How Can I Learn Online to Be a Medical Office Administrative Assistant?

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If you want to become a Medical Office Administrative Assistant, so much of your work will be done on a computer that it makes sense to train for the career through an online program. But when choosing an online program, make certain it will teach you the practical skills you’ll need to succeed in the profession.

Professional Communication and Collaboration

You will need to clearly communicate—in person and online—to patients, insurers and your co-workers so that everyone has the information to do what’s best for patients. You can learn these skills online through posts, forums, and case studies that provide you with what-if scenarios and ask what would you do?

Healthcare Rules and Regulations

In your career, you may be responsible for billing insurers and patients or scheduling patients for office visits and procedures and today most all of these activities are done through medical office software. There are also strict privacy rules in place, thanks to laws like HIPAA, which determine how, if, and with whom a patient’s information can be shared. You’ll have access to sensitive patient information, so you’ll need to know exactly what the laws and guidelines are about how it can be used and what is ethical. Mistakes can incur costly fines and penalties for your employer. Most all of these files are now electronic, so learning online will help you become more familiar with current record systems.

Patient Data in Electronic Health Record Systems

As of 2015, medical practices were legally required to keep and secure patient records in electronic databases. The more exposure you have with this technology, the more prepared you will be to use the systems as a Medical Office Administrative Assistant. Depending on your specific job title, you may need to update patient records before and after office visits or know how to access their data for billing. It’s also very important that you are clear on how to keep patient information secure to avoid any breaches that could put patient privacy at risk.

Anatomy and Medical Terminology

Anatomy, physiology, and medical terminology are at the heart of any medical profession—including yours. That’s because an important part of your job will be to understand a physician’s notes and know how to translate diagnoses, treatments, and procedures into standardized codes for insurance billing. You’ll want to feel confident that you properly code and bill so that patients don’t overpay. A program that provides online testing can help you familiarize yourself with what you need to know and allow you to practice until you get it. Some of the quizzes are even built like games, where you can chart your improvement, and repeat the exercise until you get  a perfect score.

Administrative Computer Programs

Although the type of software your medical practice, hospital, or clinic will use may vary, you can learn the basics in an online program. To succeed as a Medical Office Administrative Assistant, you will need to be proficient in basic computer skills and then learn medical-specific software programs. Programs will be used for everything from billing and coding to setting up and cancelling appointments, to maintenance of patient electronic medical records. There may even be email programs so your office can keep in touch with patients and send reminders and updates. A good medical office administrative assistant training program should give you the hands-on experience to become familiar with these kinds of programs so you’ll be able to adapt to whatever your new job brings your way.

If you want to become a Medical Office Administrative Assistant, but can’t make it to campus, an online program might be the perfect fit for you. With training at Charter College, you could enter the field as a medical secretary, medical insurance billing and coder, or medical receptionist. Fill out the form to find out how you can enroll in this program today.