Medical support assistants perform administrative tasks in healthcare facilities like hospitals, clinics, hospice care, diagnostic centers, and private practices.
They organize patient information, file insurance claims, and schedule appointments.
Employers will look for medical support assistants that have:
- administrative experience,
- knowledge of medical software and terminology (including insurance terms),
- and people skills.
As you answer the medical support assistant interview questions, show that you have the right mix of skills to make sure that the clinic is organized and efficient.
Medical Support Assistant Interview Questions and Answers
Review your resume, then go through these questions.
Think about any work experiences you can highlight and particular anecdotes that can illustrate a point.
1. Why did you decide to become a medical support assistant?
This is a common “ice breaker” question that employers ask to get an idea of your personality and why you chose this profession.
I have good organizational and admin skills, but I wanted a job where I could be with a lot of people because I enjoy talking to them.
This career allows me to do both.
Being in the healthcare industry also gives me the personal satisfaction of knowing that I am helping others, and seeing the improvement in patients’ health as they return for follow-up checkups.
2. Describe your prior experience as a medical support assistant, and what you learned from it.
This question is essentially a summary of your work experience, but don’t just recite the names of your employers.
This is a good chance to highlight your strengths and special skills.
I have been working as a medical support assistant for 4 years at a hospital.
Initially, I was assigned to the front desk, and was in charge of appointments and collecting patient information.
I was able to hone my people skills and anticipate the common things that people ask.
Because of my good performance, I was assigned additional administrative work such as billing, insurance, and patient records.
I became very familiar with medical software and processes and was even put in charge of training the new hires.
3. What computer skills do you have?
Your answer should show your familiarity with billing and coding, electronic health records, and booking software.
You can mention some programs that you have used before.
If the employer asks if you know the software they are using, and you have no experience in it, say that your previous computer experience will enable you to learn it quickly.
I used ERH software in my prior job, which we used for patient records and appointments.
I also know how to do medical billing and coding, and am adept at processing insurance claims from both private insurance companies and Medicare.
I can also type 60 words a minute, and am experienced at encoding data into spreadsheets.
4. How will you manage your time between admin and customer service tasks when there are a lot of patients?
Medical support assistants must be adept at multi-tasking and time management.
Your answer should show that you can handle different responsibilities without missing any important details.
First thing in the morning before the patients arrive, I do as many important administrative tasks as I can.
During peak hospital hours, patient care is my number one priority.
However, I carry a notebook with me for quick to-do lists or instructions from the doctors.
When there is a lull, I go back to administrative tasks.
5. Tell us about a time you had to deal with a sudden problem.
Employers want to see that you have the experience and presence of mind to make decisions even without being micro-managed.
This is especially important if you are aiming to get a more senior position or work in a bigger medical facility.
In my prior job, two medical assistants were not able to report to work because they tested positive for COVID.
I had to take over their workload and additional shifts.
I spoke to my supervisor about what administrative work to prioritize, and planned with my colleagues about how to divide the patient load.
6. How will you follow the HIPAA guidelines while collecting patient information?
This interview question tests your knowledge of important protocols, and what steps you will take to prevent any violations that could affect the hospital or clinic.
Since insurance claims are a regular component of a medical support assistant’s daily routine, make sure to review HIPAA protocols before your interview.
My certification program included training in HIPAA protocols, and I have implemented this carefully in all of my work.
To protect the privacy of patients, I only use their first names when I call them in the waiting room and keep patient charts in a safe place.
I also make sure that patients sign HIPAA release forms, and I never send patient information except through the EMR software.
When patients call and ask for test results over the phone, I explain why we cannot do it and that is part of protecting their privacy.
See also: Medical Consultant Interview Questions
7. Why do you want to work in this company?
When employers look at candidates of equal experience and skill, they will choose the one that will be the best fit for their company’s culture and vision.
That is the purpose of this question.
Be sure to research the company. Check their website, or ask people you know in the medical industry to find out more about them.
As a parent myself, I want to work in a pediatrics hospital.
I love children and know how to calm them, and I can empathize with the patient’s families and anticipate what they will need.
I also thought working with doctors from several different specializations will deepen my experience and appreciation of the medical field.
Conclusion: Interview Questions for Medical Support Assistants
The job of a medical support assistant can be challenging, but if you do it well, you can make a big difference in a patient’s quality of care and customer experience.
By answering these questions well, you show your employer your commitment to the job, and why you are the best candidate.
Good luck with your upcoming interview!
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