MEDICAL CODING CAREER

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1 MEDICAL CODING CAREER WHAT IS MEDICAL CODING AND HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST MEDICAL CODING COURSES Curious about a career in medical coding? Look no further! A medical coding career provides a flexible and convenient way to make a living one where you can have a rewarding job, while still being there for your family. And with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projecting almost 3 million new health care jobs from 2006 to 2016, it s a career that you can count on! With the new federal job creation plan, health care is front and center and positioned for huge growth ALCALDE DRIVE LAGUNA HILLS, CA MEDICALCODINGCOURSES.COM

2 ARE YOU READY TO ÌÌStart a high-demand medical coding career? ÌÌEarn a solid income - the highest 10 percent of medical coding salaries are more than $50,060 (BLS)? ÌÌEnjoy job security? ÌÌGrow in a career that is flexible and family-friendly? ÌÌExperience the opportunity and reward of being employed in the health care industry, one of the nation s fastest-growing industries? If you answered yes to even one of the above questions, this short, yet informative medical coding ebook was created especially for you. Keep reading and learn why medical coding may be the perfect career fit for you.

3 M e d i c a l C o d i n g C a r e e r F a c t s a n d S t a t s f r o m t h e Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Ì Employment of medical records and health information technicians, such as medical coders, is expected to increase by 21 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations. Ì The demand for health services is expected to increase as the population ages. An aging population will need more medical tests, treatments, and procedures. This will also mean more claims for reimbursement from private and public insurance. Ì Additional records, coupled with widespread use of electronic health records by all types of healthcare providers, should lead to an increased need for coding technicians to organize and manage the associated information in all areas of the healthcare industry.

4 M e d i c a l C o d i n g C a r e e r D e s c r i p t i o n The Day-to-Day Duties As a medical coder, you are responsible for inputting the appropriate codes of various medical services so that doctors and healthcare professionals receive payment for the services they provide. The specific codes you assign are used to establish the amount of money healthcare providers will be reimbursed from the different insurance companies (such as Medicare, etc.). The medical coding career description doesn t stop there you ll receive a record of a patient s visit to the doctor s office, hospital, clinic, etc. From this record (which can be paper or electronic), you will code the activity that occurred in the form of diagnostic and procedural codes. The codes are numerical and represent the exact nature of the doctor visit what was diagnosed and how it was treated. These numbers will jumpstart the billing process the medical biller will include these codes on the claims paperwork. Job Settings Where You can Work You ll work in a comfortable office setting, with the use of the latest technology typically a computer and classification systems software. Medical coders are commonly found in a variety of healthcare environments, including doctors offices, nursing care facilities, outpatient care centers, home healthcare services, and more. As a medical coder, you will not interact with patients your profession focuses on the administrative aspect of medical coding. You will most likely work a typical 40-hour work week; although some medical coders enjoy a part-time schedule.

5 M e d i c a l C o d i n g S a l a r i e s How Much You ll Earn Straight from the Bureau of Labor Statistics the median annual wage of medical records and health information technicians (also medical coders) was $30,610 in May The highest 10 percent earned more than $50,060. Becoming certified can increase your income potential the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) reports that certified coders earned an average of $7,000 more per year than their non-certified counterparts. Medical coding salaries are on the rise it pays to become certified! A d v a n c e m e n t How Far You Can Go As a medical coder, you can advance your career by way of certification as well as crossing over into a new, but related, profession. First, adding credentials to your resume is a quick and effective way to build your career opportunities. Your education and experience will enable you to sit for advanced specialty certifications. Determine your area of expertise create a niche, such as cancer registry, and really grow your career potential! Second, you can take your medical coding experience and apply it to a related career, such as compliance specialist, health information manager and HIM administrator.

6 Stand out with an ICD-10 Background Want to stand out in the medical coding industry and gain a strong competitive edge? Launch your medical coding career with an ICD-10 skill set! In 2014, an increased number of codes will be introduced. Medical coding professionals who prepare in advance will be valuable assets in a variety of health care settings, from doctors offices to hospitals. C a r e e r O u t l o o k The Future Looks Bright! Straight from the Bureau of Labor Statistics the median annual wage of medical records and health information technicians (also medical coders) was $30,610 in May The highest 10 percent earned more than $50,060. Becoming certified can increase your income potential the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) reports that certified coders earned an average of $7,000 more per year than their non-certified counterparts. Medical coding salaries are on the rise it pays to become certified!

7 What is ICD-10? W h y i s i t I m p o r t a n t t o Y o u r M e d i c a l Coding Career Growth? The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that the U.S. health care system will implement ICD-10 as the HIPAA mandated code set effective October 1, adding thousands of more detailed codes ensuring better analysis of diseases and treatments, which will lead to improved medical care. There is immense career opportunity for individuals who enter the coding industry now Allied will help you prepare. Until now, professional medical coders have relied upon ICD-9-CM codes to successfully perform their job duties. However, on October 1, 2014, physician practices and hospitals must convert to the ICD-10-CM and ICD-10-PCS code sets for documentation and billing. One of the major challenges facing coders and medical personnel during this transition is that for a period of time hospitals and physician offices will need to generate and track claims utilizing both ICD-9 and ICD-10 codes. Nationally recognized associations, such as AHIMA and the AAPC, are suggesting that early training is the key to a successful transition. Each year, as we approach 2014, students will receive increased training in ICD-10 ensuring that they are proficient in both coding classification systems by the deadline. Imagine entering the industry with a background in both coding systems. You will have the in-demand skills required to assist with the current medical coding system, the vital transition process, and the new ICD-10 coding classification system.

8 Maximize your medical coding education and career prospects even further add complementary courses in medical data management to your training. New regulations will require medical offices to maintain electronic health records on all patients. Training programs, such as Electronic Health Records, are intended to meet and exceed the needs of the medical community as offices nationwide struggle to meet new regulations. Combine this training with a background in ICD-10 and you can be a part of a national health care movement with comprehensive medical education from Allied.

9 Medical Coding Schools 5 Steps to Choosing the Best Training Are you in search of a medical coding school with all the right credentials? With so many medical coding schools and programs to choose from, making sure you ve made the right choice for your future career may seem overwhelming. To help you streamline your decision-making process, use these five easy steps to narrow down your top picks for medical coding schools: 1) Assess Your Personal Needs. Consider your personal responsibilities, schedule, learning style and budget. For example, do you have time for a traditional classroom setting that requires your attendance for several hours per week? Or would an online medical coding program that allows you to work at your own pace be a better fit? Once you make your personal assessments, you can start cutting down your medical coding schools list. 2) Confirm the Medical Coding School has Reputable Accreditation. Accreditation means that the school you select is governed by a strict set of regulations. These regulations should govern the school s staff, curriculum, internal/external policies, marketing and more. It s your assurance that the education you receive is from an honest school whose training will fully prepare you to enter the medical coding field. Not all accreditations are of equal merit, so do your homework - Find out about your medical coding school s accreditation prior to enrolling. 3) Review your Personal Budget and the Medical Coding School s Payment Options. Affording an education is one of the biggest concerns on every student s mind. First, make sure you have a firm grasp on your finances and approximately how much you re willing to spend on your education. Next, thoroughly review your top medical coding schools payment options.

10 For example, do they offer a pay-in-full discount or a down payment option followed by interest-free payment plans? You may be seeking a full student loan, but keep in mind that once you graduate, you will have a hefty interestbearing school loan to pay back. 4) Make Sure the Medical Coding School Offers a Hands-On Medical Coding Externship. What better way to put your new-found skills to the test than experiencing an externship in a real medical setting? Not only will you solidify what ve you ve learned and gain valuable experience for your resume before even hitting the job market, but your externship could turn into a job offer. Seek out schools that offer you this valuable opportunity. 5) Ensure the School s Curriculum Prepares you for the CPC Certification Exam. Once you complete your medical coding training, you should be fully prepared to take the next important step Taking the Certified Professional Coder (CPC) Examination. Certification is not a requirement to starting a medical coding career. However, obtaining certification can lead to increased job opportunities and income potential. Plus, it s a smart way to separate yourself from other competitors in your job market. Now that you know how valuable passing the certification exam can be, seek out schools offering a Medical Coding Certification Exam Promise that guarantees their training will fully prepare you to take your exam with confidence. Are you ready to start your search? Get online and start compiling your list. Visit the school s social media pages to see what real students are saying, and before you know it, your medical coding schools list will be narrowed down to a single school that perfectly fits your needs.

11 Conclusion Health care will generate three million new jobs through 2016, which is more than any other industry (BLS). This includes the exciting field of medical coding. Are you ready for the challenge? Allied s all-inclusive online medical coding training is all you need to study from home on your own schedule. Successfully complete your course and be prepared to take the Certified Professional Coder (CPC ) Examination. Allied Student Benefits Student Focused Ì 100% Online, 24/7 Access Ì Ì Ì Live Support Flexible Study for Busy Schedules Finish Quicker and Start You Career Sooner High Quality Education Ì Ì Nationally Accredited AAPC Certified Professional Coder Exam Promise Pass the Certification Exam or Don t Pay Ì Select courses approved for continuing education

12 Competitive T uitio n No Unnecessary Filler Courses that Inflate Tuition Cost No General Ed Classes to Hold You Back! Interest-Free Payment Plan Available No Additional Fees Your Tuition Includes Everything You Need Career Prepa r a tio n Hands On Externship in a real medical setting. Externship coordinator secures externship in student s community Résumé, Cover Letter, and Interview Prep Get the support and encouragement you deserve with Allied by your side throughout each step of your training program. Visit to learn more about Allied s online, self-paced training or call All employment and salary statistics, projections, and information where (BLS) is indicated was collected from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Information may be verified by visiting

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