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Medical assistants learn trade at OCCC

Posted: Wednesday, Mar 13th, 2013

Elaine Harley, left, demonstrates how to draw blood from a patient's arm during a skills lab for students in the medical assistant program at Oregon Coast Community College's Waldport Campus on Wednesday, Feb. 27. Harley, a long-time nurse, now assists with skills labs for the college's new medical assistant program. (Photos by Rockne Roll)

When someone arrives at a doctor’s office, the first person they see isn’t a doctor. It’s probably not a nurse, either. Most likely, the first health care professional they see is a medical assistant.

“Medical assistants are those people who work in a clinic or a doctor’s office; they’re the ones that assist the practitioner,” said Linda Mollino, nursing program director for Oregon Coast Community College. “They’re the ones who take vital signs, find out why the patient is there.“

Last fall, OCCC began a one-year program to train those personnel. The first class will graduate this year and be ready to join the workforce. That can’t come fast enough, according to what Mollino has been told by local health care executives who say they’re in desperate need of qualified medical assistants.

For the complete article see the 03-13-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 03-13-2013 paper.

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