HealthCenter21: Medical Office Assistant

Online Curriculum Resources for Allied Health and Health Science Courses

Medical Office Assistant

This module gives students an overview of the role and responsibilities of medical office occupations. Topics include: educational requirements, professionalism, personal appearance, teamwork, effective communication, HIPAA, and the legal issues that pertain to office personnel.

Office Environment

This module focuses on the reception area of medical facilities and making a positive first impression with visitors. Students will explore office safety and design and how to modify the environment to accommodate patients with special needs. Students learn to: open and close an office, greet patients, explain office policies in a professional manner, and register and check-in clients.

Office Equipment

Students discover the many types of equipment within the typical medical office. They learn to operate, troubleshoot, and care for equipment such as photocopiers, facsimile (FAX) machines, and computers. Students explore the many uses of computers in the medical office, and learn basic computer terms and functions. Finally, students perform an inventory of supplies and equipment, and prepare a purchase requisition for new supplies.

Telephone Etiquette

In this module, students examine their verbal communication skills and learn to effectively answer and document telephone calls. Students role-play many types of telephone calls, and demonstrate handling calls appropriately and professionally, including performing triage. They also practice leaving messages on answering machines. Lastly, students explore telephone technology common in the medical office.


This module introduces students to the variety of methods used to schedule appointments. Students learn to set up a matrix and schedule patients according to procedure. They also discover how to handle unexpected visitors, including sales calls. Students then maintain the schedule through a series of cancellations, walk-ins, and other situations. They also arrange for appointments outside the facility, such as outpatient visits and hospitalization.

Written Communication

In this module, students use their writing skills to relay information to others. They explore the writing process, including the importance of proofreading their work for grammar and spelling errors. Students learn how to format memos and letters and prepare envelopes. And they also learn how to handle incoming and outgoing mail.

Medical Records

In this module, students prepare, maintain, and store medical records. They learn to: organize a patient's medical record, document accurately, label files and documents, file alphabetically and numerically, and find a misplaced chart. Students also examine record control policies and procedures, including when and how a medical record may be released, and discuss the purging and long-term storage of files.


In this module, students learn to manage the financial aspects of a medical office and identify common terms and concepts associated with accounting tasks. They explore billing and collections procedures, and they perform bookkeeping procedures, such as preparing a day sheet and handling cash and receipts. Students write checks, reconcile bank statements, and prepare deposit records.

Insurance and Coding

Students begin with an overview of insurance concepts, such as managed care, PPO, and HMO. They also list the types of federal health care plans. Students explore the role of ICD-10-CM and CPT codes in processing claims and define the terminology needed to interpret and submit medical insurance claims. They complete a universal health insurance claim form and discuss electronic claim filing. Students also learn the importance of accuracy in receiving reimbursement in case of an audit.

Health Information Technology

The Health Information Technology module is an introductory module that will familiarize students with how information technology affects the healthcare industry. In this module, students will learn new terminology, gain exposure to an EHR system and understand the importance of following HIPAA guidelines.