A clinical medical assistant focuses on patient care and the clinical aspects of the practice. They may conduct assessments, prepare patients for medical exams, assist with exams, perform minor treatments, document medical histories, take vital signs, and instruct patients on home care.
An administrative medical assistant ensures that the business side of the practice operates smoothly. They will perform administrative tasks such as general accounting and billing, managing patient records, answering phones, making appointments, and maintaining the front desk/reception area.
A specialized medical assistant works closely with a physician(s) and serves patients in a more direct way. They typically report to an administrative manager or directly to a physician. Their tasks are dependant on their clinical specialty. Certification is required to be a specialized medical assistant, and they typically earn higher wages and have better job opportunities.