Medical Administrative Assistant Duties and Job Outlook

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Administrative professionals play an important role in the efficient delivery of healthcare services. Medical administrative assistant duties often require specialized knowledge and skills, which is why many individuals opt to pursue formal training in this area. By enrolling in medical administrative assistant education, you can prepare for an entry-level position in this growing allied health field, helping patients access the medical care they need.

What Is the Role of a Medical Administrative Assistant?

Medical administrative assistants use a variety of organizational skills, industry-relevant knowledge and technology to efficiently manage the front office of a healthcare service provider. They are often employed by medical facilities, physicians’ practices, hospitals and nursing homes.

While medical administrative assistant duties vary by employer, professionals in this field typically perform a variety of tasks to support the medical team with administrative functions and care of patients. They may use their medical administrative assistant training to update medical histories, transcribe treatment notes, arrange for patient hospitalization, process insurance forms and oversee inventory of office and medical supplies.

In some practices, a medical administrative assistant may be the first contact a patient has with the medical team. Professionals in this role might be responsible for greeting patients and visitors, answering telephones, scheduling appointments, managing email inquiries and answering questions.

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Medical Administrative Assistant Requirements and Training

A high school diploma is usually the minimum required for most business administrative jobs; however, medical administrative assistant requirements often include advanced skills and knowledge, such as an understanding of medical terminology and familiarity with industry-relevant computer software applications. Given the complexities of the healthcare industry and related technology, medical administrative assistant duties may require a certain level of knowledge and proficiency in the field. For that reason, many employers prefer to hire candidates who have completed medical administrative assistant programs.

In addition to enrolling in formal medical administrative assistant education, candidates may opt to pursue industry certification – such as the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) credential from the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) – as a way to demonstrate their expertise to prospective healthcare employers. Some medical administrative assistant programs not only award academic credentials, but also help students prepare for certification.

Medical administrative assistant requirements often include solid interpersonal skills, proficiency in written and verbal communication, and good spelling and grammar. Strong organizational skills and the ability to work independently are also important attributes for aspiring medical administrative assistants.

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Medical Administrative Assistant Job Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the medical administrative assistant job outlook appears strong in coming years. Recent BLS publications indicate that employment of medical secretaries is projected to grow much faster than the average occupation, with an expected 27% increase between 2008 and 2018.*

The BLS suggests that this expansion in medical secretary jobs will stem from overall growth in the healthcare industry as well as increasing automation of offices and organizational restructuring. The agency also asserts that experienced and trained medical secretaries will enjoy the best job opportunities.  

UMA's Medical Administrative Assistant Education and Career Services

If your career plans involve a future in healthcare as a medical administrative assistant, a formal training program can help you develop the necessary skills and knowledge to transition into this growing field.

Ultimate Medical Academy (UMA) offers two comprehensive Medical Administrative Assistant education options, including a diploma program and an associate degree. Both feature the flexibility and convenience of UMA’s online healthcare learning platform, which enables students to attend classes anytime and anywhere.

UMA's Medical Administrative Assistant diploma program is designed to provide the training students need to qualify for entry-level positions. The 10-month program provides industry-relevant training to meet the needs of today's healthcare employers, and features courses such as:

  • Medical Terminology
  • Introduction to Medical Assisting
  • Medical Law & Ethics
  • Interpersonal Professional Communications
  • Essentials of Anatomy & Physiology for Medial Office
  • Healthcare Coding
  • Medical Transcription
  • Medical Office Procedures With Software Applications
  • Office Accounting

Graduates of the diploma program will also be prepared to sit for the CMAA certification exam offered by the NHA.

Students who wish to pursue a higher level of education may enroll in UMA’s Associate of Science in Health Sciences degree program with a concentration in Medical Administrative Assistant. Like the diploma program, the 15-month medical administrative assistant degree program is available to students nationwide through UMA’s online learning platform. The associate degree track follows a similar curriculum to the diploma program, but includes additional general education courses and electives.

The medical administrative assistant degree program prepares students to sit for the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) exam offered by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA)

All UMA students receive the support of Career Services department personnel, who are focused on helping students find job opportunities that fit their skills and interests.

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Prepare for a Career in Healthcare With Medical Administrative Assistant Training

If you're ready to start on the path to a healthcare career, UMA’s medical administrative assistant education can be the first step. Whether you choose to pursue a diploma or degree, you’ll have the opportunity to learn the skills employers need now – which can help you transition into or advance within this expanding healthcare field.

Since 1994, thousands of graduates have completed UMA’s healthcare training and embarked on careers in the allied health field. You can follow in their footsteps by enrolling in one of UMA’s medical administrative assistant programs. For more information, contact UMA today.

* U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-2011 Edition. “Secretaries and Administrative Assistants” <http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos151.htm#outlook>

For information on student graduation rates, retention and placement rates, and student financial obligations, visit www.ultimatemedical.edu/consumerinfo

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