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The Many Hats of a Medical Assistant

09.14.2015 · Posted in Health

Hospital facilities are extremely busy places, and that means that they need a lot of great people who work tirelessly to keep patients healthy. While doctors and nurses get the majority of attention from the public, there are workers in other roles who spend more time interacting with the public than either of those two professions. If you’re interested in a career in this industry, you can visit Power Personnel to see a full listing of medical assistant jobs in San Francisco, and here are some of the things that you might end up doing on a daily basis.

Administrative Tasks

The first thing you should know is that medical assistants are the unsung heroes who make the office run smoothly every day. People who work in this profession serve as the front line of contact between a doctor and his or her patients, and that starts with answering the phone when someone calls to make an appointment. This layer of contact continues when that caller eventually comes into the clinic to get that physical exam or vaccination.

While customer service is a large part of medical assistant jobs in the Bay Area, it’s not the only administrative function performed by these valuable team members. Every patient has a detailed history of appointments and procedures, and that means there’s a large amount of paperwork to be done for each visitor. Insurance companies also require forms from a doctor’s office in order to process payment, and that means data entry and coding to ensure proper reimbursement. These tasks are absolutely vital to the smooth operation of a clinic, and assistants are the people who make them happen.

Clinical Duties

One of the unique things about the medical assistant profession is that they are expected to serve functions in two different worlds. While the administrative tasks are crucial components of this position, these members of the office staff must also serve in clinical roles. On a basic level, this can be something as simple as preparing a patient for a physical exam by recording height, weight and vital sign measurements. Assistants may also do things like collecting specimen samples and preparing them for transfer to the lab for analysis.

There are additional tasks that may be performed by a medical assistant, but they often fall under a more advanced level of care. Assistants could be asked to do things like drawing blood, conducting tests like electrocardiograms and even wound maintenance like suture removal or dressing changes. When a patient is prescribed medication, it is often an additional duty to educate him or her about dosage and other instructions.

One Job With Many Roles

As you can see, assistants have to wear two different hats depending on the current task at hand. This is just a brief overview of the responsibilities that are part of medical assistant jobs in the Bay Area, but there are many other important functions to consider. If you feel that you have what it takes to work in this industry, you will find yourself in a rewarding career that has an impact on the lives of your patients in ways you may never even know.