Medical Billing and Coding Job Options and Requirements

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a medical biller or coder. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about training, job duties and certification to find out if this is the career for you.

View 4 Popular Schools »

Essential Information

Those who work in medical billing and coding are typically called medical records and health information technicians. These technicians are skilled in the complex system of medical invoicing for reimbursement and insurance. A common pathway for an entry-level position is completion of a 2-year degree or 1-year certificate program in medical billing and coding. Many technicians go on to become certified in a specialty area of the field.

Required EducationCertificate or associate's degree
Certification Voluntary, but may be preferred by employers
Projected Job Growth (2012-2022)*22%
Average Salary (2013)*$37,710

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Info

Medical records and health information technician is a job title commonly used to describe several positions in this field. This can include technicians who specialize in coding as well as those who focus on billing. These technicians work in healthcare-related environments, including hospitals, physicians' offices or insurance companies.

Technicians might choose to specialize in physician-based or hospital-based billing and coding. Additionally, some medical records and health information technicians become specialized in a specific field of medicine, such as gastroenterology or pediatrics. These billing and coding specialists have knowledge about the specific procedures of these medical specialties as it relates to billing and coding.

Medical Billing and Coding Job Requirements

Entry-level positions typically require completion of a certificate or an associate's degree program in medical billing and coding. These programs introduce students to commonly used classification systems, such as ICD-9, CPT, DSM-IV and HCPCS. Students engage in coursework that covers medical terminology and pathophysiology. They are trained in medical insurance and the various public and private providers, such as Medicare or Blue Cross/Blue Shield. Additionally, medical coders must have an understanding of laws and ethics related to health insurance, medical billing and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Certification Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employers typically prefer employees with certifications in the field, though this certification is not mandatory (www.bls.gov). The most common certification examination is the Certified Coding Assistant (CCA), which is administered through the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). This exam is typically taken after graduating from a training program. After acquiring a few years of work experience, technicians are eligible to sit for the Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) examination, which includes either a physician-based or hospital-based option.

Medical Billing and Coding Career Outlook

The BLS stated that the number of employed medical records and health information technicians was projected to grow 22 percent between 2012 and 2022, which was faster than average. These workers made a mean yearly wage of $37,710 in May 2013, according to the BLS.

Show me popular schools

Related to Medical Billing and Coding Job Options and Requirements

  • Related
  • Recently Updated
  • Popular
Medical Billing and Coding Certificate: Program Overview

Learn about certificates in medical billing and coding. Research such programs' curriculum and practicum requirements, as well...

Online Medical Billing and Coding Degrees: Program Options

Individuals who want to learn medical billing and coding can do so through online certificate programs. These programs usually...

Online Schools with Medical Billing and Coding Programs: How to Choose

Colleges and universities around the country offer online medical billing and coding programs. Students can choose among...

Degree Options in Medical Billing and Coding

An associate's degree program in medical billing and coding is a frequent path of training for workers in this field and can...

Medical Coding and Billing: Online Diploma

Popular Schools

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must live within close proximity to school locations
    • Must be graduated from high school by 2011
    School locations:
    • Georgia (1 campus)
    • Minnesota (1 campus)
    • New Jersey (1)
    • New York (2)
    • Texas (3)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must complete an application online and submit transcripts for their highest degree earned.
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be 18 years of age or older
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Distance Learning Programs

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Applicants must have completed 12 college credits
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • California (19 campuses)
    • Washington (1)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

    • Non-Degree
        • Certificate - Health Administration

    What is your highest level of education?

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • California (1 campus)
    • Ohio (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Southwestern College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Dental
      • Health and Fitness
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Medical Administrative Assistant or Secretary
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Assisting
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Ferris State University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Dental
      • Health and Fitness
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Care Administration
        • Health Information and Records Admin
        • Health Information Technology
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
      • Optometric and Ophthalmic Services
      • Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration
  • School locations:
    • Missouri (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Missouri College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Dental
      • Massage and Related Therapeutic Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Medical Administrative Assistant or Secretary
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
        • Medical Office Specialist
      • Medical Assisting
  • School locations:
    • Missouri (1 campus)
    • Oklahoma (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Vatterott College include:
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
        • Medical Office Specialist
      • Medical Assisting
  • School locations:
    • Connecticut (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Goodwin College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Undergraduate: Associate
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
        • Medical Office Specialist
      • Medical Assisting
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Baker College include:
      • Non-Degree: Certificate
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Massage and Related Therapeutic Professions
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Care Administration
        • Health Information Technology
        • Medical Administrative Assistant or Secretary
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
        • Medical Insurance Services
        • Medical Receptionist
        • Medical Transcriptionist
      • Medical Assisting
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
      • Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Professions

Popular Schools

Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics