Medical Assisting Certifications | Medical Assisting Career

Certifications That Can Advance Your Medical Assisting Career

Starting your career in medical assisting opens doors to a world of opportunities, but it’s crucial to equip yourself with the right certifications to thrive in this dynamic field. With employers increasingly seeking certified candidates, securing the right credentials can set you apart from the competition and pave the way for a successful career journey. Many medical assisting jobs are only open to certified candidates. What makes it a little confusing is that there isn’t just one certification that all employers are looking for.

To make the field a little easier to navigate, let’s break down some of the more popular certifications.

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American Medical Technologists (AMT)

American Medical Technologists (AMT) ( has two certifications for medical assistants. These are RMA and RPT.

RMA (Registered Medical Assistant) from AMT is a prestigious certification, and having it will make you significantly more valuable to employers. However, it’s only valuable because it’s not easy to get. You must complete an approved training program, that has 720 hours of instruction with at least 160 hours of clinical externship. Then, you need to pass an exam. The exam is only open within four years of program completion.

RPT (Registered Phlebotomy Technician) is to phlebotomy certifications what RMA is to medical assisting. Employers are often looking for RPTs to fill their phlebotomist positions, and, in many cases, are willing to pay more for RPTs than for phlebotomists with other certifications.

To obtain this certification, you will need to complete an approved training program as well as at least 50 successful venipunctures and 10 successful skin punctures from human sources. Then you will be eligible to sit for the exam. Pass the exam, and congratulations! You’re an RPT!


The National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) ( offers a variety of certifications which are invaluable for proving your skills in the specific areas they cover. Depending on desired specialization, medical assistant may be interested in NCMA, NCPT, or NCET.

NCMA (National Certified Medical Assistant) is a widely used medical assisting certification. Graduates of an approved program are eligible to sit for the NCMA exam within five years of graduation. Unlike RMA, externship hours are not a requirement for NCMA.

NCPT (National Certified Phlebotomy Technician) is NCCT’s phlebotomy certification, which is also respected around the country. Like NCMA, the exam is open to graduates of approved programs for five years. Unlike RPT, NCPT does not have a minimum requirement of venipunctures or skin punctures.

NCET (National Certified ECG Technician) is NCCT’s EKG certification. Within two years of graduation from an approved training program, you are eligible to take the NCET exam. There are no additional requirements.


Midwestern Career College’s Clinical Medical Assisting graduates are eligible to sit for RMA and RPT and NCMA, NCPT, and NCET exams. Interested in learning more about medical assisting? Call (312) 236-9000 or email

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