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Business

Medical Office Administrator Jobs: What Are They and How to Be One?

Medical Office Administrator Jobs: What Are They and How to


Medical Office Administrator Jobs: What Are They and How to Be One?

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a medical office?

Physicians and nurses, right?

But who is the first person you’re most likely to meet when you go to a medical office? A front-office administrator, no doubt.

Well, these administrators are responsible for the operational efficiency of medical offices. They help ensure the provision of quality patient care services.

Continue reading for more information on medical office administrator jobs and the steps you should take to get hired.

What Does a Medical Office Administrator Do?

Medical office administrators oversee the operations of a medical office. This, though, is a broad overview of their job description. On a typical workday, they perform the following tasks:

  • Supervising administrative and clerical staff, such as receptionists and medical billers and coders
  • Scheduling patient appointments
  • Answering client questions and responding to complaints
  • Organizing and maintaining patient records
  • Processing and filing insurance claims
  • Overseeing the acquisition of medical office supplies, ensuring items don’t run out
  • Maintaining close business relations with the medical office’s suppliers.

The job of a medical office administrator largely involves sitting behind a desk. Depending on whether the medical office offers 24-hours services, they may work regular hours or in shifts.

The role might include a little bit of travel, particularly when you’re required to accompany the office’s physicians to an industry event.

Can you handle these tasks? If yes, let’s shift our focus to qualification requirements. So what’s does it take to become a medical office administrator?

Take a Course in Medical Office Administration

Back in the day, it wasn’t uncommon to find medical office admins whose highest level of academic qualification was a high school diploma. Employers would hire high school graduates and give them extensive on-the-job training.

But that was then. Today, the position if far more specialized. Employers are looking for people with relevant professional training.

As such, the first step to becoming a medical office administrator is to pursue a medical office administration program, preferably an associate’s degree. Most colleges offer online programs, so you don’t have to worry about commuting if your schedule or finances won’t allow.

In the program, you’ll take classes in:

  • Health information management
  • Healthcare systems and operations
  • Medical law and ethics
  • Scheduling and office operations
  • Financial records management.

An associate’s degree takes two years to complete, but it’s possible to find institutions that offer shorter medical office administrator programs. In this case, you’ll graduate with a diploma in medical office administration.

Develop the Right Occupational Skills

Acquiring professional knowledge is a good step, but that’s not all you need to become a competent medical office administrator. You also need to possess the right occupational abilities and skills.

For example, a good medical office admin must be a compassionate and empathetic person. Like most professions in healthcare settings, this job involves interacting with patients who might be in pain, anxious and stressed. You must be able to relate to their situations and provide services in a supportive manner.

To succeed in this role, you must have a natural passion for helping other people. Medical service administration is all about serving people. If you’re not the kind of person who loves being around other people, this job probably isn’t the right for you.

You need strong problem-solving and decision-making skills. Every day, you’ll encounter an issue that needs to be resolved quickly.

Excellent organizational skills and strong attention to detail are also must-haves. You must be able to work with a wide range of documents without making a clerical mistake.

Bear in mind medical offices are subject to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which protects the privacy of patient information. If you’re not good at organizing and keeping accurate records, you can easily mishandle crucial information, potentially landing the medical office in trouble.

Finding Employment

Medical office administrators aren’t required to obtain any occupational licenses. This means you’re ready to find a job as soon as you complete your professional training.

Physician’s offices are the primary employers of medical office admins, but you can also look for a job in dental clinics, mental health centers, and even rehabilitation facilities.

Now, although you can start off as a medical office administrator right away, this isn’t the typical career path for most people. You’ll most likely start out in an entry-level position, such as medical billing and coding, then work your way up as you gain more medical office experience.

Pursue Professional Certifications to Enhance Your Prospects

The healthcare industry is booming. The Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts an addition of 1.9 million jobs over the next decade. More medical offices will set up shop throughout this period.

As an aspiring medical office admin, it’s vital to take additional steps that will make you a compelling candidate. An ideal step is to pursue professional certification.

The Practice Management Institute, for instance, offers the Certified Medical Office Manager credential, which you can pursue to enhance your leadership and problem-solving skills in a medical office. With this credential, you’ll easily stand out from the crowd.

Life Beyond Medical Office Administration

Do you want to be a medical office admin forever? Likely not. You want to climb the career ladder.

But what’s next after medical office administration?

If you’re ambitious enough, you could go back to college and pursue an advanced program in healthcare administration. After completion, you can be hired as a hospital manager.

Alternatively, you can set up a medical office management business that provides consulting and other specialized administrative services to medical offices.

Medical Office Administrator Jobs: The Path Is Clear

Medical office administrator jobs are richly rewarding, especially if you like helping people and would love to work in healthcare settings. This article has fleshed out the duties and responsibilities of these professionals, as well as the path you need to take to get hired.

All the best and keep reading our blog for more career and workplace tips.

Health

Exercise Your Rights: A Complete Guide on How to Obtain Your Medical Records

Exercise Your Rights: A Complete Guide on How to Obtain


Exercise Your Rights: A Complete Guide on How to Obtain Your Medical Records

Do you need to access copies of your medical records? Are you having a hard time getting them from the hospital or doctor’s office? 

If so, you’re not alone.

Research shows that a number of American hospitals make it difficult for patients to get copies of their records. 

If you’re having trouble gaining access to your medical records, keep reading.

Explained below is everything you need to know about how to obtain your medical records. 

Why Obtain Copies of Your Medical Records?

There are many reasons why someone might need to obtain a copy of their medical records. Some common reasons include:

  • Get a complete understanding of your health history (this includes the results of specific blood tests and other examinations)
  • Identify errors that could lead to a misdiagnosis
  • Create a more comprehensive care plan for yourself
  • Learn more about the medications you’ve been prescribed
  • Provide proof of injuries or illnesses associated with an accident in which you were involved

Whether your intentions are health-focused or legal-focused, there a number of situations for which you might need copies of your medical records.

Are You Allowed to See Your Medical Records?

Some people are hesitant to ask for their medical records because they’re not sure if they’re allowed to see them.

Some hospitals may also be hesitant to release medical records because they’re worried about data breaches or leaking confidential information to the wrong person.

At the end of the day, though, it’s important to note that you, as a patient, absolutely have a right to look at your medical records. Caregivers and advocates are also allowed to see medical records.

Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (also known as HIPAA), you have a right to see and obtain copies of your medical records at any time.

You also have a right to dispute anything shown on those records that seems incorrect or seems that it’s been omitted.

How to Obtain Your Medical Records

Okay, you know that you have a right to obtain copies of your medical records. How do you go about doing this, though? How do you ensure you get what you need when you need it?

Follow these guidelines to make sure you get the copies you need from your doctor’s office or hospital: 

Use the Right Communication Channels

The first step you need to take is to make sure you’re attempting to access your records through the proper channels.

Your healthcare provider likely has an online patient portal that allows you to gain access to some of your information.

If the information you need isn’t available, call your healthcare provider’s office and ask the receptionist how to access your records.

They will likely transfer you to a medical records analyst (check this article to learn what they do) or someone who else handles records.

Be Clear with Your Request

Remember to be clear about which medical records you need. Records can be hundreds of pages in length, so specify whether you need copies of all your records or just from a specific time period or appointment. The clearer you are, the easier it will be to get what you need.

Specify the Format You Want

When you’re asking for copies of your records, be sure to specify the format in which you’d like them delivered. By law, your healthcare provider has to give you a choice between paper and electronic copies.

Sometimes, though, your records might not be available in an electronic format. In this case, someone from the hospital or doctor’s office will need to scan them. If this is the case, it may take longer for you to get the copies you need.

If you need information right away, you may need to just want to go ahead and accept the paper copies, even if they’re less convenient than electronic copies.

Challenge Excessive Costs

Keep in mind that copies of your medical records might not be free.

Providers can charge you for the labor involved in pulling them up, the cost of the paper to print them, and the postage involved to mail them to you.

If they charge you anything more than $6.50, which is the federal recommendation, you can challenge that cost and try to negotiate it down.

Ask for a Timeline

Legally, your healthcare provider can take up to 30 days to provide you with your records. If it is going to take longer than this, they need to give you a new delivery date and explain to you why they can’t deliver them within thirty days. Be sure to ask for a timeline and make sure it aligns with these rules.

Follow Up

Once you’ve requested copies of your records, follow up every few days to make sure they’ve received your request.

If you don’t receive your records within the date specified, reach out and ask why they are delayed. 

Be polite when you do this, of course, but be firm and make it clear that you expect copies of your records and need to know when you’ll receive them.

Escalate if Necessary

If you’re having a hard time getting copies of your medical records, call your healthcare provider and ask to speak to their HIPAA privacy officer.

If you’re still experiencing delays with no explanation — or if you’re receiving an unsatisfactory explanation — you can file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights, too.

After You’ve Obtained Your Medical Records

The idea of asking for copies of your medical records might seem intimidating or difficult at first. While some hospitals do, in fact, make it challenging for patients to gain access to their records, it’s not impossible.

Now that you know how to obtain your medical records, it’s time to follow these steps and get your hands on them once and for all. 

Are you seeking medical records because you were involved in a car accident? Do you need help handling other aspects of your case? If so, check out some of our other articles today.

This one on what to do after being involved in a fatal car accident contains some very helpful information.

Business

A Prescription for Promotion: 5 Medical Marketing and SEO Strategies that Actually Work

A Prescription for Promotion: 5 Medical Marketing and SEO Strategies


A Prescription for Promotion: 5 Medical Marketing and SEO Strategies that Actually Work

Did you know that medical marketing and SEO strategies are important to implement into your website?

In 2019, you need to focus on narrowing down on to the best medical internet marketing tools to boost traffic to your site and ultimately bring new patients into your practice. 

These are 5 of the best medical marketing tips to follow if you are interested in learning how to boost your digital content creating strategy today. 

1. Patient-Focused Website Layout

One of the first steps to operating an online presence for your medical practice is to enable a patient-focused layout.

Keep in mind the age group of the demographics of your medical practice. Are your patients over the age of 50? If so, then it’s important to ensure that your website has the best layout possible for easy navigation. 

A user-friendly website will make all of your patients happy to navigate on their phones or from their computer screens. Did you know that approximately 84% of patients use their phones to do research? Tap into this market by ensuring that your website functions properly for your demographic. 

2. Educational Videos

Another aspect to connect your patients with your medical practice involves the art of video creation. 

Video content continues to dominate as one of the best marketing tools out there. If you want to see the traffic increase to your medical practice website, upload educational videos each week. 

It would be beneficial to have one of the doctors at your practice speak up about a topic he or she is knowledgable about in one of the videos. These insightful videos will also add credibility to the doctors who work at the practice, too. 

3. Increase Social Media Presence 

As doctors, you may not see the need for social media. However, social media platforms can help you draw attention from new sources. Facebook and Instagram are just two platforms you need to pay attention to. 

Running Facebook and Instagram pages for your medical practice opens up opportunities to find new patients. Instead of relying on paper advertisements, social media can offer cheaper alternatives to market your practice.

For example, running an ad on Facebook can be more beneficial than running an ad in the newspaper because there are 2.32 billion active users. 

4. Create a Blog

On your medical website, you need to create a separate area for your blog. Blogs are content marketing assets to boost your SEO, or search engine optimization, power. Some blog ideas to add to your site include covering topics such as Eating Disorder Loneliness and How to Get Help For Knee Pain. 

Building awareness of your medical practice takes plenty of marketing strategies. One of these strategies includes building a blog. Having frequent blog updates will also improve the quality of your site and Google will reward your site for reliability. 

5. Reach a Targeted Audience with Medical Marketing Tools

Are you worried about the types of people who currently view your website because they may not be your direct audience? With the power of digital marketing, you are able to take control over who can see your ads. 

Reaching a targeted audience is possible when you switch over to digital marketing for your medical practice in 2019.

A targeted audience will also give you more bang for your buck when you spend money to find new patients. Consider changing up the age range, location, yearly income, and sex of the patients you wish to interact with your ads. 

Digital Marketing Is King in 2019

Don’t leave out the importance of implementing these 5 medical marketing strategies to create more patients at your clinic. You have everything you need to see optimal results!

Find out even more about digital marketing by checking out our top tips for growing your content strategy, too. 

Business

I Need a Career, Stat! The Best Medical Careers That Don’t Require Medical School

I Need a Career, Stat! The Best Medical Careers That


I Need a Career, Stat! The Best Medical Careers That Don’t Require Medical School

Do you need a career change? Or, are you part of the 20-50 percent of college students who are having a hard time choosing a career path?

A career in the medical field is a great option if you’re looking for job stability and a great paycheck. But, what if you’re not interested in going to medical school? 

The good news is that you don’t have to be a doctor to work in the medical field. There are lots of medical careers that don’t require eight-plus years of schooling.

Read on to learn more about some of the best medical careers out there.

Benefits of Choosing a Career in the Medical Field

Why should you pursue a career in the medical field? There are lots of benefits that come with a medical career, and they go way beyond getting to wear cool scrubs like the ones in this collection.

Some other reasons to pursue a medical career include:

  • Massive industry growth
  • Job security
  • Great pay and competitive benefits
  • A challenging and stimulating work environment
  • Lots of opportunities for promotions and cross-training
  • Travel opportunities
  • Flexible hours

Of course, it’s also important to note that a job in the medical field can be incredibly rewarding. You’re always provided with opportunities to help others and make a difference in their lives. What could be better than that?

The Best Medical Careers

Okay, you’re convinced that a career in the medical field might be the right option for you. But, which career should you choose?

There are tons of different medical careers out there that don’t involve going to medical school. The following are some of the best ones you might want to consider:

Respiratory Therapist

Respiratory therapists help those who have difficulty breathing.

They care for patients who suffer from a wide range of respiratory conditions, including asthma and emphysema. They work with doctors to develop patient treatment plans, perform diagnostic tests, and teach patients how to properly use at-home treatments.

Respiratory therapists may also provide emergency care to patients who are suffering from heart attacks or other cardiac events. 

This career also requires a minimum of an associate’s degree.

Cardiovascular Technologist

As a cardiovascular technologist, you will work with physicians, nurses, and patients to take images and conduct a variety of tests. There are a number of specializations available within this field.

For example, you can work as an invasive specialist to perform cardiac catheterization. Or, you can work as a cardiopulmonary technologist and test and monitor patients’ breathing and lungs.

Cardiovascular technologists require a minimum of an associate’s degree in order to practice.

Registered Nurse

There are tons of nursing jobs available for registered nurses. If you want to care for others while earning a competitive salary, this is the career for you. 

As a registered nurse, you will be required to provide and coordinate patient care. You’ll also be in charge of educating patients and their families about a variety of health conditions while also providing advice and emotional support.

This career requires a minimum of an associate’s degree.

Registered Dietician

Are you interested in helping people eat healthfully and maintain a healthy lifestyle? If so, a career as a registered dietician might be for you.

As a registered dietician, your job will be to consult with patients and create meal plans to help them improve their health.

You can also work with health care institutions like hospitals and nursing homes to help them put together healthy menus.

Registered dieticians require a minimum of a bachelor’s degree.

Diagnostic Sonographer

Diagnostic sonography involves using ultrasound machines to detect a variety of conditions, including blood clots and heart conditions.

As a diagnostic sonographer, you can specialize in a variety of areas, such as cardiovascular health, abdominal health, or pediatric care.

In order to work in this field, you’ll need at least an associate’s degree.

Radiation Therapist

A radiation therapist treats patients who are suffering from cancer by administering various radiation treatments. These treatments include X-rays, CT scans, and Cone beam computed tomography scans.

You need a minimum of an associate’s degree to work as a radiation therapist. This career field is growing rapidly, and job availability is supposed to increase by 12 percent by the year 2026.

Occupational Therapy Assistant

Occupational therapy assistants work with occupational therapists to help clients improve their quality of life and maintain or regain their independence.

Occupational therapy assistants teach patients how to perform everyday tasks like tying their shoes, getting dressed, or carrying out household chores.

In order to work as an occupational therapy assistant, you need a minimum of an associate’s degree.

Physical Therapy Assistant

A career as a physical therapy assistant is similar to a career as an occupational therapy assistant. Except, of course, you’ll be assisting a physical therapist instead of an occupational therapist.

This career involves helping patients perform stretches and exercises in order to regain strength and range of motion, often after an injury or illness. Physical therapy assistants also perform treatments like ultrasound therapy and soft-tissue massage. 

You need a minimum of an associate’s degree to work as a physical therapy assistant.

Medical and Health Services Manager

There are also opportunities to work a more traditional office job while still working in the medical field.

As a medical and health services manager, you will plan, direct, and coordinate medical and health care services for specific departments or entire facilities. This career is also sometimes referred to as a healthcare executive.

In order to work in this field, you will need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree.

Looking for More Career Advice?

As you can see, a career in the medical field is a great option for folks who want to earn a steady income while helping others feel their best.

Do any of these medical careers appeal to you? Or, are you interested in learning about other career options?

If you want to pursue other careers, be sure to check out the careers and jobs section of our site today. There are tons of helpful articles here today that will help you make the right choice for yourself.

Business

10 Ways Veterinary Apps Are Changing the Medical Field

10 Ways Veterinary Apps Are Changing the Medical Field


10 Ways Veterinary Apps Are Changing the Medical Field

Veterinary Apps are changing the veterinary world for everyone.

Pet owners can now schedule appointments in a matter of seconds, veterinarians can keep track of important information easily, and students have unlimited information on their phones.

But let’s backtrack. What are veterinarian apps?

Take a look at this quick veterinary app guide and find out how they’re making a difference.

What are Veterinary Apps?

There are a lot of veterinary apps out there, and they all do different things.

For example, some apps are created for veterinarians specifically and help them keep track of and complete their day to day tasks. Others are designed for customers looking for veterinarian help.

There are even apps out there tailored to veterinarian students. These apps provide them with valuable information that gets them through school and prepares them for their career.

Each of these apps takes a lot of stress out of veterinarian life and animal health. In case you don’t know about all the benefits from these veterinary apps yet, we’ll break them down for you below.

1. Schedule New Appointments

With an app, scheduling an appointment takes just a few minutes.

Instead of calling a veterinarian clinic or pet hospital and maybe getting put on hold, you can make the appointment yourself on your phone. You don’t have to go back and forth about what dates work for who. You can just pick a date and time yourself.

All you have to do is open the app and press a few buttons.

You can even get reminders for your pets check-up appointments, something that is otherwise dangerously easy to forget about.

2. Get Important Information Easily

If your pet gets sick or has some other medical emergency, you don’t want to waste time Googling what you should do.

Many veterinarian apps will keep emergency information available for you. If you need to rush your pet over to an emergency appointment, they’ll have their address and contact information somewhere easy to find.

3. Order New Medical Supplies

If your pet is on medication or has a special prescription diet, this feature is especially useful.

When you notice your pet is running out of food or needs a refill of medication, you can just hop on the app and make the order. Instead of finding a time to sit down and call them or drive to the vet in person, you can just order the supplies right as you notice you need them.

4. Use In-House Call Veterinarians

This is perhaps the best part of veterinary apps. You can schedule appointments with different veterinarians for in-house calls, taking a lot of stress out of your vet appointments.

These in-house appointments can be very flexible because they are available anytime between eight in the morning and eight in the evening. (Some apps may be different.) When you book an in-house appointment, the vets can usually see your pet that same day.

Some of these in-house services even include grooming.

Unfortunately, these types of apps are location-based, and only a few cities have them. For example, Treat.co is a veterinary app that is based in San Francisco while VetPronto also covers places like New York and New Orleans.

However, due to their popularity, these apps will probably keep being made for other places.

5. Keeps Your Pet healthy and Calm

Obviously, taking your pet to the vet or refilling their medicine keeps them in good condition, but some animals have a hard time going to the vet.

A lot of animals are afraid of going to the vet, either because they don’t like the traveling to the vet or because they don’t like being handled by the vet.

Cat’s especially have a difficult time at the vet.

Roughly 85% of cat owners don’t take their cats to the vet because they are afraid of being put into a carrier. A lot of pet parents have a hard time taking their pets to the vet because they have to spend a great deal of energy trying to find ways to calm their pets down (learn more).

In-house visits make vet appointments easier for the animals, the owners, and the vets. The animals will be calmer in their natural environment, and the veterinarian won’t have to inspect a worked up dog or angry cat.

6. Helps Manage Clients

With an app, a veterinarian can easily keep track of what pets they are seeing on any particular day. They can check the time for each appointment, look at the details of the visit, and stay on track with all their clients.

7. Keeps Everything They Need to Know Close

Some veterinarian apps work just like a desktop computer. Everything that’s stored on the computer is now available for the vet on their phone, making looking things up easier and faster.

8. Gives Vets More Flexibility

Like Uber, veterinary apps allow veterinarians to find extra work alongside their normal jobs. This benefits both them and their customers because they are able to make in-house visits when they aren’t working at a clinic.

9. Provides More Job Opportunities

It can be hard to find a job in a pet hospital or clinic, so these apps allow vets struggling to find a job a way to work.

10. Keeps People Learning

Students going through vet school now have the ability to keep all the information they need on their phone.

Some of these apps are expensive, like Merck Veterinary Manual and iDEA, but they let students find information whenever they need it, not just when they are in class.

Veterinary Apps Making the World Easier

Veterinarian apps help students, veterinarians, and pet parents alike. They make keeping track of appointments, scheduling new appointments, ordering new medical supplies, or studying for the next test as simple as pressing a few buttons.

Interested to learn more about life-changing apps? Take a look at how these online medical apps are changing the medical world.

Technology

Why Your Medical Supply Biz Needs a Fast Website

Why Your Medical Supply Biz Needs a Fast Website


Why Your Medical Supply Biz Needs a Fast Website

On the internet, there are two truths that must never be overlooked:

1.) Cat videos own Youtube.

2.) Speed is king.

While both statements are unequivocally true, only one applies to your medical supply business.

Search engines, in particular, Google, have changed the rules of search rankings over the past year. Before, if you had solid content and a bunch of links going to your page, you were good.

In the past, you could simply post a blog about polymem wound dressing and anyone searching for it would find your page if you were an active site. Now, if your page doesn’t load fast enough, it’s dropping in the rankings.

This is especially true after the mobilpocalypse, in which Google decreed that if your site wasn’t mobile friendly, it was going to be lowered.

What does this mean?

You better be fast.

There are good reasons Google made this move. According to their research, if a shopping or travel site takes more than three seconds to load, consumers will find another site.

If you run a medical supply business, that can be disastrous considering the amount of competition that’s out there. To put it simply, the question of “why your medical supply biz needs a fast website” can be answered with two statements:

Customers leave you if you have slow loading times.

We live in an age of instant gratification. What used to take 45 minutes to make in an oven takes 4 minutes in a microwave. It used to take 10 minutes to get on the internet using AOL. Now it’s just a matter of opening up a laptop.

You have three seconds until your customers either think something is wrong with your page or that something is wrong with you. Either way, the end result is that you are losing money.

Customers will never find you because Google will bury your page if it’s slow.

In the online world, competition is everywhere. If you search for the products that your page is selling, it’s almost guaranteed that there are thousands of other pages doing the same thing.

The difference often comes down to where you are ranked. The results on the first page of Google search results get 91.5% of the traffic. Those customers have already purchased their goods without even realizing you exist.

Now That You Are A Little Bummed Out, Let’s Talk Happy Things

No, not the cat videos that were mentioned earlier.

The good news is that it’s easy to check the performance of your website. Run a speed test designed by Google, and get your results.

From there you can look at your web page and figure out what’s slowing it down, and then fix it. Get rid of images that aren’t important. Get rid of some HTML on the main page.

Minimize your JavaScript and JQuery code. There are some simple things that can be done to fix the problem.

This might seem like a pain or a lot of hard work. If you catch yourself thinking that, just picture your customers giving your competitors money.

That image alone should tell you why your medical supply company needs a fast and efficient website.

Don’t Wait To Get Started!

A business that isn’t moving forward is failing. Often websites will get put on the backburner because of an “out of sight, out of mind” mentality.

Even if you have a brick and mortar store, your website can be the cornerstone of your success. It’s profit with far less overhead! If your website is your only store, there is no excuse to not fix these problems today.

Don’t allow something as fixable as slow loading times derail your customer satisfaction.