Medical Office Manager Training Programs and Requirements
Medical office managers are typically responsible for overseeing medical office personnel and administrative tasks, such as medical billing, coding and accounting practices. Employers typically prefer to hire medical office managers who have completed training programs at the associate or bachelor's degree level.
Training Requirements and Recommendations
While educational requirements vary by employer, more and more medical offices are requiring office management applicants to possess associate or bachelor's degrees. Smaller practices may occasionally employ office managers with high school diplomas. Previous medical office management employment and experience is vital and may be considered in lieu of education level.
While certificate programs in medical office management are available, most employers prefer applicants with 2-year or 4-year degrees, preferably in health-related and business-related fields. Students at either level generally participate in internship opportunities.
Associate of Science Degree Program
In the associate degree program, future medical office managers take general office administration classes in records management, computer software and typing. They also take more concentrated courses in medical software programs, insurance and billing practices, health care legalities, ethics and medical vocabulary.
Bachelor of Science Degree Program
Students enrolled in 4-year, bachelor's degree programs study business topics as they relate to the health care industry, including medical human resource management, finance, economics, politics and strategic planning. They also study basic medical topics, including common illnesses and disease prevention.
Most employers require medical office manager applicants to have 2-5 years of relevant experience. Applicants should have knowledge of medical billing, coding, collections and federal privacy standards. Additionally, applicants are typically required to be computer savvy, since more medical offices are utilizing electronic patient records and medical office software programs. Depending on the particular region, bilingual medical office managers (English and Spanish) may be preferred.
Licenses and Certifications
Medical office managers interested in earning the Certified Medical Manager designation can look to the Professional Association of Health Care Office Management. In order to earn the credential, applicants must pass the examination, which tests candidates' knowledge of nearly 20 areas of medical office management procedures and health care regulations.
Workshops and Seminars
Medical office managers who are interested in professional development opportunities may pursue 2-5 day workshops sponsored by medical organizations, such as the American Academy of Medical Management. In addition, state medical associations may hold continuing education seminars, which may last a few hours. Examples of seminar topics include employee development and organizational effectiveness.
Additional Professional Development
Web-based memberships are available through a number of industry organizations. Medical office managers who decide to join such programs can gain access to business contacts and peer opinions through live chat boards. Relevant health care articles, videos and audio files are typically posted online as well.
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