Need A New Career? Consider Medical Coding

Posted on: 15 October 2017

If you like working in an office setting and are drawn to the health field, then you may want to pursue a career in medical coding. Medical coders don't have direct patient contact, but they work with patient charts and medical histories. Coding is interesting work that is in demand since medical records are primarily digital today. Here's a look at this occupation and how you train for it:

What Medical Coding Entails

A numerical code is applied to each medical diagnosis and procedure on a patient's chart. The code is primarily used for billing and insurance purposes, but it has other uses too. It is easier to compile data and run reports on large groups of patients when you work with codes. This helps medical researchers as well as facility administrators. To learn medical coding, you have to learn the codes for each diagnosis and medical procedure performed.

However, you'll also have a vast library to consult for the little-used codes that may be difficult to remember. In order to apply the codes correctly, it's important that you're trained in medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, and pharmacology. The coder's job is a blend of medicine and technology, and it is very important to making sure the patient receives the proper insurance coverage.

How You Become A Medical Coder

A certificate is required for medical coding. That means you need to take a minimum requirement of classes and pass an examination. A college degree isn't necessary, but your training as a medical coder could be the start of a degree in health information management if you choose to further your education. Medical coding classes are offered at various colleges and adult education centers. The classes can often be completed in as little as a year.

In addition to taking actual coding classes, you'll also need certain medical classes to learn about various diseases and medical treatments so you can better understand patient charts. Upon completion of your classes, you'll take a certification examination. Once you're certified, you can look for a job as an entry-level coder at a hospital, insurance company, nursing home, or doctor's office. As you gain experience, you can work your way up the ladder to become a coding auditor or you can branch into billing or medical records management.

A career in medical coding provides you with several options throughout your working life. The working conditions are pleasant and the job is interesting and rewarding. Plus, the job is in demand and the outlook is expected to grow. It's a career to consider since it doesn't take long to train for and there are usually several places in every community where coders are needed.

Contact a company like Coding Clarified for more information and assistance.