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Medical Assistants Career Video

Description: Perform administrative and certain clinical duties under the direction of a physician. Administrative duties may include scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records, billing, and coding information for insurance purposes. Clinical duties may include taking and recording vital signs and medical histories, preparing patients for examination, drawing blood, and administering medications as directed by physician.

Video Transcript

When patients arrive for a medical appointment, it's the medical assistant who has prepared the treatment room and made sure equipment is ready for the doctor. With both patient care and administrative responsibilities, they help keep medical establishments running smoothly. Medical assistants often perform several tasks during an appointment. They may measure vital signs before the doctor arrives, assist with the examination, and enter patient information into medical records. Sometimes they may give patients medications. At the end of the appointment, they dispose of contaminated supplies or sterilize instruments for future use. In smaller practices, they may also schedule appointments and prepare samples for lab work, whereas many large practices encourage specialization in either administrative or clinical work. Medical assistants work in doctors’ offices, hospitals, and clinics. Most work full-time, including on holidays, nights, and weekends. Requirements to enter the field vary; some medical assistants hold a high school diploma, and learn their duties on the job. However, job applicants who have completed a short-term medical assistant certificate program, and passed a certification exam may have better opportunities. Regardless of where medical assistants work, they make life easier for the medical staff and their patients.