Medical Secretary Jobs
Medical Secretary Job Overview
Medical secretaries represent physicians as the first face of customer relations. Positions are offered in numerous medical environments, from doctors’, dentists’ or other health practitioners’ offices to hospitals, outpatient care facilities and medical laboratories. Unlike secretaries employed in other industries, a medical secretary needs to acquire knowledge of medical terminology, hospitals’ or physicians’ office procedures and medical records in order to fulfill their duties. Employees who demonstrate excellent transcription, scheduling and office skills, as well as attentiveness and organization could see an advancement offer to a medical office manager.
Daily medical secretary tasks include:
- Answering phones, routing calls to the appropriate staff and taking messages
- Scheduling appointments
- Typing correspondence
- Preparing financial reports and patients' bills
- Greeting patients and assisting patients with forms or payments
- Communicating with insurance companies and other healthcare providers' offices
- Completing insurance forms, maintaining medical files and checking supply inventory
- Coordinating staff schedules
Medical Secretary Job Education Requirements
Most employers require that a medical secretary hold a high school diploma or equivalency certificate. While many facilities offer on-the-job training, stand-out candidates will have taken basic courses that teach medical terminology and computer skills. Many community colleges, vocational/technical schools, and even some high schools offer formal instruction in these areas. In addition, a medical secretary needs excellent clerical skills, such as handling phones, scheduling, organization and interpersonal communication.
Medical secretaries looking to advance toward a medical administrative Assistant should enroll in a training course or even pursue an associate degree in medical office administration for a competitive edge. In addition, the National Healthcare Association (NHA) offers certification as a Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA), which could increase responsibilities and salary.
Medical Secretary Job Market
Currently, 512,970 individuals are employed as medical secretaries in the United States. The job is projected to grow 41 percent by 2020. This demonstrates that not only is the position highly sought after, but that when compared to other industries, healthcare proves one of the largest employers of secretarial support. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics places medical secretaries among the top 10 fastest growing occupations that only require a high school diploma. The states with the highest concentration of medical secretaries include Texas, California, Ohio, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. However, Arizona, Utah, and Idaho are among the top three states expected to see the highest demand growth.
Medical Secretary Job Salary Information
As of May 2013, the average salary for a medical secretary is $15.93 an hour or $33,140 annually. In offices where secretaries are in high demand, such as dental offices, salaries reach up to $18.03 an hour and $37,560 annually. Concurrently, locations with denser populations and high demand for medical secretarial support, such as the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area, receive an average annual salary of $42,690. Climbing upward in the medical management field, salaries increase to between $50,000 for managers and $60,000 for executive assistant positions. As such, what begins as an entry-level job has the power to transform into a supportive career with the right balance of continuous training, education and experience.