Medical Record Technician: Pathways, Salary, Skills, Opportunities

Understanding the Role of a Medical Record Technician

Medical record technicians organize and manage health information data that physicians rely on to treat patients. They play a vital role in healthcare administration and recordkeeping. If you’re detail-oriented with an interest in healthcare, read on to learn more about this career.

Medical Record Technician: Medical Record Technician manages and organizes patient medical records in healthcare settings.

Medical Record Technician Career Path

The first step to becoming a medical record tech is usually completing an associate's degree program in health information technology. Coursework covers medical coding, healthcare regulations, data management, and more.

With this training, medical record technicians can find employment in hospitals, clinics, insurance companies, and other healthcare settings. Experienced techs may advance to lead or supervisor roles. Some pursue additional certifications to specialize.

Education and Skill Requirements

Most medical record tech roles require an associate’s degree in health information technology or a related field like health informatics. Strong organization, data entry skills, customer service abilities, and knowledge of healthcare regulations are also important. Certifications can enhance job prospects.

Salary Trends and Outlook

Per the BLS, the average salary for medical records technicians is $46,590. Entry-level positions start around $30,000, while experienced technicians can earn over $60,000 annually. The field is projected to grow much faster than average over the next decade.

Recommended Reading

  • Medical Records Manual - Comprehensive guide covering medical records management, retention, security, and more.
  • Health Informatics: An Interprofessional Approach - Broad introduction to the field and key topics for those new to health IT roles.
  • RHIT Exam Secrets Study Guide - Helpful resource for preparing for the Registered Health Information Technician certification exam.

Key Topics in Medical Record Technician Training

Typical coursework includes:

  • Medical terminology
  • Healthcare regulations and compliance
  • Classification and coding systems
  • Quality assurance
  • Data management systems
  • Release of information procedures
  • Healthcare statistics

How to Become a Medical Record Technician

To launch a medical records tech career:

  • Earn an associate's degree in health information technology
  • Obtain certification from AHIMA to boost credentials
  • Develop strong data entry, organization, and communication skills
  • Build knowledge of medical coding and healthcare regulations
  • Research medical record technician openings
  • Highlight relevant training and skills on your resume
  • Prepare to interview by practicing responses

Top Programs and Certifications

Highly ranked programs include:

  • Sinclair College Health Information Technology Associate's Degree
  • Milwaukee Area Technical College Health Information Technology Associate's Degree
  • UHCL Certificate of Health Information Management

Leading certifications are the RHIA and RHIT credentials from AHIMA.

Job Application Strategies

When applying, emphasize your health information training, data management abilities, organization, and desire to use your skills in a healthcare setting. With the right credentials and persistence, you can start a rewarding career managing vital patient health records.