Be a Healthcare Administrative Assistant: Education and Career Roadmap

Learn how to become a healthcare administrative assistant. Research the education and career requirements, training information, and experience required for starting a career as a healthcare administrative assistant. View article »

View 10 Popular Schools »

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

94% college-bound high school students
…said it was important to communicate with colleges during the search process. (Source: Noel-Levitz 2012 trend study)

Select a school or program

View More Schools
Show Me Schools
 Replay
  • 0:00 Healthcare…
  • 0:24 Career Requirements
  • 1:05 Career Steps

Find the perfect school

Video Transcript

Healthcare Administrative Assistant

Healthcare administrative assistants, also referred to as medical secretaries, work in medical offices and assist physicians with scheduling, dictation, messaging, and billing. It's important that healthcare administrative assistants be familiar with medical terminology and have an understanding of medical procedures.

Career Requirements

Education Level High school diploma or equivalent
Experience 1-2 years in an office assistant role
Key Skills Verbal and written communication and organizational skills; detail-oriented and a self-starter; proficiency in medical, word processing, database, and accounting software
Salary $33,040 (2015 median for all medical secretaries)

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, O*NET OnLine, Monster.com job postings (October 2012)

While only a high school diploma is necessary to become a healthcare administrative assistant, those looking to work in medical settings may benefit from postsecondary training in medical, business, and computer science subjects. Some workers might also need a few years of experience as an assistant. The key skills for healthcare administrative assistants are verbal and written communication skills, organizational skills, detail-orientation, the ability to act as a self-starter, and proficiency in medical, word processing, database, and accounting software. In 2015, medical secretaries earned a median annual salary of $33,040, stated the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Health Care Administration
  • Health Information and Records Admin
  • Health Information Technology
  • Health Management and Clinical Administration
  • Health Unit Coordinator
  • Health Ward Supervisor
  • Medical Administrative Assistant or Secretary
  • Medical Claims Examiner
  • Medical Facilities Management
  • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
  • Medical Insurance Services
  • Medical Office Computer Technologies
  • Medical Office Management
  • Medical Office Specialist
  • Medical Receptionist
  • Medical Staff Services
  • Medical Transcriptionist

Career Steps

Now let's check out the career steps for healthcare administrative assistants.

Step 1: Consider Postsecondary Training

A high school diploma is the minimum educational requirement for prospective healthcare administrative assistants. At the high school level, taking courses involving science, business, and computers can be beneficial. Prospective healthcare administrative assistants can pursue medical secretary certificate or diploma programs in the field to gain formal training. Coursework includes anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, and medical transcription. Programs also place emphasis on computer literacy, which is something employers look for in healthcare administrative assistants.

Step 2: Apply for Jobs

Many different work environments exist for healthcare administrative assistants. Job opportunities are available in hospitals, outpatient clinics, and physicians' offices. Postsecondary programs have connections to local hospitals, clinics, and healthcare providers and help graduates land employment. On-the-job training is also provided for newly hired administrative assistants. This will allow them to become familiar with office procedures and policies. Most of these jobs are full-time in medical office settings, but some professionals may be able to work remotely.

Step 3: Pursue Career Advancement

Working as a healthcare administrative assistant teaches individuals about healthcare treatments and the day-to-day functions of various work environments. As administrative assistants gain more experience in the field, they pursue advancement opportunities and look for executive administrative assistant positions. These professionals will have additional responsibilities and assist high-level healthcare managers and CEOs.

To recap, with a high school diploma, experience, and possibly postsecondary education, a healthcare administrative assistant can earn about $33,000 a year to work in medical offices and assist physicians with scheduling, dictation, messaging, and billing.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Health Information Management
    • Master of Health Informatics
    • BS in Healthcare Administration
    • BS in Health Science
    • BS in Health Information Management
    • Medical Office Administration Certificate
    • Medical Billing and Coding Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • BS: Healthcare Administration

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Health Care Administration
    • MBA: Health Systems Management
    • MS in Health Care Administration
    • BS in Health Care Administration
    • BS in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
    • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership - Healthcare Management
    • Master of Business Administration - Healthcare Management
    • Master of Public Administration - Healthcare Policy and Ethics
    • Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Management

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • BS/Health Information Management
    • BA/Health and Human Services - Health Care Informatics Systems

    What is your highest level of education?

    • MSHS Clinical Operations & Healthcare Management
    • MSHS in Biomedical Informatics
    • Dual Degree: BSHS in Clinical Research Administration/MSHS in Regulatory Affairs
    • BSHS in Clinical Operations and Healthcare Management

    What is your highest level of education?

    • MBA in Healthcare Management
    • Master of Health Administration

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Medical Coding and Billing-Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

  • What is your highest level of education?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?