Healthcare is one of the quickest-growing industries for those seeking jobs. There are many careers in the healthcare industry that do not relate to patient care. This article will outline popular job titles in the medical billing and coding field.
Medical billing and coding is an essential administrative role in the healthcare industry. Permitted to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the healthcare sector is an expanding industry, and employment for medical secretaries, such as medical billing and coding, is projected to increase by 22% up to 2026.
What is Medical Billing and Coding?
Medical billing and coding professionals help healthcare experts through technology update medical records and obtain payment services. Professionals in this field assign standard codes for each diagnosis and medical procedure and enter the codes into a patient’s health record. The information is sent to insurance companies so they can process healthcare claims.
Medical billing and coding experts work in various healthcare facilities, from rehabilitation centers and health departments to medical offices. Medical billing and coding professionally typically work in an office environment and can either be full-time or part-time, depending on the employer.
Job Duties for Medical Billing and Coding
Job duties for medical billing and coding positions will vary based on their employers need, but the typical day to day everyday responsibilities for medical billing and coding are:
- Keeping data organized at all times
- Reviewing medical data in a timely fashion
- Ensuring medical records are complete and accurate
- Inputting clinical codes into medical classification software so that patients can get reimbursed by insurance
- Entering healthcare records in the proper format for medial databases and registries
- Tracking patient outcomes for quality assessment
- Maintaining comprehensive electronic records so medical personnel can analyze, retrieve and report on data as needed
- Assuring that patient’s data is always kept confidential
- Reviewing the patient’s medical records for any pre-existing conditions or previous care to ensure that data is coded correctly
- Using the correct codes when a patient gets a medical diagnosis to help healthcare providers administer proper care
- Assisting health statisticians in tracking population data and ensuring healthcare facilities submit the necessary information to obtain reimbursement from insurance companies
- Liaising between the healthcare facility and insurance companies
What is Required to Become a Medical Biller and Coder?
Most positions for medical billing and coder require candidates to have special education. There are a few paths that can be taken to become a medical biller and coder. Still, the quickest route is through a certificate or diploma program through a medical coding academy.
Most certificates can be fulfilled in less than a year. However, students can pursue a degree, which helps qualify for job posting with stricter requirements. Obtaining an associate’s degree typically includes general education classes, in addition to healthcare, billing, and coding coursework. An associate’s degree takes less than two years to complete. For management-level positions, an associated degree and work experience would be required.
In either the certification or associate’s degree medical billing and coding, students take courses on various subjects that prepare them for managing medical records, submitting invoices, applying codes, and assisting with other healthcare field procedures.
Coursework for medical billing and coding includes a mixture of technical knowledge, healthcare information, and business topics. Students learn necessary medical terminology, medical coding systems, and the cycle of healthcare claims. Most programs in medical billing and coding will include the following courses:
- Procedural Coding
- Diagnostic Coding
- Billing and Coding Application
- Introduction to Computers
- Medical Terminology
- Introduction to Healthcare Communication
- Records Management
- Medical Laws and Ethics
- Anatomy, Physiology, and Pathophysiology
- Healthcare Settings, Claim Cycle, and Claims Processing
Getting into the medical billing and coder field can take less than a year up to two years, depending on the path you pursue of either a certificate or associate’s degree. Many certificate programs can be completed in less than a year. It can take up to two years to complete training for an associate’s degree program.
Job Titles in Medical Billing and Coding
Jobs in the medical billing and coding field could have numerous different titles. Titles can vary based on the responsibilities of the position.
Titles can differentiate depending on the employer or location, but general job duties may be similar. Job title options in medical billing and coding include:
- Medical Records Coordinator
- Medical Billing Specialist
- Medical Coding Specialist
- Medical Records Technician (Medical Records Tech)
- Medical Records Clerk
- Medical Records Analyst
- Health Information Clerk
- Medical Billing Manager
- Health Information Technician (Health Information Tech)
- Medical Records Director
Jobs in the healthcare industry are everywhere, so there is availability to stay in your community. If you are looking to move into the healthcare industry, medical billing and coding is an excellent option for a career.