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Medical Insurance Billing and Coding Professions Video: Career Options

Medical Insurance Billing and Coding Professions Video: Career Options Transcript

Medical coding and medical billing professionals are part of a healthcare administration team. They work in health care organizations such as hospitals, clinics or assisted living homes. These professionals may concentrate on general medical assisting or provide specific services to the company depending on the size of the facility they work in.

Introduction

Medical billing and coding professionals keep accurate information in a patient's medical record pertaining to the types of services received and costs to clinics, hospitals, and insurance agencies. They use databases and other computer programs to calculate costs and keep track of a patient's medical procedures. They routinely work with physicians and other healthcare professionals to gather information or obtain details on services provided. Although most of the skills specific to an organization are learned on the job, this profession requires a few years of post-secondary schooling.

Job Duties and Skills

Job duties for medical insurance billing and coding professionals can vary from location to location. At small healthcare facilities, these professionals may also take on the role as medical assistants, performing additional administrative tasks along with the maintenance of patient records. These duties can include filling insurance forms, arranging for facility admissions, scheduling appointments and paying the bills. Traditional billing and coding specialists will keep tabs on a patient's medical record, making sure services are properly coded, identified and billed for. Accuracy and attention to detail is key because this information needs to be maintained in the organization's computer database. Codes are assigned for each procedure and classified through use of the computer to complete the billing and payment process. These specific skills are typically learned on the job because facilities frequently use different database systems and procedures.

Training Required

An associate's degree is usually required for medical billing and coding positions. There is also the option to become a Registered Health Information Technician through the American Health Information Management Association. Certified individuals are sometimes favored by employers. It is important to study medical terminology, statistics, database management and health information during your coursework. You may also become a certified coder, an option offered by a few different organizations. Certified coding status can be obtained from the Board of Medical Specialty Coding and the Professional Association of Healthcare Coding Specialist (PAHCS) or the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). There is also the option to become a Registered Health Information Technician through the American Health Information Management Association. Certified individuals are sometimes favored by employers.

Career Opportunities

With the right education and certification, career opportunities can be plentiful. Those interested in the field may go on to become medical information technicians, medical record coders, health information coders or coding specialists. Advancement typically happens through specializing in a certain area, such as cancer registry or privacy and security or by accepting a position in management.

Conclusion

In conclusion, medical billing and coding professionals work in a variety of medical settings to ensure accuracy in a patient's medical record. They keep track of procedures and bill those procedures according to the database system of codes that has been set. It is typical for these professionals to have an associate's degree in medical billing or coding. Degreed individuals are able to learn technical skills on the job and can advance through additional certification, training, or specialization.

Sources

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos103.htm

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos014.htm

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos164.htm

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