Skyline of downtown New York, Brooklin Bridge and Manhattan at the early morning sun light

The 25 Best Places to Work as a Medical Assistant in 2021

These U.S. Cities Offer the Highest Employment Levels for Medical Assistants

Medical Assistants (MAs) play a vital role in today’s healthcare system. MAs complete administrative and clinical tasks so that nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals can devote more of their time and attention to treating patients. MAs hold a wide range of responsibilities, including recording patient history and measuring vital signs, helping physicians with patient examinations and basic treatments, scheduling appointments, and preparing blood samples for laboratory tests.

Medical assisting is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Not only is this position in high demand, but the average pay for a medical assistant is substantial when compared to the experience and education required to become one. In fact, Medical Assisting was featured in our list of the best entry-level medical jobs.

For many, the decision to become a medical assistant is easy. More than just a career, helping others is their calling. So, the more challenging decision isn’t what you will do with your life, but where will you do it? To answer the question, where is the best place to work as a medical assistant, we provide the following ranking of the 25 best places to work as a Medical Assistant.

How Much Do Medical Assistants Make?

According to the BLS, there were 710,200 Medical Assistant jobs in 2020. Medical Assistants earned an average salary of around $37,000 (or an average hourly wage of about $18). Those in the 90% percentile earned more than $51,000 per year.

Best Industries for Medical Assistant Jobs

The employment level for Medical Assistants can vary depending on the industry in which they decide to practice or whether certification is earned. Here are the top five industries for Medical Assistants in terms of employment:

  • Physician Offices
    • Employment: 404,670
    • Annual Salary: $36,580
    • Hourly Wage: $17.59
  • General Hospitals
    • Employment: 106,290
    • Annual Salary: $38,200
    • Hourly Wage: $18.37
  • Outpatient Care Centers
    • Employment: 59,610
    • Annual Salary: $42,330
    • Hourly Wage: $20.35
  • Offices of Other Healthcare Practitioners
    • Employment: 56,810
    • Annual Salary:  $33,210
    • Hourly Wage:  $15.97
  • Retirement Homes
    • Employment: 13,930
    • Annual Salary: $30,570
    • Hourly Wage: $14.84

Best States to Find a Job as a Medical Assistant

Medical Assistant employment can also vary by geography. For instance, here are the top 5 states for Medical Assistants based on employment level:

  • California
    • Employment: 95,690
    • Average Annual Salary: $42,990
    • Average Hourly Wage: $20.67
  • Texas
    • Employment: 72,640
    • Average Annual Salary: $33,700
    • Average Hourly Wage: $16.20
  • Florida
    • Employment: 56,010
    • Average Annual Salary: $34,800
    • Average Hourly Wage: $16.48
  • Pennsylvania
    • Employment: 27,740
    • Average Annual Salary: $34,670
    • Average Hourly Wage: $16.67
  • Ohio
    • Employment: 26,250
    • Average Annual Salary: $34,270
    • Average Hourly Wage: $16.48

Methodology

The rankings are based primarily on the number of MA jobs in the metro areas. In addition, they include a review of the average annual salary, cost of living, and highlights of the city’s features and lifestyle. All employment, wage, and salary disclosures are based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data for May 2020. Our rankings were based on Employment Level, which is the number of Medical Assistant jobs currently held in the respective state.

The Best Cities to Find a Job as a Medical Assistant

Here are the 25 best cities for Medical Assistants to find a job in 2021 based on employment level data provided by the BLS.

1. New York, New York

Skyline of downtown New York, Brooklin Bridge and Manhattan at the early morning sun light

For this ranking, the New York City metro area includes Newark and Jersey City, NJ.

Employment: 32,000

Average Annual Salary: $40,020

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $52,160

Average Hourly Wage: $19.24

Overall Cost of Living Index: 187.2 (National Average: 100)

With more MA jobs than any other metro area, New York City tops our list for best places to work as a medical assistant. New York City is the most populous city in the U.S and one of the world’s largest megacities. Approximately 23 million people in New York’s metro area, and up to 63 million tourists visit annually.

New York is the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world. The city offers numerous tourist destinations, including the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, the Broadway Theater District, and the 9/11 Memorial. Many of the city’s landmarks, skyscrapers, and parks are world-famous, including The Empire State Building. In addition, New York is unmatched for restaurants, entertainment, colleges and universities, and museums and cultural activities. With services provided 24/7, New York has been nicknamed The City That Never Sleeps. It is also the most photographed city in the world.

With millions and millions of active people, there is an enormous need for medical services in the New York area. That means high demand, high salary, and job security for medical assistants. At the same time, New York is a desirable area to live in, with many unique amenities, spectacular attractions, and non-stop activities.

2. Los Angeles, California

Downtown Los Angeles at sunset

For this ranking, the Los Angeles metro area includes Long Beach and Anaheim, CA.

Employment: 30,120

Average Annual Salary: $39,750

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $58,780

Average Hourly Wage: $19.11

Overall Cost of Living Index: 173.3 (National Average: 100)

The second city on our list is also the second-largest metro area in the United States, with about 13.1 million residents. Los Angeles is known for its sunny climate, ethnic and cultural diversity, Hollywood entertainment industry, and sprawling metropolitan area.

Los Angeles is home to numerous attractions, including Hollywood Sign, Griffith Observatory, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, Hollywood Boulevard, and the USS Iowa battleship. In addition, there are 841 museums and art galleries in the L.A. area, more museums per capita than any other city. The metro area is served by an extensive network of freeways and highways, though traffic congestion is among the highest of any metro area.

With millions of active people, the need for healthcare and related services is high in Los Angeles. As a result, demand for MAs is also high. Though it is not the second-highest average salary for MAs as its employment number would suggest, Los Angeles is among the top 15 paying metro areas. Add to that the moderate climate and year-round sunshine, and Los Angeles is a great place to live and work as an MA.

3. Dallas, Texas

Dallas, Texas cityscape

For this ranking, the Dallas metro area includes Fort Worth and Arlington, TX.

Employment: 22,500

Average Annual Salary: $35,300

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $45,390

Average Hourly Wage: $16.97

Overall Cost of Living Index: 101.6 (National Average: 100)

Dallas is the fourth most-populated metro area in the United States, with about 7.5 million residents. The Dallas economy is diverse and thriving. The Dallas-Fort Worth metro area is host to 33 Fortune 500 companies, including American Airlines and ExxonMobil.

The city offers plenty of desirable suburbs, excellent schools, and many exciting and noteworthy attractions, art museums, restaurants, shops, parks, and more. The city is also home to a diversity of ethnic and religious backgrounds and one of the largest LGBT communities in the U.S. Summers can be hot and humid in Dallas. Still, winters are cool to mild, with occasional cold spells.

With the third-largest employment number, Dallas offers plenty of opportunities, a competitive salary, and job security for MAs. The diverse population, cultural focus, moderate weather, and relatively low cost of living make Dallas an excellent location for your MA career.

4. Houston, Texas

Houston, Texas, USA Skyline

For this ranking, the Houston metro area includes The Woodlands and Sugar Land, TX.

Employment: 17,070

Average Annual Salary: $36,250

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $51,320

Average Hourly Wage: $17.43

Overall Cost of Living Index: 96.5 (National Average: 100)

Houston is the fourth-best city in America for employment as a medical assistant. Houston is also the fifth-most populous metro in America, with a population of about 7 million. Considered a global city, Houston is a major hub for culture, medicine, and research.

Houston is recognized worldwide for its energy industry, particularly oil and natural gas—and biomedical research and aeronautics. Nicknamed “Space City,” Houston is home to NASA’s Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center. Many annual events celebrate the diverse cultures of Houston, including the largest and longest-running livestock show and rodeo, Houston Gay Pride Parade, Houston Greek Festival, and Houston Auto Show. Houston is also the seat of the Texas Medical Center, the world’s largest concentration of research and healthcare institutions.

With plenty to do and see, nice neighborhoods, a rich culture, and a relatively low cost of living, Houston could be the right location to launch your career as a medical assistant.

5. Miami, Florida

Miami skyline

For this ranking, the Miami metro area includes Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, FL.

Employment: 16,720

Average Annual Salary: $37,200

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $49,490

Average Hourly Wage: $17.89

Overall Cost of Living Index: 123.1 (National Average: 100)

Miami is the seventh-largest metro in the country and the fifth-best metro area for MA jobs. A major center for finance, commerce, culture, arts, and international trade, Miami was ranked the third-richest metro in the world in 2018. PortMiami is the busiest cruise port in the world and refers to itself as the “Cruise Capital of the World.”

Miami is home to many historical and multicultural neighborhoods and numerous nightclubs, restaurants, and shops. Offering a wide range of museums, entertainment venues, sporting events, beaches, and parks, there’s always something fun to do. Miami is also the second-most popular tourist destination in the U.S., after New York City.

Combining an active lifestyle, a reasonable cost of living, and high demand for medical services, Miami could be the perfect city for your career as a medical assistant.

6. Chicago, Illinois

Chicago skyline aerial view
For this ranking, the Chicago metro area includes Naperville and Elgin, IL.

Employment: 16,590

Average Annual Salary: $38,060

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $50,120

Average Hourly Wage: $18.30

Overall Cost of Living Index: 106.9 (National Average: 100)

Chicago is the sixth-best market for MA employment and the third-most-populous metro area in the United States, with about 9.5 million residents. Chicago is recognized as an international hub for finance, culture, commerce, industry, education, technology, telecommunications, and transportation.

Chicago has been voted the best largest city in the U.S. for four years in a row by Condé Nast Traveler. The city was also ranked first out of 32 cities for urban quality of life. In fact, it’s been called “the world’s number one city having fun and enjoying life.”

With high demand for medical assistants, a desirable lifestyle, and a very reasonable cost-of-living, Chicago could be the ideal setting for your future.

7. Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia, USA Downtown Skyline Aerial Panorama

For this ranking, the Atlanta metro area includes Sandy Springs and Roswell, GA.

Employment: 15,850

Average Annual Salary: $35,750

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $47,960

Average Hourly Wage: $17.19

Overall Cost of Living Index: 107.5 (National Average: 100)

Home to more than 6 million people, Atlanta is the ninth-largest metro in the nation. Atlanta’s economy is considered diverse, with dominant sectors including aerospace, transportation, logistics, professional and business services, media operations, medical services, and information technology.

Though Southern culture is part of Atlanta’s history, it has evolved into a very multicultural and cosmopolitan metro area. Experience adventure and fun with the city’s many parks, historic sites, museums, sporting events, outdoor activities, restaurants, and shops.

Plenty of employment opportunities, an enviable lifestyle, and a relatively low cost of living, make Atlanta an excellent choice for pursuing your medical assisting career.

8. Phoenix, Arizona

Phoenix Arizona

For this ranking, the Phoenix metro area includes Mesa and Scottsdale, AZ.

Employment: 14,770

Average Annual Salary: $36,130

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $44,500

Average Hourly Wage: $17.37

Overall Cost of Living Index: 103.7(National Average: 100)

The Phoenix metro area, also called “Valley of the Sun,” is the eighth-best location for medical assisting jobs, and the 10th most populated metro in the United States, with approximately 5 million residents. The top five industries in Phoenix are real estate, finance and insurance, manufacturing, retail, and healthcare.

Phoenix receives the most sunshine of any major city on Earth, making it an outdoor enthusiast’s dream. All around the metro area are mountains, hiking and biking trails, lakes and rivers, golf courses, and spectacular desert scenery. At the same time, Phoenix offers all the amenities of a large city, including museums, entertainment, fine dining, and shopping.

Phoenix offers an attractive home for a thriving MA career with its combination of high employment opportunities, outdoor lifestyle, and low cost of living.

9. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia downtown skyline

For this ranking, the Philadelphia metro area includes Camden and Wilmington, PA.

Employment: 14,090

Average Annual Salary: $36,500

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $47,990

Average Hourly Wage: $17.55

Overall Cost of Living Index: 101.2 (National Average: 100)

Philadelphia, or the City of Brotherly Love, is the eighth-most populated metro in America, with over 6 million residents. Philadelphia’s growing economy includes financial services, healthcare, biotechnology, and information technology. A study commissioned by the city in 2011 projected that 40,000 jobs would be added to the city within 25 years. Philadelphia is home to many national historical sites related to the founding of the United States, including the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed. In 2021, Philadelphia was ranked one of the top destinations in the world to visit by Condé Nast Traveler.

Philadelphia is culturally diverse and culturally active. The city contains many art museums, entertainment venues, renowned restaurants, and engaging attractions. In addition, Philadelphia offers numerous eclectic and unique neighborhoods ideal for families and young professionals. A variety of universities and colleges make Philadelphia a top study destination, as well.

With a high number of MA jobs, an attractive lifestyle, and a low cost of living, Philadelphia could make a wonderful life and career for a medical assistant.

10. San Francisco, California

San Francisco downtown with Coit Tower in foreground. California famous city SF. Travel destination USA

For this ranking, the San Francisco metro area includes Oakland and Hayward, CA.

Employment: 12,620

Average Annual Salary: $53,960

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $69,020

Average Hourly Wage: $25.94

Overall Cost of Living Index: 269.3 (National Average: 100)

San Francisco is part of the 12th-largest  metro area in the United States, with 4.7 million people. It’s also the fourth-largest metro area by economic output. Highly diverse, San Francisco has a majority-minority population, with non-Hispanic whites comprising less than half of the population.

A popular tourist destination, San Francisco is known for cool summers, fog, steep rolling hills, eclectic architecture, and famous landmarks, including the Golden Gate Bridge, cable cars, Fisherman’s Wharf, Chinatown, and the former federal prison, Alcatraz. In addition, the city, and the surrounding Bay Area, are home to a variety of prestigious universities, historic neighborhoods, world-class cuisine, and non-stop entertainment.

Though the cost of living is high, so are salaries for MAs. In fact, San Francisco offers the highest average salary of all cities on this list, about 10% higher than the next highest city (Seattle) and about 70% higher than the lowest-paying city (San Antonio). So, when you combine everything it has to offer, San Francisco could be the perfect place to practice medical assisting and enjoy life.

11. Washington, D.C.

Aerial View of the Washington DC at night

For this ranking, the Washington, DC metro area includes Arlington and Alexandria, VA.

Employment: 11,440

Average Annual Salary: $41,240

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $57,480

Average Hourly Wage: $19.83

Overall Cost of Living Index: 152.1 (National Average: 100)

Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and also known as D.C. or just Washington, is the United States capital. The metro area is the country’s sixth-largest, with a population of 6.3 million. Not surprisingly for the nation’s capital, about 25% of the employees in Washington, D.C. work for the federal government. Historically, this fact has made D.C. somewhat protected from economic downturns and unemployment, as the federal government continues operations even during recessions.

Washington, D.C. is divided into quadrants, all centered on the Capitol Building and more than 130 unique neighborhoods. The city is home to an abundance of national monuments, tourist attractions, museums, galleries, parks, entertainment, fine dining, sporting events, and numerous ongoing activities. The area has a very diverse and growing population.

The Washington, D.C. area has a lot to offer an aspiring medical assistant. Although the cost of living is higher than most, so are salaries. As a result, demand for MAs is relatively high, and job security is better than most.

12. Boston, Massachusetts

Boston Skyline with Financial District and Boston Harbor at Sunrise

For this ranking, the Boston metro area includes Cambridge and Nashua, MA.

Employment: 10,210

Average Annual Salary: $44,020

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $56,840

Average Hourly Wage: $21.17

Overall Cost of Living Index: 162.4 (National Average: 100)

The Boston area is home to 4.8 million people and ranks number 10 on the most populated U.S.  metros list. Since the American Revolution, Boston has been an important port and manufacturing hub and a center for education and culture.

Households in Boston claim the highest average rate of philanthropy in the United States, and businesses rank among the top in the country for environmental sustainability and investment. The city has one of the highest costs of living in the U.S. but remains high on world livability rankings.

Because there are so many diverse subsections, Boston is sometimes called a “city of neighborhoods.” The Boston area offers all the amenities, activities, services, and cultural offerings you would expect from a major U.S. city but still maintains a family-friendly neighborhood feel.

The cost of living is higher average in Boston, but the average annual salary for MAs is the fifth-highest at $44,020. When you combine the salary with diverse cultures, rich heritage, quality lifestyle, and caring, friendly people, you might want to call Boston home.

13. Detroit, Michigan

Detroit, Michigan, USA Downtown Skyline at Dusk

For this ranking, the Detroit metro area includes Warren and Dearborn, MI.

Employment: 10,190

Average Annual Salary: $35,810

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $45,620

Average Hourly Wage: $17.22

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 87.6 (National Average: 100)

Detroit, also called “Motor City,” is the 14th-largest  metropolitan area in the U.S., with more than 4.3 million people. Regarded as a major cultural center, Detroit is known for its major contributions to music, art, architecture, design, and automobiles.

Though the economy in the Detroit area has declined in the past and unemployment is higher than the national average, the economic outlook for the future is more positive. Over the next ten years, future job growth is predicted to be almost 30%, just slightly lower than the U.S. average of 33.5%.

With the average salary for MAs at $35,810, Detroit offers higher pay than several other cities on this list. At the same time, the city’s cost-of-living index of 87.6 is lower than most other cities on this list. Given the area’s positive outlook for the future and plenty of affordable housing, Detroit could be an innovative and strategic location to start your promising career in medical assisting.

14. Riverside, California

Downtown Riverside, California

For this ranking, the Riverside metro area includes San Bernardino and Ontario, CA.

Employment: 9,520

Average Annual Salary: $37,640

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $51,380

Average Hourly Wage: $18.10

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 133.1 (National Average: 100)

The Riverside metro area has a population of about 4.6 million, making it the 13th largest in the U.S. Riverside’s economy consists mainly of light industry and generates a range of products including aircraft components, automotive parts, gas cylinders, electronic equipment, food products, and medical devices. Between 2007 and 2011, large numbers of Los Angeles-area workers moved to the Riverside area for affordable housing, making the area one of the fastest-growing regions in the state.

A relatively small community compared to other cities on this list, Riverside is chock full of things to do, including nature and parks, museums, sight-seeing, outdoor activities, concerts, and shows. Riverside offers a dense suburban feel, and most residents own their homes. Many families and young professionals live in Riverside, and residents tend to lean liberal. The public schools in Riverside are above average.

Though the cost-of-living index is higher than average, Riverside’s combination of desirable lifestyle, family-friendly neighborhoods, quality schools, and above-average pay could make this area right for you and your future as an MA.

15. Tampa, Florida

Tampa Florida Skyline

For this ranking, the Tampa metro area includes St. Petersburg and Clearwater, FL.

Employment: 8,800

Average Annual Salary: $33,460

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $41,170

Average Hourly Wage: $16.09

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 100.1 (National Average: 100)

Tampa and the Tampa Bay area comprises roughly 3.2 million residents, making it the 18th-largest  metro in the U.S. Finance, retail, healthcare, insurance, national defense, and tourism play vital roles in the city’s economy, and several Fortune 1000 companies are headquartered in this area.

Tampa and its suburbs include over 20 hospitals, four trauma centers, and multiple cancer treatment centers. Three of the area’s hospitals were ranked among “America’s best hospitals” by U.S. News & World Report. The Tampa area is home to numerous museums, arts and entertainment venues, tourist sights, recreational activities, and diverse cuisines. Tampa’s climate generally features hot and humid summers and dry, mild winters. Though threatened by tropical storms and hurricanes, Tampa seldom feels any significant impact.

The climate, economy, focus on healthcare, desirable lifestyle—Tampa should make your shortlist of great places for an MA career.  Add to that a low (national average) cost of living, and it just might top the list.

16. Seattle, Washington

Seattle Cityscape with Mt. Rainier in the Background at Sunset, Washington, USA

For this ranking, the Seattle metro area includes Tacoma and Bellevue, WA.

Employment: 8,700

Average Annual Salary: $49,070

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $62,560

Average Hourly Wage: $23.59

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 172.3 (National Average: 100)

The population of the Seattle metro area is about 4 million people, making it the 15th-largest in the United States. From 2013 to 2016, Seattle was the fastest-growing major city in the country. Seattle’s thriving economy is driven by the “new economy” of high-tech and internet companies. Large companies continue to dominate business in the Seattle area, including Microsoft, Amazon, Starbucks, Costco, and Nordstrom.

A cultural center for the region and the world, Seattle offers an abundance of performing arts, musical venues, parks, sporting events, along with tourism and recreational opportunities. A 2008 census showed that Seattle had the highest percentage of college and university graduates of any major U.S. city. Three of Seattle’s most prominent medical centers are concentrated in a neighborhood nicknamed “Pill Hill,” including Harborview Medical Center, the only Level I trauma hospital in a region that includes Washington, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho.

With a large and well-respected medical community, an exceptional lifestyle, and the second-highest salary for MAs on this list, Seattle offers an ideal environment for a rewarding career in medical assisting.

17. San Diego, California

San Diego California

For this ranking, the San Diego metro area includes Long Beach and Anaheim.

Employment: 7,950

Average Annual Salary: $41,430

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $57,860

Average Hourly Wage: $19.92

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 160.1(National Average: 100)

With approximately 3.3 million residents, the San Diego metro area is the 17th-most populated in the U.S. The city is known for its mild year-round climate, natural deep-water harbor, extensive beaches and parks, long association with the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, and recent emergence as a healthcare and biotechnology development center.

San Diego has a diverse and growing population and was named the ninth-most LGBT-friendly city in the U.S. Tourism is a major industry in San Diego as a result of the ideal year-round weather. Tourists and residents alike are drawn to the many beaches and attractions such a Balboa Park, Belmont amusement park, San Diego Zoo, and SeaWorld San Diego. The city is also home to popular museums, entertainment venues, and major sporting events.

San Diego makes an attractive location for your future as an MA for its combination of high salary and enviable lifestyle features.

18. San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio Skyline

For this ranking, the San Antonio metro area includes New Braunfels, TX.

Employment: 7,710

Average Annual Salary: $31,880

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $39,970

Average Hourly Wage: $15.33

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 89.7 (National Average: 100)

With one of the fastest-growing populations over the last few decades, the San Antonio area has a population of about 2.5 million, making it the 24th-largest  metro area in the U.S. San Antonio is home to four Fortune 500 companies and the South Texas Medical Center, the only medical research and care provider in the South Texas region.

San Antonio’s economy is driven by the military, healthcare, government, financial services, oil and gas, and tourism. The city is also home to the South Texas Medical Center, a conglomerate of hospitals, clinics, research, and higher education. Over 20 million tourists visit San Antonio and its attractions, including The Alamo and the River Walk, every year. In addition, San Antonio offers a diversity of unique family-oriented neighborhoods of various socio-economic levels.

With the second-lowest-cost of living on this list, a substantial healthcare industry, and many desirable features, San Antonio could be the right lifestyle for your rewarding career in medical assisting.

19. Sacramento, California

Sacramento from above

For this ranking, the Sacramento metro area includes Roseville and Arden-Arcade, CA.

Employment: 7,270

Average Annual Salary: $48,600

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $66,960

Average Hourly Wage: $23.37

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 118.2 (National Average: 100)

The Sacramento metro area is home to about 2.4 million people, making it the 26th-largest  metro area in America. It is also the fastest-growing major city in California. With several prestigious universities, Sacramento is considered a central educational hub. It is also a major center for the California healthcare industry, as the seat of Sutter Health, the world-renowned UC Davis Medical Center.

Sacramento is known for its evolving contemporary culture and has been dubbed the most “hipster city” in California. In addition, Sacramento was given the honor of being “America’s Most Diverse City” for its well-integrated neighborhoods. It is also nicknamed the “City of Trees” because of its abundant urban forest. Sacramento also boasts an abundance of parks, recreation, museums, entertainment venues, and fine dining and drinking.

With its thriving healthcare industry, the third-highest average salary on this list, and desirable lifestyle, Sacramento could be the perfect fit for your future in medical assisting.

20. Portland, Oregon

Downtown Portland and the Broadway Bridge

For this ranking, the Portland metro area includes Vancouver and Hillsboro, OR.

Employment: 7,200

Average Annual Salary: $43,390

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $53,450

Average Hourly Wage: $20.86

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 130.8 (National Average: 100)

Approximately 2.5 million people live in the Portland metro area, making it the 25th-most populated area in the U.S. With more than 1,200 technology companies in the area, technology has become a major component of Portland’s economy. For that reason, it has been nicknamed the “Silicon Forest.”

Since the 1960s, Portland has been recognized for its growing progressive political values and earn a reputation as a center of counterculture. Food carts are extremely popular in Portland, and it has been dubbed the “Best City in the World for Street Food.” In addition to a plethora of museums and recreation, unique cuisines and breweries, and entertainment venues, Portland offers many desirable residential neighborhoods. In 2016, home prices in Portland rose faster than any other city in the country, and they continue to rise today.

Given the high salary, reasonable cost of living, and beautiful surroundings, Portland makes an inviting location to pursue your career as a medical assistant.

21. Orlando, Florida

Orlando, Florida Skyline

For this ranking, the Orlando metro area includes Kissimmee and Sanford, FL.

Employment: 7,140

Average Annual Salary: $33,050

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $40,750

Average Hourly Wage: $15.89

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 104.1 (National Average: 100)

The Orlando metro area, which has a population of about 2.6 million people, is the 23rd-largest  metro area in the U.S. The city is a major center for industry and technology, with a $13.4 billion technology industry employing 53,000 people. More than 150 international companies from 20 countries have facilities in the Orlando area.

Nicknamed “The City Beautiful,” Orlando is one of the most-visited cities in the world, primarily driven by tourism, major events, and convention traffic. The two largest tourist attractions are Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Florida. A very diverse city, Orlando is home to the largest population of Puerto Ricans in Florida, along with a large West Indian community. Orlando also has a large LGBT population and is recognized as one of the most accepting and tolerant cities in the U.S.

Suppose you’re looking for a city that offers a good salary for medical assistants, a relatively low cost of living, and a great atmosphere for enjoying life. In that case, Orlando could be the perfect place for you and your family.

22. Baltimore, Maryland

Baltimore, Maryland Inner Harbor Skyline Aerial

For this ranking, the Baltimore metro area includes Columbia and Towson, MD.

Employment: 6,550

Average Annual Salary: $38,680

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $49,950

Average Hourly Wage: $18.60

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 88.2 (National Average: 100)

With a population of about 2.8 million, the Baltimore metro area is the 21st-largest  metro area in the nation. At one time, Baltimore was a predominantly industrial town. Baltimore has shifted to technology. The tech sector is rapidly growing in Baltimore, and Forbes ranked the city fourth among America’s “new tech hot spots.”

With hundreds of unique districts, Baltimore has been dubbed a “city of neighborhoods,” many of which have rich histories. In fact, more than a third of the city’s buildings (over 65,000) are designated historic in the National Register, which is more than any other U.S. city. Baltimore offers many things to do and see, including parks, museums, sporting events, performing arts, fine dining, and shopping.  Housing in Baltimore is relatively inexpensive for a large, coastal city.

Plenty of hip and historic neighborhoods, a relatively high salary, and a low cost of living make Baltimore a prime destination for future medical assistants to work, play, and live.

23. Minneapolis, Minnesota

Minneapolis skyline during fall

For this ranking, the Minneapolis metro area includes St. Paul and Bloomington, MN.

Employment: 6,370

Average Annual Salary: $43,990

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $52,980

Average Hourly Wage: $21.15

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 106.5 (National Average: 100)

3.6 million people live in the Minneapolis metro area, making it the 16th-largest  metro in America. Today the economy of Minneapolis is based in commerce, finance, rail and trucking services, healthcare, and industry. Minneapolis has eight hospitals, and four are ranked among America’s best by U.S. News & World Report in 2021.

Minneapolis residents live in a variety of diverse neighborhoods and enjoy a wide range of attractions, events, and activities. Minneapolis offers an unmatched selection of theatre, performing arts, museums, fine dining, and cultural attractions. The city is home to four professional sports teams. The Minneapolis park system has been called the best-designed, best-financed, and best-maintained in America.

With healthcare an important part of the economy, a high salary for MAs, and a relatively low cost of living, Minneapolis is a desirable location for gainful employment as a medical assistant and an excellent community for a happy, fulfilling life.

24. Denver, Colorado

Sunrise over Denver, Colorado

For this ranking, the Denver metro area includes Aurora and Lakewood, CO.

Employment: 6,350

Average Annual Salary: $40,060

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $51,070

Average Hourly Wage: $19.26

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 128.7 (National Average: 100)

Called the “Mile High City” because of its elevation, Denver is the capital of Colorado. Home to almost 3 million people, this city ranks as the 19th-largest  metro area in the U.S. Major industries include aerospace, broadcast and telecommunications, healthcare and wellness, financial services, bioscience, energy, and IT software. The economy in Denver is strong and growing stronger. In fact, Forbes listed Denver as 4th in Best Places for Business and Careers.

There’s something for everyone in Denver. Neighborhoods are diverse in both people and architecture, including everything from skyscrapers to late 19th century homes to contemporary suburban developments. As a result, you’ll be surrounded by mountains, outdoor activities, cultural attractions, affordable rents.  Not to mention efficient public transportation, relatively uncongested traffic, and a crime rate way below the national average.

For a career in medical assisting, the Mile High City offers opportunity, salaries, and a lifestyle that is way above the average.

25. Indianapolis, Indiana

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

For this ranking, the Indianapolis metro area includes Carmel and Anderson, IN.

Employment: 5,880

Average Annual Salary: $36,580

Average 90th Percentile Salary: $45,950

Average Hourly Wage: $17.59

Overall Cost-of-Living Index: 83.5 (National Average: 100)

Indianapolis is the 33rd most-populous metro area in the U.S., with about 2 million residents. The economy in Indianapolis is based primarily on finance and insurance, manufacturing, business services, education, and healthcare. The city is home to three Fortune 500 companies, two major sports clubs, four universities, and several museums.

Indianapolis is best known for hosting the world’s largest single-day sporting event, the Indianapolis 500. Naming 38 fun things to do, Travel + Leisure ranked Indianapolis 7th in America’s Favorite Cities. Because Indianapolis lacks historical, ethnic divisions and physical boundaries, neighborhoods are not as clearly defined as in other cities. As a result, most neighborhoods are subtle in their distinctions.

A big city with a small-town feel, a wealth of things to do, and a very low cost of living could have you racing toward Indianapolis for a career in medical assisting.

About Brookline College

At Brookline College, our mission is to provide you with more than a degree or diploma. Our goal is to help you achieve your dreams for a brighter future. With on-campuses programs in Arizona and New Mexico and online and hybrid programs, we offer an exceptional education in nursing, healthcare, and business. Our Medical Assistant Program can be completed in as little as 9 months and provides the necessary training for entry-level positions as a medical assistant in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics, physician offices, and urgent care facilities. Graduates of our MA program can apply their skills and knowledge in patient interaction, basic coding and billing, office procedures, use of technology, medical, legal documentation, electronic medical records, and more.