What Is Considered an Administrative Skill for a Medical Assistant?

  • Medical Assistant
  • April 18, 2024
  • 4 min read
What Is Considered an Administrative Skill for a Medical Assistant

If you are naturally organized, have a good sense of order and detail, and have a heart for others, you might want to consider a healthcare career. 

As a medical assistant, you position yourself as the backbone of any healthcare facility. You ensure daily duties are done swiftly by providing much-needed support to patients and medical staff. Clinical skills are all-important, but they go hand in hand with equally important administrative skills, which are essential to ensure everything is running smoothly.

In this blog, we’ll explore administrative duties specific to medical assistants. Whether you are ready to become a medical assistant or merely want to reacquaint yourself with the art of administration, this post is bound to have something for you!

Understanding the Role of a Medical Assistant

As much as medical assistants are meant to primarily provide clinical services to patients, they also play essential roles in the complicated administrative ecosystem that exists between patients and health providers. They are also subject to a genuinely multi-functional role that puts them in charge of clinical and administrative work.

Core Responsibilities

Medical assistants are the support staff in medical practices, clinics, and hospitals. They support physicians, nurses, and other medical personnel by completing a variety of clinical or administrative support services.

Clinical duties typically include:

  • Assisting healthcare providers during patient examinations.
  • Collection of essential patient data
  • Recording vital signs.
  • Preparing patients for medical procedures.
  • In cooperation, it administers medications or injections.

Medical assistants also undertake various administrative tasks that operate the facility daily. These duties may include scheduling patient appointments, maintaining patient records, directing tasks that follow up on processing billing and coding and coordinating communications between the patient and other health staff with the provider.

Patient Interaction

From the moment a patient walks through the doors of a healthcare facility, medical assistants are the welcoming face and guiding hand. They must be polite in dealing with patients, escort them to the examination rooms, and obtain their medical history and chief complaints (i.e., the reason for their visit).

Office Management

Apart from clinical and patient care duties, medical assistants must complete their administrative duties accurately and promptly to ensure that the medical office runs smoothly. Office management involves a series of tasks to be performed to maintain organization, accuracy, and compliance in the health care setting.

Key Administrative Skills for Medical Assistants

Efficient work as a medical assistant requires both clinical and management expertise however the core administrative skills include:

Organizational Proficiency 

Medical assistants have many responsibilities on any given day, ranging from appointment scheduling to filing away records. Organizational skills are critical in the medical office; nothing can fall through the cracks.

Appointment Scheduling

Among other responsibilities, appointment scheduling can be one of a medical assistant’s most indispensable activities. These responsibilities might include setting new appointments, modifying old ones, or calling patients to provide reminders about upcoming appointments. Appointment scheduling is central to organized workflow and delivery of effective patient care.

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Patient Intake and Records Management 

In any healthcare institution, when a patient comes in for the first time, the medical assistant often greets them, takes the necessary information, and prepares for the first consultation. The skills in patient intake procedures ensure that the essential information is documented and stored for easy access at the time of requirement, and patient record management is done with great attention.

Medical Billing and Coding

Medical assistants may also take on duties associated with medical billing and coding. As the healthcare industry has become more specialized, medical assistants (typically) do no work on collections or submit insurance claims. However, they are often responsible for transcribing providers’ findings into the EHR and must capture the specific procedures, diagnoses, and treatments recommended by the provider so that everything is correct for proper billing and processing of insurance claims.

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Medical assistants must have a solid foundational understanding of administrative skills to contribute effectively to the healthcare team and excel in their duties. Honing these basic skills will ensure smooth operations and quality patient care, which brings an enhanced healthcare experience for both patients and medical assistants alike.

Corey Del Pino
Dean Of Clinical Programs

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Corey Del Pino attended Northern Arizona University after high school and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology with a Chemistry Minor in 2012. After attending Mohave Community College and earning her Medical…Read Full Bio