Archive | August 2013

Medical Coding and Billing Salary: Expectation vs. Reality

medical billing salaryWhen you hear the words “medical coding and billing salary”, do you imagine a 7 digit income with paid vacations and free health insurance? Or do you imagine some lonely, broke person doing routine clerical jobs at the back office of a hospital?

Well, to be completely honest and realistic, medical billing  salary depends on many things. This profession could either advance you to brighter opportunities or wear you down with its pressures.

Medical billers and coders have one of the most important jobs in the health care industry and are essential to the success of the business side of a health care facility, be it a hospital, research laboratory, private practice, etc.

What are the tasks of medical coders and billers?

Medical billers and coders work very closely together. Although in some firms, a medical biller and coder could be rolled into one, but their tasks are also distinct from each other.

Medical billers are the ones who review the records of patients, calculate the things charged to them by the hospital, submit insurance claims as well as assist patients in any questions and problems regarding their insurance. Medical billers know the workings of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Medicare and Medicaid.

On the other hand, medical coders abstract the information provided in a patient’s health record, then assign published codes and create claims to be paid by the patient’s insurance provider. A medical coder must be knowledgeable in CPT codes, ICD-9 codes and HCPCS codes to give the needed information to process an insurance claim.

What to Expect: Medical Coding and Billing salary

Medical coding and billing salary, according to a survey conducted by the AAPC (American Academy of Professional Coders) in 2011, differ or vary based on the job description and the location.

For example, a Certified Professional Coder (CPC) can earn more or less $14.55 per hour while a Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS) can earn about $17 per hour. Medical billing and coding salary usually depends on the skills and specialization of an individual. For example, a Medicaid and Medicare Billing specialist can earn around $17 per hour while an Electronic Medical Records (EMR) specialist usually earns around $15. The more diverse a person’s skills and the more certifications he/she has, the higher salary he/she can have.

Meanwhile, the location of employment could affect the salary of an individual due to the standard of living and economy of a city or state – the higher the standard of living, the higher salary. Cities like New York, Boston and San Diego have the highest medical coding salary offers in the country.

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Medical Coder Salary: Comprehensive and Certification are Very Significant

CPC certification coursesWhen patients usually go to a physician, someone will be responsible for writing and documenting the process and procedures that was done to them. This kind of service is compensated on the medical professional in an average rate that is determined by the insurance company as well as the government.

Comprehensive medical education and a certificate are two of the essential requirements of being a professional or licensed medical coder which you can get from CPC certification courses. Being a medical coder in not as easy as what individuals think. They translate the information that they gathered in a chart to the billing method or system. Medical coders should be detail oriented to have a high degree of accuracy in their work. They also have enough knowledge about different medical terms or terminology, physiology, and anatomy. They should also have the ability to understand the medical coding regulations and rules.

The medical coder salary tends to be higher if individuals have the certificate that is required before they are hired as a medical coder. When they pass all the needed requirements especially the certificate, their salary is more likely to increase. Medical coder salary is not like the salary of other jobs in the medical industry. For them, it is significant to have a higher salary especially when they have their own family.

When the medical coder salary is high, individuals can surely keep and save their excess money for their extra needs, pay bills and other things. In this generation, money is truly significant due to poverty. A lot of people today are suffering from poverty that’s why they are doing their best in searching jobs that are suitable and match in their abilities and knowledge as well as have a good salary.

In addition, medical coder is the most in demand job in the world of medicine, due to its good salary. This is one of the reasons why a lot of people are taking medical courses that have a connection and involvement in becoming a medical coder in an effort to earn a significant amount of salary. It is also difficult to be a medical coder because it needs the right information and document to chart in the system of billing. Even if it is difficult, still a lot of people are achieving to have this kind of job. Everyone must finish their studies to have a regular and white color job. They should also strive to become aware of the different aspects of the field that they are in.