Employment of medical assistants is projected to grow 29 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. The growth of the aging baby-boom population will continue to spur demand for preventive medical services, which are often provided by physicians. As their practices expand, physicians will hire more assistants to perform routine administrative and clinical duties, allowing the physicians to see more patients.
An increasing number of group practices, clinics, and other health care facilities need support workers, particularly medical assistants, to do both administrative and clinical duties. Medical assistants work mostly in primary care, a steadily growing sector of the health care industry. In addition, federal health legislation will expand the number of patients who have access to health insurance, increasing patient access to medical care.
Additional demand also is expected because of new and changing tasks for medical assistants as part of the medical team. As more and more physicians’ practices switch to electronic health records (EHRs), medical assistants’ job responsibilities will continue to change. Assistants will need to become familiar with EHR computer software, including maintaining EHR security and analyzing electronic data, to improve health care information.
Percent change in employment, projected 2012-22 is as follows:
|Other health care support occupations
|Total, all occupations
Note: All Occupations includes all occupations in the U.S. Economy.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics.
Adapted in part from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, Medical Assistants,
on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/health care/medical-assistants.htm (visited February 22, 2014).