If you’re thinking of becoming a medical assistant, you may have questions about what you can and cannot do as a medical assistant, and exactly what your duties will entail.
What is Medical Assistant?
One of your biggest questions may be whether medical assistants are allowed to give injections, such as medications and vaccines.
One reason for your confusion may be the recent controversy over medical assistants giving Botox shots. The law is not entirely clear on that issue, but you’ll learn more about that issue during your training.
There are clear guidelines and laws about administration of other injections by medical assistants. Those laws and guidelines say, basically, that fully trained medical assistants may administer various types of injections on a doctor’s orders and under a doctor’s supervision.
Let’s look at each of these separately. First, medical assistants may administer several types of injections. One of these injections, which medical assistants may administer, is a vaccine. Medical assistants may give any type of type of vaccine to patients.
Medical assistants may also inject medications to patients, as well as hormones and B12.
In addition to medications and vaccines, medical assistants may give intradermal injections. This would include TB skin testing and allergy testing, under a doctor’s orders and with physician supervision.
As stated, medical assistants can give injections only under a doctor’s orders. This should be very clear; since medical assistants are not physicians, they cannot order or administer treatments on their own. They must always have a doctor’s orders to do so, just like nurses.
What does it mean that a medical assistant has to administer injections under a doctor’s supervision? Fortunately for both the physician and the medical assistant, it does not mean that the doctor has to be standing over the medical assistant, literally supervising the procedure.
Most doctors wouldn’t think medical assistants were necessary if the physician had to be in the room anyway.
Under a physician’s supervision simply means that the physician must be present in the building and able to be summoned on a moment’s notice. In almost all cases the doctor’s presence in the room will never be required, but he or she must be available when medical assistants are giving injections.
These are the basic guidelines and laws for medical assistants giving injections.
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