Medical Coding Certification: Acquisition and Use
Medical coding certification starts with a basic understanding of the medical facility’s practice management. When a patient walks in the door and is seen by medical staff, those staff members must accurately document the visit. From the time spent with the patient to symptoms, treatment, and prescription, there are many relevant details to be recorded. Then, those details are translated to numeric codes by a person who has received a medical coding certification.
Why? The coding is a nondescript way for coders and billers to assign, process, and collect on claims. Claims typically are paid by a commercial payer, the patient, or CMS and are used to finance the medical clinic and its staff. Medical coding is an integral component of a medical facility that functions smoothly as well as legally. Assigning incorrect codes can lead to incorrect payments or false claims and HIPAA violations. Because of this important role, it is a highly recommended that coders have an up-to-date medical coding certification. It also helps coders to be more competitive in the industry and retain job security.
Being a medical coder goes beyond a simple certification, however. Coders must also have a vast knowledge of medical terminology and anatomy as a basis for translating the patient visit records. They must also know insurance plans, regulations, and compliance. In a regular day, coders systematically check patient visit status and details with the appropriate medical record to verify the work done, the supplies used, and other details.
Proper code assignment tells a “story” of a patient’s illness or injury. While these highly technical storytellers do not need a bachelor’s or master’s degree of any kind, medical practices prefer at least the medical coding certificate if not also prior experience in a clinic. The certificate and experience are readily available through online training courses, live workshops, and related organizations which promote coding excellence.
Finding a medical coding specialist and keeping on top of your medical practice’s billing needs can often be strenuous, especially during the implementation of new codes. As the shift to ICD-10 nears in October, you might consider outsourcing the medical coding and billing of your clinic to an established company like Billing Advantage. At Billing Advantage, we hire only the best coding specialists with up-to-date medical coding certifications; you can rest assured that your data is safe, secure, and accurately processed to increase profitability. Get started today!