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Although it is possible to become a medical office assistant without specialized training, most job postings will require a post-secondary diploma or certificate. This is because the tasks of a medical office assistant require certain knowledge and training that would be difficult to obtain solely on the job. Medical office assistant courses include training in medical procedures, billing and bookkeeping.
The diploma program at Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) will give you the medical office assistant courses you need to be successful. As well, you will complete a practicum, so that you feel comfortable on the job when it’s time to get hired.
Required medical office assistant courses
You may already have some skills that will help you in your role as a Medical Office Assistant, such as typing and using Microsoft Office. You may have worked in offices before and have experience with answering the phone and providing customer service. However, there are other more specialized skills you can learn through medical office assistant courses.
Electronic Medical Record Software – Many patient records in today’s office environment are maintained electronically. This helps to ensure efficiency and provide better care to the patient. An office assistant needs to learn how to manage these records using the latest software. ACI’s Medical Billing course includes an introduction to the Oscar Electronic Medical Record computer software program.
Medical terminology – In order to communicate effectively with doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals, you will need to understand the terminology used in the medical field. This information will be useful in ordering tests, scheduling, writing reports and other tasks. Learning to be fluent in this terminology will ensure accuracy and help you assist with delivering high quality patient care. You will learn medical terminology in your Medical Science and Transcription courses.
Medical transcription – You may be required to produce reports based on the doctor’s information such as dictation or hand-written notes. This is called medical transcription. This information must be formatted and entered electronically. Medical transcription courses will teach you both the terminology and the procedures.
Clinical procedures – Although a medical office assistant can’t treat patients, they may be required to perform certain clinical procedures. You will learn about basic laboratory tests, medical office equipment, measuring and charting vital signs and how to prepare the exam room. This information will be included in your Medical Office Procedures course at ACI.
Practicum – Practicums are an essential part of medical office assistant courses. It will allow you to see how the knowledge gained in your program is used in the real world. You will get a feel for the procedures of a office and your role in helping to make sure everything runs smoothly. You will also learn how to multi-task effectively as most offices are very busy places. When you start your first job, you’ll have some experience and feel more confident that you have the skills to handle the challenges ahead.
As you can see there is a lot of specialized learning that takes place, before one can become a confident medical office assistant. However, taking medical office assistant courses doesn’t need to take you away from the workplace for years. The Medical Office Assistant program at ACI is only 22.5 weeks.
If you want to become a confident Medical Office Assistant, contact ACI today to find out if the medical office assistant program is right for you.
Because the day-to-day tasks of a medical office assistant are varied, you will need a variety of competencies such as administration and “soft” skills.
What skills do you need?
Here is what you need to demonstrate to become a successful medical office assistant:
Communication: As a medical office assistant, you will be the first point of contact for patients. You will need to be able to take down their information accurately, collect billing or insurance information, show them into the exam room and take their vital signs. In many cases you will be dealing with people who are sick, in pain and possibly upset. You’ll need to be able to remain calm and reassuring under pressure. You should be able to communicate well in person, on the phone and in emails.
Team work: As an essential member of the staff, you will also need to communicate with doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals in your facility. You need to keep others updated about patients, order supplies and take instructions from others. You will need to be able to ask questions to ensure you understand processes and procedures. If you continue to grow in your role, you might take on leadership roles, which will involve training and supervising other employees.
Computer skills: Good typing skills and accuracy will be important as you learn new software, input data, do medical transcription and basic bookkeeping. If you have a knack for computers and learning software, it will help increase your efficiency on the job. You can learn the types of software used in medical offices from an accredited program such as the Medical Office Assistant programat Accelerated Career Institute (ACI)and on the job.
Medical skills: At Accelerated Career Institute, you will learn the clinical skills you need for the job. Although a medical office assistant does not diagnose patients, they may have to perform a few medical tasks such as measuring and recording vital signs. As well, part of your job may involve medical transcription. You will need to be familiar with terminology used by doctors. Typically these skills are learned through an accredited program, such as ACI.
Administrative skills: As a medical office assistant you will need to help with the general administration of the office. This will include data entry, bookkeeping, scheduling, billing and other basic office skills. You may learn these skills through courses, on the job or from other administrative positions you may have held in the past.
Organizational skills: Needless to say, managing an office while in a customer facing role requires excellent organizational skills. You will need to be able to take phone calls, greet patients, and perform the tasks assigned by the doctor or office manager. You may experience frequent interruptions. Your ability to multi-task will be essential in this role. Sometimes it will be impossible to do everything at once and you will need to prioritize your tasks.
If you enjoy working with people and are ready to take on new challenges in your career, find out if the medical office assistant program at ACI is right for you. Contact ustoday for more information.
Medical office assistant (MOA) is a growing occupation with a lot of potential career opportunities for the future. If you are looking for a job with stability, interesting tasks, room for advancement and great benefits, this may be the career for you.
Here are some of the top benefits of working as a medical office assistant.
Start your career quickly: The Medical Office Assistant program at Accelerated Career Institute (ACI) takes only 22.5 weeks to complete. Once you finish the program, you will be ready for work. Medical office assistant is one career where you can begin working in your desired occupation right after graduation.
Job prospects: There are plenty of medical offices that require the skills you will be obtaining in your program. It’s not difficult to find work in most major cities. Smaller towns may be more challenging. The outlook for medical office assistants is excellent with the demand for medical services high due to an aging population. A large number of people in this position are likely to retire in the next 10 years.
Hours: Unless you work in a hospital, you will likely have fairly regular hours. Most stand-alone clinics do stay open late or open on weekends to serve those with nine-to-five jobs. Some doctors’ offices will also have varied hours to better serve these people. However, the schedule is usually straightforward. Some people even specialize as medical transcriptionists so they can work at home. A career as a medical office assistant is great for parents because you will not normally need to work shifts or be called in to emergencies like other healthcare professionals.
Interesting tasks: Some people like the clinical tasks. Some like the administrative tasks. Others love serving customers. You day will be busy with lots of different things competing for your attention. For many MOAs this level of activity is very satisfying because they are never bored.
Helping people: As you work in this role, you will have the opportunity to meet many people from your community. You’ll develop patience and communication skills as you assist people with their appointments. You’ll be showing them to the exam room, taking down their vitals, assisting the doctor, and answering what questions you are able to answer. As an important member of the team you’ll feel fulfilled knowing that you’re helping people with receiving their health care.
Room for advancement: Many people take on more tasks during their career and move up the ladder to positions such as office manager or patient coordinator. Others acquire certifications or additional skills. Some become so interested in the medical field that they go back to school to become nurses or complete other diplomas or degrees. If working in the healthcare sector is right for you, there are numerous options for advancing your career, which is one of the greatest benefits of this role.
If you think a career as a Medical Office Assistant is right for you, please contact Accelerated Career Institute to learn more about our program.
Salaries for a medical office assistant in Canada can vary based on many factors:
- Geographic location
- Years of experience
All the information provided here is an average assessment. For a full picture of salaries and benefits, review job postings and talk to people working in the field. You might consider creating a career alert on some of the major job boards so you can be notified of the latest job postings. These listings often state salary alongside the expected qualifications.
On average a medical office assistant who is just starting his or her career can make between $15 and $21 per hour in Canada.
The area that you practice may have a moderate affect on starting salaries. Medical office assistants in Calgary have reported higher starting salaries than those in Toronto.
Vancouver’s starting salaries are generally in the average range of $15 to $21.
If you work at a small office with one doctor you might make a lower salary than those who work in busy clinics. However, dental office assistants sometimes report higher salaries than office assistants working for general practitioners.
A large clinic may be busier, and you will be required to handle more tasks. In this case, you might earn a higher starting salary.
Some workplaces, such as hospitals, could be unionized, which means the union has bargained regular pay increases and benefits for its members. This may result in higher wages, though not in all cases. You will also need to pay union dues.
Years of experience
One of the major benefits of a career as a medical office assistant is the variety of tasks and knowledge you will acquire throughout your career. Many office assistants go on to acquire additional certifications. Some become office managers and start to oversee other staff. There is a great deal of growth potential in this career path.
As you progress in your career you may earn annual salaries in the range of $40,000 to $50,000.
While it is possible to become a medical office assistant without a diploma, it would be much harder. A Medical Office Assistant program gives you a firm foundation in the office procedures and medical knowledge that you will be expected to demonstrate on the job.
Starting off with the right qualifications will give you the best chance of making a solid career start in this exciting field. The Medical Office Assistant job outlook is excellent for the next few decades. As baby boomers age there will be increased demand for medical staff of all types in offices, clinics and hospitals. The demand for qualified team members may help to drive wages, benefits, and job stability for many working in this field.
If you are looking for a career with good opportunity for personal growth and excellent prospects for long-term opportunity, a Medical Office Assistant career could be the right fit for you. Contact us today to learn about the Medical Office Assistant program at ACI and to get started on your career.
A medical transcriptionist needs to have a good understanding of basic medical concepts and terminology so that they can accurately transcribe information and prepare reports. That’s why having a diploma is so important to success in this field.
If you are considering a career as a medical transcriptionist, you should have good English language and typing skills. In addition, you should have a strong attention to detail and an interest in the medical field is a definite plus.
Become a Medical transcriptionist through the Medical Office Assistant program
There are several benefits to taking the Medical Office Assistant program as preparation for your career:
You will take two credits in which you will learn about medical science and transcription. As well, you will learn all of the office procedures required to work in a medical clinic or doctor’s office. Medical transcriptionists often handle the day-to-day office administrative work in smaller organizations. This can include answering phones, greeting patients and booking appointments. Having a wide variety of office skills will help you become an invaluable member of the team.
You will also learn basic computer skills, insurance billing and the software programs that are typically used in a medical office environment.
You will need excellent organizational skills to succeed as a medical transcriptionist. Reports must be completed in a timely manner to ensure the patient gets the best care possible. Depending on the work setting, you may need to balance your work with other duties. We’ll help you develop your skills so that you can excel in the workforce.
What are your job prospects as a medical transcriptionist?
Because of the complex information and the need for accuracy, employers hiring medical transcriptionists prefer those with a post-secondary education. Growth in this field is on the rise as Canada’s population ages and there is more need for staffing in all areas of health care. Some medical transcriptionists even enjoy the flexibility to work from home. After graduation, you may choose to pursue certifications so that you can progress in your career.
A Medical Office Assistant program will give you the flexibility to pursue your career goals. If you are ready to get started, contact us today.