Each time a patient is seen in health care setting a medical record is completed. This record includes the patients’ symptoms, radiographic and lab results, diagnoses, immunizations, medications prescribed and surgeries. Medical Billing and Coding Specialists are the office personnel who take this information and assign classified codes to each procedure and diagnosis. The codes are then used to bill the insurance provider or the patient properly. Other uses for the codes may be in tracing specific cancer diagnoses for treatment, survival and recovery rates, and geographic locations.
This occupation is one of the few in health care occupations in which there is no direct patient contact. Knowledge of medical terminology, principles of health information record systems, office procedures, indexes and classification systems, as well as, basic math are necessary to competently do this job. Computer proficiency, good communication skills, being detailed-oriented and accurate are also essentials for this career. Medical Billing and Coding Specialists usually work 40 hours a week in a variety of settings.
Certification can be achieved through American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) or American Academy of Professional Codes (AAPC). With additional education a Medical Billing and Coding Specialist can go on to become a Registered Health Information Technologist (RHIT).
Other certification exams include the Certified Medical Biller, Certified Professional Medical Auditor, and the Certified Professional Compliance Officer; all through the AAPC. These certifications demonstrate the holder’s expertise in medical billing, auditing and regulatory compliance.
Health Technologies Mission Statement:
To provide Health Technologies students with a personal and professional learning centered education.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job prospects should be "very good" for medical billing and coding specialist, which are included under the broader category of medical records and health information technicians. BLS projections indicate that employment of professionals in this field will increase 20% between 2008 and 2018, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.*
The BLS attributes this growth to an increase in the use of electronic medical records, the health problems associated with an expanding elderly population and the rising number of medical treatments, tests and procedures being performed today. As noted in the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook, technicians with a solid understanding of relevant computer software and technology will be in demand - do the medical billing and coding job outlook should be good for those with relevant training and certification.
*U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010-2011 Edition. "Medical Records and Health Information Technicians." <http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos103.htm>.
Students who complete Medical Billing and Coding Certificate will be prepared to take a national certification exam either through the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) at 223 N. Michigan Ave. 21st floor, Chicago, IL 60601-5809, phone: 312-233-1100, web address: www.ahima.org or American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), 2480 South 3850 West, Suite B, Salt Lake City, Utah 84120, phone: 800-626-2633, web address: www.aapc.com.
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MTC offers a three-term (full time) certificate program in Medical Billing and Coding. To see what graduates of this training will be ready to do click here.
Health Information Technology Degree
To apply for acceptance into the Medical Billing and Coding Certificate program, click here for requirements.
To get started in this Health Technologies Program, contact the MTC Office of Admissions for an appointment, by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 740-389-4636, extension 334.