Frequently Asked Questions

What Does a Medical Assistant Do?

Medical assistants perform routine administrative and clinical tasks to keep health care delivery settings running smoothly. Medical assistants should not be confused with physician assistants who examine, diagnose, and treat patients, under the direct supervision of a physician. In small practices, medical assistants are usually "generalists," handling both administrative and clinical duties and reporting directly to an office manager, physician, or other health practitioner. Those in large practices tend to specialize in a particular area under the supervision of department administrators

What is the Nature of  Work of a Medical Assistant?

Medical assistants work in well-lighted, clean environments. They constantly interact with other people, and may have to handle several responsibilities at once. The telephone is a key tool in the medical office for interacting with patients. The medical assistant must be able to screen calls effectively according to the accepted procedures of the office or clinic. The computer is another tool that is used to complete correspondence, patient registration,  medical billing, and scheduling appointments.

Source:  American Association of Medical Assistants


What are the Soft Skills Required of a Medical Assistant?

The medical assistant must have excellent written and oral communication skills, high moral and ethical standards, and good interpersonal skills.  Because Medical Assistants deal with the public, they must be neat and well groomed and have a courteous, pleasant manner.  Medical Assistants must be able to put patients at ease and explain physicians’ instructions.  They must respect the confidential nature of medical information. 

  • reliable
  • efficient
  • punctual
  • empathetic
  • mature
  • accurate
  • confident
  • team player

Contact Person 
Karen Coffey 
Associate Professor for EOC

What Keyboarding Speed is required in a Medical Office?

The keyboarding speed for entry-level employment is expected to be a minimum of 30-35 wam (words per minute) with 95 percent accuracy.

What are the Program Entry Requirements?
  • A minimum reading score of 10.0 as measured by the TABE (Test of Adult Basic Education) 
  • A minimum math score of 8.0 (TABE)
  • Keyboarding skills - a minimum of 20 wam
  • Computer Literacy
Where are the Jobs in the WNY Area?

The following area employers have hired EOC graduates of the Medical Assistant and Medical Office Assistant Programs:

  • Kaleida Health:  Buffalo General Hospital, Millard Fillmore Gates Circle
  • Univera Health Care
  • Community Health Care of Buffalo
  • Roswell Park Cancer Institute
  • Sheehan Memorial Hospital
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