Profession Profile: Medical Administrative Specialist
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Profession Profile: Medical Administrative Specialist

A medical administrative specialist serves a key role in medical office, clinic and hospital settings. Learn more about the profession, how to become certified, and employment information.

A medical administrative specialist serves a key role in medical office, clinic and hospital settings. This multi-skilled practitioner is competent in medical records management, insurance processing, coding and billing, management of practice finances, information processing and fundamental office management tasks. A medical administrative specialist is very familiar with clinical and technical concepts required to coordinate administrative office functions in the healthcare setting. Some of the duties performed by a medical administrative specialist include:

  • Answer telephones and take messages or transfer calls
  • Schedule appointments and update event calendars
  • Arrange staff meetings
  • Handle incoming and outgoing mail and faxes
  • Prepare memos, invoices or other reports
  • Edit documents
  • Maintain databases and filing systems, whether electronic or paper
  • Perform basic bookkeeping

Education and Training

A medical administrative specialist must have a high school diploma or G.E.D. with acceptable training. Many colleges, career schools and technical schools offer medical administrative assistant, medical office assistant or medical secretary programs. Graduates from these programs will receive either a certificate or diploma depending on the program. Graduation from a school that is accredited makes it easier to apply for certification.

Licensure: Each individual state decides the scope of practice for medical administrative specialists. Most states do not have licensure laws, but many states do have a scope of practice for medical administrative specialists or medical assistants.

Certification: Certification by a recognized organization enables medical administrative specialists to be promoted faster as well as earn a higher pay. Employers prefer to hire experienced workers and many prefer certified applicants who have passed a national examination by a recognized professional association, such as the American Medical Technologists, indicating that the medical administrative specialist meets certain standards of competence. If you are interested in becoming certified through AMT for CMAS visit our website page to see if you are eligible.

Is It Right For You?

A medical administrative specialist must have a sincere desire to help people and a willingness to learn the complexities of the health care industry. Medical administrative specialists work most of their time in the front office of a physician office, clinic or hospital. They must be outgoing, patient and have an attention to detail. Also, this individual must be willing to learn new procedures, laws and insurance filing forms.

Employment

Medical administrative specialists held about 528,000 jobs in 2014. Employment is projected to grow 14 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Federal health legislation will expand the number of patients who have access to health insurance, increasing patient access to medical care. In addition, the aging population will have increased demand for medical services. As a result, medical secretaries will be needed to handle administrative tasks related to billing and insurance processing.

Salary

The earnings vary depending on experience, education and skill level. Median annual wages for
medical administrative specialists in May 2016 was $33,730.

Want To Learn More?

Visit the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and O*NET OnLine websites.
 

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