What Is a Medical Unit Coordinator?

Read about the entry-level position of medical unit coordinator, which involves performing clerical and administrative work at a healthcare facility. Check the job duties, required education and outlook for this career. Schools offering Finance and Health Care degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview

Medical unit coordinators are often the liaison between patients and staff in a medical setting. They function as a combination of clerk and receptionist on a medical unit in larger facilities, such as hospitals or rehabilitation treatment centers. Other titles you may be familiar with for this position include unit secretary, ward clerk, and health unit clerk.

Your primary job as a medical unit coordinator is to effectively and accurately manage paperwork and telephones and be available to assist patients and co-workers in a non-clinical way. You would coordinate testing, reports, and personnel in an efficient and timely manner in order to help the medical unit run smoothly.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Similar Occupations Medical transcriptionist, legal assistant, information clerk, receptionist
Key Skills Organizational and interpersonal skills
On-the-Job Training Many employers prefer to hire those with formal training, but training in your specific workplace's practices will probably be included upon being hired.
Continuing Education To maintain certification with the NAHUC, you must take 36 hours of continuing education hours, and retake the credentialing exam every three years.

Duties and Responsibilities

The following duties are generally required of medical unit coordinators:

  • Organization and updating of medical records
  • Maintenance of office supplies and paperwork
  • Scheduling and coordination of outpatient procedures
  • Admission and discharge of patients
  • Crisis resolution and management
  • Requesting and sending of reports
  • Ordering of tests for patients
  • Transcription of medical orders

Education and Training

All medical unit coordinators are required to have a high school diploma or GED. It is also helpful to have receptionist skills and basic computer proficiency, along with training in medical legal issues and medical terminology. Often, an excellent candidate will become employed and then train on-the-job. There are training programs at vocational and technical institutions, and online courses are also available. You can obtain voluntary certification through the National Association of Health Unit Coordinators.

Employment Outlook and Salary Expectations

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov) reported in May 2014 that the mean annual salary for receptionists and information clerks working in the offices of physicians was $28,750. Those working in dentist's offices made $32,490 annually, on average, and the offices of other types of healthcare practitioners paid an average of $26,440. The BLS indicated that employment levels for all receptionists and information clerks is expected to rise at a rate of around 14% between 2012 and 2022, a rate on the high end of the average range predicted for all occupations.

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