Nevada is a curious state with one primary advantage for medical assistants. The true appeal of Nevada is all of the fun to be had in any of the largely populated cities, especially that of Las Vegas. Large populations mean there is a need for healthcare, so medical assistants will most certainly find opportunities for employment there. The catch is that the average pay for workers in the industry is slightly lower than the national average while the cost of living is just slightly higher than the national average. Neither amounts to a drastic difference. With a little discipline, both will go unnoticed. You can still find yourself in an advantageous financial position due to the very competitive tuition costs to enroll in the most popular universities and colleges in the state. Even the most expensive can register at half of the cost that some other states demand. This is the true strength that Nevada offers us, besides the absolute thrill and excitement of having access to Las Vegas.
Top 5 Cities
You are no doubt reading this because you are in love with medical assisting. Your passion drives you to find the best opportunities for your career path and life. But the reality is that we all need a break from the intense energy expended during serious study and long hours of working. Labor exists in order to provide money in return so we can live our lives outside of our professions. And what better state to seek fine dining, live music and stage shows, and general relaxation than Nevada. The number of very large cities in Nevada outnumber most other states while still providing smaller hubs of activity for your calmer moments. The lower salary you’ll receive will have just as much purchasing power as a higher salary in another state thanks to the lower cost of living in Nevada. Your playtime will not be impeded at all.
The state of Nevada has been said by the United States Census Bureau to currently contain 2,790,136 residents all enjoying various levels of work and leisure. They have nestled themselves neatly into many areas of the state, but most densely in the following five most popular cities, listed below in descending order with their population counts:
- Las Vegas (pop. 589,317)
- Henderson (pop. 260,068)
- Reno (pop. 227,511)
- North Las Vegas (pop. 219,020)
- Sparks (pop. 91,195)
If you really want to have an exciting night on the town, there is no other place in the United States to be than the strip of Las Vegas. From top-tier restaurants and casinos to witnessing live stage magic and music, you’ll never have a dull moment. That’s not always appropriate to your mood, and you’ll always have the chance to sidestep a lot of the distractions and head to a city like Sparks to enjoy a more quiet evening under the stars. Nevada is a dream come true for regular people and medical assistants alike.
Medical Assistant Salary in Nevada
Just because we are completely infatuated with working as medical assistants doesn’t mean that we should accept a lower than fair salary or not even negotiate for a better pay. The first step to ensuring fairness is achieved is to know what the average pay is for the position. Across the nation, medical assistants receive an average salary $30,780 per year. To use this information to your advantage, you need two more pieces of information: the average salary in the state and the cost of living in the state.
The average salary afforded medical assistants in Nevada is $29,000 dollars. This number could be completely acceptable in the right state, but unfortunately the cost of living in Nevada is 2% higher than the average in the nation. This is because housing is 7% more costlier while utilities are 14% cheaper. Throw in the inflated prices of transportation and groceries, and you balance out to 2%. This means that the average wage in Nevada is definitely not competitive for our industry.
Don’t let this deter you from considering Nevada as a possible place of residence. It is a huge tourist location with lots of fun activities constantly going on. There are also some highly affordable universities and colleges to study at, thereby saving you money over the long-term.
Medical Assistant Schools in Nevada
The major benefit for medical assistants interested in Nevada is the very affordable tuition fees for enrolling in the various colleges and universities. As a friendly reminder, always take care to ensure that any school you enroll in is fully accredited by an overseeing medical agency so that they can officially provide you with the certification required by employers in this field. Never be afraid to flat out ask if you aren’t sure. Extremely popular schools are used to fielding all types of questions.
Among these schools is the University of Nevada in Reno. Arguably the most prestigious school in the state, students can expect to pay $12,000 as in-state residents and $28,000 as out-of-state residents to enroll in their School of Medicine. The next most desired school is the University of Nevada’s Las Vegas campus. While this is the same university, the cost is only $5,000 or $10,000 annually based on residency.
As affordable as the Las Vegas campus is, if you really want to put yourself ahead financially, or at least not dig as deep of a hole in debt, consider the Great Basin College in Elko, which charges students only $2,000 or $3,000 for tuition.
Another very affordable option is the College of Southern Nevada asks a humble tuition fee of $2,000 and $2,300 for in-state and out-of-state residents respectively. If you prefer a smaller private school experience, consider Sierra Nevada College, but you’ll pay a premium tuition of $29,000 per year.
A note to mention is that, to obtain the lower in-state tuition cost, you’ll need to have lived in the state for a full calendar year before enrolling in the school of your choice. Plan ahead if you can. In some cases you’ll pay less than half for your college education if you can pull it off.
Nevada is a happening place that can be very alluring to a person seeking excitement and social interaction. Unfortunately for medical assistants, the pay level is less than competitive and the problem is only compounded by the higher cost of living. You can make up the difference by attending one of the fine schools in the state, which all feature very affordable tuition rates. Just don’t gamble all of those savings away in Las Vegas.