Tips for Success on Your First Medical Assistant Job

You are likely reading this article because you are new to being a medical assistant (congratulations!) or you are considering becoming a medical assistant. Being a successful medical assistant from the beginning of your career is achievable and can help you move your career faster than if you have some terrible experiences towards the beginning of your career.

medical assistant with patient

We have placed thousands of medical assistants, and we want to share with you some of what we’ve learned from the employers we’ve worked with as well as from the best medical assistants that we’ve helped place over the past 20+ years.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the American Association of Medical Assistants, a normal day in the life of a medical assistant can include:

  • Greeting patients and answering telephones
  • Helping patients get their next appointments scheduled.
  • Updating patients’ medical records.
  • Filling out insurance forms.
  • Giving patients injections or medications.
  • Drawing blood and preparing blood samples for laboratory testing.
  • Taking vital signs.
  • Preparing patients for procedures, like x-rays and examinations.
  • Helping physicians with patient examinations.

You will need hard skills and soft skills to complete the daily tasks. These skills will help you perform administrative and clinical functions while working directly with a physician. Here are some of the most important skills you will want to develop and stay mindful of when you begin your career as a medical assistant.

Be Approachable, Friendly, and Kind

As a medical assistant, the people who come into contact with you while you are working will likely base their satisfaction for the entire visit on the care you provide. Frequently, you will be the first person they come into contact with, and you will often be the person they deal the most with during their stay.

They need to feel they can approach you and that you will treat them and their friends and family with kindness and respect. They want to trust their medical professionals; trust begins with feeling that you are personally invested in their care.

Learn All You Can About Your Physicians and Staff

You will likely work with the same set of doctors, nurses, and other medical staff members. Begin by paying very close attention to those you have the most contact with, noting how they prefer to have things done. Here are things to pay attention to:

  • They might prefer to administer certain medications; if so, learn everything you can about the medications, such as the drugs they shouldn’t be combined with, possible side effects (common and uncommon), and reasonable expectations from taking the drugs.
  • How does your medical staff prefer to have patients prepped?
  • How do they like vital stats recorded?
  • Are there certain facilities they prefer to refer patients to?
  • Are there procedures they like to perform in the morning vs. later in the day?
  • Do you know which supplies your physician or nursing staff use the most? Make sure to have extra stock in the exam room of the high-demand items.

Note: Developing this awareness and acting on it might require you to take physical notes to organize your thoughts easily and remember subtle details.

If you would like to be placed in a medical assistant job within the United States, please fill out the form below or call us at 602-468-6300.

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Record Clearly

You will update the patients’ records when you work with them, and then your medical staff will read what you record. They will use your information to begin making decisions and as a way to measure progress from visit to visit. So find out what your doctor and nursing staff want you to record and how they want it expressed. If you are writing by hand, you will need to write clearly. If you are recording information digitally, be sure the verbiage you use makes sense to everyone who might read what you’ve written later when you aren’t available.

Continue to Grow Your Knowledge

If you have been hired to work in a specialty, learn all you can about it. Find out from your employer what types of continuing education are preferred and if any continuing education is paid for by your employer. The American Association of Medical Assistants offers continuing education and their CMA Today publication to help you stay current and advance your career. Become a member and read the CMA Today publication, which will provide in-depth articles and tests for CEUs, information about patient care, and the latest health industry news.

Are You Looking for a Medical Assistant Job?

Desert Medical Careers has a high demand for medical assistants. We place full-time and part-time positions within the Phoenix Metro Area. With over 20 years’ experience working with healthcare employees, DMC is an expert at matching healthcare workers with their ideal work environment. Contact DMC today at (602) 468-6300.

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