Medical Office Staff Lacking Advanced Skillsets Find Barriers to Employment

November 7, 2017

Regulatory changes in healthcare present challenges for medical offices seeking qualified job candidates who understand the latest administrative guidelines.

More outpatient medical offices are seeking job candidates who can demonstrate specific levels of competence and skill. But in many healthcare settings, certain administrative roles—such as those performed by medical office staff—are left unfulfilled or are filled by unqualified, undereducated job applicants. The way to improve employment and career advancement opportunities, says industry leader Practice Management Institute (PMI), is to get specialized training and certification specific to the reimbursement, management and compliance challenges faced in the medical office.

As competition among healthcare organizations grows, many job seekers who lack medical office credentials are passed over for top talent who demonstrate competence through educational achievements, as indicated by industry-specific certifications.

David Womack, CEO of PMI, says, “On-the-job training has its place, but job seekers are finding out that employers now want more, especially when it comes to medical billing and compliance. Experience matters, but I think those who have achieved certification in an area specific to the role they are applying for makes the most sense from a business and compliance standpoint.

Credentials have become increasingly important for administrative staff working in medical offices. Those seeking positions in reimbursement roles such as medical coders, auditors, and insurance claims must demonstrate extensive knowledge of coding guidelines, carrier rules, billing practices, and compliance. 

Even though the healthcare industry continues to add jobs at a steady rate, medical offices struggle to fill key business roles, constrained by a lack of qualified candidates as evidenced in many job applications. In some communities, there simply isn’t enough training, or access to training, to help workers keep up with the educational demands of the industry.(1) This can have disastrous results for healthcare facilities, since uncertified medical office staff can make costly mistakes that jeopardize both their jobs and their employers’ integrity.

Improving access to training is essential. Training organizations such as PMI offer both classroom and online training and certifications that can help advance their careers. Womack says these programs offer opportunities for certification while offering greater convenience for employed individuals, Those that embrace industry-specific training(2) and certification create more opportunities for career growth and advancement.

“PMI is proud to help meet the educational needs of job seekers and employers nationwide. By providing multiple opportunities for working adults to earn certain healthcare administrative certifications, we’re helping to usher in a new standard for education that helps protect workers, employers, and ultimately patients in our ever-changing healthcare industry.”


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