Medical bills and codes translate patient contacts into the languages used by healthcare institutions for complaints and reimbursements.
Billing and coding are separate processes, but both are required for healthcare providers to receive payment for healthcare services.
Medical coding extracts billable information from medical records and patient records, while medical billing uses these codes to create insurance claims and patient bills. In claims creation, medical billing and coding intersect to form the backbone of the healthcare revenue cycle.
The process begins with patient registration and ends when the care provider receives full payment for all services provided to the patient.
The medical billing and coding cycle can vary from a few days to a few months depending on the complexity of the services provided, the processing of denied claims, and how organizations handle patient financial responsibilities.
Ensuring that healthcare organizations understand the basics of medical billing and coding can help providers and other professionals smooth the revenue cycle and recoup any acceptable returns for the delivery of quality care.
WHAT IS MEDICAL CODING?
Medical coding begins with meeting the patient at a doctor’s office, hospital, or another healthcare facility. When a patient encounter occurs, providers describe the visit or service in detail in the patient record and explain why they provided the particular service, item, or procedure.
Accurate and complete medical records at patient consultation are critical for medical billing and coding, says AHIMA. The golden rule of billing departments and health codes is, “Don’t code or bill for anything unless it’s documented on your medical record.”
Healthcare professionals use medical records to prove reimbursement to taxpayers in the event of a claim dispute.If the provider does not adequately document the service in their medical records, the organization may face a rejection of the application and possible disqualification from the profession.
Healthcare professionals can also be investigated for fraud or liability if they attempt to bill payers and patients for services that are incorrectly documented in medical records or are missing entirely from patient records.
After the patient leaves the healthcare facility, a professional medical coder reviews and analyzes the medical records to match the benefits to the diagnosis, procedure, rate, and billing codes for occupation and/or facility codes. The
encoders use the following code sets.
5 Great Free Online Courses for Medical Billing and Coding Training
Following are the 5 Great Free Online Courses for Medical Billing and Coding Training.
AI and Big Data in Global Health Improvement:
This course from Future Learn is not specifically aimed at medical coding and billing but looks more specifically at AI and big data within the medical field as a whole. This background is something that’s vital to your foundation if you want to become a medical coding and billing professional.
Cybersecurity in Healthcare:
Similar to the course above, this cybersecurity course does not directly study healthcare coding and billing, but can give you the kind of backgrond knowledge you need in IT in order to prepare you to succeed in the field. This free course is provided to Coursera by Erasmus University Rotterdam, which is a top-100 ranked research University based in the Netherlands.
What is Medical Coding and Billing?
Udemy is an individually-constructed course network in the sense that it allows instructors to create and upload their own courses, deciding on the price and interest level for themselves. There are thousands of both paid and free courses on the site on a variety of different topics, both professional and creative. This medical coding and billing course takes only an hour to complete and has had nearly 4,000 students so far that have given the course a 4.5 out of 5 star rating.
Basics of Medical Coding & Billing:
Free Medical Billing Training is a great resource for those who want to start learning medical billing and coding but may not have the money to invest in a paid study or course. The site offers a free condensed version of the popular paid medical coding and billing course that includes over 50 video lessons. This free short course offers 10 topics covering various key medical coding and billing lessons, including troubleshooting claims, getting started with medical coding, provider and patient setup, and health insurance plans.
Learn Medical Billing in One Hour:
While you wouldn’t normally think that medical coding and accounting can be learned in an hour, this crash course from Dr. Chrono excellent work. Dr Chrono is a YouTube channel with many free educational videos on medical coding and billing and other health-related topics.
Medical billing and coding salary:
The median average medical billing and coding salary is $46,660 per year or $22.43 per hour according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), but many things impact how much you can earn
Medical billing and coding certification:
- Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS) …
- Certified Coding Associate (CCA) …
- Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) …
- Certified Coding Specialist – Physician-based (CCS-P) …
- Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC) …
- Certified Medical Coder (CMC) …
- Certified Outpatient Coding (COC)