Medical Secretary Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Medical Secretary, or Medical Administrative Assistant, is responsible for handling administrative and clerical tasks at a hospital or clinic. Their duties include accepting calls from patients and either answering their questions or directing their call, coordinating appointments for patients based on Doctor availability and processing invoices and payments.

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Medical Secretary duties and responsibilities

The primary duty of a Medical Secretary is to keep operations of the office running smoothly. They process patient information, insurance claims and payments. They also manage the Physician’s schedule, the office database and patient records. Other responsibilities involved with the role may include writing and preparing reports and typing and transcribing medical reports. 

Other duties may include:

  • Perform file system and database management
  • Take messages and manage a multi-line phone to handle calls
  • Process medical insurance claims and patient billing
  • Schedule staff meetings
  • Handle faxes and mail
  • Prepare reports, invoices and memos
  • Schedule appointments and surgeries, send appointment reminders and make follow-up calls or generate emails

Medical Secretary Job Description Examples:


Medical Secretary

In this role, you will provide support for the operations of the medical office. This includes, but not limited to, answering phones, scheduling patient appointments, obtain authorizations/certifications for treatments and diagnostic procedures, patient check-in/out, including copay collection, scanning documents into the EMR and any additional tasks as assigned.


  • Experience with Epic Medical Records System required; strong computer skills required as well.

  • Superior written and oral communication skills.

  • Exceptional customer service skills

  • Ability to follow through with tasks to completion

  • Strong organizational and problem-solving skills

  • Ability to multitask in a fast paced environment

  • Ability to effectively and accurately follow directions or instructions

  • Ability to work collaboratively as part of a team; offers to help coworkers when needed

  • Detail-oriented

  • Ability to escalate issues appropriately

  • Consistently displays a positive attitude towards one’s work and work environment

  • Knowledge of healthcare and health insurance, required

  • Familiarity with medical terminology and general office protocol required.

  • The ability to type 45-60 words per minute and exceptional organizational strengths is required.

  • Must be proficient in Microsoft Word, Excel.

  • Answer telephone including main lines, route callers, take messages and provide routine information to callers in a professional and efficient manner

  • Schedule patient appointments and other ancillary tests as directed by physician

  • Perform registration

  • File medical documentation and patient charts where applicable

  • Create, scan, file, and prepare patient charts in anticipation of office hours where applicable

  • Obtain results/outside notes prior to patients’ appointments and scan/file them accordingly in charts

  • Scan medical records into individual patient accounts within EMR system

  • Confirm patient appointments

  • Retrieve messages frequently from voicemail and return messages by the end of business day

  • Patient check out

    To qualify you must have a High School Diploma or equivalent (Associates Degree preferred) and at least two years of related MD office/healthcare experience.

    Job Type: Full-time

    Salary: $45,000.00 to $50,000.00 /year


  • medical secretary: 2 years (Required)

  • medical office: 2 years (Required)

    Additional Compensation:

  • Other forms

    Work Location:

  • One location


  • Health insurance

  • Dental insurance

  • Vision insurance

  • Retirement plan

  • Paid time off

  • Tuition reimbursement

  • Other

    Typical start time:

  • 8AM

    Typical end time:

  • 5PM


  • Monday to Friday

  • No Day Overtime
  • ×

    Medical Secretary

    Responsibilities: Administrative/Data Entry

  • Maintain physician’s schedule according to physician’s instructions and in accordance with office protocol.

  • Accurately register and schedule appointments for patients in Epic system.

  • Schedule appointments.

  • Prepare patients’ charts.

  • Greet, check in/out and schedule follow up visits for patients; schedule and/or coordinate ancillary tests, procedures and surgeries as necessary.

  • Obtain pre-certifications/pre-authorizations for office procedures.

  • Enter, edit and/or scan patients’ information into Epic system and maintain patient database.

  • Respond to patients’ general questions about the practice, health insurance coverage and explain billing procedures.

  • Review and verify patients’ insurance eligibility and benefits under various health plans.

  • Ensure patients’ messages, prescription requests and referrals are handled in a timely manner.

  • Forward test results to referring physicians and patients as necessary.

  • Answer and carefully screen phone calls; obtain detailed information and email or take written messages; direct and transfer calls appropriately.

  • Prepare and mail out negative result and referral letters.

  • Address patients’ complaints and problems.

  • Read, sort and route incoming mail; answer correspondence; prepare outgoing mail.

  • File, fax and photocopy when necessary.

    Responsibilities: General

  • Function as a team member providing coverage for other staff when necessary.

  • Maintain professional demeanor at all times with patients, physicians and coworkers.

  • Perform miscellaneous duties as assigned.

  • Comply with all Hipaa regulations and office safety compliance guidelines.

  • Comply with all hospital, department and division policies and procedures.

  • Attend all regular staff meetings and continuing professional development courses as requested.

  • Ensure service excellence by adhering to the “Seven Competencies” and implementing them in all aspects of job performance: Effective Communication; Job Knowledge; Patient Centered Care; Empathy; Collaboration and Teamwork; Pride and Excellence; Integrity and Credibility.

    Minimum Qualifications

  • High school diploma or equivalent.

  • Minimum 1 year of experience.

  • Computer proficiency (Microsoft Office Suite).

  • Epic experience preferred.

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.

  • Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills.

  • Display a positive attitude, high level of energy and commitment to providing excellent customer service.

  • Must be able to deal with a complex coordination of schedules to satisfy diversity among patients and co-workers.

    Job Type: Full-time

    Salary: $19.00 to $21.00 /hour


  • Medical Secretary: 1 year (Required)


  • High school or equivalent (Required)

    Work Location:

  • One location


  • Other

    This Company Describes Its Culture as:

  • Detail-oriented -- quality and precision-focused

  • Outcome-oriented -- results-focused with strong performance culture

  • Team-oriented -- cooperative and Monday to Day shift
  • ×

    Medical Secretary

  • Serves as the first point of contact, providing exceptional customer service, when greeting and serving all patients and visitors

  • Answers phones, routing telephone calls and/or creating patient cases as appropriate

  • Returns patient voice and/or email messages in a timely manner

  • Schedules appointments in the electronic health record

  • Assists in maintaining the provider(s) schedules by moving patient appointments, following up on no-shows, and reminding patients of upcoming appointments

  • Completely documents all required demographic information in the patient’s electronic health record, updating at each visit as appropriate

  • Scans patient registration and all other relevant documentation into the patient’s electronic health record

  • Verifies patient’s insurance if eligibility was unable to be verified electronically through the electronic health record

  • Educates patients on the sliding fee scale discounts and determines patient eligibility for the sliding fee scale through verification of income

  • Documents insurance policies and sliding fee scale policies appropriately in the patient’s electronic health record

  • Obtains signed release forms from patients

  • Responsible for maintaining the patient reception area in a clean, neat and presentable condition

  • Obtains patients’ payments at the time services are rendered

  • Participates and assists in documenting Daily Huddles

  • Follows the daily financial audit checklist and participates in the end of the day reconciliation process

  • Assists with billing and/or claim creation for services rendered

  • Maintains the clinical inbox completing all assigned inbox tasks by the end of the day

  • Exemplifies and demonstrates positive teamwork with all Administrative and Center staff

  • Participate in the daily huddle

  • Ensure timely response to appointment messages and requests via the phone and portal

  • Educate patients regarding Pcmh and how the care team can help patients

  • Participate as a member of a patient’s care team – within Team Work

  • Ensure patients receive a copy of his/her visit summary

  • Ensure patients leave with an appointment and face no barriers regarding transportation

  • Ensure patients have an identified primary care provider

  • Other administrative and clerical duties as assigned

    Job Type: Full-time


  • Health insurance

  • Dental insurance

  • Vision insurance

  • Retirement plan

  • Paid time off


  • Monday to No Day shift
  • What does a Medical Secretary do?

    Medical Secretaries are employed by medical offices to represent other medical staff at the front desk and facilitate interactions with patients. Their role is to welcome incoming patients and guide them through the process of booking an appointment or checking in to meet with a Doctor or Nurse. Medical Secretaries perform basic clerical tasks like organizing medical records, preparing reports, processing paperwork, returning messages and updating patient accounts. They help with billing tasks, communicate with insurers and facilitate referrals or prescription requests. Medical Secretaries keep track of staff schedules to make sure someone is available to meet with scheduled patients.

    Medical Secretary skills and qualifications

    A successful Medical Secretary candidate will have various skills and qualifications necessary for performing job duties. An applicant should have excellent written and verbal communication skills for conveying information to other support staff, visiting patients and corresponding with insurance companies and other medical professionals and offices. 

    Some skills a Medical Secretary should have include:

    • Prior experience as a Medical Secretary or similar administrative role
    • Multitasking and organizational skills
    • Knowledge of medical coding, medical office procedures, regulations and medical terminology
    • Patience and discretion
    • Familiarity with the basics of bookkeeping
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills
    • Experience working with EHRs, databases and word processing and spreadsheet software
    • Knowledge of how to process insurance claims

    Medical Secretary salary expectations

    A Medical Secretary makes an average of $14.64 per hour. Pay rate may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location. 

    Medical Secretary education and training requirements

    The minimum educational requirement for a job as a Medical Secretary is a high school diploma or equivalent. Medical Secretaries are not required to have advanced degrees, but Executive Medical Secretaries should have a bachelor’s degree. Having a certificate from a vocational-technical school or an associate degree from a community college showing the completion of a training program in medical administration can be beneficial. Certification is voluntary, but the International Association of Administrative Professionals offers Organizational Management and Certified Administrative Professional specialty certification. 

    Medical Secretary experience requirements

    It is helpful if a Medical Secretary candidate has some secretarial experience, but applicants must be familiar with medical terminology and practices. The successful candidate will have one to two years of training in the form of on-the-job experience and training with other experienced support workers, which would be one to three months. 

    Job description samples for similar positions

    If the Medical Secretary job description doesn’t meet your needs, see job descriptions for related positions: 

    Frequently asked questions about Medical Secretaries


    What is the difference between a Medical Secretary and a Medical Assistant?

    Medical Secretaries and Medical Assistants are two important support roles in any medical practice. The main difference between Medical Secretaries and Medical Assistants is the scope of their work. Medical Secretaries interact with both patients and staff through their role at the front desk. Medical Assistants complete clerical tasks and offer clinical support to Doctors, but they have limited interactions with patients. Medical Assistants can help Medical Secretaries with filing, preparing medical records and printing paperwork to stock the office. They can also sterilize treatment rooms, stock medical equipment and take medical histories to help Doctors prepare for an appointment.


    What are the daily duties of a Medical Secretary?

    Medical Secretaries welcome patients as they enter the medical practice waiting room and confirm that they have an appointment. For walk-ins, they look for openings and communicate with the patient about how long they could expect to wait. They give the patients intake paperwork and explain and questions that they don’t understand. Medical Secretaries accepting incoming calls and resolve any issues or take a message. They use scheduling software or an online portal to update information about each patient’s visit, upcoming appointments and test results. Medical Secretaries coordinate appointments with laboratories and diagnostic facilities when patients require outside follow-up.


    What are the characteristics of a good Medical Secretary?

    Good Medical Secretaries have excellent customer service skills that help patients feel welcome and at-ease. When discussing medical information with patients, Medical Secretaries show tact and discretion to protect their privacy and uphold HIPAA standards. They are naturally organized and can uphold consistent procedures when taking patient information, sending faxes and mail, updating Doctors about their schedule, preparing invoices and communicating with insurers. Successful Medical Secretaries pay attention to their colleagues’ workflows so they can anticipate their need for administrative support and make the office more efficient. They also have a good memory that they use to support their team.


    Who does a Medical Secretary report to?

    Medical Secretaries generally report to a Medical Office Manager but may report directly to a Physician at small private practices that have limited office staff. On a daily basis, Medical Secretaries report to other staff members to update them on the status of different tasks. For example, they may report to a Medical Biller to communicate about the status of a patient’s account or meet with the Head Nurse to confirm nursing schedules for the upcoming week.

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