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Medical Administrative Assistant vs. Medical Office Receptionist: What's the Difference?

Written by Ashworth College on Wednesday, 21 February 2018. Posted in Career

Medical Administrative Assistant vs. Medical Office Receptionist: What's the Difference?

Medical administrative assistants can help with both clinical and clerical tasks while a medical office receptionist helps exclusively with administrative work. In this article, we’ll break down the duties of each role as well as training requirements and recommendations, so you have a clear vision for which path to choose.

What is a medical administrative assistant?

A medical administrative assistant, also referred to as a medical office assistant, performs a variety of administrative tasks at a doctor’s or dentist’s office, hospital, outpatient clinic, or surgical center.  Skills required include the ability to:

  • Assist doctors and nurses with basic patient treatment and procedures.
  • Communicate clearly with doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals.
  • Manage sensitive and confidential patient-relations issues.

While a high school diploma may be sufficient for an entry-level position, most employers prefer to hire candidates that have received medical office assistant training or a medical office assistant certification.

Ashworth College offers a medical office assistant training program that may help you earn certification you need. Your course may help prepare you for the National Healthcareer Association's (NHA's) Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) exam.

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the medical administrative assistant field has an expected growth of 19% by 2029 with an average salary of $34,800.

What is a medical office receptionist?

A medical office receptionist  is the front-desk personnel of a doctor’s or dentist’s office,  hospital, physical therapy office, or long-term care facility. In this role, you work with the patients both before and after they see their treating physician. A medical office receptionist is responsible for:

  • Creating a calm environment and maintaining work order and flow in the office.
  • Greeting patients and answering phone calls.
  • Registering new patients, scheduling appointments, filing medical and insurance records, and collecting co-pays.

Once again, a high school diploma may suffice for an entry-level position in this field, but a medical office receptionist diploma may help set you above the rest. In this program you’ll learn healthcare law and ethics, appointment scheduling, medical records handling, insurance plans, and billing and coding procedures.

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the median salary is $31,250 for those in the.

Ashworth College offers flexible, affordable online programs to help you complete your training at your own pace. Call an Admissions Advisor at 1-800-957-5412 or enroll today!

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