinical medical assisting, administrative medical assisting, customer service, pharmacology for the medical office, medical law and ethics, ambulatory care practicum and a general education elective in social/behavioral sciences or communication.


“This new program provides another path in addition to nursing for students to enter the healthcare field and provides a great mix of clinical and office knowledge,” Dr. Laura Routh, JWCC administrative chair of health sciences said. “In just one year someone can enter the healthcare career, or if they are already a Healthcare Assistant or Certified Nursing Assistant or have Medical Office background, they can gain more knowledge and skills to make them more versatile and valuable in the field.”

 The need for Medical Assistants continues to grow as more providers are offering convenient care locations to better serve patients.

 “Certified Medical Assistant’s (CMA) are a valuable part of our clinical teams,” said Connie Vermeire, RN, Director of Specialty Care Services, Blessing Physician Services. “A CMA on the team allows the physician to focus on their specialized responsibilities and the RN and LPN to spend more quality time providing patient education.”

 “We look forward to partnering with JWCC to provide clinical experiences for these students, as well as opportunities for employment,” added Vermeire.

Individuals who are current Certified Nursing Assistants, Healthcare Assistants or have taken Medical Office courses may enter the MA program to move up the healthcare career ladder.  Students who complete the MA program may also apply earned credits toward an associate degree in medical office to continue their education.

 More information is available at or by calling 217.641.4334.

John Wood Community College is the educational link between business and community. JWCC collaboratively creates innovative and relevant academic and training programs with business leaders to educate young people and the workforce for today’s needs and tomorrow’s opportunities. JWCC has centers in Quincy, Pittsfield, Baylis and Mt. Sterling, Illinois. Programs include a comprehensive baccalaureate transfer curriculum, customized business training, career/technical degrees and certificates and personal enrichment courses.

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