Want a career that is in high demand, offers good pay and only requires a short but intensive educational track? Consider the field of medical coding. This niche in the healthcare field is something of a best-kept secret in great career choices. There are many aspects of the job that must be understood to consider medical coding as a career. Here are a few that are sometimes misunderstood.
When most people hear about medical coding, they often imagine a programming job where creating software, applications and interpreting various technical languages and jargon is the daily grind. This assumption is false. "Medical coding is not programming," states Lynita Ellis, medical coding program coordinator at LDS Business College.
If medical coding is not programming, then what is it? While there is an aspect of learning a "new language," a medical coder operates more as a translator and not anything a programmer might do.
"Medical coding is a little bit like translation. Coders take medical reports from doctors, which may include a patient’s condition, the doctor’s diagnosis, a prescription and whatever procedures the doctor or health care provider performed on the patient and turn that into a set of codes, which make up a crucial part of the medical claim," explains medicalbillingandcoding.org.
These codes are universally used across insurance companies and medical institutions. Thus, there is great importance in ensuring each procedure, diagnosis or prescriptions are input correctly for claims to be processed efficiently.
"One of the most appealing aspects of a career in medical coding is that medical coders are always in demand," Ellis said. "Any clinic is always going to need medical coders. The larger the clinic, the more they will need, but smaller operations will also always need their own medical coders."
Because all clinics, large and small, need medical coders, there is a great opportunity for variety in the job. Large healthcare organizations might have centralized medical coding and billing locations, while smaller organizations might even allow for working from home. This is especially beneficial when someone with a disability or for someone who needs flexibility in his or her schedule. The nature of the job means anyone with good reading and language skills has the opportunity to excel..
One of the best benefits of pursuing a career in medical coding is that while the training and educational track is intensive, it doesn't last forever. Ellis highlighted that through LDS Business College, the "certification process can be completed in as little as two semesters." LDSBC prides itself in making this a comprehensive course to a successful career with higher-than-average expected job growth for the future.
In addition to learning how to assign codes to all manner of medical procedures, processes and prescriptions, students are "prepared to sit for the Certified Coding Associate professional certification exam through the American Association of Professional Coders at the end of their coursework," states the LDS Business College website. In addition, the college "has an 'in-house' internship experience for our students on the LDS Business College campus. This 120 internship experience may lead to job offers to students who meet the company's qualification criteria."
In other words, this program is purpose-built with the student's success in mind.
With smaller class sizes, personal attention from professors and a fast and efficient training program in place, medical coding can become that career you've been looking for. Reach out to Ellis at LDS Business College for more information or for any questions regarding the medical coding certificate program. She can be reached at [email protected]