CNA vs CMA: A Guideline To A Decisive Career Decision

A job as a Medical Assistant or a Certified Nursing Assistant is a great choice for getting started in healthcare. CNA vs CMA? Which one is best for you?

Medical and nursing assistants are very important in making sure hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare places run well.

A Medical Assistant (MA) is a person who helps doctors by providing support services in the healthcare field. The main jobs of a Med Assistant are to help with both medical and office work. They write down patient information and take note of important signs like heart rate and blood pressure.

A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) is a person who helps take care of patients every day. A Nursing Assistant is someone who helps patients with tasks like bathing and physical therapy. CNAs are watched over by nurses and tell them what’s going on.

In this guide, we will explore the things that are the same about MAs and CNAs, as well as the important things that make them different.

We will also examine how much money you can make and how likely you are to find a job in these two careers. In the end, this will help you choose which career is the best fit for you.

Read: All You Need To Know About Being the Good Nurse?

Medical Assistants: Responsibilities and Roles

At some time, you might have wanted to know the meaning of a medical assistant. Medical Assistants help doctors or healthcare professionals with the things they need, like taking care of patients and office work. Typically, medical assistants are responsible for the following tasks:

  • Setting up appointments based on the doctor’s availability.
  • Checking and recording important measurements for patients
  • Keeping track of a patient’s past medical information and health records.
  • Helping patients with their insurance claims.
  • Help the doctors by gathering samples for testing.
  • Helping doctors with basic medical tests.
  • Preparing the examination rooms before and after each patient comes in.

One good thing about becoming a medical assistant is that you don’t need a special degree. You have the option to sign up for medical assistant training, which you can do online or in person.

A training program can help you learn and develop important skills needed to become a medical assistant. To join the program, you just need to have completed high school or have a GED.

Once you finish your training, you can take a certification exam. If you pass the exam, you will become a certified clinical medical assistant. More and more employers are now requiring people to get their certification.

Medical Assistants typically work in different places like doctors’ offices, clinics, and hospitals. Medical assistants (MAs) usually work full-time because their main job is to help healthcare professionals and make sure the clinic runs smoothly.

Medical assistants and nurses have different roles in the healthcare industry. Medical assistants are responsible for administrative tasks, such as scheduling appointments and maintaining patient records.

On the other hand, nurses provide direct patient care, such as administering medications and assisting with procedures. Both roles are important for the smooth functioning of a healthcare facility.

Certified Nursing Assistants: Responsibilities and Roles

Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) support patients in their daily activities and help provide the best care possible for them. They usually work near patients in different healthcare places. The important tasks and duties of a CNA are:

  • Assisting patients with daily activities, taking care of their basic needs, and providing support to them.
  • Helping patients with basic tasks like washing, getting dressed, and using the bathroom.
  • Helping patients by giving them food at the right time and making sure they take their medications correctly.
  • Assisting patients in changing their position and helping them move round.
  • Helping patients with their physical well-being.
  • Keeping track of and managing patients’ medical information.
  • Keeping track of the important signs of the patient’s health and making sure they are monitored consistently.
  • Keeping patients’ rooms clean and tidy.

If you want to become a nursing assistant, you usually have to finish a nursing assistant program that is approved and pass a test to show you are capable.

After that, you need to sign up with the government, and then you can apply for a job as a Certified Nursing Assistant.

Different states have different rules for becoming a CNA. Make sure to check the rules in your area before you start searching for jobs.

A common work location for CNAs is a place where patients stay to receive care, such as a hospital or nursing home. This is because CNAs need to interact with patients closely and often.

These places could be nursing homes or hospitals, and maybe others too. Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) have the option to work either part-time or full-time. Their schedule varies based on the patient’s requirements at different times of the day.

Similarities That Exist Between CNAs and MAs

Knowledge of basic terminologies:

Both CNAs and MAs help patients communicate with doctors, so they need to know medical words to understand and pass along information well.

Speed-start your Career:

Most jobs in healthcare need a specialized bachelor’s degree at least. This is not true for MAs and CNAs because they receive their training from a certified program. Both jobs need at least a certification, finishing training programs, and a high school diploma or a GED.

This means you can finish your training more quickly and begin your career in just a few months, which is different from other jobs in healthcare.


Both CNAs and Med Assistants help healthcare professionals by providing basic support services to ensure the workplace runs smoothly. Their main goal is the same as other healthcare professionals, which is to give the best possible care to all patients.


Sometimes, the two people have similar jobs and responsibilities, so they might do the same tasks. For instance, both CNAs and MAs typically have to keep track of and write down a patient’s medical records and important body measurements.

Dissimilarities Between CNAs and MAs

Although medical and certified nursing assistants may appear to have similar jobs, there are important distinctions between these two professions.


Generally, Medical Assistants work in places where people go for non-emergency medical treatment, like clinics. On the other hand, Certified Nursing Assistants usually work in hospitals and nursing homes.

Patient Care:

Even though medical assistants (MAs) and certified nursing assistants (CNAs) both work with patients, CNAs usually have more direct contact with patients and work closer to them than MAs.

This is because a CNA typically helps patients by giving them food, helping them look and feel clean, and helping them move around.

Autonomy to a Certain Degree:

Medical Assistants (MAs) and Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) help doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers on a regular basis. Because of this, they usually work under the guidance of healthcare professionals.

However, certified nursing assistants (CNAs) usually have more freedom to do their work without constant supervision compared to medical assistants (MAs) who typically have to be overseen by healthcare professionals.

Physical Efforts:

Unlike Medical Assistants, Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) have to do more physically demanding tasks. This is because their jobs usually involve moving and repositioning patients, which usually requires them to use their strength.

Salaries and Jobs For CNA vs MA

The future looks good for both medical assistants (MAs) and certified nursing assistants (CNAs). Experts predict that there will be many more job opportunities in these fields over the next decade.

Certified Nursing Assistants

The job prospects for Certified Nursing Assistants in the U. S are good The average salary per year, as reported by BLS, is $30,290. Although there are fewer opportunities for CNAs compared to MAs, the data shows that the number of CNA jobs is projected to rise by 5% in the coming years.

There are many chances to grow and progress in this area. For instance, you can attend a nursing school, learn and become a registered nurse.

Because you have worked as a CNA before, studying to become a nurse will be easier for you. When you work as a CNA, it will be useful when you are searching for nursing jobs.

Medical Assistants

In simple words, as per the United States. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a Certified Medical Assistant earns $37,190 per year, and the number of job opportunities in this field is expected to increase by 16% every year. A job as a medical assistant is a way to start a career in healthcare. Can being a medical assistant be a good job.

After working as a medical assistant and gaining some experience, you have the option to study further and begin your career in specialized positions such as a physician or a nurse.

Students often wonder how long it takes to become a medical assistant. The answer is that it can take 6-8 months if you choose to do an online training program.

Training For CNA’s vs MAs

Certified Nursing Assistants

To become a certified medical assistant, you need to get a license or a certification from the state where you work. Additionally, do you need a license to be a medical assistant.

To become a nursing assistant, you usually have to complete a program that is approved and take a test to show you have the necessary skills.

These programs usually last between six to twelve weeks. The main goal is to give you the experience you need and get you ready for the competency exams.

The competency exam is split into two types: one where you show your practical skills and one where you answer questions based on what you know.

After completing the program and passing the competency exam, you need to go through a background check and sign up with your state’s nursing assistant registry.

Medical Assistants

By and large, no important degree or formal education/training is required within the field of restorative colleagues.

The method of getting to be a restorative right hand ordinarily requires the completion of a therapeutic collaborator program from a true blue and authorized institution. These programs are accessible either online or offline and can be gotten from either community colleges, specialized schools, or online programs.

The in general costs of restorative collaborator programs run from $2,500 to $50,000, which depends on the sort of instruction and program you select.

The certifications required for you to be a certified restorative right hand are ordinarily authorized by the American Affiliation of Restorative Colleagues (AAMA) or the National Healthcare Affiliation (NHA).

After you complete your preparing, you’ll be able sit for the certification exams, and once your clear the exam, you’re a Certified Restorative Right hand.

In the event that you’re befuddled around which certification you should go for, check out which restorative collaborator certification is the finest.


In this article, we went in-depth on Therapeutic Colleagues & CNAs. You presently have a clear thought of the similitudes, noteworthy contrasts, and instructive necessities for the two.

Eventually, on the off chance that you’re willing to work more specifically with patients and help them, you’ll select to gotten to be a Nursing Collaborator.

But in the event that working specifically with a physician sounds more energizing, at that point you’ll consider to gotten to be a therapeutic right hand.

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