Unit of competency details

BSBMED301B - Interpret and apply medical terminology appropriately (Release 1)


ReleaseStatusRelease date
1 1 (this release)Current 10/Mar/2009

Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to BSBMED301 - Interpret and apply medical terminology appropriatelyUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages 24/Mar/2015

Training packages that include this unit

CodeTitleSort Table listing Training packages that include this unit by the Title columnRelease
SIR07 - Retail Services Training PackageRetail Services Training Package 3.0-3.3 
PSP12 - Public Sector Training PackagePublic Sector Training Package 1.0 
PSP04 - Public Sector Training PackagePublic Sector Training Package 4.1-4.2 
HLT07 - Health Training PackageHealth Training Package 4.0-5.1 
CUV11 - Visual Arts, Crafts and Design Training PackageVisual Arts, Crafts and Design Training Package 1.0 
CPP07 - Property Services Training PackageProperty Services Training Package 7.0-14.5 
BSB07 - Business Services Training PackageBusiness Services Training Package 5.0-9.0 

Qualifications that include this unit

CodeTitleSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Title columnRelease
SIR30112 - Certificate III in Community PharmacyCertificate III in Community Pharmacy 1-2 
PSP61112 - Advanced Diploma of InterpretingAdvanced Diploma of Interpreting 
PSP61110 - Advanced Diploma of InterpretingAdvanced Diploma of Interpreting 1-2 
PSP52412 - Diploma of InterpretingDiploma of Interpreting 
PSP52410 - Diploma of InterpretingDiploma of Interpreting 1-2 
PSP52312 - Diploma of TranslatingDiploma of Translating 
PSP52310 - Diploma of TranslatingDiploma of Translating 1-2 
HLT52012 - Diploma of Practice ManagementDiploma of Practice Management 
HLT52007 - Diploma of Practice ManagementDiploma of Practice Management 
HLT43812 - Certificate IV in Sterilisation ServicesCertificate IV in Sterilisation Services 
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SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 080313 Public And Health Care Administration  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 080313 Public And Health Care Administration  25/Jul/2008 
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Modification History

Not applicable.

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to understand and respond to instructions; to carry out routine tasks and communicate with a range of internal/external clients in a medical environment; and to use appropriate advanced medical terminology.

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit applies to individuals who are skilled operators and apply a broad range of competencies in various medical administration contexts. They may exercise discretion and judgment using appropriate knowledge to provide technical advice and support to a team.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not applicable.


Prerequisite units 

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Respond appropriately to instructions which contain medical terminology

1.1. Receive, interpret and document written and oral instructions  using medical terminology 

1.2. Use checklists where appropriate

1.3. Ensure own understanding of abbreviations for specialised medical terminology and associated processes

1.4. Ensure own understanding of and adhere to, the policies and procedures  of the enterprise

1.5. Seek clarification  when necessary

2. Carry out routine tasks

2.1. Use medical terminology correctly in the completion of routine tasks 

2.2. Seek assistance from supervisor or experienced staff member as required

3. Use appropriate medical terminology in oral and written communication

3.1. Use appropriate medical terminology as directed, in oral communication  with patients, fellow workers and health professionals

3.2. Use appropriate medical terminology as directed, in written communication  with patients, fellow workers and health professionals

3.3. Present written communication to a designated person  for verification if required

3.4. Spell and pronounce medical terminology correctly

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • literacy skills to interpret policies, signs and instructions and to use correct spelling, grammar and punctuation
  • learning skills to research and increase own knowledge of medical terminology
  • communication skills to understand, clarify and explain instructions and procedures.

Required knowledge 

  • medical terminology, including the fundamental word structure used in medical terms
  • basic systems of the body
  • organisational documentation and recording requirements
  • source of information relating to medical terminology
  • key provisions of relevant legislation from all levels of government that affects business operations, codes of practice and national standards, such as:
  • anti-discrimination legislation
  • ethical principles
  • privacy laws
  • Freedom of Information Act.

Evidence Guide


The Evidence Guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • using medical terminology in written and verbal communication
  • identifying and appropriately using abbreviations for medical terms and associated processes
  • managing own learning to maintain knowledge of up-to-date medical terminology
  • knowledge of relevant legislation from all levels of government that impacts on business operations, codes of practice and national standards.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • access to an actual workplace or simulated environment
  • access to office equipment and resources
  • examples of documentation and resources.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • direct questioning combined with review of portfolios of evidence and third party workplace reports of on-the-job performance by the candidate
  • review of authenticated documents from the workplace or training environment
  • analysis of responses to case studies and scenarios
  • demonstration of techniques
  • observation of presentations
  • oral or written questioning
  • observation of performance in role plays
  • review of written communication with patients for use of appropriate medical terminology
  • oral or written questioning to assess knowledge of workplace emergencies, risks and hazards
  • assessment of documentation.

Guidance information for assessment 

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • other general administration or medical services administration units.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Written and oral instructions  may include:

  • diary entries
  • drugs orders
  • instructions for postoperative care
  • notices
  • occupational health and safety (OHS) signs and instructions
  • patient notes
  • referrals
  • routine reports
  • telephone calls
  • test results
  • theatre lists
  • verbal instructions

Medical terminology  may include:

  • abbreviations for medical and pharmacological terms (e.g. BCG, HRT, IVP, tab, ante, ung)
  • causes to changes in the systems of the body (e.g. changes to the musculo-skeletal system may include inflammation due to repeated strain on the system)
  • common medical conditions including illnesses, injuries and diseases
  • departments/sections in a hospital
  • health insurance terminology
  • interrelated functions of the body, locations and diseases (e.g. functions of the skeletal system, locations of skeletal injuries, skeletal diseases
  • knowledge of medical specialties and the names and titles of doctors working in specialist fields
  • medical conditions
  • medical equipment and instruments
  • medical investigations and procedures
  • Medicare terminology
  • medications
  • referrals
  • terms to describe onset and/or nature of disease

Policies and procedures  may include:

  • abiding by local, state/territory and commonwealth legislation
  • accessing and updating files
  • cleanliness and hygiene
  • correspondence format
  • emergency procedures
  • following instructions
  • information specific to the enterprise
  • office practice manual
  • OHS
  • Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Code of Practice for the Management of Health Information in General Practice
  • RACGP Entry Standards for General Practices
  • telephone protocol
  • recording information
  • security, confidentiality and privacy procedures

Clarification  may be sought from:

  • drug and prescription information sources/databases
  • experienced staff member/s
  • medical dictionary
  • office practice manual
  • relevant handbook
  • supervisor

Routine tasks  may include:

  • answering patient enquiries
  • contributing to meetings
  • dealing with patient complaints
  • entering patient details into computer system
  • filing patient notes
  • maintaining information to assist patients
  • maintaining patient information
  • maintaining reception area, waiting room, consultation room
  • ordering stock (e.g. stationery, medical supplies)
  • preparing medical equipment
  • preparing reports
  • processing correspondence
  • producing a range of complex medical documents (e.g. patient history, case report)
  • providing information to patients
  • receiving and making telephone calls
  • receiving visitors and patients
  • recording information
  • storing and maintaining security of drugs
  • word processing

Oral communication  may include:

  • answering routine telephone enquiries
  • communicating with a range of medical/hospital professionals on patient related matters
  • confirming appointments
  • dealing with difficult patients/customers
  • paging staff
  • reporting to staff at meetings
  • transferring calls
  • verbal instructions

Written communication  may include:

  • appointment diaries, cards
  • case reports
  • complex correspondence to a range of medical/hospital professionals on patient related matters
  • forms
  • letters
  • memoranda
  • minutes
  • patient histories
  • patient history questionnaires
  • patient records
  • telephone messages

Designated person  may include:

  • doctor
  • practice manager
  • supervisor

Unit Sector(s)

Unit sector 

Competency field

Competency field 

Administration - Medical Services Administration

Co-requisite units

Co-requisite units 

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