Medical assistants play an important part in hospitals and doctor's offices throughout the country. They have many responsibilities, including speaking with patients, recording vital signs, recording patient medical histories, scheduling appointments, processing lab samples, and filing paperwork, just to name a few.
The number of responsibilities that a medical assistant has means that they need to have a number of skills, especially when it comes to solving problems that will come up on a daily basis. It's the ability to solve problems effectively and efficiently that makes a good medical assistant.
Common Problems That Medical Assistants Have to Solve
There are all kinds of problems that might come up that you will need to figure out how to deal with as a medical assistant. These include both minor issues and major problems. For example, you're likely going to deal with problems and concerns that your patients and their family have. You will need to be able to work with them and with the supervisor in charge in order to find a solution.
There may also be paperwork issues, such as with patient insurance, that may need to be solved as well. Errors are not uncommon when it comes to medical billing, and as a medical assistant, you may be in charge of sorting out what the problem is.
Skills Required for Problem Solving
The following are a few of the essential skills that good medical assistants need in order to solve the day-to-day problems that they will face in whatever type of medical environment that they are working in:
- The ability to communicate - Clear communication is extremely important. In fact, clear communication can help to prevent problems in the first place. However, when a problem does surface, you need to be able to communicate clearly and in layman's terms what the problem is with the patient, patient family or doctor in charge. By being able to communicate clearly, you'll ensure that there's no miscommunication, making it easier for everyone to get on the same page and solve the problem at hand.
- The ability to listen - An important part of communicating is listening. By listening carefully to your supervisors and to your patients, you may find a solution to a problem quicker than you expect (not to mention that listening can help you avoid potential issues in the first place as well).
- The ability to show empathy - If you're dealing with a patient or a patient's family, then getting frustrated over whatever the issue is won't get you closer to solving it. Being able to put yourself in the shoes of the patients or their family will make it a lot easier to find a solution to the problem you're having.
- Attention to detail - If there's a problem with any of the paperwork you're responsible for; for example, an insurance claim was denied, then you'll be responsible for looking through the paperwork in order to identify what the problem is. An attention to detail will allow you to identify issues and can help prevent them as well.
- Assertiveness - Be assertive in responding to any problems that come up. For example, if a patient has an issue or concern, then you should be assertive by asking the patient what they would like you to do or what the ideal solution might be. Then outline what their choices are so that you can work together to solve the issue.
These are some of the most important personal skills required to be a good problem solver. For more information about becoming a medical assistant, contact us at theAthena Career Academy today.