Health Records Technician Job Description: Top Duties and Requirements

A Health Records Technician, or Medical Records Clerk, is responsible for obtaining patient information and converting it into a permanent medical record. Their main duties include transcribing medical data, categorizing medical information, and updating patient records.

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Health Records Technician duties and responsibilities

Health Records Technicians have a wide range of duties and responsibilities to ensure they can keep patient records organized and up-to-date. Some of their primary duties and responsibilities include:

  • Transcribe medical data from patients notes into detailed records 
  • File records using a standardized system 
  • Update medical records as required
  • Keep patient data and medical records confidential 
  • Retrieve medical records for insurance companies or physicians 
  • Ensure patient records are accurate by collaborating with healthcare providers
  • Classify and code conditions, treatments, and diagnoses 
  • Utilize specialized technology, such as recordkeeping software specific to the hospital or medical office

What does a Health Records Technician do?

A Health Records Technician transcribes patient notes into organized records. They ensure these records are as detailed as possible by including everything mentioned in patients notes, such as symptoms, diagnoses, prescribed medications, and test results. Health Records Technicians then file these records using the company’s standardized coding system to ensure they can easily access them per physician, patient, and insurance company requests.

Health Records Technician skills and qualifications

Health Records Technicians must have strong analytical skills to ensure they create patient records accurately and efficiently. They must hold a variety of other prerequisite skills and qualifications, including:

  • Able to use medical record management software 
  • Knowledge of medical terminology 
  • Great interpersonal skills 
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills 
  • Ability to work in a timely manner under pressure 
  • Superb attention to detail 
  • Ability to follow standardized protocols and medical record regulations
  • Able to work independently or as part of a team when necessary

Health Records Technician experience requirements

Entry-level Health Records Technician candidates are not required to have prior experience in the role as they should have the necessary education and certification beforehand. However, experience in a similar role can be beneficial. Candidates who were previously in an administrative position where they were responsible for filing or creating records are ideal. Similarly, experience in a medical environment, such as a hospital or doctor’s office can be beneficial. Volunteer experience in a medical or office setting can also be an asset.

Health Records Technician education and training requirements

Health Records Technician candidates should have a college diploma in health record technology or health information management. These programs typically take candidates one to two years to complete, depending on whether the program is part-time or full-time. Ideal Health Records Technician candidates will also have a certificate from the Canadian Health Information Management Association. They may also have completed additional certifications such as the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) certification provided by the Canadian Academy for Health Professionals (CAHP).

Job salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary for a Health Records Technician or Medical Records Clerk in Canada is $48,886 per year. This salary is just an average and may be dependent on experience, location and company.

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Health Records Technician job description FAQs

What is the difference between a Health Records Technician and a Records Technician?

A Health Records Technician focuses solely on creating and organizing medical records, while a Records Technician’s work is more general. Records Technicians may work at libraries, offices, and schools, while a Health Records Technician works in a hospital, physician’s office, or insurance company dealing only with health records.

Where can a Health Records Technician work?

Health Records Technicians work in hospitals, clinics, physicians’ offices, insurance companies, nursing care facilities, or public health organizations. Some employers also let Health Records Technicians work from home if they have the necessary equipment and can maintain patients’ privacy.

What other job titles refer to a Health Records Technician?

Different employers may use a variety of job titles to refer to a Health Records Technician. Although the job titles vary, the position remains the same. Here are the main titles you can choose from to use in your job description:

  • Medical Records Technician
  • Medical Records Clerk
  • Medical Records Coordinator 
  • Medical Records and Health Information Technician

What is a typical day like for a Health Records Technician?

Health Records Technicians typically work full-time office hours, Monday to Friday in a medical or office setting. They spend their day in front of a computer creating, coding, filing, and retrieving medical records. Health Records Technicians usually work alone or under the supervision of a Senior Health Records Technician. If they need clarification or confirmation on patient records, they may work directly with a Physician or Nurse.

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