LPN versus CMA

  1. 1
    I was thinking at first of going for my Medical Assistant degree, since I want to work in a clinic so badly. I heard so much about how LPN's are getting phased out and only CMA's are getting jobs at clinics, and CMA's are higher up than LPN's. This of course coming from recruters from CMA programs. It would seem that the only difference between CMA's and LPN's are the fact that Med Asst's. get training in lab and x-ray. Well, I already am a certified Phlebotomist, and so I have that going. Any of you guys and gals work alongside Med Assts? Anyone work in clinics?
    futurernjap likes this.
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  5. 0
    Quote from Strandysmommy
    I was thinking at first of going for my Medical Assistant degree, since I want to work in a clinic so badly. I heard so much about how LPN's are getting phased out and only CMA's are getting jobs at clinics, and CMA's are higher up than LPN's. This of course coming from recruters from CMA programs. It would seem that the only difference between CMA's and LPN's are the fact that Med Asst's. get training in lab and x-ray. Well, I already am a certified Phlebotomist, and so I have that going. Any of you guys and gals work alongside Med Assts? Anyone work in clinics?
    You are correct, at least in rural MN. The pay difference is due to the scope of an LPNs practice. We are not considered nurses, LPN is only the first step, it is expected that you go on and complete your education. You are more useful in a clinical setting right now than we are, without any further education. I would encourage you to go for it, I am graduating soon from an LPN program, and seriously considering doing the same thing.
  6. 2
    I have never heard that CMA's are higher than an LPN. What is the pay scale between the two?
    futurernjap and jetsabel621 like this.
  7. 0
    I agree with the above poster. CMAs are not above LPNs. Here in Atlanta CMA make an average of $25.5K while LPNs make average $34.6K. That's after a little research on Monster.com, Payscale.com and Salary.com

    Check them out for you area it will give you a better idea. Out of the 3, I liked Salary.com best.
  8. 1
    I have to agree with the above poster. I work in a facility where there are CMA. I am an LPN, I am the nurse in charge and we work together, but they are not higher than me?? I cant imagine where this would be since they dont have nearly the same schooling?
    jetsabel621 likes this.
  9. 10
    i was a cma and now lpn, i am telling you the difference is day and night. lpn's are not being phased out, who is going to work in the nursing homes, home health and rehab centers. lpn's/lvn's are licensed nurses and cma's have a certification, there is a big difference. the lvn education is much much more on depth and covers many many more areas. yes, cma's cover med's and injections but in nursing school your pharm is extensive and intense. you also take many months of med-surg to help you understand why your giving those injections and meds. i dont think there is a cma to rn bridge , there shouldnt be because as a cma your not licensed. but there are lvn to rn bridges . i think i you want to extend your education to become a rn you are shooting yourself in the foot. cma's are and never will be above a lpn/lvn in any aspect. i am in no way downing cma's, i think they contribute to the medical field in great ways. i encourage you to do a cma search on this forum , you would be surprised on the negativity toward cma's. as far as pay, i made $9.40 as a cma, but last year as a part time lvn i made $35,000, the year before that i made$50,000++. it depends on where you work and your position within the company. good luck to you . please research your options before making a decision......





    Quote from strandysmommy
    i was thinking at first of going for my medical assistant degree, since i want to work in a clinic so badly. i heard so much about how lpn's are getting phased out and only cma's are getting jobs at clinics, and cma's are higher up than lpn's. this of course coming from recruters from cma programs. it would seem that the only difference between cma's and lpn's are the fact that med asst's. get training in lab and x-ray. well, i already am a certified phlebotomist, and so i have that going. any of you guys and gals work alongside med assts? anyone work in clinics?
    Last edit by txspadequeenRN on Feb 16, '11
    HazelLPN, tae26, futurernjap, and 7 others like this.
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    It is a good thing that we have this website, becuz recruiters will tell people any type of stuff I cant believe that they told her that. :angryfire You also need to be more informed of the line of work you desire to go into. You have got to at least know the diff between a nurse and a cma. Know that much prior to walking in the door-as they will screw your career and waste your time and money. That was about as bad as them telling you that a CNA is higher than an LPN.
    Last edit by sirI on Sep 16, '07
    AM326 and futurernjap like this.
  11. 2
    We don't have medication aides in California.
    Back where I used to live it was an added certification for a certified nursing assistant.
    We DO have medical assistants who work under the direct supervision of a physician in the out patient setting ONLY.

    The wonderful MA at my doctors office didn't know why a patient on diuretics needed to have a potassium level drawn. That was OK because the doctor was there.
    Clearly an LPN/LVN or any nurse should know that.
    Just one little example.
    HazelLPN and futurernjap like this.
  12. 0
    Quote from txspadequeen921
    I was a CMA and now LPN, I am telling you the difference is day and night. LPN's are not being phased out, who is going to work in the nursing homes, home health and rehab centers. LPN's/LVN's are licensed nurses and CMA's have a certification, there is a big difference. The LVN education is much MUCH more on depth and covers many MANY more areas. Yes, CMA's cover med's and injections but in nursing school your pharm is extensive and intense. You also take many months of med-surg to help you understand why your giving those injections and meds. I dont think there is a CMA to RN bridge , there shouldnt be because as a CMA your not licensed. But there are LVN to RN bridges . I think I you want to extend your education to become a RN you are shooting yourself in the foot. CMA's are and never will be above a LPN/LVN in any aspect. I am in no way downing CMA's, I think they contribute to the medical field in great ways. I encourage you to do a CMA search on this forum , you would be surprised on the negativity toward CMA's. As far as pay, I made $9.40 as a CMA, but last year as a part time LVN I made $35,000, the year before that I made$50,000++. It depends on where you work and your position within the company. Good luck to you . Please research your options before making a decision......
    I think some of the above posters might be confusing Certified Medical Assistant with Certified Med. Aid. There are quite a few misconceptions about CMA's. CMA's (medical assistants) do not work in a hospital setting, but in a clinical setting. The pharm course we take is the same one the LPN's take, so it is as in-depth. We work directly under the supervision of the physician. Yes, we are different than LPN's in that we are trained specifically for a clinical setting, where as LPN's usually work in LTC. We have the same pre-req background, and work independently from LPN's in the clinical setting. Our clinical duties include phlebotomy, injections, lab tests, ECG's, wound care, suture removal and assisting with minor office surgeries. We are also trained in front office skills, so there is the advantage of being cross-trained, which I think, makes us more valuable.The pay, however, is less than what an LPN would make, but this may depend on where you live. More and more clinics are hiring CMA's (not that they are phasing out LPN's), but they can pay CMA's less. It is one of the fastest growing professions according to the Department of Labor website, so you may get more info from there. Good luck with whatever you decide!
    Last edit by Andi33 on Jun 10, '05
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    I am in no way confusing the two professions , I am speaking of Medical Assistants and I made no reference to any one working in a hospital setting.




    Quote from Andi33
    OK. Here we go again. Obviously the above poster is confusing Certified Medical Assistant with Certified Med. Aid. CMA's (medical assistants) DO NOT work in a hospital setting, but in a clinical setting. The pharm I took was the same that the LPN's took, and I'm in a 2 year associates degree program. We work directly under the supervision of the physician. Yes, we are different than LPN's in that we are trained specifically for a clinical setting. We have the same pre-req background, and usually work independently from LPN's in the clinical setting. The pay, however, is less than what an LPN would make, but this may depend on where you live. More and more clinics are hiring CMA's (not that they are phasing out LPN's), but they can pay CMA's less. It is one of the fastest growing professions according to the Department of Labor website, so you may get more info from there. Good luck with whatever you decide!
    futurernjap likes this.


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