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What Does a Medical Secretary Do?

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

Medical secretaries -- sometimes called medical administrative assistants -- are often the right hand of the physician who needs to focus on practicing medicine. With educational preparation that varies from a high school diploma and on-job training or post-secondary certificate to a bachelor’s degree, medical secretaries handle clerical and financial tasks in a medical office, clinic or hospital.

Juggling Multiple Balls

The medical secretary is typically responsible for all clerical tasks, which can include patient scheduling, medical record management, transcribing medical dictation, and arranging for patients to have surgery or to be admitted to a hospital. In addition, she might perform typical secretarial tasks such as filing, typing letters, or ordering office supplies. In some medical offices, the secretary also performs billing tasks. She might also act as the office receptionist, especially in a small practice. The job outlook for medical secretaries is excellent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, with a projected growth rate of 36 percent through 2022 -- more than three times as fast as average. Medical secretaries earned an average annual salary of $33,140 in 2013, according to the BLS.

2016 Salary Information for Secretaries and Administrative Assistants

Secretaries and administrative assistants earned a median annual salary of $38,730 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, secretaries and administrative assistants earned a 25th percentile salary of $30,500, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $48,680, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 3,990,400 people were employed in the U.S. as secretaries and administrative assistants.

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About the Author

Beth Greenwood is an RN and has been a writer since 2010. She specializes in medical and health topics, as well as career articles about health care professions. Greenwood holds an Associate of Science in nursing from Shasta College.

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