The Scope of Practice of the Medical Assistant in Illinois
The Medical Practice Act of the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation permits physicians to delegate certain clinical procedures and administrative functions to medical assistants. Every profession involves Such duties would include, giving injections (including immunizations), performing venipuncture, patient education, administering skin tests (including tuberculosis tests), calling in prescription refills as specifically authorized by the overseeing physician, entering physician-approved information verbatim into electronic medical records, and administering medications. Procedures which constitute the practice of medicine, or which state law specifically and unambiguously permits only certain licensed allied health care professionals to perform, however, may not be delegated to unlicensed personnel such as medical assistants. Medical assistants MUST always stay within their scope of practice. They must practice ONLY methods and procedures that are commonly accepted in their profession in which they were properly trained and supervised.
Every medical assistant, whether certified or non-certified, formally trained or trained on the job, must practice their skill only under the direct supervision of the doctor (M.D., PhD), licensed healthcare practitioner, or nurse practitioner who hired them. Medical assistants who disregard established professional standards and attempt to perform procedures or tasks beyond their training, capabilities, or scope of practice are in danger of exposing themselves, patients and supervisors to serious consequences and liability issues.
Medical assistants are prohibited from making patient health assessments or judgments regarding medical treatment and may not:
* independently triage patients
* interpret diagnostic test results
* dispense medications without a prescription
* administer medications without doctor’s orders