Medical Receptionist: Job Duties, Career Outlook, and Education Prerequisites

Medical receptionists greet patients, schedule appointments and complete other office tasks for a medical office or health care facility. Find out the average salary, employment outlook and education requirements. Schools offering Medical Office Administration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Could I Expect During My Career as a Medical Receptionist?

Medical receptionists manage the flow of information in doctors' offices and other health care facilities. They set up appointments, organize paperwork and distribute information via mail, telephone and e-mail. Medical receptionists use desktop publishing programs and digital graphics to make spreadsheets, manage data and create documents on computers. As a medical receptionist, you are responsible for communicating with vendors, inspecting leased supplies, organizing stockrooms and training new employees.

What Is My Occupational Outlook?

The outlook for medical receptionists is favorable, and according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of receptionists will grow by nine percent between 2008 and 2018 (www.bls.gov). Physicians' offices employed just under half of all receptionists in 2008. Advances in technology will not slow the growth of the medical receptionist industry, because workers are still needed to interact with staff, plan meetings, and handle other duties that can't be accomplished using technology alone. BLS salary data showed that the middle half of receptionists earned between $20,540 and $30,480 per year in 2009.

What Educational Requirements Should I Meet?

Monster.com showed in April 2011 that professional experience and computer proficiency are important to prospective employers. Many high school vocational programs offer courses that teach typing and office skills, as do most community colleges. Medical receptionists usually require specialized training to learn the language in their industry, so a course in medical terminology may be helpful. Diploma programs may also be available for prospective medical receptionists in vocational schools. Additionally, the increased use of electronic health records has added to the need for strong technological skills. A strong sense of confidentiality is also important, since privacy laws surrounding medical records have increased.

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