Career Definition for a Doctor's Office Manager
Doctor's office managers, sometimes referred to as medical office managers, oversee the business operations of a doctor's office. Their responsibilities are broad in scope and highly dependent on the size of the practice. Health care is a complicated, highly regulated industry and they spend much of their time ensuring legal compliance and mediating billing issues.
In a group practice, office managers hire, train and supervise the work of other administrative staff, such as the medical receptionist and biller. They oversee billing procedures, monitor patient scheduling policy, serve as an IT liaison, contract with outside services such as medical waste disposal companies, and maintain office space conducive to patient preferences. They also must perform the duties of a general office manager, which include general financial management, according to the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management (PAHCOM).
|Education||Business administration associate degree as a minimum, bachelor's needed for larger practices|
|Job Skills||Organization, detail orientation, conflict resolution, multitasking|
|Median Salary (2017)*||$98,350 for medical health and services managers|
|Job Growth (2016-2026)*||20% for medical and health services managers|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
While there is no specific education requirement, most practices require some formal education due to the increasing complexity of the health care system. Large practices require a bachelor's degree in business administration while an associate degree is sufficient for many smaller practices. Those wishing to pursue this field should supplement their business education with coursework in medical billing, medical terminology and general physician practice management.
Doctor's office managers must be extremely organized, detail-oriented, and have the ability to handle multiple priorities. They also must excel at resolving conflict, which is a common occurrence in health care.
Career and Economic Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of medical and health services managers, which includes doctor's office managers, is expected to grow much faster than average at 20% from 2016 to 2026. Salaries vary by practice size and specialty. However, the median annual salary was $98,350 in May 2017, per the BLS.
Alternate Career Options
You can also choose from these other careers in administration:
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Human Resources Manager
Most human resources managers have earned at least a bachelor's degree in human resources, business administration, or another related field. Work experience, advanced degrees, and certifications are also positives for many positions. Human resources managers coordinate all the administrative functions in businesses and organizations, while serving as a go-between among management and employees. The BLS projected 9% expansion of these jobs, from 2016-2026, and reported an annual median salary of $110,120 as of May 2017.