This person performs various administrative tasks such as making appointments, entering and filing medical documents to ensure effective functioning with managers and health professionals.
The medical secretary performs a variety of tasks, including welcoming patients and setting up appointments with doctors. She opens the mail and prepares correspondence. She answers the phone, directs emails and information to the persons concerned. Using a computer and various office software, she writes medical documents, case histories, reports, articles and correspondence from handwritten notes or notes recorded with a voice recorder. This employee oversees the filing of confidential files and documents. She prepares financial statements and uses billing software. She is responsible for preparing and following up meetings and ordering office supplies.
According to the Services Quebec website, the interests and aptitudes necessary to practise this profession tend towards good communication, meticulous work and the pleasure of helping.
More specifically, it is advisable to have a personality that understands these benefits:
- Enjoy reading and communicating, orally or in writing;
- Enjoy physical work and handling instruments;
- Enjoy performing repetitive tasks, following established standards;
- Enjoy working in contact with people and enjoy helping them;
- Be responsible and organized;
- Show initiative and be self-reliant;
- Be discreet.
The program of studies in medical secretarial work leads to a specialized professional certificate (ASP). This program is offered at the secondary level in most regions of Quebec and Canada. Training lasts 450 hours and a practical internship with an employer completes the theoretical training.
Having received a diploma, the medical secretary can work in doctors’ offices, in integrated health and social services centres (CISSS), in hospital centres, as well as in specialized health service clinics, such as chiropractic clinics.
Organization of the work, salary and job prospects
Medical secretaries support health professionals and in order to guarantee the optimal functioning of patient services these employees work on a fixed schedule. The possibilities are day, evening, weekends and public holidays.
According to the Government of Quebec’s website, salary/hour in 2019 ranged from $20.76 and $23.22 while in Canada, a medical secretary earned about $20 an hour.
The Government of Canada site (jobbank.gc.ca) reports that job prospects for medical secretaries have gone from fair to very good, depending on where they work.