Difference between CNA & MA?

  1. 0
    Was wondering if someone can enlighten me with the difference of duties between a CNA and an MA? MA's are mostly office assistants but are usually paid less with what I seem to be finding. Also the schooling is ridiculously long for doing office work once you graduate. Do hospitals normally employ MA's?

    Also how long is the average CNA class?

    Im grateful for any help, Im collecting info for a cousin of mine.
    Last edit by Crux1024 on Apr 8, '07 : Reason: new question!!
  2. Get our hottest student topics delivered to your inbox.

  3. 9 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    CNA do bed side care...assist with activities of daily living eg bathing, taking vital signs, bed making.
    MA work at front desks at doc' office or hospital.
    now depending on where you leave. MA program can take upto 6-9 months , CNA class about 2 months in Cali. payrate is almost the same for CNA & MA. Some hosp do hire MA but most of the time they work in clinics.
  5. 0
    I've worked as both a CNA and a CMA....so here goes.....

    CNA's are there to help the Nurses...CMA's are there to help the Doctors.

    Similar skills...both do vital signs, blood draws, perform ecg's, and position the patient for procedures.

    Different skills...

    CMA's give injections..cna's do not. CMA's take medical history, perform ear lavages, give respiratory treatments (jet nebs), assist the doctor with procedures, and also "front" office work.

    CNA's give baths, change linen, empty foleys, assist with the activities of daily living, and assit the nurse with procedures.

    Depending on the state, a doctor can hire a cna and train them and a hospital can hire a cma and train them. Some states require certification as a CMA or CNA some do not. In general, CMA training will be 9-12 months. I have seen programs that claim to be associate degree programs for CMA's. CNA programs are normally 6-8 weeks. I recommend to anyone that wants to become a nurse go the cna route!! This is just my opinion however!!

    Good luck with whatever you choose.

    Sincerely,
    Jay
  6. 0
    Thanks guys. My cousin wants to enter a 21 month MA course that costs $28,000 at the local technical institute!!! She will graduate with a "assoc. of technology sciences" or something like that! While I dont want to discourage her from seeking an education, for that much time and money she could be an RN!!!

    I want to talk to her about it but feel Like I cant w.o sounding like I am MA bashing...
  7. 0
    Wow, that seems like a lot of money.... I agree that you can't really talk her out of it, but is she planning on being a nurse eventually?
  8. 0
    i'm gonna put this on my "dumbest things i ever heard of " list.... ive been a ma and although i learned a lot it is a dead end job.....encourage her to look into a rn program.

    Quote from crux1024
    thanks guys. my cousin wants to enter a 21 month ma course that costs $28,000 at the local technical institute!!! she will graduate with a "assoc. of technology sciences" or something like that! while i dont want to discourage her from seeking an education, for that much time and money she could be an rn!!!

    i want to talk to her about it but feel like i cant w.o sounding like i am ma bashing...
  9. 0
    Quote from Crux1024
    Thanks guys. My cousin wants to enter a 21 month MA course that costs $28,000 at the local technical institute!!! She will graduate with a "assoc. of technology sciences" or something like that! While I dont want to discourage her from seeking an education, for that much time and money she could be an RN!!!

    I want to talk to her about it but feel Like I cant w.o sounding like I am MA bashing...

    If she's willing to go 21 months & spend that much money, I agree with the op's, she might as well go to nsg school. For that kind of money why not get a degree that will pay more of what her education is worth? Assoc. of Tech Sciences for MA isn't a very flexable degree at all...a MA is a MA regardless of a "technical degree". Also, alot of times those credits are nontransferable if she wishes to continue her education...she'd have to start all over again. For the most part she will be stuck in some kind of clinic & that's about it. Hospitals (here, anyway) do prefer CNA training. Very hard for a MA to get into a hospital here. I did a 12 month technical (no degree) MA program 9 years ago, have been out of nsg school almost a year & just now got my loans paid off from the MA program. My RN program didn't cost as much as my MA program did. MA is a great position, I loved my job & am thankful for the experience. They are needed in allied health, but for the money & time I think CNA is a much better way to get your feet wet in the medical field. Especially if she is eventually considering nsg. I wish her all the best in whatever she chooses to do!
    Last edit by hlfpnt on Apr 10, '07 : Reason: added comment
  10. 0
    if your cousin really wants to be an ma, there may be a local cc program that is priced reasonably.

    they arn't offered everywhere, but when they are, they are usually very comprehensive, relativly inexpensive, and the applicable credits will often transfer if she decides to pursue nursing in the future.

    $28,000 for a technical degree just seems outrageous, considering the pay rate for the average ma.

    as an aside, some hospitals (mine included) call their nursing assistants "mas." that is the what their title is. however, they do "na" tasks -- no injections, nebs, etc that mas might do in a doctor's office.
  11. 0
    I was looking into the MA programs more and ALL in the immediate area are the "Technical Schools" that you see commercials for, on TV during the day. The LPN program at the Vo Tech School is less than half the Tuition and is 12 month course for Full Time program. I just hope she listens!!
  12. 0
    Well I have been CNA & MA. The reason I left CNA was $ and hours. CNA's here make around $8.50-9.00 hr with experience and MA's make around $11.50-12.00 with some experience.

    Depending on specialty you get to do alot more as MA. Such as, Work up pt history, chart, give injections, assist biopsies/surgeries, stress tests, IV certify. ect.... CNA mainly bed bath, vitals, transport. Although in L&D scrub Csections & cath's but pay the same.

    I wouldn't invest alot of money in either, as they do not have a big $ future. It is profitable for experience if you are working on nursing degree though.


Top