CMA to LPN?? - page 3

by OLIVIALEN 30,664 Views | 33 Comments

Hi to all, I am new in the CMA field in North Carolina. I am working in a doctor's office now. I have been there close to six months. I have an Associate Degree in Medical Assisting. I was wondering how to go about going from... Read More


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    The OP would make more progress if she were to pursue an RN rather than an LPN license. Hope she was able to reach a goal in the time that has elapsed since thread was started.
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    lvn's will never be phased out in any area....as long as there is long term care , home health and hospice there will be lvn's....if cma's are in demand it because they are cheaper to employ. however , a cma can never replace a lvn or rn because of the vast differences in job description and scope of practice....the nurse and cma education is two completely different monsters....i have done all three jobs cma,lvn and rn... to me being a cma is a terminal job...



    Quote from orangepancakes
    there seems to be a lot of biased comments on here, mainly from people who are either lpn/rn's, or who are in school to be one or the other.

    i'm in school to be a cma. the school i go to also has an lpn program.
    it used to take 2 years of schooling to be a cma. my program is 9 months long, but it is very fast paced and intense. the lpn program is longer at about 13 months. but is it as intense and fast paced?-i don't know. what i do is that my instructors tell me that what we do is very similar to what an lpn does, only we are also trained to do administrate work. i have also been told they are phasing out lpns (at least in my area). i can also tell you that the outlook for cma's seems to be more promising. where i am located, they are in high demand. mainly because they can go in many directions. we can work for government agencies, insurance companies and obviously doctors offices and hospitals. we can even branch off and work for cardiologists, in labs, etc.

    also, the potential to make good money is there. obviously, it depends where you work and what exactly you are doing. i know the average starting pay around here is between $16-$18 an hour if you are certified-not bad starting pay for just 9 months of schooling.
    classykaren and TheCommuter like this.
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    Quote from OLIVIALEN
    I have asked of their training and I have taken all of the same exact courses.
    There is no way you took all of the same exact courses, or else you would have been in a LPN program and not a Medical Assisting program. There might be a few courses that were similar. There is no CMA to LPN. There may be a few classes you do not have to take again like sociology. some science, and maybe an English and math class but you will have to take all of the LPN courses and finish the program to become a LPN. Yes, I use to be a CMA, I am not being bias, just stating the facts. Most MA course are not even transferable.
    Italia23 and classykaren like this.
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    There has been a lot of talk of LPN's being phased out for quite some time. Even if that is not true, you cannot deny that LPNs have less options.
    Less options means more competition, and a harder time finding work. It took my friend over a year to get hired as an LPN because the jobs are so scarce. (At least around here). Her starting pay was equivalent to what a CMA's starting pay is, so I don't know why people are saying LPN's make more.
    Also, I don't see many people hiring LPN's around here. I see people looking to hire CMA's, RN's and nurse practitioners.
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    I think some people on here may post lies to look more credible, and so they can bad mouth CMA's without looking biased.
    I think it's highly unlikely that someone would go from being a CMA to LPN to RN because that's a whole lot of schooling and a lot of wasted time and money. Wouldn't it make more sense to just go to school to be an RN, and skip the whole LPN thing completely, seeing as how you don't even have to start off as an LPN to be an RN? And if being a CMA is a totally different "monster" and scope of practice, then why ever start off as a CMA if you want to be a nurse in the first place? Doesn't make any sense to me.

    Seems to me that "you" are just a biased nurse, which is a shame.
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    Quote from orangepancakes
    I think some people on here may post lies to look more credible, and so they can bad mouth CMA's without looking biased.
    I think it's highly unlikely that someone would go from being a CMA to LPN to RN because that's a whole lot of schooling and a lot of wasted time and money. Wouldn't it make more sense to just go to school to be an RN, and skip the whole LPN thing completely, seeing as how you don't even have to start off as an LPN to be an RN? And if being a CMA is a totally different "monster" and scope of practice, then why ever start off as a CMA if you want to be a nurse in the first place? Doesn't make any sense to me.

    Seems to me that "you" are just a biased nurse, which is a shame.
    With all respects, you are on a NURSING website so yes there may be some bias here. However you are still in medical assisting school. Many of these responses are from people who have actually practiced in the real world. Keep in mind that what your instructors tell you in school does not always reflect reality. The truth is that many schools fabricate or embellish the medical assisting profession to keep up the enrollment. I'm not saying it's necessarily bad field to go into, but it's in NO way equivalent to LPN or LVN. Not many MA graduates will be making $16-18 right out of school. In my area the starting may is about $10-13 and most places advertise 1 year experience required. New LVNs here can easily get jobs here starting at $18-20+/hr. Good luck with your schooling.
    tsalagicara, Italia23, classykaren, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from orangepancakes
    I think it's highly unlikely that someone would go from being a CMA to LPN to RN because that's a whole lot of schooling and a lot of wasted time and money. Wouldn't it make more sense to just go to school to be an RN, and skip the whole LPN thing completely, seeing as how you don't even have to start off as an LPN to be an RN?
    Although I have absolutely nothing to prove to anyone on these forums, my schooling actually reflects the aforementioned pattern. Some of us actually had to "stair step" up a career ladder to get to where we are today, because pursuing an RN license directly might mean being unable to work and earn a good wage for several years. I take offense at being indirectly called a liar.

    I completed an MA program in 2000, at the age of 19, without doing complete research on this career pathway. After a year of job seeking and no employment offers, I accepted a factory job and worked there from 2001 to 2004.

    While the factory job paid well, it was a dead-end job with no career advancement, so I decided to pursue nursing. However, I could only devote one year to my education at that time in my life, so I attended a 12-month LVN program as the quickest route to a new career and more money. I completed the LVN program in 2005.

    I am currently employed as an LVN and work 16-hour weekend double shifts while attending an RN program during the week. I am scheduled to graduate in a couple of months. Although my route to an education seems wasteful and improbable, this is the way I did things.

    And one more thing: how do we know you're telling the truth? We don't really know, do we?
    classykaren likes this.
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    Quote from orangepancakes
    There seems to be a lot of biased comments on here, mainly from people who are either LPN/RN's, or who are in school to be one or the other.

    I'm in school to be a CMA. The school I go to also has an LPN program.
    It used to take 2 years of schooling to be a CMA. My program is 9 months long, but it is very fast paced and intense. The LPN program is longer at about 13 months. But is it as intense and fast paced?-I don't know. What I do is that my instructors tell me that what we do is very similar to what an LPN does, only we are also trained to do administrate work. I have also been told they are phasing out LPNs (at least in my area). I can also tell you that the outlook for CMA's seems to be more promising. Where I am located, they are in high demand. Mainly because they can go in many directions. We can work for government agencies, insurance companies and obviously doctors offices and hospitals. We can even branch off and work for cardiologists, in labs, etc.

    Also, the potential to make good money is there. Obviously, it depends where you work and what exactly you are doing. I know the average starting pay around here is between $16-$18 an hour if you are Certified-Not bad starting pay for just 9 months of schooling.

    Where do you live? I was a CMA then went back to school for my LPN and doubled my income. Plus I have more options. As a CMA in Indiana I was very limited on where I could work & all companies were looking for a nurse. I have always said that I wasted 2 years getting my CMA when I could have spent that 2 years getting my RN...but live and learn I guess. Maybe in your area the statistics are different but here CMA is a waste of time..
    classykaren likes this.
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    Well with all due respect to everyone when i graduated Nursing school(RN) I worked at a clinic with both LPNs and CMAs and what i found out was that most of the Medical Assistants had associate degrees and were doing the exact same thing as the Lpns and all Lpns have to do is go to school for a year and don't even need a degree so lets support and not badger each other cause there are many points that can be made like CMAs do with an associate do have more education and most classes do transfer lpns just have to take basic anatomy and physiology where CMAs like RNs have too take a separate anatomy and physiology plus microbiolgy so all im saying MAs if you want to advance your career go straight to RN don't waist your time on becoming an LPN and stop listening to people you know what goes on and there really isnt much difference between CMA and LPNs except a few things but as a Medical Assistant you do have more education.
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    I am still trying to get back into school. Here in my state there are extremely long waiting lists, and registration only happens twice a year. I have been a CMA now since 2006. I have found that some schools will let you transfer your anatomy classes and some other classes but not everything. I have found tht the LPN programs offer more hospital related care classes. A lot of the education is the same but more hospital based for LPN. I do have a two year degree, and in my state you can complete the LPN in one year, but they do not accept a lot of students per year. I also was not stating I do the same job as a LPN or RN in the hospital! I work in a doctors office and there we all do the same exact job!!! I am now training a LPN that just started and she told me that most of what we do in office they barely went over in her classes, such as preforming EKGs injections and vaccinations. She said she had courses related to trach care, IVs and such which we did not have. Things we did take the same were anatomy 1 & 2, pharmacology, pathophisiology, and invasive procedures. I am still wanting to go back but now have decided that RN is the best route. I have kept my CNA1 current so i will not have to retake that. I do feel that some nurses look down on CMAs and some LOVE us and accept us as we do play a key part in healthcare in our communities. There are good CMAs and bad just as there are good nurses and bad. I truely do want to say I have loved being a CMA but I have hit the point where I would need to go futher in education to make more money and remove the ceiling of what I am able to do in my healthcare profession. I have read many threads and noticed so many people do not realize exactly what all CMAs are responsible for doing, or what the scope includes. You do work under a doctor liscence and they or an RN must sign off on your compentcy and skills, but you can loose your certification just as a nurse could loose a liscense. I would never go outside of my scope of practice or outside of what I have been trained to do. I feel some do and that is why we get such a bad rep. I do have people still call me a nurse and I guess it's because I have seen them everytime they come in and have given them injections, called in their medications. taken care of their needs or given their children the vaccinations they need. I do correct them but I just think that it is the same as when a PA is called doctor by a patient. They either do not understand the difference or are trying to be respectful. I understand that nurses get upset at this but in the same token I see why it happens. I feel lucky to work with great nurses and docs and patients and I am proud of the work I do -- more importantly they are proud of my work too. That is the best accomplishment. I am still trying to get there though it seems to be a battle. Wish me luck, perhaps I will get to have that RN behind my name one day. Thank you for all the responses. I wish everyone visiting much luck in their careers.
    student forever and aw70 like this.


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