From CMA to EKG Technician, Questions!!


I am a CMA, and have worked in OBGYN for 5 years, I have been having a problem finding work, so no I am enrolled in an Telemetry Tech program. They want you to take two tests at the end of the class. One is from the NCCT, I know am going to take this one. The other test is the one from the American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians. My question is it really necessary to take both tests??? I live in California.

I dont know about getting a job in a hospital with no EKG experience, all the ads say 6m to 1-2 years.. I am hoping that with the CMA background it may lead to some other jobs maybe in a Cardiology office..

then I could move on to a hospital later..:confused:

And we all want to know about money, do you think an MD or Hospital will pay me more for the experience and two certifications?

What are the best books out there to study for the NCCT test? They have many study guides to prepare you for medical assisting, but I cant find any for the Telemetry tech testing..:uhoh3:


634 Posts

Specializes in ICU. Has 1 years experience.

Hey Stacey, I know your post was a few days ago, but maybe you'll still get my reply.

I was a CNA for a year, and now I am an EKG/CV tech in a hospital. I *love* my job now, and definitely recommend working in a hospital!

It sounds to me like the class you're taking is equivalent to a PCT class - my hospital uses PCTs for ER techs, monitor techs, OB/L&D/Nursery/NICU techs, and ICU techs. It sounds like the class you're taking could offer options in all those areas, in case you haven't considered them yet! Definitely look into the requirements for those sorts of positions at local hospitals. If you're going to go this route, I would advise you to get the phlebotomy certification - you might be able to consider hospital or lab positions as a phlebotomist as well! It's good to have options.

As for hospital vs. MD office - it really will depend on your area. In my area, it is *very* hard to get into an office or clinic job. They're in high demand because people like the M-F 8-5, no weekends, no holidays schedule. Office and clinic jobs tend to pay significantly less (in my area, anyway). Someone doing my job in an office or clinic will probably make about $5 less than me per hour. For the additional money, I work a non-ideal shift (every weekday 3p-11p), am on call on weekends, and usually cannot get holidays off. I have to schedule my time off several months in advance so my manager can get it covered.

BUT, I love my job! It's fantastic experience, it's fun, it's usually not very stressful. It's great for me, because I'm also a full-time student. I love the hospital environment and would not change it for anything, even weekends and holidays and evenings off. ;) I'm sure employers will look at your CMA experience as healthcare experience, which should be a huge plus, even if you don't have any work experience doing EKG/phlebotomy yet. That may be enough to get around the 6m-2year experience requirement, depending on the facility and the qualifications of the other applicants.

Good luck!!


4 Posts

Hi, Thanks for your reply!

That Phlebotomy certification I was asking about is not for phlebotomy, the test is just given by them. The Phleb test itself is only EKG's. It doesn't make any sense whatsoever. :uhoh3:

I worked in North Carolina and did all the phlebotomy at the OBGYN I worked at, problem was when I came back to California. I guess laws have changed and they have to be licensed here in this state. North Carolina does not seem to care about credentials, as long as you can do the job.

We have just started learning to interpret the strips. Most of the work it seems is to be done on our own. The school I go to doesn't even have a book. (Really scared) to take the Certification test because of this..

Thanks for answering my post, I feel better hearing that someone likes their job! :yeah: