Ethics in Medical Assisting

Ethics in Medical Assisting

Medical assistants work alongside physicians and other healthcare professionals in a doctor’s office, clinic, hospital, or health care facility.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that medical assistant jobs will grow about 18% between 2020 and 2030, adding 132,600 net jobs over that time.[1]

While medical assistants have procedural knowledge and perform clinical and administrative tasks, ethics are also a large part of this job. Because they work in healthcare, and are privy to details about patient conditions, acting with moral integrity is paramount to being a healthcare worker.

Who Sets Ethical Standards for Medical Assistants?

Each certifying body sets their own code of ethics. Here are two certifying bodies for medical assistants.

The American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) is a prominent certifying body for medical assistants, and sets ethical standards for its own members. It requires medical assistants to take a pledge of professionalism and integrity known as the Code of Ethics for Medical Assistants.

The National Center for Competency Testing (NCCT) is an independent credentialing organization that has tested healthcare professionals and instructors throughout the United States since 1989. NCCT provides multiple qualifying paths for certification in different medical roles such as medical assistant, insurance and coding expert, medical office assistant, and ECG technican.

Note on Certifying Bodies

Campus, formerly MTI College, uses the NCCT for certification in our medical assistant programs.

NCCT Code of Ethics for Medical Assistants

All NCCT candidates sign a document before certification that they agree to abide by the following Code of Ethics as NCCT professionals.

  • I shall strive to remain current in my knowledge and skills by participating in continuing education activities within my professional discipline(s).
  • I shall solve problems that are within my capabilities and will display the wisdom to seek help when they are beyond my skills or abilities.
  • I shall adhere to all safeguards in the workplace, for the health and well-being of those I serve, as well as my own.
  • I shall be honest in the performance of my role responsibilities and in all professional interactions with others. If I make mistakes, I will own up to them and work to make them right.
  • I shall respect and obey the law, and all regulations within the law, that serve to protect the public in connection to matters of practice related to my professional responsibilities.
  • I shall protect the confidences and privacy of those who use my services within the constraints of the law and the obligations of my profession and workplace.

AAMA Code of Ethics for Medical Assistants

The AAMA has a Code of Ethics by which they encourage medical assistants and other healthcare professionals to conduct themselves. These ethical principles relate to the medical profession and it’s practitioners, and the respect they have for their patients and community. The ethics a medical assistant should strive to uphold:

  1. Render service with full respect for the dignity of humanity.
  2. Respect confidential information obtained through employment unless legally authorized or required by responsible performance of duty to divulge such information.
  3. Uphold the honor and high principles of the profession and accept its disciplines.
  4. Seek to continually improve the knowledge and skills of medical assistants for the benefit of patients and professional colleagues.
  5. Participate in additional service activities aimed toward improving the health and well-being of the community.

Medical Assistant Creed

Alongside their Ethics Standards, the AAMA also has a statement of beliefs, that they encourage medical assistants to commit to. This is known as the Medical Assisting Creed.

  • I believe in the principles and purposes of the profession of medical assisting.
  • I endeavor to be more effective.
  • I aspire to render greater service.
  • I protect the confidence entrusted to me.
  • I am dedicated to the care and well-being of all people.
  • I am loyal to my employer.
  • I am true to the ethics of my profession.
  • I am strengthened by compassion, courage and faith.

Are you interested in becoming a medical assistant, and making a real difference in your community?

How Can Medical Assistants Handle Ethical Dilemmas in the Workplace?

Using the AMMA and NCCT Code of Ethics as a guide for decision making, medical assistants can follow a framework of ethics. Healthcare workers have private details about patients health conditions and personal information, and their professional integrity is crucial to their daily work.

How Does the Code of Ethics Address Conflicts of Interest in Medical Assisting?

Ethical dilemmas are when you are faced with two different courses of action. Medical assistants should make ethical decisions that respect all humanity, follow the law, respect patient privacy, and follow the ethics of their profession.

Become a Medical Assistant in About 36 Weeks

If you are interested in becoming a medical assistant in California, Campus, formerly known as MTI College, in Sacramento can help you get the training you need.

Our 36-week Medical Assisting program gives you the clinical and administrative training you need, along with a 200-hour externship.

The 48-week Medical Assisting with Phlebotomy Certificate program has the same training as our flagship Medical Assistant program, adding CPT-1 training to the curriculum.

Healthcare workers have a positive impact on their local communities. If you are interested in pursuing medical assisting as a career, contact our Admissions team or call (916) 339-1500 today.

[1] Note: The data provided above are from a source unaffiliated with Campus, are for informational purposes only and represent the employment field as a whole. They are not solely specific to Campus graduates and, by providing the above information, Campus makes no representation, direct or implied, or opinion regarding employability.