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How to Become a Certified Medical Coder?

Medical coding is vital to the healthcare facilities all over the world and has become one of the leading job markets in the country today. It is considered as a future profession for todays’ younger generation as it offers rewarding job. According to statistics, the job sector in medical coding is expected to grow sooner than expected throughout 2015. This is mainly due to the constant demands and requirements of the medical industry as a whole. Initially, there was an increase in the population growth leading to high level of scrutiny for healthcare procedures met by the insurance companies. Owing to this, the future healthcare industry will require more and more certified medical coders to meet the demands of the insurance firms.

Medical Coding is certainly a profession that is quite promising, especially for individuals who are considering a good start-up to boost their career.   Though a proper educational degree is not a must, a complete know-how of the basics of medical coding and billing along with an accredited certificate from AHIMA (American Health Information Management Association) or the AAPC (American Academy of Professional Coders) is necessary. With this certificate in hand, you can certainly earn a decent income depending on your experience and the nature of task allotted to you. In order to secure managerial positions, you need to have a thorough knowledge about the CPT surgical & non-surgical coding, medical terminology, pathology, pharmacology, anatomy, healthcare ethics & laws, physiology and much more. The primary role played by the certified medical coders is to assign standardized alphanumeric codes for multiple services offered by the physicians. Based on these codes, the insurance companies are promptly billed in order to obtain timely payment for the medical practitioners.

Medical coders are not only high in demand in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and healthcare centers, they are also required in medical coding & billing companies, insurance agencies, law firms, healthcare agencies, consulting firms and much more. Medical coding is a profitable option for those who are interested in pursuing this area of healthcare management as it is sure to open up new prospects in employment in the near future. There are even online certification programs in Medical Coding offered by various institutions to equip all aspirants with the requisite knowledge on medical coding.

Certified Medical Coders work under various time settings which depend on the kind of institution they are working in. Most of them work in shift basis as the healthcare sector is open for 24 hours a day. At times, the Certified Coders need to cope up by working for approx. 40 hours per week or they are given an option to work from their home settings. This is a great option for the Certified Medical Coders, especially women who want to work in that kind of relaxed environment with their own preferred work settings.

Medical coding is a pertinent part of the healthcare industry and hence there will definitely not be any drastic effects of recession in pursuing this career.

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Is Medical Billing Outsourcing a Good Choice?

Medical Billing is a procedure through which medical practitioners take their payments from the insurance company, whether private or government. This process plays a vital role in the field of healthcare but is time consuming. The U.S government regularly updates the medical billing rules and regulations. Physicians would have to devote more time in taking care of the billing practice and to ensure 100% error free claim as per the recent updates. Managing the medical claims and patient care simultaneously would be a tough challenge for them.

To overcome this scenario, physicians are forced to find a solution to reduce their workload and increase the quality of patient services.

Medical Billing – Should it be in-house or outsourced?

In-house billing requires medical practitioners to regularly train in-house staffs according to the changes in regulations. In simple, in-house billing requires additional staff training, software support, storage space and a separate working environment that would further add costs to the practice rather than revenue collections.

In today’s competitive world, outsourcing has become a common practice among healthcare organizations. It results in greater cost savings and brings broader business benefits.

Benefits of Medical Billing Outsourcing:

  • Outsourcing is more accessible and less expensive compared to in-house services.
  • Acts as the trump card for physicians to improve the business bottom lines and revenue collections.
  • Smooth functioning of the revenue cycle – Get payment on time.
  • Cost cutting – Reduced Operational cost, infrastructure, software and hardware support costs.
  • Pricing Structure is Customizable. Outsourcing Companies offer several pricing packages based on the requirements of the physicians.
  • Faster claim submissions and faster revenue transactions.
  • Helps to improve billing efficiency by providing services on deductibles, withholds and co-payments tracking.

Having an Outsourcing Services Company to manage medical billing seems to be a more feasible option.  By outsourcing, physicians can get top accuracy and best outcome in quick turnaround time. Hence, outsourcing to a reliable medical billing company makes sense.

 

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Revenue Cycle Management – Getting Paid on Time

An effective Revenue Cycle Management helps practices to increase efficiency and revenues. It also ensures to cut cost and reduce denials considerably. Revenue Cycle Management is not about just one activity, it is all about managing the entire process from start to finish. In the healthcare setting Revenue Cycle Management begins even prior to a patient’s visit to the facility.

Pre-verification is the first step in Revenue Cycle Management. All the patients scheduled to visit the provider are verified for eligibility and benefits with their insurance. All authorization and referral requirements are clearly understood and documented. Co-pay, Deductibles and out of pocket expenses are also documented. First step to effective Revenue Cycle Management begins with collecting the patient liabilities immediately during the visit. (more…)

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