Best Medical Assistant Programs in Georgia – 2023

Written By: Pattie Trumble, MPP, MPH

As a medical assistant in Georgia, you will have the opportunity to work in some of the best medical facilities in the United States and even the world. Medical assistant schools in Georgia prepare you for an entry-level support role that you can turn into a career or use as a framework for numerous other medical careers in the future. Your average salary as an MA in GA will be higher than in many other states, as well. Below, we have ranked the best programs across the state of Georgia to help you find the right school for your needs and your budget.

About Medical Assisting Education in Georgia

Medical assistant programs in Georgia will prepare you for an entry-level position that allows you to provide support to doctors, surgeons, nurses, and other members of patients’ healthcare teams. Medical assisting courses in GA will cover various topics ranging from anatomy and physiology to administrative tasks like billing and coding. You will also participate in hands-on clinicals in hospitals and other medical centers where you will need to demonstrate what you’ve learned in the classroom as you work alongside staff and faculty.

You can choose an affordable certificate program which takes as little as eight months to complete and allows you to enter the workforce more quickly, or you can choose a costlier associate degree program which takes about two years, on average, but makes you more desirable to employers at the same time. A diploma program bridges the gap between cost and length, making it ideal for many aspiring MAs.

Program Type Length Cost
Certificate 8 – 18 Months$2,020 - $22,440
Diploma10 to 18 Months$3,110 - $27,570
Associate DegreeTwo Years$7,790 - $33,980

Admission Requirements

Though each MA program across Georgia will have unique admission requirements, many will overlap from one school to the next. As an example, in order to participate in the degree program at Lanier Technical College, you must:

• Be at least 17 years of age;
• Have a high school diploma or GED;
• Submit SAT, ACT, CEP, COMPASS, or ASSET test scores -or- complete ACCUPLACER testing; and
• Pass a criminal background check and drug screen prior to your participation in clinicals.

Why Select ABHES or CAHEEP Accredited Program?

Choosing a Georgia MA program that is accredited by either the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES) or the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAHEEP) helps to ensure that you receive a quality education. You will need to provide proof that you have completed an accredited program in order to obtain a registered or certified medical assistant credential in GA, as well. Finally, many employers hire only MAs who complete accredited programs in order to improve patient outcomes.


(Based on our Ranking Methodology, below are the 10 best Medical Assistant programs in Georgia. The list includes both campus-based and online programs.)

1. United Education Institute, Morrow

2. Ogeechee Technical College, Statesboro

3. South Georgia Technical College, Americus & Cordele

4. Southeastern Technical College, Swainsboro & Vidalia

5. Augusta Technical College, Augusta, Thomson, Waynesboro, & Columbia County Center

6. Central Georgia Technical College, Warner Robins

7. North Georgia Technical College, Blairsville & Clarkesville

8. Georgia Piedmont Technical College, DeKalb

9. Lanier Technical College, Barrow, Dawson, Forsyth, & Hall

10. Georgia Northwestern Technical College, Floyd County & Walker County


Does a Medical Assistant Require any Licensure or Certification to work in GA?


Important Benefits of Getting Certified in GA?

Though certification is not required for medical assistants in Georgia, some employers may require it, and it is beneficial to you in several ways. Because you must pass a rigorous exam to earn the certification, you will become more desirable to potential employers in GA who want to hire only the best of the best. As a result, you will have access to more jobs, a higher salary, and in many cases, more relaxed work environments with predictable scheduling when you choose to become a certified medical assistant in GA.

What Certification Options are Available in GA?

Certified Medical Assistant (CMA): The Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) credential offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) is the most popular MA credential in Georgia. To take the exam, you will need to show that you have completed an ABHES or CAAHEP-accredited program. You will need to apply for the exam online and submit your exam fees of $125 along with your application, and once you pass the exam, you will receive your official credential. You will need to renew your CMA status every 60 months via your employment or the completion of continuing education courses – or a combination of these.

Registered Medical Assistant (RMA): The Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) credential is provided by the American Medical Technologists, or AMT. You can qualify for the exam by proving completion of an ABHES or CAAHEP-accredited program or by showing appropriate military or work experience. You can apply for the exam online and submit your $120 exam fee along with your application. You will be awarded your credential after passing the exam, and the RMA credential must be renewed each year by proving consistent employment or completion of CE courses and paying a $50 annual fee.

Other Certifications: Though the CMA and RMA credentials are the most popular, others are available to MAs in Georgia and can be found in the table below. You may choose a credential focused on the clinical side of medical assisting (CMAC) or the administrative side (CMAA), for example.

Certification Exam Cost Apply
Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) $125 Click Here
Registered Medical Assistant (RMA) $120 Click Here
Clinical Certified Medical Assistant (CCMA) $155 Click Here
Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) $117 Click Here
National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA) $90 Click Here
Clinical Medical Assistant Certification (CMAC) $139 Click Here

Average Salary for all Medical Assistants Working in Georgia

The average medical assistant salary in Georgia $37,560 annually, or $18.06 an hour. This salary can vary a great deal depending on the location where you work; individuals working in less populated areas earn significantly less than those working in cities like Atlanta or Augusta, for example. MAs who work in high-stress environments like critical care units or emergency departments often earn more than those who work in low-stress environments like physicians’ offices, as well.

Type Salary Range Average Salary
Hourly$13.84 - $22.50 $18.06
Monthly$2,400 - $3,900 $3,130
Annual$28,790 - $46,790 $37,560
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Average Salary: Georgia Vs National

The average annual salary for MAs in Georgia ($37,560) is $3,140 (7.71%) less than the national average salary for all medical assistants. Though there are many high-population areas across the state, much of it is rural. What’s more, the cost of living in Georgia is significantly less than in other states, including places like New York, New Jersey, and California, which has a direct influence on salaries across all careers in the state.

Georgia National Difference
Number %
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

How Much More will I Earn with a CMA Certification?

Average Salary Difference
CMA NON -CMA Number %
$39,520 $36,530 +$2,990 +8.19%
(Source: In-House Research)

Annual Job Openings in Georgia

New Replacement Projected Annual Job Openings (New + Replacement)

Which Healthcare Settings in Georgia are Hiring the Highest Number of Entry Level Medical Assistants?

Physicians’ Offices: Well over half of the medical assistants in Georgia are employed in physicians’ offices, including general care practitioners and specialists alike. As the state’s population grows, more doctors are needed to provide care, and more medical assistants are required to provide support to those doctors and their nurses. MAs are also beneficial for allowing Georgia doctors to better manage their increasing patient loads with a balance of clinical and clerical support.

Hospitals: About 15% of the MAs in Georgia work in hospitals. Some may work in general care wards, but others work in maternity, cardiac care, emergency, and other important hospital units. Some of the biggest employers of MAs in GA include Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, part of the state-wide Emory Healthcare system, which is Atlanta’s premier hospital system. Another is Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville, part of the Northeast Georgia Health System, which is one of the biggest and best healthcare providers in the state.

Top 6 Cities in Georgia to Work as a Medical Assistant

MA jobs tend to be concentrated in large metro areas across Georgia; the higher the population, the more healthcare professionals required to care for them. A huge percentage of all MAs across GA are employed in Atlanta since it provides access to some of the state’s most prestigious medical facilities. Augusta comes in a distant second, and cities like Macon, Savannah, Columbus, and Athens also make the list.

Rank City Current
Salary Range
1 Atlanta 14,720 $18.87 $3,270 $39,240 $30,280 - $47,390
2 Augusta 1,370 $16.84 $2,920 $35,030 $28,470 - $43,050
3 Columbus 800 $16.66 $2,890 $34,660 $26,810 - $39,770
4 Macon 1,130 $17.33 $3,000 $36,050 $27,720 - $43,530
5 Savannah 870 $17.45 $3,030 $36,300 $29,250 - $44,650
6 Athens 760 $18.67 $3,240 $38,840 $30,860 - $46,270
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

10-Year Job Outlook in GA

The population of Georgia continues to grow – especially the elderly population. Because of this, and because more of those people have access to affordable health insurance, more of them will seek treatment from doctors and hospitals. MAs provide crucial clinical and clerical support, making them one of the fastest-growing medical careers in the state. Because of this, between 2020 and 2030, the employment of MAs in the state will grow by 33.99%.

EmploymentEmployment Growth (2020-2030)
(Source: In-House Research)

Important Medical Assisting Organizations in Georgia

Georgia Society of Medical Assistants

The Georgia Society of Medical Assistants (GSMA) is designed to promote the medical assisting profession state-wide by supporting its members and encouraging them to participate in individual local chapters. Members attend workshops, meetings, and gatherings designed to help them grow as medical assistants and improve the overall care they provide.

Pattie Trumble, MPP, MPH
Pattie Trumble is a nurse who worked in both California and New York for many years as an emergency room nurse. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley, and an Associate Degree in Nursing from the Samuel Merritt Hospital School of Nursing. After 10 years of providing direct care, she went back to school and earned concurrent Master’s degrees in both public policy and public health from the University of California, Berkeley. Thereafter, she worked for various public health agencies in California at both the community and state levels providing economic and legislative analysis.

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