Difference Between Cna and Ma

Medical support involves working continuously in various healthcare facilities. As an occupation, it demands full attention and determination. As you are working with patients you need to be cautious as well. Medical assistant and clinical nursing assistant are two of the essential occupations in terms of medical support facilities.

Cna vs Ma

The main difference between Cna and Ma is that clinical nursing assistants work on providing basic care to patients. Whereas, medical assistants work more in the completion of administrative tasks. There are other differences between the two in terms of their work, terminology, duties and responsibilities, routine or shifts, and requirements.

Cna vs Ma

A clinical nursing assistant is a medical supporter who works towards providing basic care to patients in the healthcare centers. They are commonly referred to as a nursing aide. They also render their services in nursing homes. Their job demands more physical labor than medical assistants. 

A medical assistant is a medical supporter who works towards providing assistance in the completion of clinical as well as administrative tasks in the healthcare facilities. They are commonly referred to as a clinical assistant. They handle the front and back office work in a hospital or a doctor’s clinic.

Comparison Table Between Cna and Ma

Parameters of ComparisonCna Ma
WorkThese work more closely with the nurses and less with the doctors. These work more closely with the doctors and less with the nurses.
TerminologyThey are commonly referred to as nursing aides.They are commonly referred to as clinical or healthcare assistants.
DutyThe duties involve all hands-on work regarding taking care of the patient. The duties involve other activities like filling out forms, taking calls, scheduling appointments, reports, documentation, and so on.
RoutineTheir typical shift or routine involves toileting, bathing, changing clothes, feeding, answering the patient calls, tracking their daily intake, and assisting them in physical movements. Their typical shift or routine involves preparing the patient’s reports, getting them ready for doctor’s appointments, checking examination tools or rooms, taking their samples for examination (example- drawing blood), and organizing things. 
RequirementsThe requirements for this role vary based on the location. The duration of the training courses is generally between 1 or 4 months. Post training, the candidates have to go through state examination including practical as well as clinical questions.They can work without any prior education or training. The training can be provided during the job by the employer. 

What is Cna?

A clinical nursing assistant commonly referred to as a nursing aide refers to the medical supporters who work for providing basic care to patients in the hospitals. They also render their services in nursing homes. They have a job that requires more physical labor than medical assistants.

They are the ones who take complete care of the patients on a daily basis. In general, they are responsible for the following activities: Toileting, bathing, answering the call signals, changing diapers of old people, changing clothes, helping bedridden patients change their positions, assisting them in the execution of daily activities, feeding them food or water, record their daily intake of solids and liquids, and record their daily output of solids and liquids.

Their work is more on the clinical side of healthcare services. Their interaction is more with the nurses. They interact with the doctors only when necessary or asked. In nursing homes, they are also the primary caregivers. In nursing homes as well as residential clients they interact more with the patients.

What is Ma?

A medical assistant or commonly referred to as a clinical assistant refers to an individual assisting in the completion of clinical as well as administrative tasks in a hospital or healthcare facilities. They handle the work in a hospital help desk or a doctor’s clinic. Their work does not involve the huge amount of physical labor required by the nursing assistants.

They work more closely with the doctors and less with the nurses. Their responsibilities depend upon a number of factors including the location of the healthcare center, the type of healthcare center (doctor’s clinic, hospital, examination center), and the size of the healthcare center.

However, the duties, in general, including answering the phone calls, handling front-office work, handling back-office work, preparing and updating the patients’ charts and reports, compiling the reports in a file, scheduling appointments with others, preparation of treatment and examination rooms, explanation of procedures to patients, collection of samples or specimens (urine collection, drawing blood), checking the equipments (injections, boxes), talking to the relatives of the patient, and coordinating with physicians.

Main Differences Between Cna and Ma

  1. Cna works more closely with the nurses and less with the doctors. Ma works more closely with the doctors and less with the nurses.
  2. Cna is commonly referred to as a nursing aide. Ma is commonly referred to as a clinical or healthcare assistants.
  3. The duties of a Cna involve all hands-on work regarding taking care of the patient. The duties of an Ma involve other activities like filling out forms, taking calls, scheduling appointments, reports, documentation, and so on.
  4. A typical Cna shift or routine involves toileting, bathing, changing clothes, feeding, answering the patient calls, tracking their daily intake, and assisting them in physical movements. Their typical Ma shift or routine involves preparing the patient’s reports, getting them ready for doctor’s appointments, checking examination tools or rooms, taking their samples for examination (example- drawing blood), and organizing things.
  5. The requirements for a Cna role vary based on the location. The duration of the training courses is generally between 1 or 4 months. Post-training the candidates have to go through state examination including practical as well as clinical questions. An Ma can work without any prior education or training. The training can be provided during the job by the employer. 

Conclusion

The clinical nursing assistants provide hands-on basic care to the patients in hospitals. Whereas, Medical assistants help the doctor. They help in handling the administrative and clinical work. Nursing assistants are also called nursing aides and medical assistants are also called as clinical assistants. Medical assistants work under the guidance of a doctor. However, nursing assistants have an option of working in nursing and residential areas.

The duties of a nursing assistant involve all hands-on work regarding taking care of the patient. The duties of a medical assistant involve other activities like filling out forms, taking calls, scheduling appointments, reports, documentation, and so on. Nursing assistants work closely with patients and other nurses. Whereas, medical assistants work closely with doctors.

References

  1. https://journals.healio.com/doi/abs/10.3928/00220124-20100401-10
  2. http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.696.986&rep=rep1&type=pdf
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