A medical receptionist is an important team member in any doctor's office. Their primary duty is customer service: The medical receptionist is the person who greets patients when they enter the office or call on the telephone. Good decision making, the ability to prioritize and multitask, and conscientious handling of patients' issues are essential skills for a person who wants to be successful in this field. Most offices will be looking for a person who can perform his or her duties with a warm personality and a smile.
There are many tasks assigned to a medical receptionist. Some examples include answering phones and greeting patients as they enter the office, scheduling and confirming appointments, and filing and retrieving patients' medical charts and billing records. The receptionist also help patients fill out insurance forms and their first visit paperwork. There are often billing duties assigned as well: A medical receptionist might process payments and insurance co-payments, and then post the payment to the patients' accounts.
Many medical receptionists will work in a doctor's office, and work regular office hours. There are some opportunities outside of a doctor's office that may require longer or overnight hours, such as working in hospitals, clinics, and emergency rooms.
Most states don't require formal training for a medical receptionist, but there are courses available to help one learn the necessary skills. A medical receptionist will be required to know local, state and federal privacy laws. Many offices will also require the receptionist to be trained in CPR as a precaution.
Medical Receptionist Tasks
- Schedule and confirm patient appointments, check-ups and physician referrals.
- Answer telephones and direct calls to appropriate staff.
- Greet visitors, ascertain purpose of visit, and direct them to appropriate staff.
- Compile and record medical charts, reports, and correspondence.
- Interview patients to complete insurance and privacy forms.