A medical scribe works closely with the physician to document patients’ encounters and medical information, keeping the physician updated. You need to prepare well for such an interview since interviewers are constantly looking for qualified individuals. Here are a few questions that you should expect:
1. Why are You Interested in this Role?
The interviewer wants to know why you are applying for this position. Mention why you are interested in this role or the healthcare field as a whole. You can include some of the things you intend to learn if you get the job. It would be best if you also sell yourself.
I am passionate about healthcare. This job will help me pursue my passion and give back to my community, given that this hospital is found in my locality. I would like to meet new challenges and find ways of bettering people’s lives. I, therefore, hope that you will give me a chance to do so. ( There are many approaches to this question. You can mention some of the things the hiring institution will enjoy from your services)
2. What are the Roles of a Medical Scribe?
The interviewer wants to know if you understand what is expected of you in the facility. What are your mandates? This is a chance to prove just how conversant you are with this job. You can mention your roles in your former workplace or use the provided job description.
A medical scribe works closely with the physician. He/she documents the patient’s history, either the physical examination, family, social or past medical history; record the procedures, lab results, and radiographic impressions made by the doctor and notes any relevant information that the physician may need.
3. What Qualities Does a Medical Scribe Need to be Effective?
What makes one an excellent medical scribe? This question will reveal how much you know about achieving excellence in your line of work. Can you explain the attributes, skills, abilities, and behaviors needed to be an efficient medical scribe? The best approach to this question is to draw from your experience.
A medical scribe should be passionate about the medical field and quality patient care, possess excellent written verbal communication skills, be dedicated to the medical physician, and possess extensive office and clerical knowledge as well as computer skills.
4. Mention a Challenge that You Faced in Your Former Job. How Did You Manage It?
The interviewer is giving you a chance to show your problem-solving ability. Can you brainstorm and implement solutions to problems? Every job has its challenges, and you can either take the initiative and find solutions or sit back and whine. We all know who will carry the day in the end.
I was posted in a small healthcare facility in a remote town. When I reported, I realized that most of the software was outdated, and the former medical scribe resorted to physical means of taking and keeping records. I requested the chief medical officer to allow me to use some free software I was accustomed to, and he agreed. I chose the best, and with no time, my work had greatly improved.
5. Describe Your Daily Routine
What do you do daily in your line of work? Here you should mention your daily activities or roles. We advise that you pick one of the busiest days in your career and narrate it to the hiring manager or interviewer. Remember, everybody wants an excellent addition to their team of employees. Desist from mentioning activities unrelated to this role, such as feeding your puppy or preparing the kids for school.
I usually arrive at the clinic earlier than the physician, review the patient schedule, and swiftly begin preparing charts by collecting past medical information. I then accompany the physician to see the patients once he/she arrives at the clinic. I listen to their interactions and document them in the electronic medical record. I also ensure that all areas in the chart are accurate and complete before completing the notes for the physician and presenting them for review…
6. Briefly Describe Your Experience
This is where you offer a brief recap of your career. What are some of the positions you have occupied, notable roles you have played, and the accolades you have received in this field? Remember, most of this information is covered in your CV and work resume, and therefore, only mention what you feel will interest the interviewer.
I celebrated my thirteenth year in healthcare last month. I have worked in both government and private healthcare institutions. I have vast experience in recording and managing patient information and can operate several clinic equipment. I have also worked in 5 countries and got a chance to see the disparity that exists in healthcare. I believe that all these experiences have been gearing me towards this role.
7. Mention a Strategy and Mindset Required for This Role.
The right strategy will see you excel in your work. Tell the interviewer a way of operation that has proven successful in your line of work. The second part of the question needs you to mention your guiding perspective when going about your work. Make sure that you answer former experience.
A strategy that I have always used in my work is being timely and ahead of the physician. I come to work early, review the patient schedule, and immediately start prepping charts by collecting past medical histories. Being ahead of the physician makes work easier and more manageable. I also maintain a focused mindset when going about my job, which helps me ignore anything that may demotivate me.
8. What is the Main Challenge that You Foresee in this Job?
Always make a point to research the organization before appearing for an interview. This will help you identify some of the problematic areas you may have to deal with once you get the job. However, watch out not to mention a challenge that will make the interviewer doubt your ability.
I had the chance to talk to one of your former employees and, from the discussion, discovered that your clinic strives to ensure that all its systems are updated. This was the greatest challenge I faced in my former workplaces. I, therefore, believe that we will have smooth sailing. ( You can also assure the interviewer that you will strive to handle any challenge that comes your way)
9. How Do You Stay Motivated in this Role?
The interviewer wants to know where you get the strength to execute your duties and do well in this job. With all the challenges you may be exposed to in this job, you need a source of motivation which can either be in your place of work or outside the workplace.
I love what I do. Knowing that my job plays a vital role in quality healthcare provision is all I need to put more effort into it. I have also made it a habit to reflect on my past successes whenever I feel like quitting. I, therefore, have all the motivation I need in this job.
10. Mention a Time that You Failed in this Job and the Lesson You Learnt
This is a simple question that needs a direct answer. Please do not shy away from giving such an experience since we all have our downfalls in life. However, make sure that you highlight the lesson you learned since it is the most critical part of this question.
I once failed to back up a patient’s medical history and lost everything when a system failure occurred, forcing me to repeat the whole process of gathering information. This experience taught me the importance of backing up information and having a data recovery plan in place. Nowadays, I ensure that everything is automatically backed up.
11. Why do You Feel You are the Most Suited for this Role?
The interviewers have given you a chance to prove yourself. It would be best to tell them why you feel you are the best candidate out of all the available options. Mention some of your outstanding skills and experiences that rank you above the other candidates. However, do not refer to anyone or speak ill of others.
Having spent over 15 years in healthcare, I believe that I have vast experience in this field. I have had the chance to experience different working environments and can therefore deliver the best of both worlds. I am skilled in gathering, recording, and storing patient information and have lots of unique skills that I believe I can use to better your institution.
12. Share with Us Your Greatest Achievement
What do you consider your most remarkable milestone in this role? When did you feel incredibly proud of yourself? Look back at all the things you have achieved in your time as a medical scribe and mention the one that ranks above all the others.
I once had a brief chat with a patient before the physician walked in. I soon forgot about it since I meet lots of patients. However, weeks later, he reached out, thanking me for my kind words and said that I gave him hope to fight and go through his surgery when he had already given up. I can still feel the tears I shed.
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13. What are Some of the Questions You Ask when Intaking a New Patient?
This is an operational question that seeks to understand how you go about your work. The interviewer must ensure that you know the right questions to ask and how to frame them to obtain the relevant information from the patients. Your questions should be geared towards finding more about the patient’s background.
I first ask the patient their reasons for visiting the clinic. Most of the following questions are related to the visit. I will enquire about their names, date of birth, and how they feel. I also ask about any previous surgeries, conditions, or family history.
14. What Do You Know about this Position?
The duties of medical scribes are not constant. They may vary depending on the institution or facility. Therefore, you should conduct some research and find more about the position and this particular workplace. Convince the interviewer that you are conversant with the requirements.
I will primarily be stationed in the emergency room. Given the nature of my job, I am prepared to take any necessary shifts, including nights and weekends. I will also be required to handle several tasks, including patient intake and procedure note-taking. I am therefore ready to work in a fast-paced setting and will be willing to multitask if needed.
15. What Role Does Patient Communication Play in your Work?
Depending on the hiring facility and how your roles are constituted, you may or may not talk directly to the patient. However, the interviewer must ascertain that you are willing to listen to patients if necessary and even offer help. Your answer should show deep care for patients’ welfare.
I believe that all patients should feel loved and comfortable in every medical facility. I always strive to listen to patients and reassure them whenever we interact. I have had several of them come back to thank me for giving them the strength to face their fears.
16. This Job can be Very Stressful. How Do You Normally Handle Stressful Situations?
The situations of your patients can make this job even more stressful. You will meet patients with chronic pain, confusion, or high blood pressure, which may have a significant toll on your mental health. Therefore, you should be aware of everything that may stress you in this position and have a way of dealing with them.
Having been in this field for some time, I understand that there are several stressful situations I will be exposed to. However, I have some coping strategies that come in handy. I have learned the art of taking a deep breath and controlling my heart rate, which increases my focus. I also stay aware of my surroundings to keep safe and also help patients as fast as possible. Lastly, I took up yoga and meditation, which helps me deal with stress.
17. How Do You Avoid Errors in Your Work?
How do you ensure that everything is accurate? These can either be your records, entries, or files. You need to be focused and attentive to details to avoid mistakes in your line of work, given the critical roles you play as a medical scribe. Draw your answer from your experience.
I usually proofread the final work and cross-check with my records or drafts. I also ensure that I am keen enough when making entries to avoid numerical mistakes, which may be costly. I only submit my work to the attending physician once I am sure that everything is accurate.
18. What Would You Do if an Attending Physician Finds an Error in Your Notes?
This is a follow-up question based on your previous answer. Certain mistakes can be elusive, however thorough we are. Most of these happen during note-taking, and therefore, you should have a means of handling such situations in advance. Give a professional and proven approach.
I am usually meticulous when scribing for physicians since I know how important this job is, especially during high-pressure examinations and treatments. If a physician notices an error in my notes, I will ask for details so that I can avoid the same situation from happening in the future. I will also offer an apology and find out anything that I can do to improve.
19. Have You Ever Gone above and beyond in Patient Care?
The interviewer wants an experience where you stepped out of your regular job description and made a positive impact in your place for work. This question is, therefore, assessing your commitment to this job. Give an experience where you helped a patient or family.
I love seeing patients get better and reunite with their families. I once decided to volunteer and mentor kids suffering from cancer. I even helped fundraise for several organizations that were creating awareness for such children.
20. What is the Importance of a Note Taker?
The interviewer is testing if you understand the role of a medical scribe. Remember, you will be typing, observing, and taking note of doctors’ and patients’ interactions. Therefore, tell the interviewer how note-taking helps doctors and patients.
It is essential to have a note-taker, and in this case, a medical scribe, since it allows the doctor to focus on the patient instead of spending most of their time writing down notes.
21. Give Us Five Importance Of Using Scribes In The Hospital.
Your interviewer wants to know whether you know the reason why you are in this role. It would be best if you talked about the importance of scribes and how they are effective in the medicine area.
Scribes are very important in the medical field. They help physicians and other specialists that are attending to a patient. The five importances among the many are;
i) Increase efficiency and productivity by reducing the documentation burden where a physician will waste a lot of time taking notes instead of attending to other patients
ii) Improve surge volume management
iii) Reduce waste of time patients waiting to be attended to for many hours if not minutes.
iv) In a case where a physician wants to refer something or information said by the patient as it was, scribes would help in reference
v) Ensures adequate shift coverage.
I would pick those as the first importance of using scribes in health facilities.
22. Tell Us The Elements Of Documentation Of Scribe Services.
The interviewer is testing your knowledge on the key elements that scribes should have. Talk about the main aspects of this field.
There are several elements of medical scribes. Among them are
i) The name of the scribe and legible signature.
ii) The name of the individual rendering the service
iii) Authentication of the scribe
iv) The name of the patient that received the service from the physician
v) The date and the time when the services were provided to the patient.
These are the main elements that should be present in scribes.
23. What Is EMR Software, And What Is It Used For?
The interviewer is testing your overall knowledge of the software that is used by medical scribes.
This is a digital version of paper charts in a clinical office. It helps record medical data of a patient effectively.
24. What Is The Difference Between EMR And ERH?
The interviewer expects you to tell them the difference between the two software
EMR contains a patient’s medical history from one practice while ERH contains the patient’s records from multiple doctors.
25. Talk About The Top Five Tech Tools Used By Medical Scribe
The interviewer wants to study your knowledge of the tools you are supposed to use as a medical scribe.
There are several tools that I can use to maximize my productivity as a medical scribe. Among the five are;
iv) Care management software
v) Medical scribe services.
26. Why Did You Leave Your Previous Role
The interviewer wants to know why you had to quit your job and apply for a position in their facility. Talk about what made you leave your previous workplace. It would be best if you did not criticize your previous employer or staff.
In my previous role, I had been employed on a four-year contract which was actually renewable, but I decided not to renew it. The reason why I did not do it is that I also wanted to learn new skills from new places and meet other people in my career too. Also, I wanted to change my working environment to avoid a lot of boredom at work which can have a negative impact on my performance. It’s good to change environments. I hope that I will get a chance to work in this new environment, learn from you, and meet many people in my career as well.
27. What Would Your Previous Boss Describe You
The interviewer wants to study what your relationship with your previous role was like. How would they, and what would they say about you?
In my previous role, I had a lot of projects with my boss, Mr. Tommy. He would describe me as a person who likes to learn a lot, a kind person, and a very focused person when completing tasks assigned to me. We could do a lot of projects with my boss, and he has never complained about me at all.
28. What Are Your Greatest Fears In Your Career?
The interviewer wants you to tell them what you would not like to happen to you in your career. Talk about your fears in your career.
As a medical scribe, my biggest fear would be producing poor results in a project. Although I have never experienced that, I never want to give poor results to a person or institution I am working for.
These 20 recommendations sum up the most common questions in a medical scribe interview. Make sure that you answer the questions correctly and increase your chances of landing the job.