Performing a wide variety of administrative and clerical tasks to assist doctors in their work is the prime duty of a medical office assistant. Working as a medical office assistant means that you will be scheduling appointments, performing follow ups, handling bookkeeping and word processing duties, and managing correspondence on any typical day at work.
To be considered eligible to work as a medical office assistant, you need to possess a high school diploma or a GED at the very minimum. Good organizational and communication skills, along with deep insight into medical terminology and processes is also important. Exceptional telephone manner and the ability to resolve issues before they become crises is also necessary in this work.
Since you will be working with patients on a daily basis, good people skills are a given. The ability to create and maintain effective relationships with patients is also imperative, as is a mature attitude towards the human body, wellness and disease. Working as a medical office assistant means that you will be on the go throughout your shift, with very little opportunity to rest. You will need to be physically dexterous as you will be on your feet most of the day, and your time management skills will need to be exceptional. Here is a list of duties and responsibilities of a medical office assistant:
• Schedule medical and procedural appointments over the telephone and in person and provide efficient follow up
• Answer telephone calls and provide information regarding the facility’s services
• Perform intake work by taking and processing patient information including contact data, demographics and medical histories
• Ask patients questions in order to fill intake forms and assist them in completing health histories
• Complete insurance and other claim forms and verify patients’ insurance coverage information
• Call out patients’ names or tag numbers in a bid to expedite their turns for consultations
• Process payments and copays and ensure that patients understand their coverage options
• Set up and maintain patients’ record systems including classifying and coding electronic and hard copy files
• Prepare examination areas prior to each procedure and ensure that they are properly cleaned and sanitized after each procedure
• Create and update patients’ electronic health records and manage the correspondence needs of the facility
• Educate patients and families about specific medical procedures and examinations with a view to preparing them
• Obtain and process new patient referrals and pull patients’ records for doctors’ reviews