Career Development

What Does a Hospital Clerk Do?

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

Hospital clerks are the behind-the-scenes workers who keep hospitals running smoothly. They handle a wide range of clerical duties, from scheduling appointments to filing paperwork and tracking inventory.

Hospital clerks may also be responsible for providing customer service to patients and their families. This might include answering questions about hospital services or procedures, helping with billing issues, or even assisting with patient transport between floors or departments.

Hospital Clerk Job Duties

A hospital clerk typically has a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Provide information about insurance coverage to patients and families
  • Reviewing medical charts and updating medical records with new information such as patient complaints or test results
  • Communicating with other hospital staff members regarding patient status, lab results, insurance information, and other pertinent data
  • Collecting data from medical tests, such as blood pressure or electrocardiograms (EKGs), and entering it into the patient’s medical record
  • Provide clerical support for the billing department by receiving claims from patients, processing payments, and entering payment information into the computer system
  • Greeting patients, answering phones, and scheduling appointments
  • Communicating with other departments within the hospital regarding patient care needs and requirements
  • Communicating with patients, family members, and visitors about hospital policies and procedures
  • Entering data into the computer, including detailed descriptions of treatments provided to patients

Hospital Clerk Salary & Outlook

Hospital clerks’ salaries vary depending on their level of education and experience, the size of the hospital, and the geographic location of the job.

  • Median Annual Salary: $32,602 ($15.67/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $64,000 ($30.77/hour)

The employment of hospital clerks is expected to grow faster than average over the next decade.

As hospitals continue to consolidate, there will be a greater need for hospital clerks to process paperwork and ensure that the correct procedures are followed. In addition, the aging population is expected to increase demand for healthcare services. As older people typically use more medical services than younger people, this demographic change should lead to higher demand for hospital clerks.

Related: Hospital Clerk Interview Questions and Answers

Hospital Clerk Job Requirements

A hospital clerk typically needs to have the following qualifications:

Education: Hospital clerks are typically required to have at least a high school diploma or equivalent. Some hospitals may prefer candidates who have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in health information management, health care administration or a related field. These programs teach students about health care laws, ethics, management, accounting, business and other topics that are useful in a hospital setting.

Training & Experience: Hospital clerks typically receive on-the-job training from their supervisors or other hospital staff. This training may include learning how to use the hospital’s computer systems and software, as well as how to perform clerical duties.

Certifications & Licenses: Certifications are not usually a requirement as a hospital clerk, but they can be earned to improve your qualifications and increase your earning potential.

Hospital Clerk Skills

Hospital clerks need the following skills in order to be successful:

Communication skills: Hospital clerks communicate with patients, doctors, nurses, insurance representatives and other hospital staff. Effective communication skills can help you convey information clearly and answer questions accurately. You can also use communication skills to help patients understand their treatment plans and insurance information.

Attention to detail: Hospital clerks must be able to pay close attention to detail when recording patient information, filling out forms and entering data into computer systems. Attention to detail can help hospital clerks ensure they enter the correct information into the hospital’s records and ensure patients receive the correct treatment.

Computer proficiency: Hospital clerks use computers to enter patient information, create patient files and access patient records. They should be comfortable using computers and have basic computer skills, such as typing and navigating the internet.

Organizational skills: Hospital clerks often have excellent organizational skills, as they must be able to keep track of multiple patient files and paperwork. This requires attention to detail and the ability to prioritize tasks. Hospital clerks often have to keep track of patient information, insurance information, medical history and other confidential information.

Medical knowledge: Hospital clerks often work in hospitals, so it’s important for them to have a basic understanding of medical procedures and terminology. This can help them answer questions from patients and provide them with the correct information. Medical knowledge can also help hospital clerks complete their duties more efficiently.

Hospital Clerk Work Environment

Hospital clerks work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, physician’s offices, and insurance companies. They typically work a regular 40-hour week, although they may occasionally have to work evenings or weekends to cover for absent colleagues or to meet deadlines. Hospital clerks who work in large hospitals or clinics may have to deal with a high volume of patients and paperwork and may feel pressure to work quickly and efficiently. Those who work in smaller settings may have more opportunity to interact one-on-one with patients and staff and may find their work more satisfying.

Hospital Clerk Trends

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

The Use of Technology in Healthcare

The use of technology in healthcare is becoming increasingly common, as hospitals look for ways to improve efficiency and patient care. This trend is having a significant impact on the role of the hospital clerk, who is now responsible for using technology to manage patient data and records.

As hospitals continue to adopt new technologies, clerks will need to be able to use these tools to their fullest potential. This includes learning how to use electronic medical records (EMRs) and other software programs that help manage patient information.

Patient Satisfaction Will Be More Important Than Ever

As patients become more educated about their health care options, they are placing greater importance on patient satisfaction. This means that hospital clerks will need to be excellent communicators who can create a positive experience for patients.

In order to meet the needs of patients, clerks will need to be familiar with current trends in healthcare, such as the increasing popularity of concierge medicine. They will also need to be able to handle difficult situations, such as complaints about billing or wait times.

More Collaboration Between Hospital Departments

Hospital departments are increasingly working together in order to provide better care for patients. This trend is leading to increased collaboration between departments, which requires hospital clerks to be able to work effectively with others.

As hospital clerks are increasingly called upon to collaborate with other departments, they will need to be able to communicate effectively and understand the needs of other team members. This will allow them to work together to provide the best possible care for patients.

How to Become a Hospital Clerk

A hospital clerk career can be a great way to get started in the healthcare field. As a hospital clerk, you’ll have the opportunity to learn about different departments and areas of the hospital, as well as meet many people who work in healthcare. You’ll also gain experience working with patients and their families, which is important for any future jobs in the field.

As you progress in your career, you may want to consider becoming a medical assistant or nurse assistant. These are both great ways to further your education in the healthcare field and increase your skillset.

Advancement Prospects

Hospital clerks typically start out in entry-level positions and advance to higher-level positions as they gain experience. With experience, hospital clerks may be promoted to positions such as medical records technician, medical office manager, or health information administrator.

Those interested in management may advance to supervisory or administrative positions in larger hospitals or health care systems. Some hospital clerks with experience and additional education may become licensed health information administrators. Some may also become certified coding specialists, which requires passing an exam.

Hospital Clerk Job Description Example

At [CompanyX], we provide high-quality patient care by maintaining a clean, organized, and well-run hospital. We’re looking for a hospital clerk to join our team and help us keep things running smoothly. The ideal candidate will have experience working in a hospital or medical office, and will be comfortable working with a variety of people. He or she will be responsible for a variety of tasks, including answering phones, scheduling appointments, filing medical records, and handling patient inquiries. The hospital clerk will be the face of [CompanyX], and must be professional, courteous, and efficient at all times.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Answer phone calls, take messages, and direct inquiries to the appropriate staff member or department
  • Greet patients, visitors, and vendors in a professional and courteous manner
  • Schedule appointments and maintain calendars for hospital staff
  • Check patients in and out of appointments, verifying insurance information and collecting co-pays
  • Prepare and distribute patient charts and other required documentation
  • Perform data entry and maintain accurate patient records
  • Process incoming and outgoing mail
  • Maintain cleanliness and organization in the reception area and throughout the hospital
  • Assist with special projects as needed
  • Adhere to all HIPAA regulations and maintain confidentiality of patient information
  • Follow hospital policies and procedures
  • Provide support to other departments as needed

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Proven clerical experience in a hospital setting
  • Excellent communication, customer service, and interpersonal skills
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality of sensitive information
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office applications
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • Associate’s degree or higher
  • Bilingual (English/Spanish)
  • Experience with medical billing and coding
  • Experience with Electronic Health Records (EHR) systems


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