Are you searching for an easy way to learn medical terminology? You may be studying for a certification test, struggling with an elective, or preparing to interview for a job in healthcare and looking for a quick way to review your medical vocabulary. If so you’ve definitely come to the right place. Here we’ll show you the secret to learning the language of medicine quickly and easily – even if you don’t have much of a background in science or have never been to college. But first let’s look at why knowing basic medical terminology is a critical skill in today’s healthcare workplace.
Electronic medical records have become the central hub of medical offices and hospitals, and this has changed how medical information is managed, as well as who is involved in documenting it. The switch to electronic medical records has transformed old jobs like medical receptionist and medical secretary; it has also created new positions like medical scribe and health informatics technician. Now there is greater demand for employees who are not only computer savvy, but also fluent in the use of medical terminology. Without strong skills in both those areas, the average applicant would have a hard time entering the healthcare job market today.
The advantage of understanding the medical terms you will encounter everyday cannot be overstated. Your medical terminology skills may even be tested as part of the application process or job interview. Of course, medical terms and their definitions are taught as a part of training courses and certifications, but that alone may not give you the vocabulary skills needed to keep up in a fast-paced medical office or hospital. Prior experience tends to be what healthcare employers look for, so without what can an entry-level applicant do? Impress them with the skills you can acquire yourself – show how motivated you are, by learning their language .
Let’s look at what you may have already tried. If you’ve studied medical terminology before, you may have been told that everybody finds it difficult to learn. You may even have been encouraged to memorize just enough medical words to pass an exam. With a good instructor, you would have learned how to break down words into medical prefixes, suffixes and roots. This teaching technique is definitely helpful to students. Still, for the most part, studying medical terminology in a stand-alone course, involves trying to memorize many strange sounding medical terms that may have little meaning to you.
Think about it, who learns a foreign language by memorizing a dictionary? Why would it make more sense to try committing a medical dictionary to memory? Yet that is often the approach taken in many terminology courses designed for medical assistants, medical coding and billing staff, and other ancillary healthcare jobs. In some courses, after a quick overview of the main body systems, you’re asked to memorize a list of medical terms organized by system. If you’re like most people, six months later you can’t remember many words from that list; so any shortcuts designed simply to help you pass a medical terminology quiz or test, will be of no help to you in the hectic world of healthcare. The pace of work in most medical settings is just too hectic to allow you to pull out a cheat sheet every time you don’t understand a word. Worse yet, using unfamiliar words without checking their meanings can have disastrous consequences for the people you serve. You simply must learn the language of the workplace if you want to work safely with computerized medical records.
How do medical professionals learn and remember medical terminology? Students in medical school or nursing school get familiar with hundreds of medical words repeatedly, over time, as they learn the fine details of human anatomy and physiology. Opportunities for learning in context, as well as repeated exposure, are what make medical terminology the second language of a doctor or nurse. Does that mean you need an advanced degree to master medical terminology? Not really. One of our goals at Adonis Health Informatics, is to show that with the right tools, anyone qualified to work in a doctor’s office can learn medical terminology easily – it doesn’t have to be painful (or boring). Step 1 is to believe that you can do it. The next step is finding a learning tool that works for you.
To help with step 2, we have created lessons that you can use to learn medical terminology online, in a series of videos that are fast, free and fun. Each one-minute video teaches a single medical suffix, prefix or root, using fun illustrations and examples to give that medical term context for you. Once you have a good understanding of these common word parts, the medical words built from them will begin to make sense to you and will become easier to use correctly. So prepare yourself to be competitive when facing prospective employers – use our system to improve your medical vocabulary.
Get started by subscribing to our YouTube channel: 1-Minute Medical Terminology. There you will find over 70 free lessons and quizzes, categorized into playlists. We suggest selecting a playlist to get started. To see a complete list of our videos, you could also click the hashtag below this article. If you prefer to begin our series by email, sign up at our main website then check your inbox for a confirmation message. Whichever option you choose, start today – to build or improve your medical vocabulary. Have fun learning!