Types of Medical Office Careers
Many people want to work in a medical environment without being a doctor or a nurse and working directly with patients. For people with those interests, there are a variety of other medical office careers that are available that provide the best of both worlds.
One of the most basic positions to hold is that of a medical office assistant. They could be responsible for a wide range of different things depending on the environment they are working in. An administrative medical assistant will take a more clerical role, maintaining patients’ files, filling out insurance paperwork, making appointments, and doing basic bookkeeping.
A clinical medical assistant on the other hand may have more duties related to the patient, like checking vital signs and taking medical histories on top of some basic office duties.
If however, you are good with numbers and want to work with insurance claims, medical billing and coding is another office route you can take. Medical coding demands that you translate all medical treatments and services into industry standard codes to prepare them for billing, which entails contacting the patient’s insurance companies to bill for treatments rendered and deal with unpaid bills.
These jobs rely on another important office position, which is that of a medical transcriptionist. There work involves listening to doctor’s audio recordings and then transcribe them into documents such as reports. Coders use their reports in order to translate the necessary services to later be billed.
Finally there are positions like medical records and health information techs who are responsible for collecting and validating patients’ medical histories, test results and treatments, and management positions in health information and healthcare.
Necessary Training and Certification
There are different levels of medical office training available depending on the specific area you want to focus on, but in general most medical career training simply requires a high school degree and a 2 year associate’s degree from vocational or community colleges.
In some cases a 1 year certificate is sufficient, but you should try to seek programs that are accredited in all cases. There are also different certifications available for each position on an optional basis.
A medical transcriptionist for example can become a Registered Medical Transcriptionist (RMT) or Certified Medical Transcriptionist (CMT) by passing the appropriate exams.
Some medical administration training, like for office assistants, can often be done on the job without any formal background. Office assistants also have the choice to advance their studies and pursue certification through the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) or the Association of Medical Technologists (AMT).
There are also The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) that provides coding certification, and The Board of Medical Specialty Coding (BMSC) and Professional Association of Health care Coding Specialists (PAHCS) that give specialty coding certification and The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) where you can become a Registered Health Information Technician.
These are just a few of the many different certifications you can be eligible for by attaining your associate’s degree and the proper medical career training. Management positions however will require the minimum of a bachelor’s degree and the proper certification. Whatever niche you feel best suited for, there is an abundance of medical office careers that are right for you.