Medical Assistant Salary By State – (2021 FIGURES)


Written By: Editorial Staff @ NursingProcess.org

Though medical assistants are the unsung heroes of the American healthcare system, the average medical assistant salary is only 75 percent of the average salary across all occupations in the U.S. Depending upon the practice setting where they work, medical assistants perform a wide variety of clinical and administrative tasks that range from billing and appointment scheduling to drawing blood and dispensing medications. While Idaho, Washington, Connecticut, and New Jersey are the only states that require medical assistants to be certified, certification is a condition of employment for most employers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 725,200 medical assistants were employed in various capacities across the U.S. How much does a medical assistant make? This article provides a comprehensive look at medical assistant salary in 2021.



What Does A Medical Assistant Do?


The primary function of medical assistants is to provide more highly trained healthcare professionals with the support those professionals need to do their jobs more efficiently. You may earn your medical assistant salary performing many tasks that were traditionally the purview of nurses and other ancillary healthcare personnel. Such tasks might include measuring and reporting vital signs, taking patient histories, drawing blood, collecting laboratory specimens, changing wound dressings, removing stitches, preparing patients for examinations, and cleaning examining rooms. Medical assistants may also act as substitutes for medical secretaries, scheduling appointments, coding medical services, billing for medical services, preparing insurance forms, and updating electronic patient records.

Medical Assistants in Physician’s Offices: Your professional responsibilities as a medical assistant will depend upon where you’re working. You’re likely to have the widest range of latitude when you’re working in a physician’s office. That’s because in a smaller practice setting, work roles are more likely to be assigned on the basis of an assessment of your individual ability rather than on the basis of administrative protocols. Over time, the professionals you work with may come to trust you with greater responsibilities, particularly if the practice is a busy one, and staff is spread thin. Don’t forget, though, that medical assistants are not licensed. That means all support services you provide are being provided under the license of the supervising healthcare worker who can be a physician, physician assistant, nurse practitioner, or nurse. If you are found civilly liable for a negligent act, it’s likely they will be found civilly liable as well.

Medical Assistants in Hospitals and Large Practices: In hospitals or large physician practices, scope of practice typically adheres more strictly to written protocols in order to limit liability. Your primary function will involve interacting with patients: monitoring vital signs, administering certain types of medications and assisting with treatments, therapies and exams, and the like. Hospitals are busier places that physician practices, so you are likely to see more patients in any given day, but it’s unlikely you will be allowed to perform procedures that are outside the hospital’s written medical assistant practice guidelines even if you have training that enables you to do so. Hospitals typically pay higher medical assistant salaries than physician practices.

Medical Assistants are Not Nursing Assistants: Medical assistants are sometimes confused with nursing assistants (also called nursing aides). Though the two positions have some overlap, they’re not the same. Nursing assistants’ jobs are typically more physical. Nursing assistants help patients with the routine tasks of daily life like eating and drinking, grooming and moving though they may also be asked to take vital signs, or measure and record intake and output. The average clinical medical assistant salary ($36,990) is 15 percent higher than the average nursing assistant salary ($32,050).


Where Do Medical Assistants Work?


Medical assistants work in as many different environments as patients are cared for. In 2019, 57 percent of all medical assistants worked in physician offices, 15 percent worked in hospitals and 8 percent worked in outpatient clinics such as urgent care centers, ambulatory care centers, and pharmacies. A surprising 4 percent of all medical assistants—more than 28,000 individuals—earn their medical assistant salary in chiropractors’ offices. But medical workers are employed in other venues as well:

• Colleges and universities: Many colleges and universities operate their own clinics for students and staff members. If you work in one of these clinics, your responsibilities will be similar to those a medical assistant might perform in any physician practice.
• Medical research facilities: Most clinical jobs for medical assistants at research facilities require phlebotomy certification. Medical assistants help with obtaining and classifying samples and administering tests.
• Insurance companies: Medical assistants employed by insurance companies utilize their knowledge of medical terminology and basic care by helping with the review of medical records, hospital admissions, and lab services.
• Skilled nursing facilities: Medical assistants are some of the most important direct care employees at skilled nursing facilities. They check vital signs, administer medications, and may even give injections under certain circumstances. They may also be asked to help with patients’ daily hygiene needs and to assist mobility-impaired residents who use wheelchairs and walkers.
• Hospices: Medical assistants in hospice settings play an important role in offering families emotional support and updating them on the status of their loved one. They also assist patients with their daily care, administer certain medications, change dressings and offer support.
• Home: Medical assistants can also work on telephones from their own homes, directing callers to pertinent information sources and helpful professionals. Though this process is often referred to as “phone triage,” it is not triage in the traditional sense. There is no state in which medical assistants are allowed to perform triage in the traditional sense since triage involves physical assessment, an activity that requires healthcare licensure.


What Is The Typical Work Schedule For Medical Assistants?


The hours medical assistants put in earning their medical assistant salaries depend upon the place where they work. Medical assistants who work in the offices of physicians and other medical professionals, outpatient care centers, hospices and university clinics generally work eight-hour shifts; if the practice is open weekends or evening hours, medical assistants may be asked to cover those.

Medical assistants who work in hospitals typically work either 12-hour or eight-hour shifts; since hospitals never close, hospital-employed medical assistants may be asked to work weekends, holidays, and evening or night shifts. The same is true of medical assistants working in skilled nursing facilities.

Medical assistants who work for businesses in the private sector such as insurance companies and medical research labs usually work eight-hour shifts.


What Are The Job Satisfaction Levels Of Medical Assistants?


Anecdotal reports suggest that for those just starting out in the field, medical assisting can be a stressful job with high turnover rates. A study published in 2020 gauged the average turnover rate among medical assistants at 59 percent.

In 2013, an Italian healthcare journal published the results of a survey administered to 175 medical assistants working in public hospitals throughout a small Italian city. While respondents generally gave high marks to relationships with patients and colleagues, and the opportunities the profession offered for professional development, respondents were generally dissatisfied with the average medical assistant salary. Admittedly, there are significant differences between Italy and the U.S. that may affect the relevance of this study’s findings to American workplaces.

Respondents to surveys conducted by the career information aggregator site CareerExplorer pegged their job satisfaction with medical assisting in the midrange. The average salary for medical assistants was cited as one of MAs’ chief sources of dissatisfaction.


What Are The Requirements (Education and Certification) To Become A Medical Assistant?


No national requirements exist so far as the education of medical assistants is concerned. Alaska, North Dakota, Colorado, Hawaii and Illinois have regulations in place obliging medical assistants to have a high school diploma or a GED, but most states don’t. The majority of employers, however, won’t hire medical assistants unless those medical assistants are certified. Research done in 2020 by the National Healthcare Association found that 72 percent of all employers used certification as their primary hiring criterion. Three states—Arizona, New Jersey, and Washington State—won’t let medical assistants practice without some type of certification.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are five types of medical assistant certifications:

Certified Medical Assistant CMA: Offered by the American Association of Medical Assistants, the CMA requires graduation from an accredited postsecondary medical assisting program.
Registered Medical Assistant RMA: The RMA is administered by American Medical Technologists. Applicants can either be enrolled in or have graduated from an accredited medical assisting program.
National Certified Medical Assistant NCMA: The NCMA is the only medical assistant exam that allows you to substitute experience for graduation from an accredited medical assistant program. Test study materials are in English and Spanish. The NCMA is sponsored by the National Center for Competency Testing.
Certified Clinical Medical Assistant CCMA: This test is also sponsored by the National Center for Competency Training. It focuses on the clinical aspects of medical assisting.
Certified Medical Administrative Assistant CMAA: This test, too, is sponsored by the National Center for Competency Training. It focuses on the administrative aspects of medical assisting.


What Is The Salary Per Hour For A Medical Assistant In 2021?


How much does a medical assistant make an hour in 2021? The average medical assistant salary per hour in 2021 throughout all parts of the U.S. is $17.75. This is 34 percent less than the average hourly wage for all occupations across the U.S. (This figure is obtained by taking $56,310—the average wage for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and dividing it by 2,087—the average number of work hours in a year, according to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.) Typically, medical assistants reach this earnings benchmark somewhere in their fifth year of employment. This average hourly rate is 37 percent more on average than the medical assistant salary paid to someone who is just starting out in this field but 27 percent less on average than a medical assistant who has accumulated two decades or more of experience.

The hourly salary for medical assistants is nearly two and one-half times the current minimum federal wage of $7.25 an hour. If the Raise the Wage Act of 2021 that’s currently before Congress passes, the federal minimum wage will immediately go up to $9.50 an hour, and the average salary for medical assistants will be 1.86 times the hourly federal minimum wage.

Compared with others in the healthcare field, medical assistant salary per hour is low. It’s likely this has much to do with the profession’s low barriers to entry: Few formal educational requirements exist for medical assistants, and research shows a high correlation between education and earning capacity. For purposes of comparison, look at the educational requirements for registered nurses, with whom medical assistants show the greatest degree of overlap in terms of professional responsibilities. While it’s true that it’s still possible to become a registered nurse in two years by earning an associate degree in nursing, the overwhelming majority of employers these days prefer nurses who’ve graduated from four-year programs.

Hourly Medical Assistant Salary
Level of Experience Earnings
Entry-Level $12.95
1-4 Years of Experience $14.60
5-9 Years of Experience $17.24
10-19 Years of Experience $19.85
20 Years or More Experience $24.32
Average Earnings $17.75
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is The Starting Salary For A Medical Assistant In 2021?


How much does an entry-level medical assistant make in 2021? The starting medical assistant salary in 2021 is $12.95 an hour, which multiplies out to $2,240 a week or $26,930 a year. This is approximately 37 percent less than the average salary for medical assistants throughout the U.S. and 17 percent less than $32,592, which is the average entry-level salary for all occupations. A variety of factors affect entry-level salaries. The two most important are the job’s geographic location and the prerequisite education needed for credentialing and employment.

There’s quite a bit of variability from state to state in the starting salary for medical assistants. In Alaska, which has the highest-paid medical assistants, compensation for beginning medical assistants is $16.96 an hour or $35,270 annually; in contrast, in West Virginia, which has the lowest-paid medical assistants, compensation for beginning medical assistants is $10.91 an hour or $22,690 annually: Medical assistants in the Last Frontier make 36 percent more than they do in the Mountain State.

As discussed earlier in this article, educational requirements for medical assistant credentialing are low compared with the credentialing requirements that other healthcare professionals face, and many medical assistants who are starting out receive the training they need to perform their jobs competently in the workplace. Since these new employees require more management supervision, they cannot yet work independently, and so, they are paid less than more seasoned employees. As they acquire more experience on the job, the salary of a medical assistant per hour increases.

One further factor may influence medical assistants’ starting salaries, and that is the turnover rate. A study published in the January 2020 issue of The Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine found that the turnover rate in 2017 among a group of medical assistants employed in a private physician practice was 59 percent. The total cost to the practice of this turnover was estimated at $213,000; these costs were mostly related to the expenses associated with training these medical assistants. After investing so much money in training employees who quit within the first year of employment, it’s easy to see why an employer might prefer to minimize other expenses—like wages—associated with first-year employees.

Starting Medical Assistant Salary
Per Hour $12.95
Per Month $2,240
Per Year $26,930
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is The Average Salary For A Medical Assistant In 2021?


What is the average salary of a medical assistant in 2021? The average medical assistant salary in 2021 is $36,930 a year, which breaks down to $3,080 a month or $17.75 an hour. A number of factors affect average salary. The most influential of these are the education and credentialing required for the job and industry-standard pay rates within a specific geographic location. As noted above, there is quite a bit of geographic variation in the salary for medical assistants, and educational requirements are low.

But other factors are relevant to the relatively low salary of a medical assistant per hour as well. One of these may be gender discrimination: More than 90 percent of all medical assistants are women, and women traditionally earn less than men. This is even evident within the medical assistant profession itself where the average male salary is $40,472 a year while the average female salary is $32,012. Male medical assistants, in other words, earn salaries that are 26 percent higher than female medical assistants.

Another factor that may affect the average medical assistant salary is their scope of practice, which varies from state to state. Jobs that entail less responsibility typically pay less. While many medical assistants may perform complex tasks such as blood draws and injections during the course of their employment, they are not actually responsible for the jobs they do in the full legal sense of the word. Medical assistants are unlicensed employees; they can only perform clinical procedures under the direct supervision of a licensed medical professional. In some states, that licensed medical professional can only be a physician; in other states, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses can also supervise medical assistances. Should a medical assistant make an error while doing his or her job, it is the licensed medical professional supervising them who is legally liable for that error.

During the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, medical assistants were categorized as “essential employees.” Unfortunately, this classification did not result in an increase in the average salary of a medical assistant. Anecdotal evidence suggests many medical assistants left the profession during this time for jobs—at supermarkets, or shipping and receiving companies, for example—for which formal education was not a prerequisite and which paid better. Increasing the average medical assistant salary would be one way to retain these valuable healthcare workers.

Average Medical Assistant Salary
Per Hour $17.75
Per Month $3,080
Per Year $36,930
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


How Much Does The Medical Assistant Salary Grow With Experience?


Medical assistants make more money as they accumulate years of experience on the job. This reflects the fact that they are becoming better at their jobs. The majority of medical assistants work in physician practices or clinics where the higher the patient volume, the higher the practice’s revenue. A medical assistant who’s good at his or her job will enable the practice’s licensed medical professionals to diagnose and treat more patients, and this may be reflected in the salary for medical assistants.

A medical assistant who’s been on the job between one and four years will make 13 percent more on average than one who is just starting out, while a medical assistant with 10 to 19 years of experience will make 53 percent more than one who is just starting out. If a medical assistant stays in the profession for 20 or more years, he or she will make a medical assistant salary per hour that’s nearly twice as much as a medical assistant who’s just beginning a career.

A medical assistant with five to nine years of experience can expect to make 18 percent more than a medical assistant with one to four years of experience. A medical assistant with 10 to 19 years of experience can expect to make 15 percent more than a medical assistant with five to nine years experience, while a medical assistant with two decades or more experience can expect to make 23 percent more than a medical assistant with 10 to 19 years experience. It’s likely that the higher salary for seasoned medical assistants is an incentive to persuade these skilled workers not to retire.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Month Per Year
Entry-Level $12.95 $2,240 $26,930
1-4 Years of Experience $14.60 $2,530 $30,360
5-9 Years of Experience $17.24 $2,990 $35,850
10-19 Years of Experience $19.85 $3,440 $41,280
20 Years or More Experience $24.32 $4,220 $50,580
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is The Average Annual Compensation (Salary + Benefits) For Medical Assistants In 2021?


Salary isn’t the only compensation medical assistants receive for a job well done. The American Association of Medical Assistants reports that 97 percent of full-time medical assistants also receive significant benefits.

Benefits are compensation employers provide to employees on top of salaries. Though they have a cash value, employees don’t have to pay taxes on them in most instances. Employers use benefit packages to attract top-notch workers to their companies.

Some medical assistant benefits are mandated by federal or state law. These include unemployment and disability insurance, workers’ compensation, and time off under the Family Medical Leave Act. Other benefits are awarded at the employer’s discretion. These typically include healthcare insurance and paid time off. To recruit and retain highly desirable employees, employers may offer benefits that include healthcare insurance for dependents, retirement fund contributions, flexible scheduling, or even reimbursement for professional licensure costs.

Under the terms of the Affordable Care Act, employers with 50 or more employees are required to offer healthcare insurance to all employees who work at least 30 hours a week. Approximately 86 percent of full-time medical assistants receive healthcare insurance and paid vacation as benefits.

The monetary value of benefits can add up. For medical assistants working in the private sector, the average value of benefits equals $15,581; the average salary for medical assistants in 2021 who work in the private sector is $36,880, so their total average compensation is $52,461. For medical assistants working for state or local governments, the average value of benefits equals $23,038; the average salary for medical assistants in 2021 who work in the public sector is $36,880, so their total average compensation is $60,469.

Component Private Industry State and Local Government
Paid Leave $3,882 $4,596
Supplemental Pay $1,836 $605
Insurance $4,092 $7,075
Retirement and Savings $1,784 $7,498
Legally Required $3,987 $3,326
Total Benefits $15,581 $23,038
Average Annual Salary $36,880 $37,430
Total Average Compensation $52,461 $60,468
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is The Average Medical Assistant Salary By Industry In 2021?


The highest-paid medical assistants are those who work in outpatient care centers: On average, these medical assistants make $42,330 a year. Outpatient care clinics are settings that offer medical procedures, tests, and services without requiring an overnight hospital stay. Some outpatient care clinics are affiliated with nonprofit medical centers while others like urgent care centers are operated by for-profit companies.

Outpatient care revenues are growing at a faster rate than inpatient care revenues because healthcare providers can see more patients in clinic settings while keeping operational costs down. Revenue models in both nonprofit and profit outpatient clinics depend upon treating relatively high numbers of patients. Medical assistants play an important role in helping outpatient clinics meet this goal.

Hospital-based medical assistants make $38,200 a year (90 percent of the average salary earned by medical assistants in outpatient care) while medical assistants who work in physician practices make $36,580 a year (86 percent of the average salary earned by medical assistants in outpatient care).

Physician practices also depend upon patient volume to meet their revenue goals, but it is likely here that that the relatively small size of a private practice means it doesn’t benefit from the same economies of scale that medical centers or chains of urgent care centers enjoy. These economies of scale are what bring operating costs down. Physician offices may pay a relatively low salary for medical assistants because their operating expenses are so high that they simply can’t afford to pay more.

Industry Per Hour Per Month Per Year
Offices of Physicians $17.59 $3,050 $36,580
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals $18.37 $3,180 $38,200
Outpatient Care Centers $20.35 $3,530 $42,330
Offices of Other Health Practitioners $15.97 $2,770 $33,210
Continuing Care Retirement Communities and
Assisted Living Facilities for the Elderly
$14.84 $2,570 $30,870
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is The Average Salary For Different Types Of Medical Assistants in 2021?

(Below you will find the average salary for the 4 Different Types of Medical Assistants.)

1. Administrative Medical Assistant: Administrative medical assistants are front-office assistants who specialize in clerical work. In private practices, they answer telephones, greet patients as patients arrive, assist patients with filling out forms, assist with billing and processing insurance payments and copays, compile and manage patient charts, and stay on top of the office’s correspondence. In hospital settings, they act as ward clerks, performing receptionist duties but also managing the flow of physicians’ orders and making sure that vital information is accurately transcribed in patient charts.

The average administrative medical assistant salary is $17.19 an hour or $35,760 a year. Administrative medical assistants typically reach this benchmark after they’ve been working in the field for more than 10 years. The average administrative medical assistant salary is 3 percent less than the average yearly salary of a clinical medical assistant. Experienced administrative medical assistants earn $48,980 a year, which is nearly twice what entry-level administrative medical assistants make.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.54 $26,080
1-4 Years of Experience $14.13 $29,400
5-9 Years of Experience $16.69 $34,710
10-19 Years of Experience $19.22 $39,970
20 Years or More Experience $23.55 $48,980
Average Earnings $17.19 $35,760


2. Certified Medical Assistant (CMA): Certified medical assistants (CMAs) are medical assistants who have passed the qualifying exam given by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). In order to sit for this exam, you must be a graduate of a medical assistant program recognized by either the Council for Higher Education Accreditation or the U.S. Department of Education; so, all certified medical assistants have had at least two years of post-secondary training. The AAMA exam doesn’t discriminate between administrative medical assistants and clinical medical assistants.

This level of educational attainment is not overly reflected in the average CMA salary, though: On average, certified medical assistants make $18.04 an hour or $37,525 annually. This is only 1 percent more than the annual salaries earned by clinical medical assistants who are not certified. As noted elsewhere in this discussion, however, employers prefer to hire medical assistants who’ve been vetted by a certifying organization.

Another credentialing organization, the National Center for Competency Training (NCCT), administers tests specifically designed for either administrative or clinical practitioners. Prospective administrative medical assistants can sit for the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) examination while prospective clinical medical assistants can sit for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) examination. NCCT does not require exam applicants to graduate from a formal medical assistant training program; they can substitute on-the-job training for more formal education.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.16 $27,370
1-4 Years of Experience $14.83 $30,850
5-9 Years of Experience $17.51 $36,420
10-19 Years of Experience $20.16 $41,940
20 Years or More Experience $24.71 $51,400
Average Earnings $18.04 $37,525


3. Clinical Medical Assistant: Clinical medical assistants focus on patient care. So long as specific protocols are in place which define their scope of practice, clinical medical assistants can perform a broad range of duties. They take patient histories, measure and record vital signs, prepare patients for examinations and assist physicians during examinations. If their training and the scope of practice laws in the state in which they’re employed allow, they may also draw blood, perform electrocardiograms, remove sutures, and change wound dressings.

Clinical medical assistants work under the license of a supervising healthcare professional or the managed care organization that employs them; they are never authorized to make independent medical assessments or render treatment on their own. Within those guidelines, though, they can take on a number of advanced patient care tasks.

Clinical medical assistants are the highest-paid medical assistants. The average clinical medical assistant salary is $17.78 an hour or $36,990 annually, which is 3 percent higher than the average administrative medical assistant’s salary. Clinical medical assistants typically reach this benchmark after they’ve accumulated a decade of experience. If they continue working for 20 years or more, they can expect to average almost twice what they were paid when they were first starting out in the field.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.97 $26,980
1-4 Years of Experience $14.62 $30,410
5-9 Years of Experience $17.26 $35,900
10-19 Years of Experience $19.88 $41,340
20 Years or More Experience $24.36 $50,670
Average Earnings $17.78 $36,990


4. Registered Medical Assistant (RMA): Registered medical assistants are medical assistants who’ve pursued credentialing through the examination administered by American Medical Technologists. In order to sit for this exam, you must either be a current student in an accredited medical assistant program or have graduated from one.

There is no qualitative difference between RMAs and CMAs; they have merely passed examinations administered by two different organizations. The average registered medical assistant salary is $17.52 an hour or $36,450 a year. The average registered medical assistant salary is 3 percent lower than the average CMA salary, so there may be a slight financial advantage to pursuing the latter credential.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.78 $26,590
1-4 Years of Experience $14.41 $29,970
5-9 Years of Experience $17.01 $35,380
10-19 Years of Experience $19.59 $40,740
20 Years or More Experience $24.00 $49,930
Average Earnings $17.52 $36,450


8 Specialties That Help Medical Assistants Increase Their Earning Potential


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of medical assistants is projected to grow 19 percent between 2016 and 2026. Yet the average salary for medical assistants in the U.S. is significantly lower than the average salary for all occupations. If you are considering becoming a medical assistant, you are probably asking yourself these two questions: How much does a medical assistant make? How can I make more than that? The most effective way to advance your career and increase your earning potential as a medical assistant may be by acquiring a clinical specialty:

1. Podiatry: Podiatric medical assistants assist podiatric physicians with foot care. Tasks podiatric medical assistants help with include trimming nails, applying splints and casts, wound care, and post-surgical care. Podiatry medical assisting credentialing can be pursued through the American Society of Podiatric Medical Assistants. The average podiatric medical assistant salary is $38,260 per year.

Per Hour $18.39
Per Month $3,190
Per Year $38,260


2. Ophthalmology: Ophthalmologists are physicians who specialize in eye and vision care. Ophthalmologic medical assistants assist ophthalmologists with diagnostic testing, medication administration, eye treatments and minor surgeries, and patient education. Ophthalmologic medical assistants can be certified through the Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology. The average ophthalmologic medical assistant salary is $39,720 per year.

Per Hour $19.10
Per Month $3,310
Per Year $39,720


3. Obstetrics/Gynecology: There’s no formal certification process for medical assistants who wish to specialize in obstetrics and gynecology. Medical assistants pursuing this career track will benefit from on-the-job training. In addition to basic medical assisting tasks like taking vital signs, they’ll also assist OB/GYN doctors with procedures like Pap tests, breast exams, and sample collections. MAs play a valuable role in patient education as well. The average OB/GYN medical assistant salary is $38,940 per year.

Per Hour $18.72
Per Month $3,250
Per Year $38,940


4. Geriatrics: AAMA offers an Assessment-Based Certificate Program in Geriatrics as a continuing education class. Geriatric medical assistants work with elderly patients in long-term care facilities, hospitals, and physicians’ offices. In addition to performing basic medical assisting functions like taking vital signs and collecting lab samples, they also serve as liaisons between physicians and patients. The average geriatric medical assistant salary is $38,660 per year.

Per Hour $18.59
Per Month $3,220
Per Year $38,660


5. Chiropractic: Four percent of all medical assistants work in chiropractors’ offices. Training for this specialty primarily involves hands-on learning in a chiropractic setting, but the Federation of Chiropractic Licensing Boards does offer a Chiropractic Assistant Certification. Medical assistants in this setting perform administrative office duties and may also be called upon to take health histories, provide patient education and assist the chiropractor with patient treatments. The average chiropractic medical assistant salary is $37,950 per year.

Per Hour $18.25
Per Month $3,160
Per Year $37,950


6. Cardiology: Cardiologists are doctors who specialize in diagnosing and treating conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels. Cardiology medical assistants typically help prep patients for cardiology procedures, record the results of heart tests, and educate patients about procedures and medications. Many cardiology medical assistants also pursue certification as EKG techs , which enables them to perform electrocardiograms. Certification is not necessary, however; many cardiology medical assistants learn this skill through on-the-job training. The average cardiology medical assistant salary is $41,890 per year.

Per Hour $20.14
Per Month $3,490
Per Year $41,890


7. Dermatology: Medical assistants can also choose to specialize in dermatology. These MAs will find employment opportunities in hospitals, dermatologists’ offices, and specialized skincare clinics. In addition to doing front-office, administrative work, dermatology medical assistants will assist physicians during physical examinations, prepare patients for specific procedures and assist physicians during cosmetic procedures. Many dermatology MAs go on to pursue careers as licensed estheticians. The average dermatology medical assistant salary is $43,450 per year.

Per Hour $20.89
Per Month $3,620
Per Year $43,450


8. Oncology: Oncology clinics and hospital oncology departments focus on the care of patients with cancer. As a medical assistant within this specialty, you will assist physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners and registered nurses with patient check-ins, blood draws, chemotherapy, and other treatments. At the administrative level, you will assist with patient scheduling and help ensure medical records are up to date. The average oncology medical assistant salary is $40,680 per year.

Per Hour $19.56
Per Month $3,390
Per Year $40,680


Do Medical Assistants Get Paid Well When Compared To All Other Occupations?


When compared to average earnings for all occupations across the U.S, medical assistants don’t make out particularly well. The average medical assistant salary is $36,930 a year, which is 52 percent less than the average annual salary across all occupations ($56,310). As discussed previously, this earning gap may reflect a number of factors, including negligible education and certification requirements, gender discrimination and the fact that medical assistants are unlicensed and therefore, their supervisors must assume legal liability for a medical assistant’s actions.

Medical Assistant All Occupations Comparison
Number %
$36,930 $56,310 -$19,380 -52.48%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Do Medical Assistants Get Paid Well When Compared To Similar Allied Health Jobs?


Medical assistants make considerably less than dental hygienists, occupational therapy assistants, licensed practical nurses and physical therapist assistants, but those four professions all require licensing at the state level, which medical assisting does not. At $36,930 a year, the average salary of a medical assistant is less than half the average salary of a dental hygienist ($78,050) and 62 percent less than the average salary of an occupational therapy assistant.

Medical assistant salaries are pretty much on a par with similar healthcare-related jobs that require neither licensure nor four years of education. Phlebotomists make $37,280 annually on average, which is 1 percent more than medical assistants make, but pharmacy technicians make $36,450 annually, which is 1 percent less. Nursing assistants make $32,050, which is more than 13 percent less than what medical assistants make.

Rank Job Title Average Salary
Per Year
Comparison
Number %
1 Dental Hygienist $78,050 -41,120 -52.68%
2 Occupational Therapy Assistants and Aide $60,010 -23,080 -38.46%
3 Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurse $50,090 -13,160 -26.27%
4 Physical Therapist Assistants and Aide $49,750 -12,820 -25.77%
5 Medical Records and Health Information Specialist $48,270 -11,340 -23.49%
6 Dental Assistant $42,310 -5,380 -12.72%
7 Psychiatric Technician $38,080 -1,150 -3.02%
8 Phlebotomist $37,280 -350 -0.94%
9 Medical Assistant $36,930 0 0.00%
10 Pharmacy Technician $36,450 +480 +1.32%
11 Nursing Assistant $32,050 +4,880 +15.23%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Does The Salary Of A Medical Assistant Differ From State-To-State?


How much do medical assistants get paid? That amount varies considerably from state to state. In Alaska, where medical assistants earn their highest salaries, MAs average $46,610 annually, which is 26 percent more than the average salary across all states. In West Virginia, on the other hand, medical assistants only average $29,820 annually, which is more than 19 percent beneath the national average. Thus, MAs in the Last Frontier make 56 percent more than MAs in the Mountain State.

State Per Year Comparison To National Average
Number %
Alabama $29,950 -6,980 -18.90%
Alaska $46,610 +9,680 +26.21%
Arizona $35,670 -1,260 -3.41%
Arkansas $31,530 -5,400 -14.62%
California $42,990 +6,060 +16.41%
Colorado $39,040 +2,110 +5.71%
Connecticut $41,070 +4,140 +11.21%
Delaware $34,750 -2,180 -5.90%
Florida $34,800 -2,130 -5.77%
Georgia $34,250 -2,680 -7.26%
Hawaii $40,530 +3,600 +9.75%
Idaho $36,760 -170 -0.46%
Illinois $37,190 +260 +0.70%
Indiana $34,790 -2,140 -5.79%
Iowa $37,660 +730 +1.98%
Kansas $32,030 -4,900 -13.27%
Kentucky $33,450 -3,480 -9.42%
Louisiana $31,110 -5,820 -15.76%
Maine $37,820 +890 +2.41%
Maryland $38,480 +1,550 +4.20%
Massachusetts $43,090 +6,160 +16.68%
Michigan $34,830 -2,100 -5.69%
Minnesota $43,090 +6,160 +16.68%
Mississippi $30,550 -6,380 -17.28%
Missouri $33,540 -3,390 -9.18%
Montana $36,980 +50 +0.14%
Nebraska $35,810 -1,120 -3.03%
Nevada $35,970 -960 -2.60%
New Hampshire $38,860 +1,930 +5.23%
New Jersey $37,920 +990 +2.68%
New Mexico $32,340 -4,590 -12.43%
New York $39,850 +2,920 +7.91%
North Carolina $34,540 -2,390 -6.47%
North Dakota $38,380 +1,450 +3.93%
Ohio $34,270 -2,660 -7.20%
Oklahoma $31,790 -5,140 -13.92%
Oregon $41,700 +4,770 +12.92%
Pennsylvania $34,670 -2,260 -6.12%
Rhode Island $38,510 +1,580 +4.28%
South Carolina $33,010 -3,920 -10.61%
South Dakota $31,910 -5,020 -13.59%
Tennessee $33,990 -2,940 -7.96%
Texas $33,700 -3,230 -8.75%
U.S. $36,930 0 0.00%
Utah $35,170 -1,760 -4.77%
Vermont $37,190 +260 +0.70%
Virginia $36,730 -200 -0.54%
Washington $45,700 +8,770 +23.75%
West Virginia $29,820 -7,110 -19.25%
Wisconsin $38,800 +1,870 +5.06%
Wyoming $35,660 -1,270 -3.44%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


Which State Pays The Highest Salary For Medical Assistants?


Medical assistants average $46,610 a year in Alaska, making Alaska MAs the highest-paid medical assistants in the U.S. With a population density of just 1.2 people per square mile, Alaska is the most sparsely populated state in the nation. Alaska weather can be brutal, particularly during the winter, and few recreational activities are available in the smaller, more remote towns and outposts.

Sparsely populated states that don’t offer much in the way of lifestyle amenities must offer higher salaries to medical assistants in order to attract these workers in sufficient numbers to help deal with the state’s healthcare needs. Even though medical assistants in Alaska perform much the same tasks as they do in states where MAs are paid less, competitive wages must be higher to compensate for the fact that many people may consider Alaska a less desirable place to live.


Which State Pays The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?


West Virginia is the state where medical assistants earn the least amount of money. How much does a medical assistant make a year in The Mountain State? Just under $30,000.

Part of the reason for this may have to do with the fact that West Virginia has traditionally been a bad place for employment. The state has a glut of unskilled workers, and though individual employers may make certification a condition of employment, the state itself does not require any particular education or training to become a medical assistant. Competition for medical assisting jobs is high despite the relatively meager salaries associated with the job. An oversupply of eager workers tends to depress wages.

Another reason may be that as noted above, 90 percent of all medical assistants are women. Jobs in which women make up the majority of the workforce tend to be lower-paying.


What Are The Main Reasons Behind Difference In Medical Assistant Salary From State-To-State?


A number of factors influence the differences in average medical assistant salary from state to state. The employment of medical assistants is determined by the demand for healthcare services in a particular area, and metrics such as age and population density affect that demand. Elderly individuals typically use more healthcare services, so it can reasonably be assumed that states with a higher proportion of elderly residents will have a greater demand for medical assistants, which would drive wages up. However, if that demand is counterbalanced by an oversupply of uneducated workers—and these are the workers most likely to be attracted to medical assisting—then competitive pressures will drive wages down. Additionally, a facility’s ability to pay medical assistants is likely to be impacted by taxes and other operational costs that may depend on the overall economic health of the state in which it is located.

As noted above, sparsely populated states may pay higher-than-average salaries to medical assistants as an incentive to get them to work there. On the whole, however, states with major metropolitan areas pay medical assistants higher wages than more rural states.



AVERAGE MEDICAL ASSISTANT SALARY BY STATE – HIGHEST TO LOWEST PAYING

(Below you will find the average salary of a Medical Assistant in Every State for 2021, ranked in the order of the Highest to Lowest paying.)

1. Alaska: Alaska is the state where medical assistants stand to make the most money. Why? Because Alaska’s inclement climate and high cost of living deter many people from moving there, so higher salaries act as an incentive. The average salary for medical assistants in Alaska is $22.41 an hour or $46,610 a year, which is 26 percent higher than the average salary for medical assistants throughout all parts of the U.S.

You’ll need to have a high school diploma in order to be an MA in the Last Frontier, but beyond that, the state imposes no additional education or certification requirements. Most employers, though, prefer to hire MAs who’ve had some formal medical assisting education. Chapter 40 of the Alaska Administrative Code contains standards for the delegation of routine duties. Licensed physicians, podiatrists, osteopaths and physician assistants can delegate tasks to a medical assistant so long as that medical assistant has been adequately trained and the patient is medically stable.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $16.96 $35,270
Mid-Level $22.12 $46,000
Top-Level $28.80 $59,910
Average Earnings $22.41 $46,610


2. Washington: Washington is one of only four states where medical assistants must be certified in order to be employed. This requirement is most likely the reason why the average medical assistant salary in Washington is one of the highest in the U.S.: Occupations that require accreditation tend to pay better. The average salary for medical assistants in Washington is $21.97 an hour or $45,700 a year. In the greater Seattle Metropolitan area, medical assistants average $23.59 an hour or $49,070 annually—high for an MA salary but still 13 percent less than the average salary for all occupations in the U.S. There are 15,870 medical assistants working throughout the State of Washington.

The scope of practice for medical assistants in the Evergreen State is very explicitly laid out in the Revised Code of Washington Title 18 > Chapter 18.360 > Section 18.360.050.

Licensed healthcare providers who can delegate tasks to medical assistants include physicians, podiatrists, registered nurses, nurse practitioners, and optometrists. Medical assistants must possess a credential issued by the Washington State Department of Health. Washington State law recognizes four levels of medical assistants:

• Medical Assistant-Certified is an MA who has completed a formal medical assisting training program and passed the certification examination.
• Medical Assistant-Registered is an MA who has not been certified but whose competence an employer will vouch for. This verification must be renewed each time you change employers.
• Medical Assistant-Hemodialysis Technician is an MA who can perform hemodialysis.
• Medical Assistant-Phlebotomist is an MA who can draw blood.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $16.46 $34,230
Mid-Level $21.88 $45,500
Top-Level $28.90 $60,110
Average Earnings $21.97 $45,700


3. Massachusetts: Massachusetts has no specific statutes addressing scope of practice for medical assistants. The Board of Registration in Medicine (BORIM) maintains a set of FAQs as part of its Delegation of Medical Services regulation, 243 CMR 2.07 (4) that sets forth guidelines for the delegation of tasks to medical assistants. MAs may be supervised by either a licensed physician or a licensed registered nurse. They may perform any task they have been trained to perform that does not expressly require licensure in order to be carried out. MAs cannot perform invasive procedures except in instances where state law specifically authorizes such procedures. Medical assistants working in clinic settings are not allowed to administer injections, but medical assistants working in private physician practices may administer injections at a supervising physician’s discretion.

The average salary for medical assistants in Massachusetts is $20.72 an hour or $43,090 a year, which is 17 percent higher than the average salary for medical assistants throughout all parts of the U.S. but still 25 percent less than the average wage for all occupations throughout the U.S. At $21.16 an hour or $44,020 annually, wages in the Boston Metropolitan Area are 2 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Massachusetts.

There are 14,160 medical assistants working throughout the state, and 2,050 employment opportunities for MAs open up every year. Given the relatively high pay MAs earn in the Bay State, it is likely that retention is not an issue for most employers. The Massachusetts State Society of Medical Assistants is the Bay State’s professional association for MAs.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $15.94 $33,150
Mid-Level $20.33 $42,290
Top-Level $26.18 $54,450
Average Earnings $20.72 $43,090


4. Minnesota: The average salary for medical assistants in Minnesota is $20.72 an hour or $43,090 annually. This is 17 percent higher than the average wage for medical assistants throughout all U.S. states, and it is likely to mean that the Land of Lakes’ MA workforce is relatively stable since this pay rate is competitive with that of other jobs that require similar levels of education. Top-level medical assistants in Minnesota with some years of experience earn $25.32 an hour or $52,670 annually, which is 56 percent more than entry-level MAs earn. MAs in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Metropolitan Area earn $21.15 an hour or $43,990 a year, which is 2 percent more than the average medical assistant salary in Minnesota.

Interestingly, Minnesota has no explicit statutes regulating the role that medical assistants can play in the delivery of healthcare. However, according to the American Association of Medical Assistants, some guidance may be inferred from Minnesota Statutes Health (Ch. 144-159) § 147.091. Grounds for disciplinary action. According to the AAMA, medical assistants in Minnesota should be able to perform a range of administrative and clinical tasks, including venipuncture, and subcutaneous and intramuscular injections, so long as they are supervised by a licensed physician who remains onsite.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $16.18 $33,660
Mid-Level $21.00 $43,670
Top-Level $25.32 $52,670
Average Earnings $20.72 $43,090


5. California: How much does a medical assistant make in California? The average medical assistant salary in California is $20.67 an hour or $42,990 annually. In fact, the Golden State is home to two cities—Oakland and San Francisco—where the average wage for MAs is close to $54,000 a year.

The average salary for medical assistants in California with two decades or more experience is $63,540 a year.The State of California neither licenses nor certifies medical assistants. California medical assistants must be over 18 years of age. They are allowed to work in clinics and physicians’ offices, but they are not allowed to work in acute care hospital inpatient settings. With appropriate training, California MAs are permitted to perform a limited number of medical procedures so long as they perform them under a physician’s supervision. However, the Medical Board of California does require that medical assistants who perform certain procedures like blood draws, skin tests, or the administration of vaccinations or other medications through injection receive specialized training.

More medical assistants are employed in California than in any other state: 95,690 in all. Demand for MAs continue to be high: According to CareerOneStop, a career website sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, there are more than 15,000 MA job openings in the Golden State every year. The State of California’s own Employment Development Department predicts that jobs for medical assistants will increase by 24.5 percent, or 24,900 jobs. between 2018 and 2028. Much of this is due to the prominent role the healthcare industry plays in the Golden State’s economy.

Prospective employers of medical assistants in California prefer MAs to be certified. That way, employers will not have to spend as much time training new employees, which will save employers a significant amount in operational costs.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.80 $28,710
Mid-Level $19.00 $39,520
Top-Level $30.55 $63,540
Average Earnings $20.67 $42,990


6. Oregon: In order to work as a medical assistant in Oregon, you must have a high school diploma. While Oregon has no licensure or certification requirements for MAs, certification will make you more desirable to prospective employers. Some 12,480 medical assistants work throughout the Beaver State, and 2,070 employment opportunities open up there for MAs every year. The average pay for medical assistants in Oregon is $20.05 an hour or $41,700 a year; this is 13 percent higher than the average pay for all medical assistants across the U.S. MAs in the Greater Portland Metropolitan Area earn $20.86 an hour or $43,390 annually, which is 4 percent more than the average medical assistant salary in Oregon.

While the role of medical assistants is not defined by statute in Oregon, the Oregon Medical Board, a state regulatory agency, has issued guidance on the subject. Physicians are responsible for ensuring that the MAs to which they entrust medically related tasks are qualified and competent to perform such delegated tasks. Medical assistants must be supervised by a licensed physician, and that means the physician must be physically present at the site where MAs are performing services. Medical assistants may not perform any tasks defined as the practice of medicine in the Oregon Medical Practice Act (for example, triage.) Medical assistants must clearly identify themselves as “medical assistants” before they interact with patients. Legal counsel for the American Association of Medical Assistants has interpreted these guidelines to mean that in Oregon, physicians can delegate tasks like venipuncture, subcutaneous and intramuscular injections, EKG administration, and the verbatim transmission of verbal physician orders to medical assistants.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.86 $30,900
Mid-Level $19.90 $41,390
Top-Level $25.31 $52,640
Average Earnings $20.05 $41,700


7. Connecticut: If you want to work as a medical assistant in Connecticut, you’ll need to be certified. Connecticut is one of the most proscriptive states in the U.S. when it comes to medical assistant scope of practice. For example: Connecticut is one of only two states that doesn’t allow MAs to administer medications either orally or by injection. Medical assistants are not allowed to administer oxygen or perform X-rays, either. Delegatory guidelines for Connecticut’s medical assistants are summarized in a Department of Public Health advisory entitled “ Medical Assistant Information.”

On average, medical assistants in the Constitution State make 11 percent more than the average medical assistant salary across all states. The average salary for medical assistants in Connecticut is $19.75 an hour or $41,070 a year. The average medical assistant salary in Connecticut for MAs who’ve accumulated a number of years of experience is $25.44 an hour or $52,910 annually.

Some 8,420 medical assistants are employed throughout the state. Because of the tight restrictions placed on MAs’ clinical scope of practice here, the majority of medical assistants in the Constitution State work in an administrative capacity. According to the Connecticut Department of Labor, there are 1,068 employment openings in the state for medical assistants every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $15.19 $31,590
Mid-Level $18.87 $39,240
Top-Level $25.44 $52,910
Average Earnings $19.75 $41,070


8. Hawaii: Medical assistants in Hawaii must have a high school diploma. The Aloha State doesn’t have a statute regulating medical assistant scope of practice. The Hawaii Medical Board determines which tasks physicians can delegate to unlicensed professionals, and the Hawaii Board of Nursing through its Nurse Practice Act determines which tasks registered nurses and advanced practice nurses can delegate to unlicensed professionals. The basic rule of thumb is that in Hawaii, MAs are never allowed to perform any tasks that expressly require professional licensure. Thus, they may take vital signs, collect laboratory specimens and draw blood, but they cannot perform tasks like triage that require assessment.

Some 4,190 medical assistants are employed throughout Hawaii, and 510 employment opportunities open up for MAs every year. The average pay for medical assistants in Hawaii is $19.49 an hour or $40,530 a year, which is 10 percent higher than the average wage for medical assistants throughout all parts of the U.S. However, given the fact that Hawaii’s cost of living is 88 percent higher than the national average, your medical assisting pay here will have less purchasing power. The average medical assistant salary in Hawaii for MAs with significant experience is $24.98 an hour or $51,960 annually.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.93 $31,060
Mid-Level $19.06 $39,640
Top-Level $24.98 $51,960
Average Earnings $19.49 $40,530


9. New York: How much does a medical assistant make in New York? MAs start at $14.20 an hour or $29,540 a year. But by the time they have accumulated 20 years or more of experience, the average salary for medical assistants in New York is $25.05 an hour or $52,110 a year. The average medical assistant salary in New York for all levels of experience is $19.16 an hour or $39,850 annually.

The Empire State does not require medical assistants to be either licensed or certified. Most employers, though, prefer to work with certified MAs. MA scope of practice is under the jurisdiction of the Office of the Professions of the New York State Education Department (NYSED). With the proper training and supervision, MAs are specifically allowed to do administrative tasks like filing and medical billing, and clinical tasks like taking vital signs, performing EKGs, taking laboratory specimens (including by blood draw), and assisting licensed practitioners. They are never allowed to administer medications by any route or perform any diagnostic assessments, including triage.

25,490 medical assistants are employed throughout the Empire State. Nearly 82 percent of them are female, and they tend to be a far more racially and ethnically diverse group than New York’s other healthcare professions. (The latter is especially true of the MA workforce in New York City.) Physicians’ offices and hospitals each employ 24 percent of the MA workforce; other significant medical assistant employers include nursing care facilities, pharmacies, outpatient care centers, and veterinary services.

There are 4,660 new employment opportunities for medical assistants in the Empire State every year. Employers typically observe that it’s more difficult to retain medical assistants on staff than it is to recruit new job candidates. The retention issue is more serious for medical assistant employers in the rural upstate New York than it is for employers in the Big Apple.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.20 $29,540
Mid-Level $18.59 $38,660
Top-Level $25.05 $52,110
Average Earnings $19.16 $39,850


10. Colorado: If you want to work as a medical assistant in Colorado, you’ll need a high school diploma and transcripts that prove you’ve taken basic science coursework. But you don’t need to be licensed or certified. MA scope of practice is not addressed directly in Colorado’s state statutes but can be inferred from Rule 800, an amendment to Title 12 Article 36. MEDICAL PRACTICE, which describes the circumstances under which licensed physicians can delegate healthcare-related tasks to unlicensed professionals. Medical assistants to whom tasks are delegated must be trained, and their competence must be documented; furthermore, their competence must be reviewed on an annual basis. The delegating physician must conduct some kind of quality review of the services rendered by MAs at least once every two weeks.

Within those guidelines, physicians may delegate a wide range of tasks to MAs, including taking vital signs, performing venipuncture and administering subcutaneous and intramuscular injections. Physicians can also delegate tasks to MAs through intermediary personnel such as nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and registered nurses.

The average pay for medical assistants in Colorado is $18.77 an hour or $39,040 annually, which is 6 percent higher than the average wage for MAs in all parts of the U.S. Medical assistants working in Denver make 3 percent more than that—$19.26 an hour or $40,060 a year. But medical assistants working in Colorado Springs earn $18.02 an hour or $37,490 a year, which is 4 percent less than the average medical assistant salary in Colorado.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.16 $29,450
Mid-Level $18.49 $38,460
Top-Level $24.26 $50,460
Average Earnings $18.77 $39,040


11. New Hampshire: New Hampshire doesn’t impose any educational requirements upon medical assistants; nor does the state require licensure or certification. As in other states, prospective employers have a marked preference for MAs who’ve passed a certification exam after completing a formal medical assisting training program. The average salary of a medical assistant in New Hampshire is $18.68 an hour or $38,860 a year, which is 5 percent higher than the average pay for MAs across all parts of the U.S.

Medical assistants in the Granite State have broad latitude when it comes to the tasks that can be delegated to them. However, the New Hampshire Board of Medicine is concerned that patients may not be able to distinguish medical assistants from registered nurses and has issued guidance on that issue. The New Hampshire State Society of Medical Assistants is the professional organization for MAs in the Granite State.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.95 $31,100
Mid-Level $18.38 $38,230
Top-Level $23.82 $49,540
Average Earnings $18.68 $38,860


12. Wisconsin: The average pay for medical assistants in Wisconsin is 5 percent higher than the national average. The average medical assistant salary in Wisconsin is $18.65 an hour or $38,800 annually. Salaries vary according to MA geographic location. In Milwaukee, the Badger State’s largest city, MAs average $18.79 an hour or $39,090 a year, 6 percent above the state average. But in Madison, the state capital, MAs make $12.97 an hour or $26,984 a year, which is 27 percent less. One reason for this differential in pay may be that Madison lies in the middle of a very rural area where there aren’t a lot of employment alternatives, so employers don’t need to offer higher salaries to medical assistants as a retention incentive.

Section 448.03(2)(e) of Wisconsin’s medical practice statutes recognizes a physician’s right to delegate tasks related to patient service so long as the professional to whom the tasks have been supervised are properly trained and supervised. Beyond that, Wisconsin laws do not specifically address medical assistant scope of practice. According to legal counsel for the American Association of Medical Assistants, MAs should be able to collect laboratory specimens, perform venipuncture, and administer intramuscular and subcutaneous injections. They should also be able to transmit a physician’s verbal orders to a party responsible for writing those orders down. The Wisconsin State Board of Nursing is responsible for determining which patient care responsibilities registered nurses can delegate to MAs.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.73 $30,640
Mid-Level $18.40 $38,270
Top-Level $24.01 $49,950
Average Earnings $18.65 $38,800


13. Rhode Island: The average medical assistant salary in Rhode Island is $18.51 an hour or $38,510 a year. The Rhode Island Department of Health has issued explicit advisories concerning which tasks licensed physicians can and cannot delegate to medical assistants. First of all, the supervisory agreement needs to be written rather than verbal. Medical assistants can perform a broad range of administrative tasks but a far more circumscribed range of clinical tasks. Before MAs can draw blood, administer medications or administer vaccines, they must demonstrate their competency to the supervising physician who must then document this competency. MAs in the Ocean State are never permitted to perform triage or any other type of diagnosis, place sutures, starts IVs, take X-rays or perform any procedure that requires a license. There are only 300 employment openings for medical assistants in Rhode Island each year, which is probably because Rhode Island is such a small state.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.94 $29,000
Mid-Level $18.06 $37,570
Top-Level $24.73 $51,430
Average Earnings $18.51 $38,510


14. Maryland: Some 12,660 medical assistants work in Maryland, and there may be a significant number of MAs who live in Maryland but work in physicians’ offices and medical centers in the District of Columbia. The average salary for medical assistants in Maryland is $18.51 an hour or $38,510 a year, which is 4 percent higher than the national average. MAs in Baltimore, Maryland’s biggest city, make a marginally higher salary: $18.60 an hour or $38,680 a year. The medical assistant salary in Maryland for MAs who’ve accumulated a few years of job experience is $24.73 an hour or $51,430 a year.

The Free State is quite liberal in the tasks it allows medical assistants to perform. The scope of delegation is detailed in the Maryland Administrative Code 10.32.12.04. With proper training and supervision, Maryland medical assistants can establish intravenous lines, inject intravenous drugs and even administer small doses of topical anesthetics. They can perform tests such as basic pulmonary function tests, tuberculin skin tests, and visual field tests. With onsite supervision, they can inject contrast materials for imaging procedures. They can even assist physicians with minor tasks during surgery. Maryland medical assistants have also been permitted to administer COVID-19 vaccinations at state-sponsored vaccination sites following successful completion of specialized training.Maryland-based medical assistants are expressly forbidden to do anything that might require a license in the State of Maryland. Restricted activities would include conducting a physical examination on their own or providing physical therapy.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.81 $28,720
Mid-Level $18.08 $37,600
Top-Level $24.37 $50,690
Average Earnings $18.50 $38,480


15. North Dakota: In order to work as a medical assistant in North Dakota, you must have a high school diploma. While North Dakota doesn’t require all medical assistants to be licensed or certified, any MA who administers an injection must be a Medical Assistant III. Medical assistants who’ve been classified as Level III must have a completed a medical assisting program approved by the North Dakota Board of Nursing, have two years of nursing education, and register with the North Dakota Board of Nursing. A Medical Assistant II must also take continuing education classes. Guidelines pertaining to physician delegation of tasks to medical assistants are described in North Dakota Century Code Chapter 43-17.

The average medical assistant salary in North Dakota is $18.45 an hour or $38,380 a year. Most medical assistants in the Peace Garden State work in long-term, extended care facilities where they are called “medication assistants” to distinguish them from the “nursing assistants” who are responsible for helping patients with the routine activities of daily life.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.86 $28,830
Mid-Level $18.19 $37,840
Top-Level $24.12 $50,170
Average Earnings $18.45 $38,380


16. New Jersey: New Jersey requires medical assistants to be certified before they can administer subcutaneous or intramuscular injections. No other language in the Garden State’s statutes or regulations address medical assistants’ clinical scope of practice, so it is likely that a licensed physician in an outpatient setting can delegate clinical tasks like venipuncture, taking vital signs, and performing EKGs to MAs so long as MAs are properly trained.

Some 17,360 medical assistants are employed throughout the Garden State, but some MAs who live in New Jersey may actually work in nearby New York City. Between retirement, attrition and new job creation, New Jersey sees approximately 2,790 MA employment opportunities every year. Physicians’ offices employ 73 percent of all medical assistants in New Jersey (12,690); another 16 percent (2,600) are employed in general medical and surgical hospitals.

The average salary for medical assistants in New Jersey is $18.45 an hour or $38,380 a year, which is 4 percent more than the average pay rate for all medical assistants throughout the U.S. Top-level medical assistants in New Jersey with some years of experience average $24.12 an hour or $50,170 a year. Salaries vary considerably by location throughout the Garden State: Medical assistants in cities like Newark and Jersey City make around $31,000 annually, approximately 16 percent less than the average MA wage throughout the U.S.; this likely reflects the fact that physicians’ offices here serve a lower-income patient population. In tony suburbs such as Princeton, however, the average annual wage is 38,602 a year, which is 1 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in New Jersey.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.37 $27,810
Mid-Level $17.91 $37,250
Top-Level $24.12 $50,170
Average Earnings $18.23 $37,920


17. Maine: In Maine, delegating physicians assume explicit liability for medical assistants’ acts. A physician must remain within close physical proximity to any medical assistant to whom that physician has delegated a task so that if something goes wrong, the physician can rectify the situation as soon as possible. MAs in the Pine Tree State don’t need to meet any educational or certification standards, but most employers prefer to work with medical assistants who’ve had some formal MA training, and formal MA training requires a high school diploma.

The majority of Maine MAs work in physicians’ offices in administrative capacities. So long as they’ve received adequate training, medical assistants in the Pine Tree State can perform any clinical procedure delegated by a physician or a registered nurse so long as that procedure doesn’t fall under the purview of another healthcare professional’s license. The average medical assistant salary in Maine is $18.18 an hour or $37,820 a year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.28 $29,700
Mid-Level $18.10 $37,640
Top-Level $23.27 $48,400
Average Earnings $18.18 $37,820


18. Iowa: You don’t have to meet any educational or certification requirements in order to work as a medical assistant in Iowa, but most healthcare employers prefer to work with MAs who have graduated from accredited medical assisting programs. Medical assistants who’ve been properly trained can perform any task delegated to them by a licensed supervising physician so long as that task does not require a license. Thus, Iowa MAs are not allowed to start IVs, provide IV therapy, or do any sort of patient assessment or triage, but they are allowed to take vital signs, draw blood, and administer subcutaneous and intramuscular injections. Additionally, MAs must be sure that patients understand they are medical assistants.

The average pay for medical assistants in Iowa is $18.11 an hour or $37,660 a year, which is 2 percent more than the average pay rate for MAs across the U.S. Medical assistant salary in Iowa for MAs with some years of experience is $23.84 an hour or $49,590 a year. Iowa’s cost of living is 17 percent below the national average, so these dollars stretch far. Iowa has approximately 770 job openings for medical assistants every year. The state’s professional MA association is the Iowa Society of Medical Assistants.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.48 $28,040
Mid-Level $17.97 $37,370
Top-Level $23.84 $49,590
Average Earnings $18.11 $37,660


19. Illinois: How much does a medical assistant make in Illinois? The average salary for medical assistants in Illinois is $17.88 an hour or $37,190 annually, but wages vary according to experience. Top-level MAs make $49,430 annually, which is 56 percent more than what entry-level MAs make ($27,480). Medical assistants in Chicago, the Land of Lincoln’s biggest city, make $18.30 an hour or $38,060 annually, which is 2 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Illinois.

In order to be a medical assistant in the Land of Lincoln, you must have a high school diploma. Medical assistants are not licensed in Illinois, and the state does not mandate that they be certified in order to work. There’s no discrete practice act or set of guidelines that governs what medical assistants can or cannot do in Illinois; limitations on MAs’ scope of practice is generally included in the practice standards for other Illinois healthcare professionals. For example: The Illinois Nurse Practice Act states that a nurse cannot delegate any task that requires a nursing license to a medical assistant. In particular, a nurse can never delegate medication administration to a medical assistant. But the Illinois Administrative Code, Section 1285.335 Physician Delegation of Authority states that a physician can delegate tasks covered by physician licensure at his or her discretion.

Approximately 22,030 medical assistants are employed throughout Illinois. The greater metropolitan Chicago area has the fourth-highest level of MA employment in the nation. Most medical assistants in the Land of Lincoln work in physicians’ offices and clinics. Few employers will hire an MA who doesn’t have some specialized training in the field. The Land of Lincoln has 2,910 annual job openings for MAs every year. Illinois medical assistants also have their own professional organization, The Illinois Society of Medical Assistants.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.21 $27,480
Mid-Level $17.58 $36,560
Top-Level $23.76 $49,430
Average Earnings $17.88 $37,190


20. Vermont: Educational preparation and scope of practice are not defined for medical assistants working in the State of Vermont. The Vermont Board of Nursing has issued a position statement, however, that clarifies some of the surrounding issues. Physicians, registered nurses, and licensed vocation nurses may all delegate tasks to medical assistants. Supervising RNs are advised to verify the competency of medical assistants in writing. Clinical tasks assigned to MAs may include preparing patients for physical exams or procedures, collecting and taking laboratory specimens, taking patient histories, removing sutures, changing dressings, administering medications, and drawing blood.

The average salary of a medical assistant in Vermont is $17.88 an hour or $37,190 a year. This is roughly on par with the average pay of all medical assistants throughout the U.S. Vermont is the most rural state in the U.S.: More than 80 percent of the Green Mountain State’s population lives in a rural area or in a small town. Rural areas don’t offer the same opportunities to individuals who want to change their occupations, so it’s likely turnover among Vermont’s medical assistant workforce is low.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $14.03 $29,180
Mid-Level $17.81 $37,050
Top-Level $22.84 $47,510
Average Earnings $17.88 $37,190


21. Montana: The average medical assistant salary in Montana is $17.78 an hour or $36,930 a year, which is only marginally higher than the average pay rate of all MAs working throughout the U.S. Montana is one of the few states to define the role of the medical assistant in its statutory code, and this definition is clarified and expanded upon in administrative rules issued by the Montana State Board of Medical Examiners.

While prior training is not mandatory, Montana’s performance standards for MAs are strict enough to make most prospective employers opt for hiring graduates of accredited medical assistant programs. Medical assistants may not perform injections other than immunizations or perform any other invasive procedures. While they may administer fluids or medications through an intravenous line, they can only do so while under the direct supervision of a licensed physician or a licensed podiatrist.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.41 $27,900
Mid-Level $17.64 $36,690
Top-Level $23.37 $48,600
Average Earnings $17.78 $36,980


22. Idaho: While Idaho doesn’t require medical assistants to be certified, most employers in the Gem State won’t hire an MA who hasn’t attended an accredited medical assisting training program. Idaho also requires the completion of an IV certification class before MAs will be allowed to perform any type of IV-related task. Beyond that, there are no state statutes specifically standardizing scope of practice for MAs based in the Gem State. The Idaho Board of Medicine has issued guidance advising physicians to ensure supervision by remaining onsite where MAs are working and to put protocols for basic procedures that MAs will be performing in writing.

The average medical assistant salary in Idaho is $17.67 an hour or $36,760 a year. This is only marginally less than the wage that MAs make averaged throughout all 50 states. Medical assistants who’ve accumulated some years of experience average $23.38 an hour or $48,620 annually in Idaho.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Type Entry-Level $13.00 $27,030
Mid-Level $17.37 $36,120
Top-Level $23.38 $48,620
Average Earnings $17.67 $36,760


23. Virginia: Virginia recently made a change to that part of its legal code that defines what medical assistants can and cannot do. As of January 2022, medical assistants in the Old Dominion State will be permitted to administer controlled substances by injection so long as they have been properly trained and remain under the direct and immediate supervision of a licensed physician.

Medical assistants seeking employment in Virginia are not required to meet specific educational or certification standards. Most employers prefer to work with MAs who’ve graduated from an accredited medical assisting training program, though. Physicians may delegate a broad range of administrative and clinical responsibilities to medical assistants, including taking vital signs, scheduling appointments, performing general bookkeeping and secretarial tasks, collecting laboratory specimens, performing EKGs, drawing blood, and giving nonintravenous injections.

Some 14,330 medical assistants are employed throughout Virginia in various capacities. Many MAs who live within the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area may live in Virginia but work in D.C. There are 2,120 employment opportunities opening up for MAs in the Old Dominion State every year. It’s likely that retention is an issue for employers in the state’s biggest cities as well as the regions closest to D.C. because the average pay for medical assistants in Virginia is only $17.66 an hour or $36,730. Plenty of other jobs are available for individuals in this education bracket that pay similarly or even more. The medical assistant salary in Virginia for MAs who end up accumulating some years of experience within the profession average $24.88 an hour or $512,740 annually.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.59 $26,180
Mid-Level $16.96 $35,270
Top-Level $24.88 $51,740
Average Earnings $17.66 $36,730


24. Nevada: The average pay for medical assistants in Nevada is $17.29 an hour or $35,970 a year, which is 3 percent less than what MAs in all parts of the U.S. earn on average. MAs in Las Vegas, the Silver State’s biggest city, earn even less: $17.06 an hour or $35,450 annually. This leads to the assumption that medical assistant turnover may be fairly high in Sin City where there are plenty of other jobs in the casino industry that probably pay better. Churn is not likely to be as big an issue in the more rural areas of the state, however, where other employment options are limited and the medical assistant salary in Nevada has more purchasing power.

No particular education or training is required by state law for individuals who want to be MAs in Nevada, but employers prefer to hire graduates of accredited medical assistant training programs. The term “medical assistant” is defined in 454.181 of the Nevada Administrative Code, and guidelines for delegating tasks to them are reviewed in NAC 630.810. Physicians and physician assistants may delegate a variety of tasks to MAs in the Silver State, including aseptic procedures, blood draws, nonintravenous injections, and taking vital signs. Under the direct supervision of a physician, MAs may also perform ultrasound therapy, massage therapy, and small-volume nebulizer treatments.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.37 $27,810
Mid-Level $17.18 $35,740
Top-Level $22.14 $46,050
Average Earnings $17.29 $35,970


25. Nebraska: Language specifically pertaining to medical assistants’ scope of practice in Nebraska can be found in 38-2025 of the Nebraska Medical Practice Act. Medical assistants in the Corn Husker State are persons who perform tasks under the supervision of licensed physicians or physician assistants. Licensed physicians may also delegate tasks to medical assistants through intermediaries like nurse practitioners and registered nurses. MAs may measure vital signs, perform venipuncture and enter data into the electronic health record when authorized by a supervising physician. In order to administer medications in outpatient settings, they must register with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (NDHHS) and meet specified requirements in order to be classified as medication aides.

The average medical assistant salary in Nebraska is $17.22 an hour or $35,810 a year, which is 3 percent less than the average pay for all MAs throughout the U.S.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.94 $26,910
Mid-Level $16.55 $34,430
Top-Level $23.63 $49,160
Average Earnings $17.22 $35,810


26. Arizona: The average pay for medical assistants in Arizona is $17.15 an hour or $35,670 annually but there is some regional variation in the MA pay scale throughout the Grand Canyon State.

Medical assistants in Phoenix make $17.37 an hour or $36,130 annually, which is 1 percent more than the average medical assistant salary in Arizona, while MAs in Tucson make $16.57 an hour or $33,000 a year, which is 7 percent less. Medical assistants who stick with the career and accumulate some years of experience average $20.68 an hour or $43,010 a year. Some 19,460 medical assistants work in administrative and clinical capacities throughout the Grand Canyon State. The Arizona Revised Statutes are quite specific about what a medical assistant can and cannot do. Under the direct and immediate supervision of a licensed physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner, an MA can collect body fluid specimens for laboratory analysis and administer injections. A medical assistant can perform many different administrative tasks, including billing and coding, insurance verification and patient appointment scheduling, without supervision.

Arizona is one of the few states that requires MAs to complete an accredited medical assistant training program as a condition of employment. When people pursue formal training for their occupation, not only do they bring a higher level of skills to their workplace, they are also far less likely to leave their profession to pursue other employment opportunities. Thus, Arizona’s MA workforce can be presumed to be relatively stable. While medical assistants may retire from their profession, it is likely that few drop out through attrition. The number of available medical assisting jobs in Arizona is projected to grow by 44 percent within the next decade.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.46 $28,000
Mid-Level $17.22 $35,810
Top-Level $20.68 $43,010
Average Earnings $17.15 $35,670


27. Wyoming: No language exists in any of Wyoming’s statutes or regulations that specifically addresses what physicians in the Cowboy State can or cannot delegate to medical assistants. In the absence of specific guidelines, it can be assumed that physicians in Wyoming can delegate tasks that are commonly delegated to medical assistants in other states such as measuring vital signs, performing venipuncture, and administering subcutaneous and intramuscular injections. It can also be assumed that physicians can delegate tasks to MAs through intermediaries like physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses.

The average salary of a medical assistant in Wyoming is $17.14 an hour or $35,660 a year. This is 3 percent less than the average wage MAs make throughout all parts of the U.S. Some 660 medical assistants are currently employed throughout the Cowboy State, mostly in physicians’ offices where they perform a combination of administrative and clinical duties. Thirty employment opportunities open up for MAs in Wyoming every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.02 $27,090
Mid-Level $16.69 $34,720
Top-Level $22.73 $47,280
Average Earnings $17.14 $35,660


28. Utah: Utah’s Medical Practice Act defines a medical assistant as “an unlicensed individual working under the direct and immediate supervision of a licensed [or osteopathic] physician and surgeon.” MA scope of practice encompasses the specific tasks delegated by the licensed physician so long as those tasks are in accordance with medical standards and ethics. Thus, MAs in the Beehive State can provide any healthcare-related service that does not specifically require a license such as vital sign measurement, venipuncture, and intramuscular and subdermal injections, but they cannot assess patients or set up treatment plans.

The average pay for medical assistants in Utah is $16.91 an hour or $35,170 annually, which is 5 percent less than the national average for all MAs across the U.S. After some years on the job, the medical assistant salary in Utah goes up to $20.66 an hour or $42,970 a year. Medical assistant salaries in Utah are the lowest for any part of the western United States, but outside the Salt Lake City Metropolitan Area, it is likely that these low salaries do not contribute to employment volatility. Some 7,990 are employed in administrative and clinical capacities throughout the Beehive State.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.06 $27,170
Mid-Level $17.01 $35,380
Top-Level$20.66 $42,970
Average Earnings $16.91 $35,170


29. Michigan: How much do medical assistants make in Michigan? It varies with experience. The average salary for medical assistants in Michigan is $16.75 an hour or $34,830, which is 6 percent less than the average salary for all MAs across the U.S. The medical assistant salary in Michigan for top-level MAs with years of experience is $20.42 an hour or $42,480 annually, but this is still 28 percent less than the average wage for all occupations across the U.S. ($56,310 annually).

MA salaries across the Wolverine State fluctuate by location as well. In Grand Rapids, medical assistants average $16.78 an hour or $34,894 annually while in Detroit they average $17.22 an hour or $35,810 annually. In upscale Ann Arbor, on the other hand, medical assistants earn $19.39 an hour or $40,340 a year.

Approximately 2,940 employment opportunities for medical assistants open up every year in Michigan. Although some of these may be newly created jobs, many of these vacancies are probably replacement openings. Due to the low wages paid to medical assistants in this state, Michigan most likely has an MA retention issue. There are plenty of jobs available for Michigan workers with similar educational backgrounds that pay better.

Michigan law doesn’t require medical assistants to be certified or licensed. According to Chapter 333.16215 of the Michigan Public Health Code, MAs in the Wolverine State may perform any medically related task delegated to them by a licensed physician so long as that task does not expressly require a medical license. According to the Michigan Society of Medical Assistants, an administrative MA’s responsibilities can include answering telephones, greeting patients, billing, bookkeeping, handling correspondence, scheduling appointments, coding and filling out insurance forms, updating and filing patients’ medical records, and arranging for hospital admissions and laboratory services. A clinical MA’s scope of practice can include taking medical histories, assisting with physical exams, collecting and preparing laboratory specimens, drawing blood, taking EKGs, preparing and administering medications (when directed to by a physician), removing sutures, and changing wound dressings.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.08 $27,200
Mid-Level $16.84 $35,030
Top-Level $20.42 $42,480
Average Earnings $16.75 $34,830


30. Florida: Florida has no legal mandate requiring licensure or certification of medical assistants. An MA’s scope of practice is defined in Florida Statute Title XXXII Chapter 458.3485, and it is much broader than medical assisting scopes of practice in many other states. Under the supervision of a licensed physician, a medical assistant may perform a wide range of clinical procedures, including venipuncture, nonintravenous injections, medication administration, and dialysis protocols (both in a clinical setting and in the home). In the Sunshine State, medical assistants can even perform IV infusion therapies so long as the supervising physician is directly on site.

These additional areas of responsibility granted to medical assistants have not succeeded in raising the average salary for medical assistants in Florida, however. How much does a medical assistant make in Florida? On average, the medical assistant salary in Florida is $16.73 an hour or $34,800 annually, which is just 62 percent of the average salary for all occupations throughout the U.S. In Jacksonville, the Sunshine State’s biggest city, medical assistants average $17.08 an hour or $35,530 a year, which is 3 percent above the state average, while in Miami, they earn $17.88 an hour or $35,530 a year, which is 7 percent above the state average. In Tampa, however, medical assistants only average $16.09 an hour or $33,460 annually, which is 4 percent less than the state average.

Some 56,010 medical assistants are employed in Florida, the third-highest number employed in any state of the U.S. Fifty-six percent of these MAs (31,538) work in physicians’ offices while 24 percent (13,280) work in hospitals or outpatient care clinics. Nine thousand employment opportunities open up for MAs in the Sunshine State every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.90 $26,830
Mid-Level $16.39 $34,100
Top-Level $21.64 $45,010
Average Earnings $16.73 $34,800


31. Indiana: The average pay for medical assistants in Indiana is $16.73 an hour or $34,790 a year, which is 6 percent lower than the average payrate for all medical assistants across the U.S. Salaries in the state’s largest city, Indianapolis, are significantly higher: Indianapolis-based MAs make $17.59 an hour or $36,580 a year, which is 5 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Indiana and very close to the national average for all MAs. Some 16,790 medical assistants work in the Hoosier State, doing clerical and clinical work in physicians’ offices and clinics. In Indiana, demand for medical assisting services is high: Projections Central, a website operated by the U.S. Department of Labor, projects that in the past decade, the profession grew by 29 percent. There are 2,180 employment openings for medical assistants in Indiana every year.

The scope of practice for Indiana medical assistants is defined in and regulated by the Indiana Medical Practice Act. Medical assistants work in outpatient settings in the Hoosier State under the direct supervision of licensed physicians. Physicians may delegate a “reasonable” range of clerical and clinical tasks to MAs, including vital sign measurement, venipuncture, and the administration of medications (including vaccines) through subcutaneous or intramuscular injection. The State of Indiana requires MAs to have a high school diploma, and most employers in the Hoosier State prefer to work with medical assistants who are graduates of an accredited training program. The Indiana Society of Medical Assistants is the professional association for MAs in the Hoosier State.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $13.05 $27,140
Mid-Level $16.69 $34,720
Top-Level $20.60 $42,850
Average Earnings $16.73 $34,790


32. Delaware: No language exists in Delaware’s legal code specifically addressing the nature of the tasks that physicians may delegate to medical assistants. However, the Delaware Nurse Practice Act regulates the types of tasks that registered nurses may delegate to medical assistants. In common practice, licensed physicians delegate a range of clinical tasks to properly trained MAs in the First State, including vital sign measurement, venipuncture, and the administration of medications through intramuscular and subcutaneous injection. Though the state does not impose education or certification requirements, most employers prefer to work with MAs who’ve graduated from an accredited medical assisting training program.

The average salary of a medical assistant in Delaware is $16.71 an hour or $34,750 a year. This is 6 percent less than the average amount MAs earn across all parts of the U.S. Delaware MAs with some years of professional experience average $22.66 an hour or $47,140 a year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.26 $25,510
Mid-Level $16.34 $33,980
Top-Level $22.66 $47,140
Average Earnings $16.71 $34,750


33. Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania doesn’t license or regulate medical assistants, nor does it impose any educational requirements on MAs. However, most employers do prefer to hire certified MAs.

Title 63, Chapter 12. 63 P.S. § 422.17 (2011) of the Pennsylvania State Statutes, entitled “Medical Practice Act of 1985" specifies conditions that physicians must follow when they delegate clinical tasks to medical assistants. The delegated task must not fall within the scope of practice of another regulated healthcare occupation such as a midwife or physician assistant. The delegated task must be within the realm of accepted medical practice, and the delegating physician must assume full liability for the medical assistant’s actions. Most significantly, the medical assistant cannot perform the task if the patient objects to the task being delegated to a medical assistant.

How much do medical assistants make in Pennsylvania? The average salary for medical assistants in Pennsylvania is $16.67 an hour or $34,670 a year. This amount is 6 percent less than the average medical assistant salary throughout all parts of the U.S. and 38 percent less than the average wage for all occupations across the U.S. Medical assistant salary in Pennsylvania is the lowest of any of the Northeastern states. There’s some variation in salary across the state: In Philadelphia, on the eastern side of the state, medical assistants average $17.55 an hour or $36,500 a year, which is roughly on par with the national average for MAs; in more westerly Pittsburgh, MAs only average $12.93 an hour or $26,902 a year.

Some 27,740 medical assistants are employed throughout Pennsylvania, and 3,910 MA employment opportunities open up every year. Some 15,726 work in physicians’ offices while 6,662 work in hospitals and outpatient care clinics. Medical assistants in Pennsylvania have a professional association called the Pennsylvania Society of Medical Assistants. MA wages are low enough in the Keystone State that it’s likely employers have a significant retention issue since many jobs outside healthcare are available to individuals with these employment qualifications that pay better.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.84 $26,700
Mid-Level $16.40 $34,110
Top-Level $21.57 $44,860
Average Earnings $16.67 $34,670


34. North Carolina: How much do medical assistants make in North Carolina? The average salary for medical assistants in North Carolina is $16.61 annually or $34,540 a year, which is 6 percent less than the average salary for MAs in all parts of the U.S. There’s some geographic variation in salary amounts. In Charlotte, the Tar Heel State’s biggest cities, medical assistants earn $17.34 an hour or $36,060 an hour, which is close to the national average; in Raleigh, the state’s capital, medical assistants earn slightly less—$16.93 an hour or $35,220 annually.

Most medical assistants in North Carolina are not salaried employees but are paid by the hour. The pay MAs earn in North Carolina compares favorably with the average annual pay that hourly employees make in North Carolina ($26,796 ), so it’s likely MA employers outside Charlotte and Raleigh do not have a significant retention issue: There are not a lot of jobs for medical assistants who want to leave the profession that pay comparably. Some 20,240 medical assistants are employed throughout the Tar Heel State, and 3,910 MA employment opportunities open up every year. The North Carolina Society of Medical Assistants is the occupation’s state-wide professional organization.

There are no educational, licensure, or certification requirements for medical assistants in North Carolina. North Carolina doesn’t provide a specific list of tasks that medical assistants can or cannot do, either. Guidelines regarding the scope of practice for medical assistants must be inferred from North Carolina General Statute §90-18(c)(13), which is subtitled “Practicing without license; penalties”. This statue allows physicians to delegate any task permitted by law or established by custom to a qualified person but does not set guidelines for determining what “qualified” or “custom” means. The statute is generally interpreted to mean that physicians may not delegate tasks that fall under other healthcare professionals’ licensure purview or tasks that other physicians would not delegate.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.82 $26,660
Mid-Level $16.70 $34,740
Top-Level $20.64 $42,930
Average Earnings $16.61 $34,540


35. Ohio: How much does a medical assistant make in Ohio? That depends upon where you’re looking. The average salary for medical assistants in Ohio throughout all parts of the state is $16.48 an hour or $34,270 annually. But medical assistants in Cleveland on the banks of Lake Erie in the northernmost reaches of the state average $14.13 an hour or $29,385 a year, which is 14 percent less than the state average, and medical assistants in Toledo, close to the shared border with Michigan, average $13 an hour or $27,050 a year, which is 21 percent less than the state average. Cincinnati-based MAs average $15.25 an hour or $31,720 a year—7 percent of the state average. In Columbus, the Buckeye State’s largest city, MA salaries are slightly higher than the average medical assistant salary in Ohio: $16.80 an hour or $35,140 a year.

Ohio doesn’t impose education or certification requirements upon its medical assistant workforce, but most prospective employers prefer to hire certified MAs, which means MAs who have completed a formal medical assisting program. Ohio Administrative Code 4731-23 Delegation of Medical Tasks is the statute that describes the list of tasks that can be legally delegated to MAs. Medical assistants in Ohio are not allowed to do anything that could be construed as assessing or diagnosing a patient, but they are free to perform most tasks beyond that provided they’ve received adequate training, and performance of the task is supervised by a licensed physician. However, Ohio MAs are never allowed to administer anesthesia, intravenous drugs, or controlled substances.

More than 26,000 medical assistants are employed throughout the Buckeye State and 3,330 MA employment opportunities open up every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.49 $25,970
Mid-Level $16.42 $34,150
Top-Level $20.63 $42,900
Average Earnings $16.48 $34,270


36. Georgia: How much do medical assistants make in Georgia? While the average salary for medical assistants in Georgia is $16.47 an hour or $34,250 annually, the average MA pay in Atlanta, the state’s largest city, is Higher: $17.19 an hour or $35,750 a year. MA salaries in Georgia vary by experience as well as by geographic location: Entry-level MAs average $11.55 an hour or $24,020 annually, just 70 percent of the average medical assistant salary in Georgia, but MAs with some years of experience under their belts average $21.97 an hour or $45,700 a year—133 percent higher than the entry-level salary.

The State of Georgia won’t require you to be certified or meet special educational requirements in order to work as a medical assistant, but it’s likely that prospective employers will give preference to workers who’ve been certified after the completion of a formal MA training program. § 43-34-44. Role of medical assistants clarified is the sole statute that describes what medical assistants in Georgia can and cannot do. Tasks can be delegated to Georgia MAs by licensed advanced practice registered nurses as well as by physicians. Medical assistants must be properly trained. Once trained, MAs can perform relatively sophisticated medical tasks such as subcutaneous and intramuscular injections, the administration of nebulizer treatments, and the removal of sutures so long as the supervising healthcare professional is onsite. MAs cannot perform any task that specifically requires a license under state law.

Most of Georgia’s 25,820 medical assistants are employed throughout the populous Atlanta-Sandy Springs metropolitan area. It’s likely that employers have a retention problem with MAs here since medical assistant pay isn’t high, and there are many jobs available for individuals with these educational qualifications that pay better. Some 4,050 employment opportunities for medical assistants open up throughout the state every year. The Peach State’s MA professional organization is the Georgia State Society of Medical Assistants.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.55 $24,020
Mid-Level $16.10 $33,490
Top-Level $21.97 $45,700
Average Earnings $16.47 $34,250


37. Tennessee: At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Tennessee governor Bill Lee issued an executive order authorizing certified medical assistants to administer COVID-19 vaccines and perform other tasks that hitherto had been within the purview of the state’s licensed vocational nurses. This was a major accolade for both medical assistant certification and medical assistant scope of practice in the Volunteer State.

Section 63-19-110 of the Tennessee Physician Assistant Act is the only statutory language that addresses the delegation of tasks to unlicensed medical assistants. So long as MAs have been trained and their competency documented, MAs in Tennessee can perform a wide range of clinical services, including venipuncture, the administration of medication through intramuscular or subcutaneous injections, and the measurement of vital signs. MAs cannot perform any task whose commission specifically calls for licensure, and in Tennessee, that means MAs cannot perform radiographic procedures.

The average pay for medical assistants in Tennessee is $16.34 an hour or $33,990 annually. This is 8 percent less than what medical assistants make on average throughout all parts of the U.S. The pay scale is slightly higher in Tennessee’s largest cities: Medical assistants in the Nashville Metropolitan Area earn 2 percent more than the average medical assistant salary in Tennessee while medical assistants in the Memphis Metropolitan Area earn 4 percent more. In all, 15,900 medical assistants work in administrative and clinical capacities throughout Tennessee, and 2,250 employment opportunities for MAs open up in the Volunteer State every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level

$12.32

$25,630

Mid-Level

$15.83

$32,930

Top-Level

$21.45

$44,610

Average Earnings

$16.34

$33,990



38. Texas: Scope of practice guidelines for medical assistants in Texas are described in the state’s Occupations Code, Title 3, Chapter 157: Authority of Physician to Delegate Certain Medical Acts. Medical assistants in the Lone Star State are not allowed to work in acute care hospitals. While a physician may delegate—in writing—supervision of an MA to a physician assistant, nurse practitioner or certified nurse-midwife, ultimately it is the physician who’s liable if the MA makes an error. Supervisors must be physically present at the facility where the medical assistant is working. Medical assistants must be properly trained in the performance of the tasks they undertake and their competence at these tasks must be documented.

Once trained, Texas MAs have a wide scope of practice. They can administer medications both orally and by injection, administer vaccines, perform EKGs and EEGs, apply and remove bandages, dress wounds, remove sutures, collect many different types of lab specimens and draw blood. They can even give narcotic injections. They cannot start IVs or administer medications through an IV line, however, or administer oxygen to patients.

How much do medical assistants make in Texas? The average salary for medical assistants in Texas is $16.20 an hour or $33,700 a year, but Texas is a huge state, so pay rates vary from region to region. In the Dallas/Fort Worth Metropolitan Area, MAs average $16.97 an hour or $35,300 annually, which is 5 percent more than the average medical assistant salary in Texas. In Houston, they average $17.43 an hour or $36,250 annually, which is 8 percent more. In El Paso in the far western reaches of the state, though, MAs only make $12.72 an hour or $26,450 a year, which is 22 percent below the average state wage for the occupation.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.92 $24,800
Mid-Level $15.79 $32,840
Top-Level $21.24 $44,170
Average Earnings $16.20 $33,700


39. Missouri: The average pay for medical assistants in Missouri is $16.13 an hour or $33,540 a year, which is 9 percent less than the average amount MAs working in all parts of the U.S. earn. In Kansas City, the pay rate is slightly higher: $16.91 an hour or $35,170 a year, which is 5 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Missouri. In St. Louis, the pay rate is significantly lower: $13.85 an hour or $28,805 a year, which is 14 percent lower than the Missouri average for all MA salaries. Some 10,110 medical assistants are employed throughout the Show-Me State, and the profession’s projected growth rate of 20 percent throughout the next decade is significantly lower than the projected growth rate for the occupation as a whole.

There are no educational or certification requirements for medical assistants seeking employment in Missouri. Employers prefer to hire medical assistants who’ve graduated from accredited medical assisting programs, however. Missouri’s legal code doesn’t contain any specific language touching on how tasks can be delegated to medical assistants, from which it can be inferred that licensed physicians can delegate any task to a properly trained MA that doesn’t come under the license of another healthcare professional. Missouri MAs should be able to take vital signs, draw blood and administer medications through subcutaneous and intramuscular injection when directed to do so by a licensed supervising physician. That physician should also be able to delegate tasks to medical assistants through intermediary personnel like physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.99 $24,930
Mid-Level $16.05 $33,380
Top-Level $20.45 $42,540
Average Earnings $16.13 $33,540


40. Kentucky: Kentucky is another state whose legal statutes contain no specific guidance pertaining to the use of medical assistants. In the absence of specific guidance, there are no educational or certification requirements for MAs in the Bluegrass State although employers have a marked preference for hiring graduates of accredited MA training programs whom they will not have to spend as much of their own time and money training.

Medical assistants in Kentucky perform a range of administrative and clinical tasks, including venipuncture, the administration of medications through intramuscular and subcutaneous injection, and the measurement of vital signs. Tasks must be delegated to them by licensed physicians or those physicians’ intermediaries (physician assistants, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses), and physicians must supervise the performance of such tasks in some manner.

The average pay for medical assistants in Kentucky is $16.08 an hour or $33,450 a year, which is 9 percent less than the U.S. average for medical assistant salaries overall. Salaries in Louisville are significantly higher: $17.09 an hour or $35,550 annually, which is 6 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Kentucky. This may mean that there’s more competition among employers in the Bluegrass State’s largest city for qualified medical assistants than there is in the more rural parts of the state. Some 10,110 medical assistants are employed in various capacities throughout the state.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.87 $24,680
Mid-Level $15.75 $32,760
Top-Level $20.94 $43,550
Average Earnings $16.08 $33,450


41. South Carolina: The average pay for medical assistants in South Carolina is $15.87 an hour or $33,010 a year, which is 11 percent less than the average pay for medical assistants throughout all parts of the U.S. Some 11,840 MAs are employed in various administrative and clinical positions throughout the state, and MAs who accumulate some years of experience at the job will average $19.92 an hour or $41,430 a year, which is 26 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in South Carolina.

You don’t have to meet any educational or certification requirements to work as a medical assistant in the Palmetto State, but employers prefer to hire job applicants who’ve graduated from accredited MA training schools. The scope of practice for medical assistants is touched upon in South Carolina’s Medical Practice Act. Tasks must be delegated through licensed physicians and not through intermediaries such as physician assistants, nurse practitioners, or registered nurses. Tasks must be of a routine nature and pose no risks to patients. The supervising physician must remain on the same physical premises that the task is being carried out.

Within these parameters, medical assistants can perform a range of delegated clinical tasks, including vital sign measurement, blood draws, and the administration of medications through subcutaneous and intramuscular injections. Medical assistants can never participate in any type of patient assessment, including triage.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.23 $23,350
Mid-Level $15.38 $32,000
Top-Level $19.92 $41,430
Average Earnings $15.87 $33,010


42. New Mexico: The New Mexico Medical Practice Act summarizes the conditions under which a licensed physician may delegate healthcare-related tasks to a properly trained medical assistant. MAs can perform any task that does not require specific licensure. Although they cannot administer BOTOX or other cosmetic injections, New Mexico medical assistants can operate therapeutic cosmetic devices such as lasers so long as they have received adequate training, and their competency has been documented.

An estimated 5,340 medical assistants work throughout New Mexico. The average pay for medical assistants in New Mexico is $15.87 an hour or $33,010 a year. This is 11 percent less than the average pay for MAs throughout all parts of the U.S., but once you get some years of experience beneath your belt, your pay can go up to $20.03 an hour or $41,670 annually—17 percent more than the average amount earned by all hourly wage earners throughout New Mexico ($35,505), which makes the medical assistant salary in New Mexico an attractive option. Interestingly, MAs in Albuquerque make slightly less than the average MA wage throughout the state—$15.50 an hour or $32,240—which probably speaks to a more competitive job market in New Mexico’s biggest city.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.32 $23,550
Mid-Level $15.06 $31,320
Top-Level $20.03 $41,670
Average Earnings $15.55 $32,340


43. Kansas: You don’t need to meet any educational or certification standards in order to be a medical assistant in Kansas. Most employers, however, prefer to work with MAs who have completed a formal training program in their field. In the Sunflower State, medical assistants are allowed to perform most clinical or administrative tasks that have been assigned to them by a licensed physician or a licensed registered nurse. With supervision, they can administer medications, including injections. They cannot, however, start IVs. While there are no Kansas statutes that speak specifically to medical assistant scope of practice, K.S.A. § 65-2872 (2011), which is a section of the Kansas Healing Arts, does distinguish between individuals who are and who are not engaged in the healing arts.

At $15.41 an hour or $32,030 annually, the average pay for medical assistants in Kansas is 13 percent lower than the average pay rate for MAs across the U.S. The pay rate for MAs with some years of experience, however, is 26 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Kansas. Some 4,590 medical assistants work throughout Kansas, and there are 570 MA employment opportunities in the Sunflower State every year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.90 $24,760
Mid-Level $15.18 $31,570
Top-Level $19.42 $40,390
Average Earnings $15.40 $32,030


44. South Dakota: The medical assisting profession in South Dakota is jointly regulated by the South Dakota Board of Medical Examiners and the South Dakota Board of Nursing. Though the Mount Rushmore State doesn’t impose any educational or certification requirements, all MAs must register with the Board of Medical Examiners before they will be allowed to practice in the state. When properly trained, MAs can take vital signs, perform aseptic procedures, draw blood, perform basic laboratory tests and administer medications by unit dose. Medical assistants cannot administer insulin or provide patient education.

The average medical assistant salary in South Dakota is $15.34 an hour or $31,910 a year. On average, medical assistants throughout the entire U.S. earn salaries that are 16 percent higher. Though South Dakota does not require certifications, it does require medical assistants to have graduated from an accredited medical assisting program or a program that adheres to the same standards as an accredited program.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $12.46 $25,910
Mid-Level $15.07 $31,350
Top-Level $19.26 $40,060
Average Earnings $15.34 $31,910


45. Oklahoma: Medical assisting is briefly touched upon in Oklahoma’s Allopathic Medical and Surgical Licensure and Supervision Act ( 59 Okl. St. § 492 (2011)). So long as a medical assistant is properly trained and the delegated task does not conflict with licensing provisions for any other healthcare occupation, licensed physicians in the Sooner State are free to delegate any task they like to medical assistants. In Oklahoma, medical assistants can take vital signs, perform venipuncture and participate in the verbatim transmission of a physician’s verbal orders. They may not engage in any type of clinical assessment, including triage. While you don’t have to be certified to work as an MA in the Sooner State, most employers prefer to hire MAs with some type of accreditation.

The Sooner State pays MAs the lowest salaries of any state in the southwestern part of the U.S. The average pay for medical assistants in Oklahoma is $15.28 an hour or $31,790 annually. This figure is 14 percent less than what medical assistants make across all parts of the U.S. MAs in Oklahoma City and Tulsa do a bit better, earning $32,930 a year and $33,000 a year respectively, which is 4 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Oklahoma.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.40 $23,720
Mid-Level $14.78 $30,750
Top-Level $19.66 $40,900
Average Earnings $15.28 $31,790


46. Arkansas: The average medical assistant salary in Arkansas is $15.16 an hour or $31,530 a year. While this is 17 percent less than the average salary of MAs across all parts of the U.S., it’s only 8 percent less than the average annual pay for all hourly wage earners in Arkansas ($41,142). Particularly in the more rural parts of Arkansas, it’s likely that medical assisting pay is considered adequate and that retention is not an issue for most employers. This is supported by the fact that there are only 570 employment openings for MAs in the Land of Opportunity every year.

State regulations for the delegation of tasks to medical assistants is defined in A.C.A. § 17-95-208 (2011) of the Arkansas Code. MAs are allowed to perform most clinical procedures delegated to them by a licensed physician. Specifically, they are allowed to administer scheduled medications. They would not be allowed to administer PRN medications, however, because that would require them to make a medical judgment as to need. Arkansas MAs have a professional association called the Arkansas Society of Medical Assistants.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $11.06 $23,000
Mid-Level $14.71 $30,600
Top-Level $19.69 $40,960
Average Earnings $15.16 $31,530


47. Louisiana: While Louisiana has no specific laws defining the scope of practice for medical assistants, the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners has issued an advisory. Medical assistants may perform services for which they have been adequately trained so long as those services have been delegated to them by a licensed physician who is physically present onsite. MAs can administer medications, but they are never permitted to administer insulin. In order to draw blood, medical assistants must complete a specialized training program and become certified by the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners.

Some 8,060 medical assistants are employed throughout the Bayou State. The average pay for medical assistants in Louisiana is $14.96 an hour or $31,110 a year. While it’s true that this figure is 16 percent less than the average wage for all medical assistants across the U.S., Louisiana’s cost of living is 13 percent less than the average U.S. cost of living, which means dollars earned in the Bayou State go much farther. Medical assistants in New Orleans are paid $15.58 an hour or $32,400 a year, which is 4 percent higher than the average medical assistant salary in Louisiana.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $10.74 $22,330
Mid-Level $14.61 $30,390
Top-Level $19.45 $40,450
Average Earnings $14.96 $31,110


48. Mississippi: No Mississippi laws exist pertaining to medical assisting, but the Mississippi Board of Nursing has published guidelines. With proper training, MAs in the Magnolia State can perform a range of clinical and administrative tasks delegated to them by a physician or a nurse practitioner, including laboratory specimen collection, oxygen setup and administration, phlebotomy, EKGs, and taking vital signs. But they cannot administer medications, perform dressing changes or do any type of clinical assessment, including triage.

The average salary of a medical assistant in Mississippi is $14.69 an hour or $30,550 annually, which is 17 percent less than the average salary for all MAs across all parts of the U.S. Salaries increase with experience: A Mississippi medical assistant who’s spent some years on the job can expect to earn 25 percent more than the average state salary—$19.27 an hour or $40,090 a year.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $10.58 $22,010
Mid-Level $14.37 $29,890
Top-Level $19.27 $40,090
Average Earnings $14.69 $30,550


49. Alabama: The only Alabama statute relating to medical assistants can be found in Title 34 Professions and Businesses Chapter 21 Nurses Article 1 General Provisions. In the Cotton State, tasks can be delegated to medical assistants by physicians, dentists, and registered nurses. Medical assistants can perform a range of clinical and administrative duties, including filling out paperwork, processing lab work, taking vital signs, drawing blood, and administering certain medications. However, they cannot perform invasive procedures or make any type of clinical assessment that would require a professional license.

The average pay for medical assistants in Alabama is $14.40 an hour or $29,950 a year. This is 19 percent less than the average pay for medical assistants throughout all parts of the U.S. Alabama’s cost of living is 18 percent lower than the average throughout the U.S., however, so the average medical assistant salary in Alabama goes a lot farther than it does in many other places. MA salaries in the Cotton State vary according to the level of experience. Experienced Alabama medical assistants make $19.31 an hour or $40,170 a year, which is nearly twice the salary that entry-level MAs make.

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $10.40 $21,640
Mid-Level $14.06 $29,250
Top-Level $19.31 $40,170
Average Earnings $14.40 $29,950


50. West Virginia: The average salary of a medical assistant in West Virginia is $14.34 an hour or $29,820 a year. This is only 80 percent of the base pay that medical assistants average throughout all parts of the U.S. Low MA salaries most likely reflect the fact that West Virginia has a depressed job market, particularly in the more rural areas of the state. West Virginia also has the lowest level of educational attainment in any of the 50 states. Since West Virginia doesn’t require any particular education or training to become a medical assistant, there is likely competition for MA jobs, and competition drives down wages.

Though West Virginia doesn’t mandate certification for MAs, any medical assistant who wants to administer medications while under the supervision of a licensed healthcare provider must be a graduate of an accredited MA training program. Additionally, training must be provided by the physician’s office or facility in which the MA works, pursuant to guidelines from the West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Nurses. Training must be refreshed every two years. MAs who’ve undergone this training are referred to as "Approved Medication Assistive Personnel."

Level of Experience Per Hour Per Year
Entry-Level $10.91 $22,690
Mid-Level $14.12 $29,370
Top-Level $18.54 $38,570
Average Earnings $14.34 $29,820




How To Decide Which State Is Best For You To Work As A Medical Assistant?


Moving to another state is a major life transition. Should you move solely for the purpose of increasing your average medical assistant salary? Probably not because whichever state you end up in, it is likely that you will still end up earning far less than the average salary for all occupations within that state. A medical assistant’s scope of practice doesn’t vary widely from state to state, so you are unlikely to advance your professional career in that respect, either. Practice setting and the degree to which you can earn the trust of your supervisors will have more of an impact on the nature of the work you do than geographic location.

If medical assisting is one of the steps toward achieving a longer-term career goal, though, moving may make sense. For example: Many people who are thinking about going to nursing school test the waters by first working as a medical assistant. In situations like this, it may make sense to relocate to the state where your top choice nursing school is located and seek employment at a medical center associated with that school.


Average Medical Assistant Salary By City in 2021


Even within the same state, the average medical assistant salary may vary greatly from city to city. In Houston, Texas, for example, medical assistants make $36,250 annually, which is 37 percent more than medical assistants make in El Paso, Texas, where medical assistants average $26,450 annually.

Medical assistants earn their highest wages in San Francisco Bay Area cities like Oakland and San Francisco where their average annual salary is just under $54,000. This is more than twice as much as medical assistants earn in El Paso, Texas. Salary may not tell the whole story here, however: The cost of living in Oakland is more than twice the cost of living in El Paso, so in some ways, the buying power of your wages in Oakland and wages in El Paso may be equivalent.

City Per Hour Per Year
Albuquerque, NM $15.50 $32,240
Arlington, TX $16.97 $35,300
Atlanta, GA $17.19 $35,750
Austin, TX $17.33 $36,050
Baltimore, MD $18.60 $38,680
Boston, MA $21.16 $44,020
Charlotte, NC $17.34 $36,060
Chicago, IL $18.30 $38,060
Colorado Springs, CO $18.02 $37,490
Columbus, OH $16.89 $35,140
Dallas, TX $16.97 $35,300
Denver, CO $19.26 $40,060
Detroit, MI $17.22 $35,810
El Paso, TX $12.72 $26,450
Fort Worth, TX $16.97 $35,300
Fresno, CA $18.67 $38,840
Houston, TX $17.43 $36,250
Indianapolis, IN $17.59 $36,580
Jacksonville, FL $17.08 $35,530
Kansas City, MO $16.91 $35,170
Las Vegas, NV $17.06 $35,480
Long Beach, CA $19.11 $39,750
Los Angeles, CA $19.11 $39,750
Louisville, KY $17.09 $35,550
Memphis, TN $16.95 $35,260
Mesa, AZ $17.37 $36,130
Miami, FL $17.88 $37,200
Milwaukee, WI $18.79 $39,090
Minneapolis, MN $21.15 $43,990
Nashville, TN $16.75 $34,830
New Orleans, LA $15.58 $32,400
New York, NY $19.24 $40,020
Oakland, CA $25.94 $53,960
Oklahoma City, OK $15.83 $32,930
Omaha, NE $18.08 $37,610
Philadelphia, PA $17.55 $36,500
Phoenix, AZ $17.37 $36,130
Portland, OR $20.86 $43,390
Raleigh, NC $16.93 $35,220
Sacramento, CA $23.37 $48,600
San Antonio, TX $15.33 $31,880
San Diego, CA $19.92 $41,430
San Francisco, CA $25.94 $53,960
San Jose, CA $23.57 $49,020
Seattle, WA $23.59 $49,070
Tampa, FL $16.09 $33,460
Tucson, AZ $16.57 $34,460
Tulsa, OK $15.87 $33,000
Virginia Beach, VA $17.00 $35,350
Washington, DC $19.83 $41,240
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


What Is Salary Outlook Like For Medical Assistants?


As noted above, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of medical assistants will have grown by 19 percent in the decade between 2019 and 2029, which is much faster than average for all occupations. This employment boom, initially driven by the medical needs of the aging Baby Boomer population, now reflects demand for medical services associated with the coronavirus pandemic as well. Typically, when demand increases for a specific type of worker, salaries go up as well.

Over the past decade, medical assistant salaries have risen by 19 percent. While at first glance, this may look impressive, keep in mind that the average wage increase for all occupations in the U.S. over the past decade is around 30 percent. The increase in medical assistant salaries, thus, is under two-thirds of the increase in all wages. Meanwhile, inflation has increased by 20 percent. This effectively means that there has been no real increase in the purchasing power associated with medical assistant salaries over the past 10 years.

In order for medical assistants to make real salary gains, it is likely that states will need to impose more uniform educational and certification standards.


Is The Investment Of Time And Money Associated With Becoming A Medical Assistant Worth It Financially?


Only four states impose a certification requirement upon medical assistants, but since an overwhelming majority of prospective employers prefer to work with credentialed medical assistants, if you’re going into the field, you should probably be certified. That means you’ll need to complete some type of medical assistant training program. These programs typically cost somewhere between $2,500 and $15,000.

If a return on the financial investment you’re making in your professional education is your only criterion, then enrolling in one of the less costly medical assisting training programs may be worth it, particularly if you can finance your education through earnings and financial aid. Think very carefully, though, before deciding to take out a loan to finance medical assistant education. Average take-home pay after federal, state, and payroll taxes is approximately 78 percent of your salary; that means if you’re earning the average medical assistant monthly salary of $3,080 a month, you will only be taking home $2,433. A monthly loan payment is likely to put a hefty dent in the MA take-home pay you’re able to pocket.


My Final Thoughts


How much do medical assistants make? There’s no getting around the fact that medical assisting is not a well-paying occupation; the average medical assistant salary in 2021 is low. This has implications for employers as well as for employees because when workers feel they are underpaid for the jobs they do, they will look around for other jobs. In the post-COVID employment market, the retention of qualified medical assistants can be a real challenge for employers.

Medical assisting has many other compensations, of course. As a medical assistant, you will have the opportunity to touch many people’s lives in a positive way, you can work in a wide variety of practice settings and chances are you’ll always be able to find a job. Medical assisting is also an excellent way to get your feet wet if you’re contemplating any sort of career in the healthcare profession. If medical assisting fits your unique set of employment needs and aspirations, then it’s the right career for you.


HIGHEST & LOWEST EARNING MEDICAL ASSISTANTS


1. What Are The Highest And Lowest Earning Types Of Medical Assistants?

Certified medical assistants average $37,525 a year, which makes them the highest-earning medical assistants. Administrative medical assistants who are not certified average $35,760 a year, which makes them the lowest-earning medical assistants.

Rank Highest Earning Lowest Earning
Type Annual Salary Type Annual Salary
1 Certified Medical Assistant $37,525 Administrative Medical Assistant $35,760
2 Clinical Medical Assistant $36,990 Registered Medical Assistant $36,450
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

2. What Are The 10 Highest And Lowest Paying States For Medical Assistants?

The 10 highest paying states for medical assistants are Alaska ($46,610), Washington ($45,700), Massachusetts ($43,090), Minnesota ($43,090), California ($42,990), Oregon ($41,700), Connecticut ($41,070), Hawaii ($40,530), New York ($39,850) and Colorado ($39,040).

The 10 lowest paying states for medical assistants are West Virginia ($29,820), Alabama ($29,950), Mississippi ($30,550), Louisiana ($31,110), Arkansas ($31,530), Oklahoma ($31,790), South Dakota ($31,910), Kansas ($32,030), New Mexico ($32,340) and South Carolina ($33,010).

Rank Highest Paying States Lowest Paying States
State Annual Salary State Annual Salary
1 Alaska $46,610 West Virginia $29,820
2 Washington $45,700 Alabama $29,950
3 Massachusetts $43,090 Mississippi $30,550
4 Minnesota $43,090 Louisiana $31,110
5 California $42,990 Arkansas $31,530
6 Oregon $41,700 Oklahoma $31,790
7 Connecticut $41,070 South Dakota $31,910
8 Hawaii $40,530 Kansas $32,030
9 New York $39,850 New Mexico $32,340
10 Colorado $39,040 South Carolina $33,010
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

3. What Are The 10 Highest And Lowest Paying Cities For Medical Assistants?

The 10 highest paying cities for medical assistants are Oakland, CA, ($53,960); San Francisco, CA, ($53,960); Seattle, WA, ($49,070); San Jose, CA, ($49,020); Sacramento, CA, ($48,600); Boston, MA, ($44,020); Minneapolis, MN, ($43,990); Portland, OR, ($43,390); San Diego, CA, ($41,430); and Washington, DC ($41,240).

The 10 lowest paying cities for medical assistants are El Paso, TX, ($26,450); San Antonio, TX, ($31,880); Albuquerque, NM, ($32,240); New Orleans, LA, ($32,400); Oklahoma City, OK, ($32,930); Tulsa, OK, ($33,000); Tampa, FL, ($33,460); Tucson, AZ, ($34,460); Nashville, TN, ($34,830); and Columbus, OH, ($35,140).

Rank Highest Paying Cities Lowest Paying Cities
City Annual Salary City Annual Salary
1 Oakland, CA $53,960 El Paso, TX $26,450
2 San Francisco, CA $53,960 San Antonio, TX $31,880
3 Seattle, WA $49,070 Albuquerque, NM $32,240
4 San Jose, CA $49,020 New Orleans, LA $32,400
5 Sacramento, CA $48,600 Oklahoma City, OK $32,930
6 Boston, MA $44,020 Tulsa, OK $33,000
7 Minneapolis, MN $43,990 Tampa, FL $33,460
8 Portland, OR $43,390 Tucson, AZ $34,460
9 San Diego, CA $41,430 Nashville, TN $34,830
10 Washington, DC $41,240 Columbus, OH $35,140
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

4. Which States In The Northeast Pay The Highest And The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?

In Massachusetts, medical assistants average $43,090 annually, making The Bay State the highest paying state in the Northeast for medical assistants. Medical assistants in Pennsylvania average $34,670 annually, making The Keystone State the lowest paying state in the Northeast for medical assistants.

Massachusetts $43,090 Pennsylvania $34,670
Connecticut $41,070 Delaware $34,750
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

5. Which States In The Midwest Pay The Highest And The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?

Medical assistants in Minnesota earn $43,090 a year, making the Land of Lakes the highest-paying state in the Midwest for medical assistants. Medical assistants in South Dakota earn $31,910 a year, making The Mount Rushmore State the lowest-paying state in the Midwest for medical assistants.

Minnesota$43,090South Dakota$31,910
Wisconsin$38,800Kansas$32,030
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

6. Which States In The Southeast Pay The Highest And The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?

In the Southeast, Virginia is the highest-paying state for medical assistants; medical assistants in the Old Dominion State average $36,730 annually. West Virginia is the lowest-paying state in the Southeast for medical assistants; medical assistants in the Mountain State earn $29,820 annually.

Virginia$36,730West Virginia$29,820
Florida$34,800Alabama$29,950$29,950
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

7. Which States In The Southwest Pay The Highest And The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?

Arizona is the Southwestern state that pays medical assistants the highest salaries; medical assistants in the Grand Canyon State earn $35,670 a year. Oklahoma is the Southwestern state that pays medical assistants the lowest salaries; medical assistants in the Sooner State earn $31,790 a year.

Arizona$35,670Oklahoma$31,790
Texas$33,700New Mexico$32,340
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

8. Which States In The Western Region Pay The Highest And The Lowest Salary For Medical Assistants?

Alaska’s medical assistants earn $46,610 annually, which is the highest salary earned by medical assistants in the Western region of the U.S. Utah’s medical assistants earn $35,170 a year, which is the lowest salary earned by medical assistants in the Western region of the U.S.

Alaska$46,610Utah$35,170
Washington$45,700Wyoming$35,660
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


MEDICAL ASSISTANT EMPLOYMENT – FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


1. How Many Medical Assistants Are Currently Employed In U.S?

There are 725,200 medical assistants currently employed throughout the U.S.

725,200
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)



2. How Many Hours A Week Does A Medical Assistant Work?

Medical assistants typically work eight-hour days and 40-hour workweeks.


3. Are Medical Assisting Jobs Stressful?

Medical assisting jobs often involve challenges and depending upon your ability to rise to these challenges, they can be stressful.


4. In Which Industries Do Majority Of The Medical Assistants Work?

Most medical assistants work either in physicians’ offices or hospitals. Fifty-seven percent of medical assistants or some 404,570 MAs work in physicians’ offices, and 15 percent of medical assistants or 106,290 MAs work in hospitals.

Rank Industry Employment
1 Offices of Physicians 404,670
2 General Medical and Surgical Hospitals 106,290
3 Outpatient Care Centers 59,610
4 Offices of Other Health Practitioners 56,810
5 Continuing Care Retirement Communities
and Assisted Living Facilities for the Elderly
13,930
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


5. In Which States Do Majority Of The Medical Assistants Work?

Some 95,690 medical assistants work in California, which is more than any other state. Other states where significant numbers of medical assistants are employed include Texas (72,640), Florida (56,010), Pennsylvania (27,740), and Ohio (26,250).

Rank State Employment
1 California 95,690
2 Texas 72,640
3 Florida 56,010
4 Pennsylvania 27,740
5 Ohio 26,250
6 Georgia 25,820
7 New York 25,490
8 Michigan 22,750
9 Illinois 22,030
10 North Carolina 20,240
11 Arizona 19,460
12 New Jersey 17,360
13 Indiana 16,790
14 Tennessee 15,900
15 Washington 15,870
16 Virginia 14,330
17 Massachusetts 14,160
18 Wisconsin 13,250
19 Maryland 12,660
20 Oregon 12,480
21 Colorado 12,010
22 South Carolina 11,840
23 Kentucky 10,110
24 Missouri 10,110
25 Alabama 9,380
26 Minnesota 9,320
27 Oklahoma 8,960
28 Connecticut 8,420
29 Louisiana 8,060
30 Utah 7,990
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


6. What Are The Approximate Number Of Annual Job Openings For Medical Assistants?

Newly created medical assistant job openings number 13,920 each year. When added to the replacement jobs created by the 78,880 medical assistants who leave the profession every year, that means there are 92,800 annual job openings for medical assistants.

New Jobs Replacement Jobs Annual Job Openings
(New + Replacement)
13,920 78,880 92,800
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


7. Which States Offer The Highest and Lowest Annual Job Openings For Medical Assistants?

In California, there are 15,050 annual job openings for medical assistants, making the Golden State the top location for medical assisting employment opportunities. Other states with large number of medical assisting job openings include Texas (9,300), Florida (9,000), New York (4,660), and Georgia (4,050).

On the other hand, Mississippi only has 30 medical assisting job openings every year, which is the fewest in the U.S. Other states with only minimal employment openings for medical assistants include North Dakota (80), Idaho (90), Wyoming (100), and Vermont (110).

Rank Highest States Lowest States
State Annual Job Openings State Annual Job Openings
1 California 15,050 Mississippi 30
2 Texas 9,300 North Dakota 80
3 Florida 9,000 Idaho 90
4 New York 4,660 Wyoming 100
5 Georgia 4,050 Vermont 110
6 Pennsylvania 3,910 South Dakota 130
7 Ohio 3,330 Louisiana 140
8 Michigan 2,940 Montana 170
9 Illinois 2,910 Alaska 220
10 New Jersey 2,790 Nevada 260
11 Washington 2,720 Rhode Island 300
12 North Carolina 2,680 New Hampshire 370
13 Maryland 2,410 Delaware 380
14 Tennessee 2,250 Nebraska 450
15 Indiana 2,180 West Virginia 490
16 Virginia 2,120 Hawaii 510
17 Oregon 2,070 Maine 550
18 Massachusetts 2,050 Kansas 570
19 Colorado 1,890 Arkansas 570
20 Wisconsin 1,640 Iowa 770
(Source: careeronestop.org)


8. What Is The Job Outlook For Medical Assistants?

The job outlook for medical assistants is excellent. The employment of medical assistants is projected to increase more than 19 percent by 2029.

Employment Employment Growth (2019-2029)
2019 2029 Number %
725,200 864,400 +139,200 +19.19%
(Source: careeronestop.org)


9. Which States Offer The Best and Worst Job Outlook For Medical Assistants?

Job prospects for medical assistants are brightest in Arizona, which is expected to boost the number of MAs employed throughout the state by 44 percent within the next decade. Other states where MA employment prospects are good include Colorado (36 percent), Georgia (35 percent), New York (34 percent), and Florida (32 percent).

The slowest growth in job opportunities for medical assistants will be in Mississippi where the number of MA employment opportunities will only grow by 7 percent in the next decade. Other states with slower medical assistant job growth include Illinois (8 percent), Rhode Island (8 percent), Massachusetts (8 percent), and Alaska (9 percent). That said, this projected job growth is far greater than the projected job growth for many other occupations in the U.S.

Rank Best States Worst States
State Job Outlook State Job Outlook
1 Arizona 44.43% Missouri 19.79%
2 Colorado 36.21% Hawaii 18.90%
3 Georgia 34.53% Ohio 17.95%
4 New York 34.04% New Mexico 17.76%
5 Florida 31.62% West Virginia 16.67%
6 Maryland 30.97% South Dakota 16.67%
7 Idaho 28.01% Wisconsin 16.28%
8 Tennessee 27.71% Louisiana 15.67%
9 Texas 27.33% Oklahoma 15.65%
10 Oregon 27.10% Connecticut 15.28%
11 Iowa 26.08% Kentucky 13.68%
12 Arkansas 25.72% Maine 12.65%
13 Nevada 25.58% Kansas 10.40%
14 California 24.51% Vermont 10.23%
15 Virginia 24.42% Michigan 8.81%
16 Wyoming 23.88% Alaska 8.62%
17 Washington 23.71% Massachusetts 8.43%
18 Utah 23.55% Rhode Island 8.23%
19 South Carolina 23.52% Illinois 7.77%
20 North Carolina 23.12% Mississippi 7.43%
(Source: careeronestop.org)


10. Do Medical Assistants Have A Better Job Outlook When Compared To All Other Occupations?

Employment opportunities for medical assistants are expanding at a far faster rate than they are for other occupations in the U.S.

Employment New Employment Growth (2019-2029)
2019 2029 Number %
Medical Assistant 725,200 864,400 +139,200 +19.19%
All Occupations 162,795,600 168,834,700 +6,039,100 +3.71%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)


11. Do Medical Assistants Have A Better Job Outlook When Compared To Other Similar Allied Health Jobs?

Medical assistants have a far better job outlook than any of the allied medical professions apart from physical therapist assistants and occupational therapy assistants.

Rank Job Title Employment New Employment Growth (2019-2029)
2019 2029 Number %
1 Physical Therapist Assistant and Aide 98,700 130,900 +32,200 +32.62%
2 Occupational Therapy Assistant and Aide 55100 73000 +17,900 +32.49%
3 Medical Assistant 725,200 864,400 +139,200 +19.19%
4 Phlebotomist 132,600 155,500 +22,900 +17.27%
5 Psychiatric Technician 82,800 93,800 +11,000 +13.29%
6 Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurse 721,700 787,400 +65,700 +9.10%
7 Medical Records and Health Information Specialist 341,600 370,600 +29,000 +8.49%
8 Nursing Assistant 1,528,500 1,645,500 +117,000 +7.65%
9 Dental Assistant 354,600 378,000 +23,400 +6.60%
10 Dental Hygienist 226,400 239,700 +13,300 +5.87%
11 Pharmacy Technician 422,300 437,600 +15,300 +3.62%
(Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)