Are you preparing for a job interview for a medical assistant position? Familiarizing yourself with these common interview questions will help you have answers ready and feel more comfortable. It might also help to have a friend use these questions to give you a practice interview.
1. Tell me a little about yourself.
This is a basic interview question that can be tough to answer due to its open-ended nature. Instead of sharing hobbies or personality traits, keep your answer focused on your professional experience and education.
Example: “I recently completed the medical assistant certification program at Advantage Career Institute Medical & Dental School, where I learned to work with patients while taking their vital signs, and assisted doctors in physical exams and other procedures. I especially enjoy communicating with patients and helping to make their experience easy and comfortable.”
2. How much experience do you have as a medical assistant?
If you have prior experience as a medical assistant, tell them where you have worked, and how long you worked there. If you are new to the medical assistant field, tell them about your experience with ACI’s 180-hour internship, included in the medical assistant certification program.
Example: “I recently completed a 180-hour internship at AM/PM Walk-in Urgent Care, where I got valuable hands-on experience in the responsibilities of a medical assistant. Now that I have graduated and completed my internship, I am looking forward to finding a full-time position and continuing my professional growth.”
3. What are some of your strengths?
When answering this question, it’s important not to brag. Simply discuss the areas that you feel you are strongest in.
Example: “My phlebotomy skills are one of my biggest strengths. I feel confident when drawing blood. I am also good as communicating with patients and making them feel comfortable.”
4. What are some of your weaknesses?
When answering this question, do not put yourself down or say you are bad at something. Simply mention areas where you are looking to improve.
Example: “I am currently more comfortable with clinical tasks than administrative responsibilities, but I am good at communicating, so I am confident that I can adapt to that role quickly.”
5. Tell me about your computer skills.
When answering this question, be sure to mention your medical billing and coding training, as well as your Electronic Health Records training, as both are very important when employers are looking to hire candidates. It may be a good idea to take some notes to remind yourself of the specific computer programs you are experienced with.
Example: “I am trained in Electronic Health Records software, specifically the Example program. I am also trained in medical billing and coding, and have learned how to process claims with Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance companies. I am also experienced with all Microsoft Office programs.”
6. As a medical assistant, how will you ensure that you are following HIPAA guidelines?
It’s a good idea to brush up on HIPAA protocol before your interview, as it is an important part of a medical assistant’s job.
Example: “I was trained in HIPAA protocol during my medical assistant certification program. At my internship, I learned to be careful about patient privacy, for example only using patients’ first names in the waiting room, making sure patient charts were kept out of view of others, and making sure the exam room door was closed before any discussions took place.”
7. Are you experienced in front office administrative responsibilities? Are you comfortable on the phone?
It is common for medical assistants to do a combination of clinical tasks and administrative work. Be ready to talk about the office tasks you have been trained to do. This is another good opportunity to bring up your EHR and medical billing and coding training.
Example: “We learned many front office duties in my training program, with an emphasis on customer service and professionalism. I have been trained on medical billing and coding and Electronic Health Records, and I am comfortable talking to patients both on the phone and in person.”
8. Have you been trained in phlebotomy? Are you comfortable drawing blood?
Phlebotomy is an important part of a medical assistant’s job, so employers will want to make sure you are trained and ready to take on that responsibility, even if you have not had any experience in the field yet.
Example: “I am comfortable with drawing blood and all phlebotomy procedures, and did well in my training program. I have had a lot of practice drawing blood from fellow students, family, and friends as a core component of my training, and continued receiving experience throughout my internship.”
9. Are you experienced in taking patient vital signs and medical histories?
These are important responsibilities for a medical assistant, so be sure to detail the procedures you learned in your training program.
Example: “I have been trained in taking weight, temperature, blood pressure, and pulse. We practiced in the lab at school, and I had the opportunity to take these measurements on patients during my internship.”
10. Are you experienced with electrocardiograms (EKG)?
Performing EKG tests is another important responsibility of a medical assistant, so share some details about your qualifications.
Example: “I received my EKG certification through the National Healthcareer Association, which included completing EKG tests, identifying sets of waves, and determining normal vs abnormal EKG readings.”
11. What is a difficult position you have been in at work, and how did you handle it?
Make sure your story is honest and describes a circumstance in which you handled a difficult situation with professionalism.
Example: “During my internship, I had to take a blood drawing for a child who was extremely nervous. I was able to calm him down, keep him comfortable, and talk to him throughout the procedure.”
12. What do you like most about the medical assistant position?
Answer honestly and pick an aspect of the medical assistant job requirement that appeals to you. For this question, it is important to understand how the role of a medical assistant differs from other healthcare roles, such as a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), Home Health Aid (HHA), and Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).
Example: “I enjoy working with patients and making their visit comfortable and stress-free.”
13. What do you like least about the medical assistant position?
This is a difficult question, as you do not want to complain about your job before you get it. Your best bet is to tell them that you don’t have a least favorite part.
Example: “There aren’t really any responsibilities of this job that I don’t like. I hope to gain new and different responsibilities as I learn more and become more experienced.”
14. Why do you want to work here?
It’s important to research a company before you interview with them. If this question comes up, have a specific answer about what you can bring to the company. Avoid talking about personal motivations such as the good pay or easy commute.
Example: “Example Hospital’s pediatrics department would be a good fit for me because I enjoy working with children. Working with six different doctors would give me a great range of experience.”
15. Why are you the best candidate for this position?
When answering this question, you do not want to come off conceited. Simply reiterate your training and experience, and that you feel you would make a valuable member of the team.
Example: “I feel that my training, internship experience, and communication skills make me a strong candidate for this position. I am confident in all of the responsibilities in the job descriptions, and my personal skills will allow me to make patients comfortable during their visit.”