Schools for Aspiring Certified Coders: How to Choose
Certified coders work in the healthcare industry assigning codes to patient files in order to guarantee correct billing to insurance organizations. A certified medical coder has been credentialed by an accredited medical coding association. A number of schools offer an associate's degree or certificate in medical coding.
How to Choose a Certified Coder School
Certified medical coders must be able to identify and code diseases, anesthesias, surgeries, therapies and outpatient procedures. Coders must also have a comprehension of insurance claims and medical terminology. Their primary duty is to serve as a liaison between the insurance company and healthcare facility. An associate's degree in medical coding can prepare an individual for an entry-level position in the field. A certificate in professional coding can help individuals advance in their career and enhance their resume.
Individuals can also look for schools that provide programs that will prepare them to sit for the American Association of Professional Coders (AAPC) Certified Professional Coder (CPC) exam; this inductry certification is required by many employers. Additionally, all programs in medical coding should abide by all federal and state regulations. Students seeking programs that offer a mock exam prior to sitting for the true exam can give students an idea of what to expect and study. Individuals may also benefit from programs taught by an AAPC approved instructor.
Program Overviews for Certified Coders
Associate of Applied Science Degree in Advanced Medical Coding and Billing
This degree program is suitable for students looking to get into the medical coding industry. This degree program introduces students to medical and anatomical terminology and teaches them the basic skills needed for the profession. Coursework may include physiology, health information systems and pharmacology. Additional courses may cover computerized billing, hospital coding and patient access services.
Professional Medical Coding Certificate
This certificate program is for individuals that have experience in the coding industry and are familiar with coding terminology and practices. Coursework may include human anatomy and biology, computer applications and coding procedures. Other topics covered may include supply and diagnosis codes and insurance billing policies.
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