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Career and Education Opportunities for Medical Secretaries in St. Louis, Missouri

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for medical secretaries in the St. Louis, Missouri area. Currently, 9,410 people work as medical secretaries in Missouri. This is expected to grow by 6% to 9,980 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for medical secretaries, which sees this job pool growing by about 26.6% over the next eight years. Medical secretaries generally perform secretarial duties utilizing specific knowledge of medical terminology and hospital, clinic, or laboratory procedures.

Medical secretaries earn about $13 per hour or $27,490 per year on average in Missouri and about $14 hourly or $29,680 per year on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Secretarial, people working as medical secretaries in Missouri earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Secretarial nationally.

There are seventy-one schools of higher education in the St. Louis area, including thirteen within twenty-five miles of St. Louis where you can get a degree to start your career as a medical secretary. The most common level of education for medical secretaries is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a medical secretary if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Medical Secretary

Medical Secretary video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, medical secretaries perform secretarial duties utilizing specific knowledge of medical terminology and hospital, clinic, or laboratory procedures. They also duties include scheduling appointments, billing patients, and compiling and recording medical charts, reports, and correspondence.

Medical secretaries answer telephones, and direct calls to appropriate staff. They also greet visitors, ascertain purpose of visit, and direct them to appropriate staff. Equally important, medical secretaries have to transmit correspondence and medical archives by mail, e-mail, or fax. They are often called upon to operate office equipment such as voice mail messaging systems, and use word processing and other software applications to ready reports, invoices, financial statements, letters, case histories and medical archives. They are expected to receive and route messages and documents such as laboratory results to appropriate staff. Finally, medical secretaries schedule and confirm patient diagnostic appointments, surgeries and medical consultations.

Every day, medical secretaries are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for medical secretaries to interview patients to finish documents and forms such as intake and insurance forms. They are often called upon to perform various clerical and administrative functions. They also maintain medical archives, technical library and correspondence files. They are sometimes expected to compile and record medical charts and correspondence, using typewriter or personal computer. Somewhat less frequently, medical secretaries are also expected to maintain medical archives, technical library and correspondence files.

and arrange hospital admissions for patients. And finally, they sometimes have to complete insurance and other claim forms.

Like many other jobs, medical secretaries must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in St. Louis include:

  • Administrative Assistant. Provide high-level administrative support by conducting research, preparing statistical reports, handling information requests, and performing clerical functions such as preparing correspondence, receiving visitors, arranging conference calls, and scheduling meetings. May also train and supervise lower-level clerical staff.
  • Correspondence Clerk. Compose letters in reply to requests for merchandise, damage claims, credit and other information, delinquent accounts, or unsatisfactory services. Duties may include gathering data to formulate reply and typing correspondence.
  • File Clerk. File correspondence, cards, and other records in alphabetical or numerical order or according to the filing system used. Locate and remove material from file when requested.
  • Insurance Claims Processor. Obtain information from insured or designated persons for purpose of settling claim with insurance carrier.
  • Legal Secretary. Perform secretarial duties utilizing legal terminology, procedures, and documents. Prepare legal papers and correspondence, such as summonses, complaints, and subpoenas. May also assist with legal research.
  • Library Clerk. Compile records, sort and shelve books, and issue and receive library materials such as pictures, cards, slides and microfilm. Locate library materials for loan and replace material in shelving area, stacks, or files according to identification number and title. Register patrons to permit them to borrow books, periodicals, and other library materials.
  • Office Machine Operator. Operate one or more of a variety of office machines, such as photocopying, photographic, and duplicating machines, or other office machines.
  • Procurement Clerk. Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
  • Secretary. Perform routine clerical and administrative functions such as drafting correspondence, scheduling appointments, organizing and maintaining paper and electronic files, or providing information to callers.
  • Statement Clerk. Prepare and distribute bank statements to customers, answer inquiries, and reconcile discrepancies in records and accounts.
  • Typist. Type letters, reports, or other material from rough draft, corrected copy, or voice recording. May perform other clerical duties as assigned.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Medical Secretary Training

Sanford-Brown College - Fenton, MO

Sanford-Brown College, 1345 Smizer Mill Road, Fenton, MO 63026-3400. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 885 students. Sanford-Brown College has a less than one year program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated thirty-four students in 2008.

Hickey College - Saint Louis, MO

Hickey College, 940 Westport Plaza, Saint Louis, MO 63146. Hickey College is a small college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 442 students. Hickey College has an associate's degree program in Medical Administrative/Executive Assistant & Medical Secretary which graduated fourteen students in 2008.

CALC Institute of Technology - Alton, IL

CALC Institute of Technology, 235a E Center Dr, Alton, IL 62002. CALC Institute of Technology is a small school located in Alton, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 114 students. CALC Institute of Technology has a less than one year program in Medical Office Assistant/Specialist which graduated twenty students in 2008.

Allied College North - Maryland Heights, MO

Allied College North, 13723 Riverport Drive, Maryland Heights, MO 63043. Allied College North is a small college located in Maryland Heights, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 395 students. Allied College North has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated twelve and twenty-eight students respectively in 2008.

Everest College-Earth City - Earth City, MO

Everest College-Earth City, 3420 Rider Trail South, Earth City, MO 63045. Everest College-Earth City is a small college located in Earth City, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 249 students and an admission rate of 79%. Everest College-Earth City has a less than one year program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated 128 students in 2008.

Lewis and Clark Community College - Godfrey, IL

Lewis and Clark Community College, 5800 Godfrey Rd, Godfrey, IL 62035. Lewis and Clark Community College is a medium sized college located in Godfrey, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,016 students. Lewis and Clark Community College has 2 areas of study related to Medical Secretary. They are:

  • Medical Office Assistant/Specialist, associate's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
  • Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller, less than one year which graduated 11 students in 2008.

Southwestern Illinois College - Belleville, IL

Southwestern Illinois College, 2500 Carlyle Ave, Belleville, IL 62221-5899. Southwestern Illinois College is a large college located in Belleville, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,308 students. Southwestern Illinois College has an associate's degree program in Medical Office Assistant/Specialist which graduated three students in 2008.

St Louis College of Health Careers - Saint Louis, MO

St Louis College of Health Careers, 909 South Taylor Avenue, Saint Louis, MO 63110. St Louis College of Health Careers is a small college located in Saint Louis, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 285 students. St Louis College of Health Careers has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated forty-two and zero students respectively in 2008.

Sanford-Brown College - Hazelwood, MO

Sanford-Brown College, 75 Village Square, Hazelwood, MO 63042. Sanford-Brown College is a small college located in Hazelwood, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 722 students. Sanford-Brown College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated twenty-two and thirty students respectively in 2008.

St Louis College of Health Careers - Fenton, MO

St Louis College of Health Careers, 1297 North Highway Drive, Fenton, MO 63026. St Louis College of Health Careers is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 85 students. St Louis College of Health Careers has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated five and two students respectively in 2008.

Allied College South - Fenton, MO

Allied College South, 645 Gravois Bluffs Blvd, Fenton, MO 63026. Allied College South is a small college located in Fenton, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 424 students. Allied College South has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Medical Insurance Specialist/Medical Biller which graduated seventeen and twenty-five students respectively in 2008.

Vatterott College - Berkeley, MO

Vatterott College, 8580 Evans Avenue, Berkeley, MO 63134. Vatterott College is a small college located in Berkeley, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 971 students. Vatterott College has a one to two year program in Medical Office Assistant/Specialist which graduated forty-one students in 2008.

Vatterott College - Sunset Hills, MO

Vatterott College, 12970 Maurer Industrial Dr, Sunset Hills, MO 63127-1516. Vatterott College is a small college located in Sunset Hills, Missouri. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 603 students. Vatterott College has a one to two year program in Medical Office Assistant/Specialist which graduated twelve students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Patient Account Manager: American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management (AAHAM) CPAM certification is available only to National AAHAM members who are in good standing and have a minimum of four years health care experience, or two years health care experience and a two-year college or university associates degree.

For more information, see the American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management website.

Certified Coding Specialist: Coding accuracy is highly important to healthcare organizations, and has an impact on revenues and describing health outcomes.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Registered Health Information Technician: With experience, the RHIT credential holds solid potential for advancement to management positions, especially when combined with a bachelor's degree.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Certified Medical Administrative Specialist: This certification is for medical administrative specialists who serves a key role in medical office, clinic and hospital settings.

For more information, see the American Medical Technologists website.

Certified Medical Coder: Experienced medical office professionals with exceptional coding skills are eligible to sit for the Certified Medical Coder (CMC) exam.

For more information, see the Practice Management Institute website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: St. Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri
St. Louis, Missouri photo by Dschwen

St. Louis is located in St. Louis City County, Missouri. It has a population of over 354,361, which has grown by 1.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in St. Louis, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in St. Louis are priced at $111,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, one hundred fifty-seven new homes were built in St. Louis, down from two hundred sixty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in St. Louis are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is accommodation and food services, construction, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 25 minutes. More than 19.1% of St. Louis residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in St. Louis is 10.9%, which is greater than Missouri's average of 8.9%.

Nativity of Our Lord Church, Church of the Good Shepard and Church of the Holy Communion are among the churches located in St. Louis.

St. Louis is home to the Terminal Railroad Association Building and the Memorial Home as well as Washington Park and Willmore Park. Shopping malls in the area include Hampton Village Shopping Center and Loughborough Shopping Center.