How to Become an Administrative Medical Assistant

All medical facilities require trained medical personnel to complete a variety of administrative tasks. Administrative medical assistants are trained medical staff that performs many different administrative duties to help with the efficient operation and workflow of healthcare facilities.

What does an administrative medical assistant do?

Administrative medical assistants are an important part of medical facilities. They update, maintain, and file patient medical records, arrange hospital admissions, schedule medical and laboratory procedures, and fill out and process insurance documents. They also complete clerical duties such as greeting patients and visitors, answering telephones, scheduling appointments, handling correspondence, bookkeeping, and billing tasks. Administrative medical assistants are sometimes responsible for supervising office duties and ordering the necessary medical supplies. They also help assist doctors and other healthcare professionals with a variety of tasks such as preparing reports and presentations, writing correspondence, and transcribing dictation. Administrative medical assistants often work in hospitals, clinics, and private doctors’ offices.

What kind of training does an administrative medical assistant need?

Administrative medical assistants typically need a diploma or associate degree in administrative medical assisting. Many vocational and technical schools and community colleges offer programs in administrative medical assisting. Prospective administrative medical assistants typically complete courses in anatomy and physiology, medical termination, record keeping, medical office procedures, accounting, medical law, ethics, and processing insurance. Many employers prefer administrative medical assistants that have some type of on the job experience. Many aspiring administrative medical assistants volunteer at medical facilities to gain practical experience and remain competitive. Most administrative medical assistants become certified through the American Association of Medical Assistants. Administrative medical assistants must complete continuing education to keep their skills up to date and stay abreast with advancements in the field.

What are the prospects for a career as an administrative medical assistant?

Employment of administrative medical assistants is expected to grow much faster than average for all professions, increasing 34% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The growing and aging population and expansion of the healthcare industry will drive job growth.

Job prospects are expected to be excellent, especially for administrative medical assistants with formal training and extensive experience. Many job openings will arise from the need to replace administrative medical assistants that retire, transfer, or leave the field for other reasons.

How much do administrative medical assistants make?

As of January 2010, the average annual salary for administrative medical assistants is $40,000; average annual administrative medical assistant salaries (2).

A career as an administrative medical assistant is a great choice for people with a strong interest in the medical field and performing a variety of administrative tasks for healthcare facilities. Administrative medical assistants must have a solid understanding of medical terminology and the necessary office procedures. Patience, manual dexterity, detail orientation, and critical thinking are necessary characteristics. Administrative medical assistants must have excellent communication and interpersonal skills because they often deal with a variety of healthcare professionals, patients, and visitors.

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