Becoming a medical coder is a rewarding and exciting career. However, like many things, it comes at a price in the form of time and tuition. With the new Healthcare plan going into effect, it is expected to be fully operational by the year 2016. The field as a whole is set for massive growth and as demand increases so will the medical coding salaries of specialists. This guide will give you a little more understanding of what is needed to becoming a medical coder.
Medical Coding Salary Information:
As a certified medical coder, you can expect an average of medical coding salaries of $35,000 per year based on the latest statistics from the Department Of Labor. Please keep in mind that this could be different based on what part of the country you live in. For example, the medical coding salaries will be higher if you live in New York and lower if you live in Arizona based on the cost of living. When starting out in the field you should be making a minimum of $28,000. After a few years of experience and some good references, you should have no trouble increasing your salary to over $35,000. [more information on salary]
Medical Coding Education Requirements:
Medical Coding Schools are pretty easy to locate these days thanks to the internet. A simple search on Google will reveal at least three to five schools in your area. Many of them will be offered at your local community college or one of the hybrid college/online colleges and institutes. Online classes can be a great way to learn the field but you much consider that it requires self-discipline on your part. If you are not a self-starter, this is not the way to go. Many people today think online courses are easier but this is simply not the case. Only if you are very serious and well disciplined should you attempt online courses. Otherwise, stick to a more traditional form of education. School and certification should take no more than two years to complete. [more information on education]
Medical Coding Work Place:
As a medical coder, there is three different places you may end up working in. The first is a hospital in which you will be in charge of calling the patients insurance companies who came in for procedures. The second place you may end up is a doctors office. In this case you will be on your own or part of a very small team. Just as before you will be contacting the patients insurance companies. The final place you could end up is a medical billing center. Sometime, doctors and hospitals outsource their billing to larger centers. In all cases you will need good interpersonal skills as you will be dealing with insurance representatives as well as staff on a daily basis. [more information on work environment]
Again, with the massive increase in healthcare of the next few years, you can count on medical coding being a very stable career path. Make sure to check if your state has any programs to help you pay for tuition and get a few quotes from banks for a student loan. It's also worth calling up your local schools for some additional advice. With some hard work upfront, you should have no problem becoming a medical coding specialist.