Advantages of Hiring a Virtual Medical Assistant over a Traditional Employee
Healthcare is an essential and intricate industry that serves people worldwide. Patients may perceive a visit to a doctor or clinic as a simple task, but in reality, it involves various complex procedures that healthcare professionals must follow. To alleviate the burden on medical businesses, a Virtual Medical Assistant (VMA) can be employed to manage various administrative tasks such as verifying insurance, obtaining prior authorization, following up with patients, entering data, and much more. Essentially, a VMA is an online administrative assistant for the medical field. The advantage of hiring a VMA is that they can perform the tasks of a conventional medical office secretary at a reduced cost.
By employing a virtual medical assistant, you do not have to pay for office space, employee benefits, or other overhead costs.
In addition to the cost savings, another benefit of hiring a VMA over a traditional employee is that it provides access to a broader pool of skilled professionals. This not only means that you can hire from anywhere in the world, but it also means that you can select the level of expertise you need in a VMA. You can choose from basic administrative assistants to trained nurses with experience working in hospitals, giving you a wider range of options than hiring an on-site assistant.
What Tasks can a Virtual Medical Assistant Handle in the Medical Field?
Virtual medical assistant can be a tremendous help in handling the many tasks required in the medical field. They can take care of tasks like insurance verification and authorization by checking databases or contacting insurance companies to confirm patients’ policies. They can also complete pre-authorizations for procedures, which makes for a smooth experience for both you and your patients.
Updating patient databases and ensuring that all electronic patient records are correctly documented takes a lot of time and effort. Fortunately, medical assistants can manage patient data entry and database maintenance, freeing up your time for more pressing tasks.
Prescription refills can be time-consuming, but virtual medical assistants can handle the entire process of filling out requests, contacting pharmacies, and recording the details in patient charts.
Managing schedules can be tricky, but medical assistants can keep your appointments organized and up-to-date. They can also contact patients in case of sudden schedule changes, rescheduling appointments when necessary.
Patient follow-ups are crucial for proper treatment. A medical assistant can keep track of appointments and prescriptions, and even contact patients to remind them of their next visit.
Transcribing notes and voice messages can take up a lot of time. By letting virtual assistant handle transcription, you can free up more time to focus on other critical tasks.
Virtual medical assistants can answer phone calls and handle basic inquiries, ensuring that your customers get prompt attention. They can also manage your inbox and respond to simple requests, leaving the more complicated questions for you to answer.
Managing inventory is essential to any medical practice. Virtual medical assistants can keep track of your supplies using a digital inventory management system, and order replacements when stocks run low. By utilizing a virtual medical assistant, you can focus on providing the best possible care to your patients.
What Qualities and Expertise Should a Virtual Medical Assistant Possess?
Virtual medical assistants have access to confidential patient information and your clinic’s private accounts, making trustworthiness and integrity crucial qualities for any VMA. Effective communication skills are also essential since VMAs are responsible for answering calls, emails, and other messages from patients and your office. Additionally, they need to be empathetic and understanding towards patients who may be under a lot of stress.
The ability to multitask is important since medical assistants have to handle multiple aspects of your practice simultaneously. Being organized is also a key skill, as it allows your VMA to access different data points quickly and track their tasks and processes efficiently. HIPAA compliance is a must for VMAs, and they need to be familiar with the rules and regulations of HIPAA to keep your clinic compliant.
Tips for Hiring a Medical Assistant for Your Practice
Hiring a virtual medical assistant can bring great benefits to your medical practice, both in terms of cost and productivity. However, with these benefits come new challenges that you should be aware of. One challenge is the need to search through a wider talent pool for the right VMA, as hiring remotely means that you can consider candidates from all over the world. Additionally, you may encounter some difficulties in transitioning from physical to digital communication methods, since you will need to find new ways to communicate with and monitor your new employee.