Career Development

What Does a Clinical Coordinator Do?

Find out what a clinical coordinator does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a clinical coordinator.

Clinical coordinators are the liaisons between medical professionals and their patients. They help doctors, nurses, therapists, and other clinicians coordinate patient care by scheduling appointments, answering questions, and ensuring that all parties are on the same page with regard to treatment plans and instructions.

Clinical coordinators may also be responsible for managing the flow of information between different departments or healthcare providers. For example, they might take notes during doctor’s visits and then pass those notes along to nurses or other staff members as needed.

Clinical Coordinator Job Duties

A clinical coordinator typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Coordinating patient care with physicians, medical staff, and other health care providers
  • Scheduling appointments, surgeries, and other procedures for patients
  • Communicating with patients about their appointments, procedures, and progress
  • Communicating with insurance companies on behalf of patients in order to obtain pre-approvals for services
  • Coordinating care with other staff members, including nurses, social workers, therapists, and dietitians
  • Collecting, processing, and storing patient data in an electronic database
  • Ensuring that all clinical equipment is working properly before procedures begin
  • Preparing patients for examinations by administering medications and assisting with preparations such as shaving or bathing
  • Reviewing medical records to ensure accuracy, updating them as needed, and filing them with the appropriate departments

Clinical Coordinator Salary & Outlook

Clinical coordinators’ salaries vary depending on their level of education and experience, the size of the company and the geographic location of the job.

  • Median Annual Salary: $66,500 ($31.97/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $95,000 ($45.67/hour)

The employment of clinical coordinators is expected to grow faster than average over the next decade.

As healthcare providers continue to consolidate and form larger organizations, clinical coordinators will be needed to organize and manage the care provided by these groups. Clinical coordinators also will be needed to ensure that patients receive appropriate care in a cost-efficient manner.

Clinical Coordinator Job Requirements

A clinical coordinator typically needs to have the following qualifications:

Education: Most employers require clinical coordinators to have a bachelor’s degree in a health-related field, such as nursing, health care administration or health care management. Some of the coursework that these programs include is health assessment, health care systems, ethics, research methods, health care law and health care economics.

Training & Experience: Clinical coordinators receive most of their training on the job. They may work as a clinical assistant or a medical assistant before advancing to a clinical coordinator. Working as a clinical assistant or medical assistant provides hands-on experience in a clinical setting. Clinical coordinators who have a bachelor’s degree may receive additional on-the-job training to learn the specific software and processes of the facility.

Certifications & Licenses: Clinical coordinators do not need certifications to work in their field. However, some employers may prefer candidates who have certifications. Certifications allow clinical coordinators to demonstrate their knowledge and skills to potential employers.

Clinical Coordinator Skills

Clinical coordinators need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication: Clinical coordinators communicate with many different people throughout their workday. They must be able to communicate with patients, medical staff and other clinical staff. They must also be able to communicate with patients’ families and insurance companies. This requires excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Organization: Clinical coordinators often use organization skills to keep track of patient information, treatment plans and other important data. They also use organization skills to ensure they complete all their duties on time. For example, clinical coordinators may use organization skills to create schedules for their team and ensure all staff members are available when patients need them.

Time management: Time management is another skill that clinical coordinators use in their daily work. They often have many tasks to complete in a short period of time, so it’s important for them to prioritize their work and manage their time wisely. This can help them meet their organization’s goals and deadlines.

Medical knowledge: Clinical coordinators work with medical professionals, so it’s important for them to have a basic understanding of medical terminology and procedures. This can help them communicate with medical staff and understand patient information. Clinical coordinators also need to know how to handle medical emergencies and other situations that arise in the workplace. Medical knowledge can help them respond to these situations appropriately.

Teamwork: Clinical coordinators work with many different people throughout their workday, including patients, medical staff, insurance representatives and other clinical staff. Being able to work well with others is an important skill for clinical coordinators to have. Being able to work with others to solve problems, complete tasks and meet goals is essential to success in this role.

Clinical Coordinator Work Environment

Clinical coordinators work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, physician’s offices, and research laboratories. They typically work full time, and some may work evenings or weekends to meet the needs of their patients. Clinical coordinators may be required to travel to different locations to meet with patients or to attend conferences. The work can be stressful, and coordinators must be able to handle a high volume of work and be able to work well under pressure.

Clinical Coordinator Trends

Here are three trends influencing how clinical coordinators work. Clinical coordinators will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Need for Better Communication Between Providers and Patients

The healthcare industry is changing rapidly, and one of the most significant changes is the need for better communication between providers and patients. This trend is being driven by a number of factors, including an increased focus on patient satisfaction and the growth of telehealth services.

Clinical coordinators can capitalize on this trend by becoming experts in communication skills. They can also work to create systems that make it easier for patients to communicate with their providers, such as through online portals or phone lines.

Patient Engagement Becomes More Important

As patient engagement becomes more important in the healthcare industry, clinical coordinators will need to develop new skills and strategies to help them connect with patients.

This trend means that clinical coordinators will need to be able to not only manage patient data and appointments, but also build relationships with patients and understand their needs. In order to be successful in this field, clinical coordinators will need to be able to communicate effectively and be able to adapt to changing circumstances.

More Use of Technology in Healthcare

The use of technology in healthcare is increasing at a rapid pace, and this is having a major impact on the role of the clinical coordinator.

As technology becomes more prevalent in hospitals and clinics, the clinical coordinator will need to learn how to use it effectively in order to provide the best possible care for patients. This includes using electronic medical records, computerized billing systems, and other technologies that can improve efficiency and reduce errors.

How to Become a Clinical Coordinator

A clinical coordinator career path can be a great way to get started in the healthcare field. As a clinical coordinator, you’ll have the opportunity to work with a variety of professionals and learn about different aspects of the industry. You’ll also gain experience working with patients and their families, which is an important part of the job.

To become a clinical coordinator, you’ll need to have a strong understanding of medical terminology, anatomy, and physiology. You should also be able to communicate effectively with patients and their families. It’s also helpful if you have knowledge of insurance policies and procedures.

Related: How to Write a Clinical Coordinator Resume

Advancement Prospects

The best way to advance in this career is to obtain an advanced degree, such as a master’s degree in health administration or a related field. With an advanced degree, clinical coordinators may be eligible for promotion to managerial or executive positions. Some clinical coordinators may also choose to open their own private practices.

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