Medical coding is an important career path for many reasons. Firstly, it offers a wide variety of job opportunities with good salaries and benefits. Secondly, the medical coding field is expanding rapidly, which means more jobs are available than qualified candidates to fill them. Thirdly, this profession requires only a high school diploma or GED to enter the workforce, making it affordable for most people to get started in the field right away, even if they don’t have any previous work experience or higher education under their belt. Finally, because medical coding involves working closely with other healthcare professionals, you will be able to learn about new trends in medicine while earning money at the same time.
The article below provides information on how one can become a successful medical coder and answer important questions such as: what is a medical coder, how many medical coders make, and where can one find employment.
1. What Is a Medical Coder?
A medical coder is responsible for translating medical terminology into standard codes used for billing and insurance purposes. They work with doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals to ensure that all services rendered are properly documented and coded. This is a critical role in the medical industry because it helps ensure that patients receive the correct level of care and that providers are fairly compensated for their services.
Medical coders typically work in an office setting and may be required to work overtime or on weekends depending on the needs of their employer.
2. How Much Do Medical Coders Make?
Medical coders make an average salary of $38,048 per year. However, salaries can vary depending on experience, education, and specialization. Most medical coders receive healthcare, 401k plans, and paid time off.
3. Schools That Offer Certification and Training Programs in Medical Coding
The field of medical coding is growing rapidly, so there are many job opportunities available for qualified candidates. Furthermore, this profession does not require a college degree which makes it more accessible to a wider range of people. If you are interested in pursuing a career in medical coding, there are many schools that offer certification and training programs. Below, you can find the best billing and coding schools in the United States for excelling in health records management. Schools mentioned below are picked based on their affordability and rank. Please have a look:
- Bowling Green State University
- St. Catherine University
- Alfred State College – SUNY
- Keiser University
- Ferris State University
- Weber State University
- Dakota State University
- Washburn University
- Idaho State University
- Peirce College
4. Where Can One Find Employment?
The variety of firms and agencies that need medical coders provides up a plethora of job prospects. In addition to health systems and hospitals, physician practices, and ambulatory surgery centers, Coders are sought by the following organization.
- Urgent care clinics
- Sports medicine clinics
- Mental health practices
- Telehealth providers
- Collection agencies
- Risk adjustment vendors
- Insurance companies
- Professional liability companies
- Federal government agencies
- Information technology services
- Law firms
- Dental offices
- Durable medical equipment and supply vendors
- Imaging centers
- Physical therapy centers
- Long-term care facilities
- Home health agencies
- Consulting firms
- EHR software vendors
- Accountable care organizations
- Workman’s compensation companies
- State government agencies
- Career colleges
- Medical billing service
- Medical laboratories
- Rehabilitation services
- Cancer registries
5. Job Duties for Medical Coding Specialists
Job duties for medical coders vary depending on the specific role they are employed to perform. However, below are some of the common duties for those who work in medical coding:
The following are job duties for medical coding specialists:
- Code documents by utilizing the International Classification of Diseases, Clinical Modification codes.
- Ensure that all procedures are documented in accordance with guidelines specified by regulatory agencies and accreditations bodies such as The Joint Commission or ANSI/ISO 11135-2003 Standards requirements applicable to electronic health records systems.
- Identify, interpret, analyze, record data accurately inpatient care reports using required terminology and formats based on established standards of care and professional practices while adhering to legal mandates and directives from relevant authorities such as law enforcement agencies or government entities while using discretion when dealing with highly sensitive information according to employer policies and procedures.
- Utilize computer software to electronically record, store and manage patient health information.
- Verify the completeness and accuracy of medical coding data and edit as necessary to ensure that all information is correctly captured.
- Respond to requests for clarification or correction from other members of the healthcare team, physicians, or insurance payers.
- Maintain knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy, and physiology.
6. Is Career Paths in Medical Coding Good?
There are many good reasons to consider a career in medical coding. This career offers many benefits, such as flexibility in scheduling, paid time off, and bonuses. You can also choose your schedule depending on the job requirements. Medical coders may be required to work overtime when there is a rush of claims to process; however, most jobs can be performed within a regular 40-hours week.
7. How to Become a Medical Coder?
To become a medical coder, all needed is a high school diploma or G.E.D. Many professionals in this industry work 40 hours per week and are able to work remotely or from home on occasion.
8. How Much Medical Coder Make?
Medical coders can earn up to $30,000 annually, and this is the entry-level salary for this profession. As you progress in your career, you can make more money; for example, an experienced medical coder could make $60,000 annually.
9. Qualifications You Need to Work as a Medical Coder
Medical coding professionals receive a wide array of jobs and salaries based on their education, experience, and qualifications. The most common qualification for medical coders is a high school diploma or GED, enough to get started in the field. Medical coders without any formal education beyond their high school degree can expect to start with an entry-level position and work their way up to positions with better salaries as they gain experience.
10. Skills You Need to Work Effectively as a Medical Coder
- Knowledge of anatomy and physiology
- Ability to remember information quickly
- Patience when dealing with patients or other medical personnel
11. How Long Does It Take to Become a Medical Coder?
Medical coding appeals to many people because it offers a wide variety of job opportunities with good salaries and benefits. Medical Coders perform detailed classification tasks related to diseases and procedures performed by healthcare providers. The input data from patient files into an electronic health record (EHR) system according to pre-defined codes for disease, diagnosis, a procedure performed, and supplies and services used.
There are many different ways to become a medical coder. Some people may enter the field with a certificate or associate’s degree from a vocational school, while others may have a bachelor’s degree in health information management or another healthcare-related field. However, the most important qualification for this profession is to have strong computer skills and accurately input data into an electronic health record system.
Most medical coders work full-time hours, although there are some opportunities for part-time work. The job outlook for medical coders is good, with employment projected to grow by 13 percent from 2016 to 2026. This growth is faster than average for all occupations and is attributed to the increase in demand for healthcare services.
12. How to Get Medical Coding Experience?
Medical coders need only two years of experience in order to be certified and licensed as an RMT (Registered Medical Transcriptionist).
It’s possible to get medical coding experience through online certification programs such as course-hero, udemy, ed2go, etc., but these types of courses don’t provide hands-on training. The best way to gain experience is through on-the-job training.
Certification is not required in order to get a job as a medical coder, but it can be beneficial. There are many different types of certification exams that medical coders can take, but the most common one is the Certified Professional Coder (CPC) exam offered through the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). The CPC exam is a national certification that covers all medical coding specialties.
Medical coding is a great career path for those interested in working in the health care industry but don’t want to get involved in patient care services. It is a flourishing career field with lots of working opportunities and good scope. If you are planning on getting into this field, then our article might help you get the information you need before making any decision in this regard. We hope you have found this article helpful. Good luck with your future endeavors!