Medical Billing Coding School

By Mary White

  • Overview

    Do you enjoy working with numbers and have strong communication skills? Are you organized and interested in health care? If so, you might enjoy the field of medical billing.
  • Significance

    As demand for health-care increases, the demand for skilled medical billing coding professionals is also likely to rise. Significant growth in job opportunities for individuals with medical billing skills is expected throughout the 21st century.
  • Function

    Medical billing schools provide students with the training they need to succeed. Those who work in medical billing are responsible for accurately requesting payment from insurance companies and patients for services rendered. They must send invoices that are timely and prepared in compliance with insurance provider requirements. They are also responsible for tracking payments received and following up to collect late or inaccurate payments.
  • Types

    The majority of medical billing professionals work for billing services or in healthcare facilities, so the program you choose should include training for both environments. If you choose a medical billing service, you'll work behind the scenes with the administrative aspects of payment processing. If you work in a doctor's office or hospital, you'll interact with patients as well. Select a curriculum that includes training specific to medical terminology, insurance company processes, insurance coding, billing procedures, collections, payment tracking and medical office administration.
  • Time Frame

    Medical billing training programs typically range from 10 months to two years. Programs ranging from 18 to 24 months are usually associate degree programs, while the shorter-term programs offer a certificate or diploma credential. Most programs also include an externship, which involves earning school credit for completing 40 or more hours of practical work experience.
  • Identification

    When evaluating medical billing and coding training options, select a school that offers a program accredited by the American Health Management Association (AHIMA). Many employers require their medical billing workers graduate from a program recognized by AHIMA. Additionally, AHIMA certification is a requirement for some positions.
  • Considerations

    When deciding which medical billing and coding school to attend, investigate each institution's job placement rates.
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