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Medical secretary Medical personal assistant

Medical secretaries provide office support in hospitals, GP surgeries, private clinics and universities.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £16,500 to £28,500 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 37 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no set entry requirements, but you'll need excellent keyboard skills.

It may also be helpful if you have:

  • GCSEs or equivalent qualifications in maths and English
  • office experience
  • a typing or word processing qualification
  • knowledge of medical terms

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • an excellent telephone manner
  • administration and organisational skills
  • accuracy and attention to detail
  • the ability to stay calm under pressure

3. What you'll do

You'll work for a hospital doctor or consultant, NHS manager, GP or healthcare provider. You could work in the NHS or for a private company.

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • handling questions from patients, staff and consultants
  • organising a doctor's diary, booking consulting rooms and meetings
  • making travel arrangements
  • managing a waiting list of patients
  • updating patient records and dealing with confidential information
  • sending samples for medical testing and recording the results
  • typing letters, clinical reports, minutes of meetings and filing
  • monitoring an office budget and dealing with invoices

4. Salary

Starter: £16,500 to £19,500

Experienced: £19,000 to £22,500 (senior medical secretary)

Highly Experienced: £22,000 to £28,500 (lead medical secretary)

Salaries and benefits will vary between NHS posts and private healthcare companies and hospitals.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work in an office, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. If you work in a GP surgery, you may work on a rota covering early starts, evenings and weekends.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could manage a team of secretaries in a large organisation.

With further training, you could become an administration manager, office manager or GP practice manager.

You could also move into roles in finance or HR.

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Last updated: 11 April 2017