Medical Billing and Coding Jobs
The medical billing and coding job market is very diverse. Medical billing and coding jobs are in high demand and according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there will be a sharp increase in demand over the next several years. Once your complete your medical billing and coding training and become certified, job placement is very promising. Medical billing and coding jobs will be around as long as there is a healthcare industry. The only thing to keep in mind while planning your career is the competitiveness of this particular job market. Since the initial training only requires six months to one year to complete, there are constantly new professionals entering the field.
Once your training is complete and your certification is obtained, you have the choice of becoming strictly a medical coder, a medical billing specialist, or taking a position which involves both roles. Here’s a breakdown of what’s available in either area:
A Medical Coder has many possible job duties, including the following:
- Reporting medical information
- Providing efficient record sharing amongst physicians and insurance companies
- Working on internal fiscal procedures
- Regulating medical billing and compliance
- Entering medical data into software and using word processing, spreadsheets, and databases
- Explaining code policies and resolving any issues related to coding
There are also many possible job duties for a medical billing specialist, including the following:
- Insurance and billing clerical duties
- Reviewing and verifying patient account information
- Following insurance specifications
- Resolving billing issues, including inquiring about patient billing information
- Sending invoices to insurance companies
- Sending invoices directly to patients
- Collecting payments from insurance companies and patients
- Processing payments, charges, denials, and making adjustments to transactions
- Analyzing and coding procedures and diagnosis using ICD-9 and CPT-4 codes
Many duties that a medical coder has coincide with what a medical billing specialist does so some of the duties will be the same.
Being a medical coder or medical billing specialist offers quite a bit of flexibility when it comes to the work environment. Either profession can be done from home, in a physician’s office, government-affiliated building, hospital, in-patient facility (e.g. nursing home, rehabilitation center), etc.
In order to work in certain work environments, a medical coder or medical billing specialist may need to obtain a certification for that particular environment, especially when working for in-patient facilities or a hospital. These certifications are not necessary to actually become a medical coder or medical billing specialist, but some employers may require the certification as a condition of employment.
Should You Obtain Your Certification?
Even if a particular employer does not require certification, it is best to go ahead and get it anyway. Because of the level of competition in this field, anything extra you can add to your resume is going to prove to a potential employer that you are credible and serious about your career.
Be sure to update your resume often, always adding to your list of skills and work experience. Job opportunities often come up at unexpected times and it’s always best to be ready.