How to succeed at a Medical Assistant interview

The healthcare industry is booming in terms of career opportunities for people who are qualified. Due to societal changes, the need for health care workers is constantly increasing as new diseases, sicknesses, and procedures are discovered with the passing of time. There will never not be a need for healthcare workers, so this is why the job outlook is sky rocketing right now. But it’s not easy just landing a job as a medical assistant. Just because it is in demand doesn’t mean that you’ll land the job. Not only are there basic certifications that you have to meet, like being a certified Medical Assistant with a few externships under your belt, but you also have to nail the interview portion of the job just like you would for any other.

What kind of questions will they ask me?

You may be wondering about the kind of questions that you’ll be asked during an interview for a job as a Medical Assistant. Now, there are going to be a lot of standard questions like, “what was a challenging situation and how did you overcome it,” or the usual, “would you be available to work extra hours.” While these questions are easy to nail, here are the few that aren’t.

  1. Tell me about your previous work experience as a medical assistant, and what your responsibilities were?

This is a tricky question to nail, especially if you haven’t worked an actual medical assisting job. For people who have passed certification programs or graduated from a technical school this is a good time for you to talk about your externship programs since they are required for graduation.

  1. How did you add value to the patient’s experience?

Again, this is another hard question to nail. It involves really being verbal about how you changed a patient’s experience. You have to really sell it to the employer and make them feel moved otherwise you’re going to seem like every other candidate.

How to become a Medical Assistant

Medical assisting is currently one of the most thriving careers in the healthcare industry and for good reason. Right now, medical assisting is one of the few careers with a job outlook that is continuously booming. The need for healthcare professionals is something that will always be in demand, especially as new health related issues arise in society. So if a career focused entirely on helping people with their health related issues sounds good to you, here’s how to become a medical assistant.

How do you become a medical assistant?

Medical assistants usually require a high school diploma or the equivalent to that which would be a GED. While the BLS says you can jump into the job and get on-the-job training while only being a high school graduate – it is a very unlikely case. Most medical assistants go to Technical Schools or certificate programs in order the get specialized training that sets them apart from the rest of the competition. Remember this is a profession not just a part-time job, and while there is always a need for medical assistants, employers want people they can depend on and who know what they are doing.

While most states do not require certification, like I said, most employers will be looking for it because they do not have the time to train you on the job. The standard certification is the CMA which stands for Certified Medical Assistant from the American Association of Medical Assistants. Most technical colleges and certification programs will help you study/register for the test, and if you excelled well in your respective program you should pass with flying colors.

What do they do?

If you are wondering what a medical assistant does because you are interested in the job, just know that they are a cross between a nurse and an administrative assistant. An MA does very basic nursing functions like taking blood pressure and temperature, but for the most part they keep track of records and schedule appointments.

Preparing for an Accident – But Do Not Anticipate One

Panama City, Florida has 37,000 people in it. It also has over 300 people in its city limits. This means that there is one billboard for every 123 residents. If Rexburg, Florida had that same billboard to population ratio, then there would be 200 billboards in the city. New billboards have not been allowed in the city ever since 2003.

The most common type of billboard advertisement you will see in Panama City, Florida is for attorneys who are seeking personal injury and medical malpractice clients. Seafood is the second most common advertisement you will see. Billboards are an effective way to get across a message.

Many people have been able to find a qualified personal injury attorney thanks to an advertisement that they saw on a billboard. Others have purchased a meal because of an advertisement that they saw.

A man recently went to Wendy’s. There were two elderly women there. One of the women had to be at least 90 years-old. The employees asked the 90 year-old woman to give her name, and she refused to. Interestingly, this woman paid for her meal with cash.

The man paid for his meal with an American Express credit card. Credit cards are the way that many people pay for things. The credit card company issued the credit card because they trust that the person will pay them back.

Cash was a topic that was recently discussed in a video by Bill Bonner. He is really worried about the United States economy. He believes that because the government has spent trillions of dollars that it could not afford to spend, we are on the verge of an economic collapse.

He believes that in the future, people will not be able to get money out of the ATM. He also believes that there will be riots in the future because of a lack of food and fuel. Bonner also stated that he has predicted other events like this. He said that he successfully predicted the collapse of the Japanese Stock Market and Soviet Union.

Bonner stated that the fact that there is more credit in America than cash is the reason this economic crisis will occur. He advises people to be prepared for this crisis because it will inevitably occur.

Cell Phone Distracts Florida Driver, Resulting in Multi-Car Accident

DWC or “Driving While Chatting” could be a new acronym next to DUI or DWI. As the debate heats up nationally, an increasing amount of states are considering a ban on cell phone use while operating a motor vehicle, including Florida.

Early this morning, two Florida law enforcement officials and another victim where rushed to an Orlando-area hospital after a distracted driver plowed into their vehicles when he went to reach for his cell phone. The accident occurred shortly after 3:30 a.m. near the intersection of Apopka Vineland and Conroy in Windermere. Florida Highway Patrol trooper Clark Egerton, 47, Windermere officer Jason Sipos, 35, and another driver, Sheri Faynik, 23, were all rushed to Orlando Regional Medical Center following the crash.

According to the officers, Christopher Patterson, 27, of Ocee, was distracted by his cell phone when he sideswiped all three vehicles parked on the side of the highway. Officer Egerton had pulled over Faynik for speeding and officer Sipos arrived on the scene to assist just before the crash occurred. Officers Egerton and Sipos were still inside their vehicles at the time of the crash.

While Florida does not currently have a cell phone ban in place, many safety groups are pushing for future regulations to create safer Florida roadways. Despite the benefits, the “road” to passing these measures is long and winding. Most recently, Maryland became the newest state to pass a state-wide ban on cell phone use while driving; however it took Maryland’s Legislature nearly a decade to pass the ban.

Some experts believe that talking on your cell phone while driving is equivalent to driving drunk in terms of the likelihood of getting into an accident.

Related Resource:
• Driver distracted by cell phone plows into FHP trooper, Windermere officer, other car (Orlando Sentinel, May 24, 2010)

Product Liability: BP May Have Used Cheaper, Less Reliable Design

According to a recent investigation by the Orlando Sentinel, BP’s design choices for its deep-water oil well may have been flawed. The Sentinel interviewed several engineering experts and reviewed documents for its late-May report, which concluded that BP chose to use a cheaper but less reliable design as it built the well. Along with a number of other mechanical and maintenance failures, the inadequate design may expose BP to class action product liability claims by those injured by the oil spill.

“The deepwater Gulf of Mexico is an especially challenging place to drill,” explained Louisiana State University petroleum engineering professor John Rogers Smith in the Sentinel report.

Texas A&M petroleum engineering professor F.E. Beck, testifying recently before one of the U.S. Senate committees investigating the spill, said, “There are clear alternatives to the methods BP used that most engineers in the drilling business would consider much more reliable and safer.”

After reviewing the log of activities on the Deepwater Horizon, drilling engineers interviewed by the Sentinel explained that BP’s well design called for a single permanent pipe, or “casing,” which would be 13,293 feet long. The casing would be finished with an injection of drilling cement. The cementing process can often be problematic because of the geology in the region.
More commonly used in Gulf drilling operations is a system with an additional layer of pipe called a liner. The liner and casing are locked together with two cement jobs, which makes them less prone to failure. A liner also provides more options for testing and repair.

The BP well “is not a design we would use,” said another veteran deep-water engineer interviewed by the Sentinel. He estimated that the well design virtually always used by his own company, which uses both a liner and casing, was approximately ten times more safe and reliable than the design BP used. However, the safer design might have cost BP an additional $7 million to implement.

Regulation by the Minerals Management Service does not require that wells use the liner system.

It is not clear whether BP’s choice to use the casing-only design caused the accident. Many of the experts the Sentinel interviewed were unwilling to hazard a guess because some important site-specific factors are not known publically.
However, it is clear that BP experienced a large number of problems when drilling the well. Drilling in challenging areas like the Gulf requires a great deal of judgment, and it remains to be seen whether BP’s well design caused the spill. However, if equipment or design failures are responsible, BP and the other companies involved could face product liability lawsuits for the injuries and wrongful deaths of the workers and any other injuries caused by the disaster.

Related Resource:
“Documents show BP chose a less-expensive, less-reliable method for completing well in Gulf oil spill” (Orlando Sentinel, May 23, 2010)

McDonald’s Recalls 12 Million Tainted “Shrek” Collectors’ Glasses

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is warning consumers not to use any “Shrek Forever After”-themed collectible drinking glasses from McDonald’s because they are tainted with the cancer-causing metal cadmium. McDonald’s has recalled all 12 million of the glasses distributed through their restaurants for consumer protection and product liability concerns.

No illnesses or injuries to children have been reported from McDonald’s Shrek glasses, but high long-term cadmium exposure is known to cause cancer, bone softening and severe kidney problems.

The product liability concerns arose after high-tech tipsters wielding Thermo Electron Niton XRF testing guns found readings of up to 1,000 parts per million of cadmium in the paint that creates the design on the glasses, and reported to the CPSC. The cadmium level considered safe and legal in children’s toys is 75 parts per million.

Even the level of 1,000 parts per million, however, is much lower than the reported level of cadmium contained in the Miley Cyrus jewelry recalled earlier this year by Walmart. Some pieces of Walmart Miley Cyrus jewelry were shown to contain as much as 10 percent cadmium by weight.

The XRF testing gun-toting tipsters also reported their findings to California’s Representative Jackie Speier, who is pushing legislation to apply the children’s toy standards to all products likely to be used by kids, such as the McDonald’s Shrek Glasses.
McDonald’s did have a third-party lab test the glasses before distributing them, but that lab did not find elevated levels of cadmium. After the reports to the CPSC and Representative Speier, McDonald’s decided on the product recall out of an “abundance of caution.”

“We believe the Shrek glassware is safe for consumer use,” said Bill Whitman, McDonald’s USA spokesman, to the BBC. But “to ensure that our customers receive safe products from us, we made the decision to stop selling them and voluntarily recall these products, effective immediately.”

Related Resources:
1. “McDonald’s recalls 12 mln Shrek drinking glasses-media” (Reuters, June 4, 2010)
2. “McDonald’s Recall Of Shrek Glasses Started With Tipster” (National Public Radio, June 4, 2010)
3. “Walmart’s Miley Cyrus Jewelry Contains Cadmium” (Los Angeles Times, May 19, 2010)

Driver in Beach Truck Accident Has History of Careless Driving

According to a recent report in the Daytona Beach News-Journal, the Volusia County Beach Patrol ranger involved in Wednesday’s beach truck accident has a history of careless driving while on the job. Beach ranger John Scott Dowling is accused of running over sunbather Carole Dalton as he drove across the beach to help a lifeguard.

Despite initial reports that her injuries were not serious, Ms. Dalton required emergency surgery due to compound fractures in her lower leg. Her shinbone was fractured up to the knee, requiring the installation of a plate and seven screws. She also sustained cuts to the face and a large bruise on her chest where the beach truck’s tire ran over her.

“She started rehabilitation this morning. They’re saying no weight (on it) for 90 days,” her husband told the News-Journal on Thursday. “It was much worse than we thought.”
Dalton feels lucky: “God and a guardian angel were watching over me,” she said. “If he (Dowling) hadn’t turned to miss the woman with the baby, he would have run over my center and I’d be dead.”

A Personnel File Filled With Commendations — And Several Accidents
The Florida Highway Patrol’s investigation of the beach truck accident was not complete by the time the Daytona Beach News-Journal story was published on Thursday afternoon, but charges are pending.

John Dowling has worked as a beach ranger since 1987, According to the News-Journal, his personnel file is mostly filled with commendations. He has several marks on his record, however, when it comes to his driving:

• In 1993, he was suspended without pay for one day because the county’s Accident Review Board determined he had “been negligent” while driving his work vehicle.
• In 1998, his supervisor sent him a “letter of caution,” reminding Dowling that he had been involved in “several preventable motor vehicle accidents” since he began working for Volusia County, and that he had taken Risk Management’s driver safety training course “twice previously.” That course is required when employees are involved in on-the-job car or truck accidents, although Volusia County spokesman Dave Byron points out that the accidents could be minor.
• In 2008, Dowling was involved in a slow-speed, rear-end collision on State Road A1A that the Accident Review Board determined was preventable.

Also in 2008, Dowling and some colleagues were created a beach driving training class, which earned him a commendation from Beach Patrol Captain Scott Petersohn. “Your dedication and commitment to the Volusia County Beach Patrol and the beach-going public will have a positive effect on safety and public perception for many years to come,” wrote Petersohn.

“As soon as the FHP report comes out, we’ll review it to see what went wrong,” Petersohn told the News-Journal of Wednesday’s beach truck accident. “We’ll see what we can do to change.”

Carole Dalton holds no grudge against beach patrol drivers, but does think some safety procedures could be incorporated to prevent accidents.

“I closed my eyes for a couple of seconds and the next thing I knew, the truck was on top of me,” she said. “I was on my chair stuck under it. I was screaming and crying. It hurt.”
“If he had a blind spot, he should have gotten out to look,” she added.

Related Resources:
• “Records: Beach officer warned before about driving” (Daytona Beach News-Journal, June 11, 2010)
• “Sunbather run over by Beach Patrol vehicle” (Daytona Beach News-Journal, June 9, 2010)

New Cooling Blanket Limits Brain Injury in Oxygen-Deprived Babies

Neonatologist Dr. Michael Weiss of the University of Florida in Gainesville has been pioneering a new technique that can greatly reduce complications in newborns with brain injuries from lack of oxygen at birth. He and his colleagues have just completed an 18-month study of the technique, part of coordinated research at academic hospitals nationwide.
Used for newborns who have sustained a mild to moderate brain injury due to oxygen deprivation or low blood supply, the technique involves wrapping the baby in a special blanket constructed with cold water tubes inside. The blanket cools the baby’s body temperature to about 91 degrees, slowing the body systems, reducing energy requirements and reducing swelling in the brain.

The technique has been shown to reduce the risk of cerebral palsy, seizures and death in newborns with moderate brain injuries, as well as to result in improved vision and cognitive and motor skills.

“What it does is it decreases the amount of cerebral edema, or swelling, around the brain. It can also decrease cell death and decrease the release of excitatory factors, which can cause brain injury. It also decreases the inflammation that’s typically seen after brain injury,” Dr. Weiss told Ivanhoe Broadcast News recently.

Four Out of Every 1,000 Babies Born in the U.S. Suffer Brain Injuries
Brain injuries caused by oxygen deprivation can occur because of a number of different complications at birth. For example, the placenta may separate prematurely, the umbilical cord may become wrapped around the child’s neck, or the cord can come out before the baby is actually born. These types of birth injuries may be unavoidable or due to medical malpractice.
Infant asphyxia can cause cerebral palsy, cognitive and motor problems, blindness and developmental problems.

“Before the cooling blanket, we really didn’t have any therapies that were brain-specific, so before, we would just provide supportive care for these babies. By cooling the babies, it actually decreases the amount of brain injury these babies have,” said Dr. Weiss.

“I really thought it was going to be some high-end, high-tech procedure,” one mother whose child was helped by the procedure told Ivanhoe. “It amazes me that something like that could save or help you know a little baby’s life.”

The therapy is currently available at major medical centers. Dr. Weiss is working to develop a statewide therapy protocol in Florida, and to promote the technique nationwide.
“One of the biggest things that I think we offer the parents in this case is hope,” said Dr. Weiss.

Related Resource:
“Cooling blanket helping to save babies from brain damage” (Ivanhoe Broadcast News/WNDU-TV, Jun 8, 2010)