In order to become a medical administration assistant, a certificate or associate's degree in medical administrative assisting is required. This educational background, often combined with an externship, prepares assistants for work in healthcare offices.
Medical administration assistants update and file patients' medical records, handle billing and perform bookkeeping duties in a doctor's office, hospital or similar healthcare facility. Unlike clinical medical assistants, these professionals do not have any hands-on medical skills but instead perform clerical tasks. The education required is usually a certificate or an associate's degree program that focuses on medical administrative assisting and typically includes an externship. Those who want to improve their career prospects may seek related certifications from the National Healthcareer Association (NHA).
|Required Education||Certificate or associate's degree in medical administrative assisting|
|Certification||Optional certification from the NHA|
|Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)*||23% for all medical assistants|
|Median Salary (2018)*||$33,610 annually for all medical assistants|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Job Description for a Medical Administration Assistant
Medical administration assistants keep medical offices running efficiently. They are skilled professionals with office and clinical management responsibilities. Medical administration assistants work in medical clinics, health agencies and hospitals. They have excellent interpersonal communication skills, are organized and discreet.
Medical administration assistants are responsible for managing patient records, processing insurance claims, coding insurance forms and monitoring the daily functions of a medical office. In addition, medical administration assistants prepare, review and answer correspondence, and assist physicians with reports and bookkeeping.
A high school diploma or GED is required for admission to a medical administration assistant associate's degree or professional certificate program. Students study various administrative procedures, including insurance claims processing and general office procedures. The program provides a solid foundation in medical terminology and administrative skills, and coursework includes core skills training and an externship.
In addition to medical administrative assistant positions, graduates of a program could pursue careers as medical office managers, hospital admissions coordinators and medical records managers. Additionally, the NHA offers Medical Administrative Assistant certifications for those looking to increase their salary and for job advancement.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of medical assistants was expected to grow 23% between 2018 and 2028 (www.bls.gov). Medical assistants with formal experience or training, particularly those with certification, should have the best job opportunities. In 2018, the BLS listed the median annual salary for medical assistants at $33,610.
Medical administrative assistants only need a certificate or an associate's degree to get started in the field, and career prospects should be above average from 2018-2028. Good communication and organizational skills are critical for medical assistants. Earning voluntary certification could lead to career advancement.