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Medical Assistant Job Description

“What, you’re a medical assistant? Isn’t that kind of like being a nurse?”

The above statement may have been heard by most medical assistants countless times, but these noble helpers will tell you that it is one of the most common myths in the industry. The general misconception revolving around being a medical assistant is that the job is banal and lowly. The truth is, being a medical assistant can be very rewarding for the right individuals. Let’s find out if you are cut out to take on one of the most demanding professions in the modern world today.

What does a medical assistant do?

The medical assistant profession requires one to be a versatile worker. He or she may be a clerk, a receptionist, a Jack of all trades and basically a multi-tasker all rolled into one.

In short, a good medical assistant does all he or she can to help doctors run their offices smoothly.

What makes a good medical assistant?

A good medical assistant will find him or herself equally comfortable in both back and front offices. He or she will move effortlessly through these areas, finding ways to improve the practice and allow doctors to revel in a smoothly-run medical office.

In the front office, a medical assistant will often take up tasks usually performed by clerks and secretaries. He or she may spend some time making and screening calls, scheduling appointments and answering patient inquiries. A good medical assistant is also an adept record-keeper who keeps files organized and prescriptions fulfilled.

Just as efficiently a medical assistant moves about the front office, so can he or she perform tasks effectively in the back office. A skilful medical assistant will assist doctors in bringing their patients to the exam rooms and can be expected to perform simple tasks such as taking samples and assisting in minor surgeries. Depending on his or her capabilities, a medical assistant is usually trained and entrusted to take patients’ vitals to ease a physician’s burden.

Types of medical assistants

The beauty of being a medical assistant is that you can pretty much do your job in a variety of locations and even choose to be one of these types of medical assistants:

  • Clinical Medical Assistant
    Clinical medical assistants are paid to focus their time and efforts on patient care although bedside duties are mostly performed by diligent nurses. It is not uncommon to see medical assistants helping doctors administer treatments, perform minor surgeries and conduct assessments.
  • Administrative Medical Assistant
    An administrative medical assistant will liken him or herself to an adroit administrative staff. Managing patient records, organizing files, setting appointments and placating impatient patients may seem like banal work, but a good administrative medical assistant will be lauded for his or her multi-tasking capabilities.
  • Specialized Medical Assistant
    One perk enjoyed by specialized medical assistants is the higher pay. Along with their specialization in certain fields, these medical assistants are required to perform more clinical tasks which will demand more technical skills as opposed to just performing clerical or administrative tasks.

Future as a medical assistant

With new diseases and medical conditions constantly being discovered each day, it is no surprise to see that more and more people are opting to earn a living in the health care industry.

As a medical assistant, your future may very well be a bright one as you immerse yourself in patient care and assist physicians in making life-changing decisions. Advancements and opportunities are abound as you are presented with the choice to enter other departments in the medical field as and when you are ready to do so. After you discover your true calling, it is never too late to gain a degree or certification. Coupled with your already-extensive experience as a medical assistant, you would already have the upper hand to kick start a stable career for many years to come.

Filed in: Medical Assistant

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