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Distinguishing Between Medical Coding and Medical Billing

April 09, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 107

While they are both invaluable skills, a constant point of confusion in the medical industry is the difference between medical coding and medical billing. Both careers are greatly in-demand as far as specialties go, and both assist greatly in the expediting of health care documentation to necessary sources. Without either of these jobs, the process of creating and sending invoices for rendered medical services would be exponentially less efficient. So what is the cause for confusion? Find out more about how you could serve as an indispensable role in your healthcare facility by studying in medical coding and billing schools.

Each time a patient receives health care treatment, the outpatient facility of the hospital or physician's office must provide documentation of the completed service. While the jobs of medical coder and biller may be accomplished by the same person, the coder's main responsibility is to abstract and assign the correct coding to claims on medical services, while the medical biller is charged with the task of submitting claims forms claims forms to insurance companies and following up accordingly. The biller is also recommended to pass an exam (such as the RHIA, CMRS exam, and others) and become certified in their position.

A large part of the coder's job comes in checking various sources within the medical record of a patient, in order to verify that the proper work was administered. Once this is complete, the coder assigns CPT, ICD, and HCPCS codes that document the procedure history and provide the necessary information for the biller to process a reimbursement claim from the patient's insurance agency. With code systems constantly undergoing constant updates, it is important for both coders and billers to keep abreast of the latest in this diverse system of medical codes.

The daily routine of a coder varies from facility to facility, but usually consists of first reviewing the batch of patient notes from the day before that require coding. Whether the clinical setting is that of outpatient or facility, the records many require a specific degree of specialization. A coder in a large hospital may be subject to sharper focuses, while a worker in a smaller facility could have a broader understanding of medical conditions and patients. After the overview, the coder reads the documentation in order to abstract the most important information- names of physicians, dates of procedure, etc- in order to create the most accurate code for facility records.

These positions work hand in hand so that the entire billing process of a medical facility may be accomplished as quickly and efficiently as possible. Because the workload can often be overwhelming (especially for larger facilities), it is important for both billers and coders to stay at the top of their game in terms of knowledge of the industry. Thankfully the invention of the internet has made it easier than ever to keep up to speed on medical coding trends from the comfort of one's own home. A few minutes online could be just what is needed to bulk up one's understanding of their profession.

George Kagan is a lead marketing copywriter for a Medical Billing School. Allied provides Medical Coding and Billing programs that prepare students for careers in the medical coding and billing and medical transcription fields. Online courses offer students a quick and convenient way to learn.

Source: EzineArticles
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