Medical coding specialists’ jobs are among the most varied in the medical industry. While “back office” type of work may not seem as exciting as providing hands-on care in the emergency room, medical coding specialists jobs require a wide range of skills, provide impressive remuneration and demand far less education than nearly every position in medicine.
What are medical coding specialist jobs like?
It’s tough to offer a blow-by-blow of a typical day for a medical coding specialist because each day is so different. The job duties can include processing insurance claims, resolving conflicts between the electronic medical record and the coding software, consulting with physicians and physician extenders, patients and health insurance company representatives over the phone, and more.
What kinds of skills are required?
Medical coding specialists possess a combination of skills, including data entry, mathematics, customer service, conflict resolution, and analysis. Knowledge of office protocol and understanding professional demeanor augments a medical coder’s ability to succeed as well. Of course, with experience any of these can improve in time; however, a foundational desire to attend to every detail is essential.
What else is rewarding about medical coding specialists jobs?
It may seem that medical coding specialists jobs wouldn’t provide as high of a personal satisfaction as someone directly caring for patients. Medical coding specialists may not save lives; however, they do provide:
- assistance to patients who are often yet recovering from an illness, injury or surgery
- help to persons who could not otherwise obtain resolution to their medical billing issue because of language barriers or literacy issues
- prompt and more positive outcomes for patients, most of whom do not understand medical billing, intricacies of healthcare insurance, and conflict resolution for health insurance issues
- confirmation that the patient receives all of the benefit from their health care coverage
- valuable service to their medical facility so that care providers can focus on care instead of this administrative work
What are the job requirements?
While many healthcare organizations require education for those applying for medical coding specialists jobs, the industry standard is that they have passed the Insurance and Coding exam offered by the National Center for Competency Testing. Completing coursework in medical coding can provide the candidate with the best chance of passing the exam. A background in any type of healthcare position is also helpful, but not usually required.