MA's being used as "nurses" - page 5

Hello all! I work in a private practice office in which I am the only RN. There are several MA's and one LPN. My concern is that the MA's are referred to as "nurses". The patients often do not... Read More

  1. by   HeartsOpenWide
    see below
    Last edit by HeartsOpenWide on Jan 29, '06
  2. by   HeartsOpenWide
    Quote from robynv
    Thank you so much!

    After reading how MA's were thought of on here it made me sick. Thanks to everyone who stuck up for MA's. We go to school and work hard too. I know it's not the same education and not for nearly as long, but we still work hard for what we do. I want to work in a DR. office and just want to supplement my husbands income and to have something of my own. This makes sense to me now. My foot is in the door and I'll have a job.
    :kiss :yeahthat:
    I am MA going to school to be a nurse. When patients call me nurse I always correct them and tell them I am a certified medical assistant. Not only because I think other nurses deserve the respect, but after I finish nursing school and become an RN I want to wear by title proudly knowing I worked for it.
    As far as respect, I think MA's should be respected too. In the future I will proudly were my RN title, but for now, I proudly wear my ceritified medical assistant title...I love coming on this site, but it is true that many people bash medical assistants on here. I know this is on old thread and everything, but I have seen people doing it on new threads...
    Last edit by HeartsOpenWide on Jan 29, '06
  3. by   lgnurse20
    I honestly don't mind MA's being called nurses. A lot of patients don't know what a medical assistant is just like they don't understand what a CNA is in the hospital. What gets me is when MA's are practicing outside of their scope.
  4. by   crisscross
    Quote from lgnurse20
    We are referred to as "nursing staff". I am the RN and there is an MA. I have actually been yelled at for delagating to the MA. She answers questions and sometimes does things that are so far out of her scope. I went on vacation and the office manager (non-clinical) actually had the MA administer BCG and it is chemo...makes me sick!!!!!!
    So, where is the MD during all this?
  5. by   lgnurse20
    For a Nurse to administer BCG or Lupron the MD is suppose to be on campus. This could be in the OR or doing rounds. Many times BCG and Lupron are scheduled as Nurse visits. My office manager did not want to reschedule BCG so she had the MA do it. The docs are working on getting the office manager out. Anyone who manages a office should know the scope of a MA and RN.
  6. by   Christine996
    Hello everyone. It is nice to see that we all can talk to different nurses. I am writing in reply to the people on this site who don't understand why MA's are being hired for nursing positions. Why shouldn't we be hired for nursing positions we have put our time and money into going to school to become a medical assistant. I have received my degree in Medical Assisting just the same as all you other nurses have received a degree. I have learned medical terminology, injections, CPR, IV's, medical office management, and alot of other things. I am very upset with all of you who think we are just hired from the street and showed how to do things once or twice. Who do you honestly think would take the risk of being sued now days. I hope you all change your minds about medical assistants. Some of us who are hired have a right to be there. :angryfire

    Concerned and upset,

    Christine996
  7. by   Nurse Ratched
    Quote from christine996
    why shouldn't we be hired for nursing positions we have put our time and money into going to school to become a medical assistant. i have received my degree in medical assisting just the same as all you other nurses have received a degree.
    i don't think anyone believes you shouldn't hired for medical assistant positions, but no one should claim that an ma is a nurse, or vice versa . there are differences in the schooling and the roles, or we'd all have the same legal titles.

    the main objections many posters have had on this site is doctors referring to ma's as nurses (and in some cases ma's referring to themselves as nurses.)
  8. by   RNOTODAY
    Quote from Jeanbean
    Thanks for the responses- I'm glad I'm not the only person dealing with this- I'm also glad that MA's are somewhat limited in their duties. They are not limited at my office at all- they do phone triage, cath pts, change sp tubes, instill intravesical chemotherapy, etc. I have brought my concerns to the docs several times, and now am looking for another job because I cannot watch patient safety being compromised anymore.
    chemotherapy!!!!!!!!!! I, as an RN, cannot even TOUCH chemotherapeutic agents until I am certified......... thats how it is in my area, anyway. And cath patients?????!!!!! Isnt all this practicing nsg without a license???? I wonder if they are even aware.
  9. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from Christine996
    Why shouldn't we be hired for nursing positions we have put our time and money into going to school to become a medical assistant.
    Because they are NOT the same thing.

    I have received my degree in Medical Assisting just the same as all you other nurses have received a degree.
    That doesn't mean that an MA with an MA degree is qualified for a nursing position.
  10. by   lgnurse20
    Honestly I have great respect for Medical assistants and CNA's, but they are very different. You absolutely can't have Medical assistants doing RN work. It would be like saying a doctor could be a veternarian. Both jobs have training, but they are trained on different things. In my office I trust the medical assistant more than myself to set up procedures and many other things.When I first started on the floor as a new nurse I trusted some of the technicians manual blood pressures more than my own. I don't think anyone is disrespected medical assistants...nurses are well aware of the training. I do know however I had a medical assistant that had been doing it for several years in my nursing class. She graduated with me, but struggled greatly all the way through....it just shows we are trained for different reasons.
  11. by   GLORIAmunchkin72
    Many of our residents constantly refer to the CNAs and Qs as nurses. When corrected they turn around and say the same thing. They don't care. They just want somebody to take care of them. There was a time when you could spot a nurse from a mile away.
    Quote from lgnurse20
    I honestly don't mind MA's being called nurses. A lot of patients don't know what a medical assistant is just like they don't understand what a CNA is in the hospital. What gets me is when MA's are practicing outside of their scope.
  12. by   LanaBanana
    I have mixed feelings about this thread, because I originally started in the MA program (2 year program). After doing my phlebotomy rotation I decided I wanted to do nursing though. The reason I went with MA first was because I didn't think I could get in to the nursing program because I had trashed my GPA when I first went to college 10 years ago. The MA program didn't have any prereqs to it, or any qualifications for entering the program. Honestly, the classes I took for it were pretty laughable. There was a 65 year old women in the class who couldn't use a computer, even after we spent several hours with her - couldn't even turn it on (no joke!) In my classes though, we were told that under no circumstances were we to pass ourselves off as a nurse - we were told it was actually illegal.
    I think there are a lot of jobs in physicians offices that are great for MA's, which is bad for me because that's where I want to end up as an LPN. But MA's are not allowed in hospitals because they do not have the same training. Our MA program didn't teach IV's and catheters, so I am surprised to hear about the MA's that do that kind of stuff.
    As for me, I've worked hard to get my GPA back up and take all the necessary classes and will be starting my LPN in May and then eventually do BSN. Like others said, I didn't want to go to school for a 2 year program that would only end up making me $8-9/hour. But for some people, it's a better option. There were some students in my class who would never be able to make it through even the required science classes for nursing.
  13. by   fyrelight74
    I'm in a community college program to get my A.S. in Medical Assisting. I already have a bachelor's in another field. This degree is to get my foot in the medical door, so to speak. Why would I go to Medical Assisting school instead of LPN school, when its about the same time frame? Easy answer for me.... I want to work only in doctor's offices.. no hospitals, no long night shifts, no nursing homes..... and I realize I will get paid MUCH less for that fact, but I'm okay with that.

    Being a medical assistant is just one step for me towards becoming a PA (physician assistant)... I want to skip the whole nursing area and just go straight to PA. I have a few more additional classes to take and about 3000-4000 hours of medical experience to get in before I can apply to PA school. Being a back office MA qualifies as that experience.

    So, for me, THOSE are the reasons I chose to become an MA instead of a nurse. In the meantime, I'm taking medical terminology, A&P, etc... right along with some future EMTs, paramedics, other MAs, nurses, etc.

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MA's being used as "nurses"