Medical schedulers work with patients by phone or in person and may use computer based systems or date books in their daily duties. Training for this type of work is not required, but programs are available that can lead to better employment opportunities and higher-paying positions.
Medical schedulers coordinate appointment times for patients and medical practitioners. Educational requirements vary from employer to employer; however, a certificate or associate's degree in medical assisting or medical office administration might be preferred. Certification is not mandatory, but holding such a credential could lead to more or better job opportunities.
|Required Education||None mandatory; certificate and associate's degree programs in medical office administration and medical assisting are available|
|Certification||Voluntary through the Association of Medical Technologists|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)||23% for medical assistants*|
|Median Annual Salary (2015)||$30,590 for medical assistants*|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Job Description for Medical Schedulers
Medical schedulers, also known as medical appointment schedulers or patient appointment schedulers, work in outpatient care centers, hospitals, private physicians' offices or other medical practices. Their primary job duty is making appointments for medical practitioners as well as incoming patients. Computer-based applications or patient appointment books are typically used to manage a scheduling system.
Medical schedulers also might work with patients by phone or in person. In large offices or hospitals, medical schedulers might fulfill many of the duties of a medical office assistant. Typical responsibilities in this role include medical billing, ordering supplies, communicating with vendors, medical transcription and minor computer troubleshooting.
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Salary Information and Career Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for medical assistants was projected to grow by 23% from 2014-2024 (www.bls.gov). In May 2015, the BLS noted that the median annual salary of medical assistants was $30,590; however, the highest-earning 10% of these workers made approximately $43,880 annually.
Education Requirements for Medical Schedulers
The BLS notes that for related positions, such as administrative or clinical medical assistant, entry-level education requirements include a high school diploma. However, some employers prefer applicants who have completed a formal training program. Aspiring medical schedulers might enroll in a medical office assistant certificate program or an Associate of Science in Medical Assisting program. Relevant coursework could include medical account management, scheduling procedures, transcription techniques and insurance claims.
Prospective medical schedulers also might choose to pursue Medical Administrative Specialist certification through the Association of Medical Technologists. Certification requirements include completion of an accredited postsecondary medical office program and five years of experience in the field. According to the BLS, earning voluntary certification could lead to more job opportunities and higher earnings.
Medical schedulers coordinate appointments with patients and their caregivers. They may work in a hospital, clinical, or any kind of medical setting. Some training is usually preferred by employers, and certification is also available for the experienced medical scheduler.