Day in the Life : Hospital Receptionist
We have all been in that horrible situation where we have had to visit the A&E. Whether it be taking our children, after a bicycle accident or if we have cut ourselves while preparing the dinner. It’s something we all dread: walking up to that desk, explaining what has happened and showing them our war wounds. Do we ever wonder what it is like for the member of staff that greets us? Do we even pay much attention? We are probably a little preoccupied! We spoke to a receptionist at a large London hospital to see what life is like for them.
Can you sum up your main responsibilities?
As a receptionist at a large hospital, my main duties include booking in patients using a specific computer system, answering phone calls, working with nurses and doctors to assign patients to the appropriate clinic. I also perform standard receptionist duties such as filing and diary management.
Did you require further education to get to your current position?
No but I have to keep up to date with all of the mandatory training sessions. Some mandatory training sessions include hand hygiene, handling of vulnerable adults and fire safety.
What are the working hours like?
In my position I work on a ‘bank’ basis. Bank means I can choose when I want to work. I contact my boss and she informs me of available hours. I can choose to take them or not. My hours can range from 8 to 55 hours per week.
What are the pluses and minuses of working as a Hospital Receptionist?
Pluses: I am part of a close and hardworking team. I am always learning medical terms and keeping myself up to date with appropriate training. Knowing medical terminology can make scared patients feel at ease. Although I’m a receptionist, I am the first person a patient meets on entry. I like to be nice, caring and helpful in any way possible.
Minuses: In the A&E department, there is no quiet time. I have to deal with agitated and aggressive patients. Being the first port of call, the majority of their aggression is directed at me. At times it is difficult to communicate with doctors and nurses as they are busy. This can cause issues with waiting patients