How to become a Medical Office Manager

How to become a medical office manager?

It is a good idea to job shadow a professional in this field before determining if it is a good fit. Sometimes people are under the illusion that they are management material or that they’d be good at making decisions. However, when they actually work in these roles and see the consequences of their decisions, they are unhappy. Below are some general steps to pursuing a career in this field.
  1. Job shadow several professionals in this field who work at a variety of practices, both large and small.
  2. Earn an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree in business, finance, accounting, marketing, or something else related to this field.
  3. Find a job as a medical office manager.
  4. Join a professional group such as Medical Group Management Association or the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management.
  5. After working in the field for three years or so, sit for a certification exam to increase credibility and make oneself more marketable. Examples of well-known certifications in this field are the Certified Medical Manager and Certified Medical Office Manager.
  6. To advance in this field, consider earning a master’s degree in a field such as business, accounting, finance, or marketing.

Learn more about medical office manager training.

What is the history of the medical office management profession?

The role of the medical office manager is a relatively new one, coming to wide recognition in the past 15-20 years. Prior to this, many times the physician would manage his/her own practice or bring in a family member to do so. The transition from family/physician run private practices to the need for a management professional started with the rise of managed care medicine. Since the advent of HMO’s, PPO’s and other managed care organizations, the health care industry has changed dramatically. There are numerous government mandates and regulations that must be followed. In order to keep abreast of all the changing laws and to keep up with trends and opportunities, the role of the medical office manager has emerged and grown.

Physicians can no longer simply practice medicine. They now need to be concerned with being compliant with federal regulations, state regulations, and rules of insurance companies that they have contracted with. Also, the ever-increasing threat of a malpractice suit is another area of concern for doctors. Therefore, there is a great need for physicians to hire a professional to manage their business so that they can indeed practice medicine. In the past, physicians didn’t look at their practice as a business whereas today it’s essential that they do so.

What types of personality traits or skills make someone a good fit for this profession?

There are a variety of personality traits and skills necessary to succeed in this line of work. First of all, being able to communicate well is vital. The medical office manager must communicate with all employees, insurance companies and other regulatory groups, and sometimes with disgruntled patients. They must communicate with employees that run the spectrum from the janitor all the way up to the physician so it is important they are able to tailor their communication style to suit the specific individual they are working with. Being organized and having the ability to perform multiple roles or job functions is important too. For the financial job responsibilities, it helps to be efficient in working with numbers and have an analytical mind.

Medical Office Manager Schools

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