How to Answer Common Healthcare Interview Questions

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You completed your training, applied to several jobs, and now an employer has invited you to interview for a position. Congratulations! You’re excited, but nervous. To tamp down your nerves and boost your confidence, be sure to prepare. The questions you may be asked for a nursing interview may differ from what you’ll be asked for a medical billing and coding position, but there are some common questions that are asked in most healthcare job interviews:

Why Did You Choose to Become a Healthcare Professional?

Often used to break the ice, this question allows a potential employer to get to know you a little bit. They want to understand your motivations and see how you might fit into their organization. Your response should show your dedication to the field, your willingness to learn and grow, and why the healthcare industry is exactly where you belong. Maybe you chose health care to be of service to others and make a difference in their lives. Or maybe you want to make the whole system better. Whatever your reason, be honest. If you cared for an ailing loved one and the experience inspired you, you could use your answer to make a personal connection.

How Will You Follow HIPAA Protocol?

All healthcare professionals have a duty to follow HIPAA laws and regulations, particularly when it comes to patient confidentiality. This is a good chance to show that you understand HIPAA and how it pertains to the position you applied for. For example, if you interview for a medical billing and coding job, you can explain that you would verify a patient’s information before you speak with them, ensure patients have access to their medical information, and keep physical forms in a locked drawer or cabinet. If you interview for a medical assistant position, you might explain how you access and secure electronic medical records and keep patient charts from public view.

How Would You Handle a Difficult Patient?

Employers want to know that you can handle all the challenges of the job, including difficult patients. If you haven’t had the experience yet, think about your training. How have you been taught to deescalate a situation and calm patient fears? You can also reach back to jobs you’ve had that aren’t in health care. Talk about any experience you may have had that might require similar skills such as dealing with a challenging customer. Then, explain how you would react in a medical setting. For example, as a medical biller, you may encounter patients who are upset about an unexpected out-of-pocket charge. Explain how you would perform due diligence with the insurance company or offer payment plans to patients who have difficulty paying. No matter what your specialty is, your answer should reflect empathy and compassion for your patients.

What is Your Experience with Front-Office Responsibilities?

This is a common question for both medical assistants and medical office administrative assistants. For both positions, employers want to know that you’re ready to work at the busy front desk in a medical facility. If you don’t have specific work experience, this is a good opportunity to talk about your training. Explain that you have been taught to work with electronic health records, perform billing and coding, schedule appointments, and manage files. If you have completed an externship, you can speak to the administrative work you did during it.

Are you ready for your interview or just deciding upon a career path? Charter College offers a variety of healthcare certificate and degree programs that can prepare you for entry-level work in hospitals, clinics, doctor’s offices, and long-term care facilities. Call 888-200-9942 or fill out the form to learn more.