As a CMA or LPN, you will be required to work in medical facilities assisting patients. The functions of a licensed practical nurse includes giving basic care and a certified medical assistant is required to perform clerical tasks as well.
If you're looking to become a certified medical assistant, you will be have a variety of tasks to perform, such as filing records, conducting lab tests, withdrawing blood, greeting patients and getting patient rooms ready.
On the other hand, if you're looking to become a licensed practical nurse, you will have different functions to perform, such as taking vital signs, caring for wounds, giving injections and assisting patients with their personal hygiene and a variety of other daily tasks.
To become a CMA, you will have to spend between one to two years in a community college or tech school. Some of the courses you will have to take will involve clinical practices and routines of medical offices.
Then for a career as an LPN, you will have to spend just a year in a community college or tech school. In the courses you'll take, you'll have classroom and clinical based studies. You will also be required to pass the NCLEX-PN, which stands for National Council Licensure Examination-Practical Nurse. Once you pass the test, you qualify to become certified.
As a CMA, you can make a median of $28,300 annually. The median wage for LPNs, is $39,030 annually.