As a medical office administrator, you’ll schedule patients, file medical records and collect medical bills. It’s a demanding job with many diverse responsibilities. All the more reason today’s medical office employers want the best the brightest employees working for them. And in this economy, they can be pretty picky when it comes to selecting just the right candidate.
If you’re looking for a job in this field, you’ll need to complete a formal training program at an accredited college or university. You’ll also need credentials from professional associations to show that you are a specialist in the field.
Most online schools require a high school diploma. Online medical office administration schools can help you get your foot in the door to run a medical office or to be a certified medical billing and coding specialist. These schools let you prepare at your own pace to manage a medical clinic or private physician's office.
Medical offices, clinics and hospitals need people with professional health administration training. As a medical billing and coding specialist, you’ll learn to assign a universally accepted numerical code that categorizes each symptom, diagnosis, procedure, or treatment a patient receives. Accredited online medical administration schools offer training in medical billing and medical coding as well as many other areas of health care management.
To become a medical office administrator, you’ll need a two-year associate's degree program or at the very least a one-year certificate program. You can also earn a bachelor's or even a master's degree online if you want to move into management.
Many currently available online programs can help prepare you with the knowledge and educational coursework required to take certification exams today’s employers require.
For example, to take the CMMCertified Medical Manager exam, you’ll need at least 12 college credits relating to healthcare or business management and three years of experience in the healthcare field. To take the CPAMCertified Patient Account Manager (hospital-based) or the CCAMCertified Clinic Account Manager (physician-based) exams, you’ll need at least four years of healthcare experience or two years of healthcare experience and a two-year college or university associates degree. An Associate of Science in Medical Office Administration degree is required to meet the minimum education requirement for the CPAM or CCAM exams.
Here are some accredited schools you may want to look into:
As you can see, you have many options to prepare yourself for a career in this growing field. Keep in mind that employers will also be looking for a friendly, outgoing personality. You’ll need to be a team player and be expected to work well with doctors as well as patients.