Generally hospitals, clinics and health care centers hire medical office assistants to assist doctors and nurses to care for the patients. Thus these assistants are very important members of every hospital, health center and clinic. They shoulder different types of responsibilities which include reception duties, administrative responsibilities as also clinical jobs. Their duties also extend to recording simple medical histories in order to help the doctor.
With increasing number of patients and the growth of more and more new hospitals, clinics as well as health care centers there is an increasing demand for medical office assistants in today’s world. Those who take up this field of work generally have long and busy working hours. At times in some hospitals and clinics the working hours are not fixed and so the medical office assistants do not get much rest in between their long working hours.
The jobs that a medical office assistant can perform would be divided into three namely the front office medical assistant, the administrative medical office assistant and finally the clinical medical office assistant. The front office medical assistant is responsible for handling the busy front office or the reception, phone calls, both external as well as internal and also transfers calls to the right department of the hospital. He schedules the appointments of the patients according to the time that the doctor is available. He gives the registration forms to the patient and ensures that they are filled correctly giving all the valid and necessary information as well as handles data entry tasks.
The administrative medical office assistant is responsible for registration, filing and maintaining all the medical records of the patients. He maintains all financial records, takes responsibility for financial accounting, initiates and maintains correspondence with patients and insurance companies and explains hospital admission procedures to the patients and to their family members. This professional is also responsible for maintaining records of the equipment and medical supplies that have been purchased and his other duties include processing medical claims, medical billing, and incorporating correct coding procedures whenever and wherever required.
The clinical medical office assistant is responsible for both administrative as also clinical work. He draws blood for blood donation and diagnosis, applies and changes dressings on wounds and also works in the medical laboratories as and when required. Getting a record of the daily observations of the patient’s health and reporting the situation to the concerned doctor is also a part of his job. His other jobs include maintenance of the patient’s health records and producing them as and when they are asked for.
Since the work of the medical office assistant is so varied the persons who would like to take up this field of work should be well qualified. Hospitals and health centers generally prefer to hire people who have an Associate of Applied Science Degree from any college that is accredited to the Commission of Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs. The training program in such colleges includes training on important administrative as well as clinical procedures, communication skills, and front office grooming.
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