Understanding Medical Billing and Coding

When visiting a hospital, patients come in contact with many different employees who contribute in different ways to the treatment and business aspect of patient care. Behind the scenes of bustling treatment centers are important professionals who hold the responsibility of coding medical procedures and assuring that insurance companies are billed accurately and promptly. These people are known as medical billing and coding specialists. Billing and coding specialists are vital to the smooth operation of all hospitals and physicians’ offices.

Each symptom, diagnosis, and treatment has a special code that distinguishes it from another. A specialist is required to learn these codes in order to properly chart a patient’s medical history and report it to insurance companies for accurate billing. Using communication between doctors, patients, and insurance companies, a medical billing and coding specialist ensures that all claims are reported accurately and payments are received for each patient.

What Type of Education is Required?

Because the terminology for medical coding is so complicated, it is required that specialists receive proper training before being hired for these positions. A student can receive certification to practice medical billing and coding by either obtaining the Certified Professional Coder certificate or the Certified Coding Specialist certificate. These certifications can easily be obtained through most community colleges and technical schools.

Specialists need to have a knowledge of anatomy and general information surrounding medical insurance and claims. Basically, any person with a high school diploma or GED is capable of training for this position, which makes it an attainable and desirable option for many aspiring health care workers.

How Much do Specialists Make?

The median annual amount of income for medical billing and coding specialists is about $34,000 per year. The demand for specialists is expected to increase yearly as a large portion of the population gets older and requires more medical treatment. The job outlook is excellent and improving each year. The innovation and development of new medical technologies expands the need for medical billing and coding specialists.

The medical field is a reliable place for graduates to invest their education. For people who are looking for an easily attainable career without the need for years and years of further education, medical billing and coding is an ideal choice. Science and technology are constantly adding to the capacity of medical procedures. Changes in health care are allowing patients to obtain better medical care, which means more potential work opportunities for individuals in this field. If you are looking to build a career to last a lifetime, medical billing and coding might be the path for you.


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