Receptionists are part of the health services front line staff. They are the first link for many patients and visitors who might be anxious - perhaps visiting a doctor or other member of staff for the first time or waiting for the results of an important test.
Receptionists work on their own or with one or two other receptionists, greeting patients as they arrive and checking them in. They might also collect patient notes and ensure that these vital records go to the right healthcare professional. In a clinic, they may make appointments and arrange patient transport. Hospital departments can be busy and the pace can be fast, so receptionists need to be able to think on their feet.
Receptionists are employed in hospitals, in a ward or clinic, and in GP surgeries. They may work some evening and weekend shifts.
There are no minimum qualifications to work as a receptionist in the NHS. Previous experience is welcome but not always essential. Once employed, you will be helped and encouraged to develop your career and it may be possible through further training to progress to a supervisory or even management role.
The British Society of Medical Secretaries and Administrators (BSMSA) runs a number of courses on topics such as, health administration and medical terminology. Click here for details of these and other BSMSA courses
The Association of Medical Secretaries, Practice Managers, Administrators & Receptionists (AMSPAR) runs courses in medical terminology and medical administartion. Click here for details of these and other AMSPAR courses
Some of the skills you'll need to be a receptionist include:
Most NHS trusts advertise vacancies on the NHS Jobs website. Vacancies are also advertised in local press or job centres. Additionally, you can contact the local hospitals/trusts directly for information on their specific opportunities.
British Society of Medical Secretaries & Administrators**
2 New Cottages
**NB the BSMSA offers relevant training courses
The Association of Medical Secretaries, Practice Managers, Administrators & Receptionists (AMSPAR)
Tavistock House North