Medical Receptionist Colleges and Schools in the U.S.

Medical receptionists work at the front desks of medical offices and hospitals, greeting patients and keeping the practice organized and running smoothly. Continue reading to learn about the type of training students need to become medical receptionists and about schools in the U.S. that offer medical receptionist programs.

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Students in medical receptionist or medical office technology programs learn to work as administrative assistants in healthcare facilities. These programs typically award certificates or associate's degrees.

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Schools with Medical Receptionist Programs

Some medical receptionist programs in the United States are offered at the institutions listed here.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)*
Henry Ford Community College Dearborn, MI 2-year, Public Certificate In-district $2,798; In-state $4,382; Out-of-state $5,990
The University of Montana Missoula, MT 4-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-state $6,158; Out-of-state $23,048
Bellevue College Bellevue, WA 4-year, primarily associate's, Public Certificate In-state $3,619; Out-of-state $8,957
Delta College University Center, MI 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-district $3,394; In-state $5,270; Out-of-state $9,770 (for degree only)
Edmonds Community College Lynwood, WA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-state $3,758; Out-of-state $9,096
Everett Community College Everett, WA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-state $3,643; Out-of-state $8,981
Pierce College - Fort Steilacoom Lakewood, WA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-state $3,643; Out-of-state $8,981
Olympic College Bremerton, WA 4-year, primarily associate's, Public Certificate $3,837
Spokane Community College Spokane, WA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's degree In-state $3,388; Out-of-state $8,726

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Keep the following in mind when choosing a medical receptionist program:

  • It can be helpful to find out where internships are offered by the school; students who want to work in specific settings, such as the offices of children's hospitals or small family clinics, should make sure they can gain experience in that setting.
  • Prospective students may want to find out which software programs are covered in the program and whether that software is provided by the school, or whether students need to purchase it on their own.
  • Prospective students who have work commitments or other scheduling constraints may want to look for programs that allow for part-time study or offer coursework online.
  • When considering certificate programs, it can be helpful to find out if credits can be applied to an associate's degree program. Similarly, prospective students who are looking at associate's degree programs might want to find out if credits are transferable to a bachelor's degree program in the future.

Certificate Programs

Certificate programs cover the basic administrative aspects of working in an office. Students gain experience with common business software and build their business communication skills. In addition, they take medical office-specific courses in topics such as medical terminology, electronic health records, health insurance, medical billing and medical ethics. Students may also complete an externship or cooperative experience in the field. In total, these programs typically take one year or less to complete.

Associate's Degree Programs

In associate's degree programs, students take the same office- and healthcare-related coursework as is provided in certificate programs. However, they must also fulfill general education requirements. Therefore, associate's degree programs take two years of full-time study to complete. Graduates are typically awarded an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree.

Aspiring medical receptionists can prepare to enter the field through certificate or associate's degree programs that include internships or co-ops in addition to coursework covering medical office procedures and software use. These programs are commonly found at 2-year institutions, though some 4-year colleges and universities offer them as well.

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