Medical assistant certification is only valid for 60 months from the date of issue, so if you want to maintain your status after this time it must renew your certification.
This is designed to protect patients treated by making sure knowledge and competencies are up to date.

There are two distinct processes you can follow for medical assistant re-certification.

A. Retake the certification exam, and
B. Renew your qualification through continued education and accumulation of re-certification points.

Let's take a look at the two processes:

Taking a Re-certification Exam


The re-certification exam is the same as the initial certification exam, and is known as the CMA (AAMA) exam. If you are a member of the American Association of Medical Assistants, your fee for taking the exam will be $125. You can also take the exam for this price if you are a CAAHEP or ABHES completing student or recent graduate. All other applicants taking the re-certification exam must pay $250.

The timing of the re-certification exam is important; you need to have passed the exam at least two months before the expiration of your current certification in order to maintain your certified status without a break. You can take the exam at a Prometric Test Center of your choice, and you must provide your current CMA certificate number. You will have 160 minutes, plus breaks, to answer 200 multiple choice questions. You will know immediately if you have passed the exam, but then you will need to wait for an official result to be mailed to you.

Re-certification by Continued Education


To renew your medical assistant certification via continued education, you need to accumulate 60 re-certification points, at least half of which must be AAMA approved CEUs (continuing education units). These re-certification points need to include at least 10 points from each of three categories, administrative, clinical, and general.

Taking AAMA approved programs is the easiest way to ensure that your re-certification points are valid, but the AAMA will accept certain programs for re-certification if you can prove that the subject matter is relevant to the profession. Check with the AAMA before you begin a program to see whether the points you gain will count towards your re-certification.

If you accumulate all 60 re-certification points before your current certification is due to expire, you can choose to re-certify early. However your certification will only be valid for 60 months from your date of re-certification and points must be gained in the 60 months before applying for re-certification. You can't roll over any additional continued education points that were gained before your re-certification into the next period of 60 months. Re-certification by continued education costs $65 for members of the AAMA, while non members must pay $130.

Importance of Medical Assistant Certification Renewal


However you choose to re-certify, your application should be received at least 90 days before your current certificate is due to expire. If you are not re-certified on time, your medical assistant certificate will expire and you will no longer be able to use this credential for employment purposes. A $50 reactivation fee is applicable if you wish to re-certify after your current certification has expired. You can re-certify by continued education or by taking the exam for 60 months after the expiration date of your certificate. After that time you must take the exam in order to re-certify.

Certified Medical Assistant

Certified Medical Assistant

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