Best Medical Coding and Billing Online Courses

How can you find and know what are the best medical coding and billing online courses? Not all of them are offering you all types of accreditation. You should first see if they offer specialized or just general courses and you should choose the one that is providing the type of knowledge and specialization you aim for.

You should see how flexible are with deadlines and compare with your own time frame. Some schools have a tide schedule that you might not be able to meet. On the other hand, with a tide schedule you will finish it faster.

To choose the best medical coding and billing online courses you should always look for details. Some of them are nationally accredited; some of them are regional accredited. The number of programs is different in number and types of specializations they offer. Take a look or ask for a full program. Also you should ask for all costs involved. If there are applications fees or not, if any additional books will make you spend some extra money, if the final exam costs are included or if you can get any financial aid and what would be the terms.

Also you should look at what types of degrees they offer – Associate’s, Bachelor’s or Certificates. The best medical coding and billing online courses are offering also Master’s or even MBA, very useful if you want to turn this type of job in a business opportunity. Not all of them are offering all types of degrees. Or at least you should look for the course that is providing the degrees you need for depending on how committed or not you are for a career. Don’t forget to check if you can get the final degrees via internet or not.

When you are looking for the best medical coding and billing online courses don’t hesitate to search for reviews, ratings, opinions or even get in touch with people who attended one course or another. Sometimes, the official information you get on a website might not perfectly match with real life.

Source by Freddie Vincent

The Process of Medical Coding Certification

One does not need to have medical coding certification to work as a medical coder. Unlike other healthcare professions, which require intensive training and several years’ worth of book knowledge and practical experience, the tasks relegated to medical coders are relatively more mechanical and therefore easier to learn whether or not one has had any kind of medical training before.

Medical classification is the process of transforming descriptions of medical diagnoses and procedures taken from a variety of sources within the medical record into universal medical code numbers. These diagnosis codes are used to track different diseases and are a valuable source of information that may influence such sectors as government health agencies, private health insurance companies and worker’s compensation carriers.

Having medical coding certification gives the individual a competitive edge. Just having it listed down on one’s resume provides proof that the person has studied well and is qualified to work in her chosen career. Certified coders are more likely to be immediately hired and given higher compensation. They are also more likely to be recognized for higher positions after just a short term of experience within the healthcare institution.

To become a certified medical coder, one will have to pass a special certification exam. Depending on the program they have enrolled themselves in, individuals who are just starting to learn about medical classification can take the exam once they have passed their medical coding course. What awaits after is a flexible, stable and financially rewarding career in the flourishing healthcare industry.

Source by Jack M Patterson

Gastroenterology Medical Coding – Upper GI Procedures

Gastroenterology is a medical specialty that deals with the digestive system and its disorders. Gastroenterologists use a number of diagnostic procedures to accurately identify the patient’s medical condition and prescribe treatment. Coding for gastroenterology involves accurate coding of the various procedures and services offered by the physician. Reimbursement is offered for procedures provided in in-office, in-facility, hospital outpatient and ASC facility settings. Payment policies vary with individual payers and therefore these should be verified before providing treatment to identify limitations if any, on diagnosis, site of service or coding requirements.

Common Gastroenterology Procedures

• ERCP (endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography) – this procedure combines the use of X-rays and endoscope. It is used to identify disorders such as gallstones, tumors, cysts, blockages and narrowing in the ducts.

• Sphincterotomy – to treat abnormalities diagnosed during an ERCP

• EUS (endoscopic ultrasound) – ultrasound of the pancreas, transduodenal or transgastric

• Sigmoidoscopy – enables the physician to view the lower end of the colon.

• Gastroscopy – this helps to examine the lining of the oesophagus, stomach and duodenum using an endoscope.

• Colonoscopy – is utilized by physicians to have a direct view of the whole of the large bowel or colon.

Upper Gastrointestinal Procedures and Codes

Upper gastrointestinal procedures include endoscopic and esophagoscopic procedures. These help the physician to view the interior of the upper GI tract including the esophagus, stomach and duodenum. When billing for Upper GI procedures, you have to verify payer conditions for covering the procedure. The services are usually covered when medical conditions such as esophageal disease, anemia, gastric ulcer, Celiac disease, persistent upper abdominal symptoms, and involuntary weight loss have been diagnosed.

• 43200 Diagnostic esophagoscopy

• 43202 Esophagoscopy with biopsy

• 43215 Esophagoscopy with foreign body removal

• 43216 Esophagoscopy with electrocautery removal of tumor or polyp

• 43217 Esophagoscopy with snare removal of tumor or polyp

• 43220 Esophagoscopy with dilation

• 43227 Esophagoscopy with control of bleeding

• 43232 Esophagoscopy, rigid or flexible; with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s)

• 43234 EGD – simple primary examination

• 43235(dagger) EGD – diagnostic

• 43238 Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s) esophagus (includes endoscopic ultrasound examination limited to the esophagus)

• 43239(dagger) EGD with biopsy

• 43241 EGD with transendoscopic catheter or tube placement

• 43242 Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy with transendoscopic ultrasoundguided intramural or transmural fine needle aspiration/biopsy(s)(includes endoscopic ultrasound examination of the esophagus, stomach, and either the duodenum and/or jejunum as appropriate)

• 43246 EGD with PEG tube placement

• 43247 EGD with foreign body removal

• 43250 EGD with electrocautery removal of tumor or polyp

• 43251 EGD with snare removal of tumor or polyp

• 43255 EGD with control of bleeding

Certain codes 43200, 43202, 43234, 43235 and 43239 require prior authorization with some payers, and this has to be verified beforehand.

Some Important Considerations

A comprehensive endoscopic evaluation of the upper GI tract has to be reported with the code 43235. This usually involves a detailed view of the esophagus, stomach and duodenum and a thorough examination of the duodenal bulb. Physicians should use code 43239 to report EGD (Esophagogastroduodenoscopy) with biopsy. An EGD that is provided just as a primary examination and does not include “comprehensive” components can be reported with the code 43234. Lesser services such as esophagoscopy and esophagoscopy with biopsy should be reported only using their specific codes, 43200 and 43202 respectively. Physicians should avoid the practice of adding modifier -52 to 43239 to signify these reduced services, because this usually results in pointless delays or even denials of payment. When reporting biopsies and procedures for removing foreign bodies, physicians should take care to choose the code that clearly specifies these.

In cases where more than one procedure is carried out during a single visit, physicians should ensure whether these come under the multiple endoscopy payment rules. Here, Medicare as well as most private payers will reimburse the full value of the highest-valued procedure, along with difference between the value of the remaining procedure and the base endoscopic procedure. Modifier -51 has to be used along with the lesser-valued procedure.

Source by Laura N Jones

The Basics of Medical Billing and Coding Schools

Education is the base of many careers and this is especially true in the medical industry where experience, practice and skills are required. Medical billing and coding schools are designed to offer students the education that is needed to build a successful career.

Steps Followed by Those Interested

If you are interested in pursuing a career in this path, there are a couple of things you need to consider before enrolling in any of these schools and these are as highlighted below.

• Start by selecting accredited medical billing and coding schools in order to get the necessary formal education. Keep in mind that not all institutions are created equally and as such, you need to weigh your options carefully before making a pick.

• Select the appropriate certification exam that is in line with what you want to pursue in order to increase the probability of landing the job you desire.

• Select highly reputed and relevant employers in this sector and ensure that they offer a superb salary and opportunity to enhance your career.

Is the Course Appropriate?

Before settling down to sign up with any medical billing and coding schools, you have to ask yourself some hard questions. For instance, are the programs you intend to pursue suited for your needs? This type of studying does not demand any fast prerequisites and as such, you simply need a DGED or high school degree in order to pursue an associate degree in this field. You should also be willing to learn fresh things everyday and handle different types of cases with a high level of expertise. There are several things you need to consider in order to ensure you are ready for this challenge and capable of getting into a school that meets your needs.


It is possible to find offline and online courses and these are availed to all students interested in pursuing a career in this field. A large number of the well known health organizations are known to demand specialized degrees from well known coding schools in order to employ new staff. Certification is obtained through a national exam which is conducted by some accredited national agencies. Re-certification is also required after 2 years for the purpose of ensuring that the certification is renewed to sit in well with the insurance and state medical laws which are known to change frequently. You should carry out thorough research and determine whether an offline or online school is the best choice for you.

Getting Admitted

In order to get into medical billing and coding schools, there are certain prerequisites that need to be followed. Depending on the institution selected, make sure that you confirm what these are and look at the coursework, accreditation and status before making a choice.

Source by Ali Raza

Online Medical Coding And Billing Schools

Many people want to know how they can make money and work from home in a legitimate industry that will not only provide stimulating and interesting work, but will actually help them earn a decent income as well. The solution for many has been in the field of medical billing or coding. This growing profession is an ideal solution to anyone who prefers the freedom and flexibility of having your own at-home business and with the right training, you can start making money in a very sort time.

Becoming a medical coder or biller requires education, but there are many local Colleges and Universities who provide classes and even degrees or certificates. There are also many online schools that can help you get the education you need and become one of the many people who work from the comfort of their home every day.

Whether you are a parent who wants to be home with the kids or you are looking for a part-time job to supplement your regular employment. They can help you get the education you need to meet the goals you have for yourself. Many of these schools will also help you network and find work once you have completed your training.

Be sure to call several medical coding and billing schools and find one that fits with your schedule and your career goals and you will soon be on your way to becoming a medical billing or coding professional with the flexibility and income to do more than you thought possible.

Source by Bradley White

Smart Tips in Choosing the Right Medical Coding and Billing School

Are you looking for a second career? If you have great interest in healthcare industry, I would suggest you to consider developing yourself as a professional in medical coding and billing. It is currently a popular career in United States with lucrative income.

In order to get into this particular line, you need to equip yourself with certain academic qualification such as a diploma or a degree in this field. Let me share with you 3 smart tips in choosing the RIGHT education provider.

  • First thing first, to be frank, studying in this line is not cheap. You need to get yourself financially ready before commencing your study. If you don’t have personal fund, you are recommended to look for schools which offer low interest study loan for new students so that you can pursue the course in an easier manner.
  • Secondly, we always consider OUR FUTURE. We need to make sure that we can obtain a good job after graduating from the school. Hence, you are advised to look for schools which provide extensive job placement for their graduates so that you can stand a higher chance to be placed in corporations.
  • Thirdly, you need to look for schools which are accredited by The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs or The American Health Information Management Association. Don’t waste your time and money studying in a school which is not approved by the authorized bodies.

Last but not the least, in order to be competent in medical coding and billing, you are required to look for suitable practical training which allows you to obtain necessary skills in the working place. Learn as much thing as possible so that you can gain sufficient experience to become better.

Source by Jeslyn Jessy

Medical Billing Coding Certification Is Necessary to Reduce Bogus Charges and Improve Reimbursement

Without professionals who operate using high standards and who have received medical billing and coding certification, a suspicious charge on your bill may end up damaging your credit score. Health finance professionals believe that up to 40% of hospital bills will contain billing errors. A Boston-based health care advocacy group, the Access Project, believes that number is closer to 80%.

Medical billing errors can reduce your credit score. Results from a study from the Federal Reserve indicate that medical bills account for more than half of all the debt currently in collection. Inaccurate billing by a physician office and hospital can increase your financial debt and can be more than just an inconvenience.

Hospitals and physician offices are looking for professionals who have received certification in order to demonstrate their knowledge and reduce the potential that they will produce in billing errors. These billing errors impact, not only the patients and their credit score, but also the trust that patients have in their hospitals and physicians.

Interestingly, some healthcare experts believe that the number of errors may jump in the coming years because of the electronic health records included in the $19 billion stimulus package. The US Department of Health and Human Services hopes that by 2014 at least 80% of hospitals will be using electronic records. Although the intent is to reduce the number of errors, logistically these errors may increase exponentially.

This is because electronic record-keeping in the hospital begins on the hospital floor with nurses and certified nursing assistants entering information into the computer records that generates codes for reimbursement. Any time dressings, fluids, antibiotics or medications are administered, the information is entered into a medical record but also generates a code for insurance reimbursement. If the certified nursing assistant, nurse or physician enters the wrong item and patient can be overcharged or under charged.

The good news is that these billing errors can be corrected when patients are willing to look through their hospital billing records to ensure that they received everything that was charged. Unfortunately, if you do find an error, it can take serious legwork and long hours on the phone in order to resolve the issue. However, without resolution, these billing errors can significantly impact your credit rating.

Hospitals and physician offices to use electronic medical billing services will find that employment of individuals who have received certification can help to reduce their overall errors. Conscientious professionals must spend hours pouring over bills and medical records to ensure that the correct coding is sent to insurance companies and third-party payers.

Source by Vanessa Youngstrom

Choosing Medical Billing And Coding Jobs As A Career: 3 Good Reasons

The demand for health care is growing rapidly, and that demand has created an unprecedented number of medical billing and coding jobs. Working in the medical field is a demanding and fast paced career choice, but the rewards are both financial and personal.

Working in medical coding and billing means that you will be a vital part of the office where you work. Specialists in the field are needed in hospitals, doctors offices, physical therapy practices, dental offices, and much more. This career area offers highly competitive pay, great benefits, and you will be able to work almost anywhere in the country.

Following are three great reasons to look into medical billing and coding jobs:

1. Growth Industry

The medical field is experiencing a tremendous amount of growth. Unlike other industries that are shrinking or sending jobs overseas, the healthcare profession continues to see fast paced growth. America’s aging population along with the increase in health technologies has created jobs in every segment of the medical industry.

Further billers and coders support the work of every other health care professional. Without people in the administrative offices, doctors and health care professionals don’t get paid, which is why the demand for people trained to work in this field continues to grow.

2. Flexibility to Work Anywhere

You can work anywhere in the country and even work from home. Individuals trained in medical billing and coding positions are needed everywhere that health care is offered, which means that you can find jobs in every state, city, and town in the country.

Once you have completed your training, you can live anywhere you want and still find a great job. While most medical billing and coding jobs are situated in medical offices, there is an increasing demand for people to work from home. This means that you can work a great paying, rewarding career from the comfort of your own home.

3. Exciting, Rewarding, and Challenging

Working in the medical field is challenging and exciting. When you enter a career as a medical biller or medical coder, you become part of the health care industry, which is an extremely exciting profession to be a part of.

Working with health care providers means that you are part of the team that helps people live longer, healthier, happier lives. The medical field offers a career which is full of opportunities to grow and learn, and in turn, the opportunities are limitless.

Whether you are looking for your first career or transitioning to a meaningful new career, training as a coder or biller specialist will help you reach your professional and personal goals. If you are ready to be part of the fast growing and exciting medical field, find out more about billing and coding training today.

Choosing medical billing and coding jobs allows you to become part of an industry which is both financially and personally rewarding. Those who train to work in this field find that they are part of a job that they truly love. The opportunities for medical billing and coding professionals are endless, and positions are always available in all parts of the country.

Source by Mark Wellman

The Use Of Medical Coding For Insurance Purposes

Medical Coding is the process used through which the descriptions of medical diagnoses and procedures are converted into universal bits of numbers, known as “codes”. These codes are numeric and alphanumeric designations that depict the descriptions of injuries, diseases and other health care procedures used in the medical field.

Medical coding has emerged as an important field of medical sciences. It allows access to different healthcare records in terms of procedures as well as diagnoses, which can then be used for diverse purposes such as research, education and clinical care. The many uses of this field include:

1. Identification of symptoms to be evaluated, alerting other professionals in the healthcare field to different life threatening situations and allergies,

2. Comparing different facilities and also planning for new services, and

3. Helping out with administration function, which may include scheduling, staffing, adding services, reporting reimbursement information, and more.

Medical coding can be classified into four major types, which include Diagnostic codes, Procedural codes, Pharmaceutical codes and Topographical codes. Diagnostic codes are used for diseases, symptoms, disorders, medical signs as well as human response patterns. The procedural codes are used to identify the specific interventions by medical professionals. Pharmaceutical codes, on the other hand, are used for identification of medications. Lastly, topographical codes are used to indicate a specific body location.

The main use of medical coding is for insurance purposes, where it is used for financial reimbursement from insurance companies. It helps in identification of codes and thus has the potential of displaying the entire history of the patient and also the services that were performed on him/her. The physician’s note is converted into medical codes, which is then used by the insurance companies that make payment to the health care provider accordingly.

Medical Coding is a growing industry and has a huge potential. It has grown as an offshoot of the medical and technological industry as large databases and micro computers are used to manage all the coding work. It has also emerged as a lucrative professional field, which is popularly outsourced because of many different reasons. Medical coders are in high demand and need a specialized qualification in order to be able to work as a medical coder. Several third world countries have specialized outsourcing agencies for medical coding that provide services to companies abroad. That way, insurance companies and other firms requiring coding data benefit from the cost advantage of outsourcing, as they utilize cheaper medical coder services from these countries.

Source by Elyse Hartman

How to Better Prepare Yourself to Study for the Medical Coding Certification (CPC) Exam

If you are feeling stressed because the medical coding certification exam is arriving closer and closer, you need to be aware of a few tips to help you prepare for the exam as well as study for it. Whether you are taking the exam by the AAPC or AHIMA, there are several steps you want to be aware of to better prepare yourself before it is too late. You may want to take a preparation course, collect practice exams, or use a study guide to help you review on certain topics you may not have a complete understanding of at the moment.

Experience matters

Since part of the job responsibilities of a medical billing and coding specialist requires that you process patient treatment records, you need to make sure you have the medical terminology knowledge as well as anatomy knowledge before you begin to prepare for this certification exam. You may want to intern at a physician’s office while you are in school so you can have a better understanding of everything a medical billing and coding specialist does on an everyday basis. On the day of your exam, you want to have some knowledge as well as experience so you will not be concerned about the toughness of the questions.

Practice exams

By collecting several different practice exams, you will have a better understanding of the amount of difficulty the questions will be on the real CPC exam. You could either ask your school instructors for a practice exam or you can find a few different ones online that you can print out. By taking them online instead of printing them out, you will find out your score as soon as you take it and you will also see the problems you missed as well as why you missed them. It is better to collect as many as you can at least six months before you end up taking your actual exam so you can take your time and are able to go into a lot more detail about each question in case your CPC exam will ask you more questions about each one of the questions you answered on all of your practice exams.

Study guides

Having a study guide will definitely help you prepare for the exam because it will help you study in a more organized fashion and will also prepare you for the exam by giving you a few sample questions within each topic. Your study guide may also give you an outline of each topic so you can refresh your memory in case you have forgotten, and it will also help you with the more difficult topics that you are not able to understand.

Keep calm and prepare thoroughly

By taking in all of these strategies to prepare for your CPC exam, you need to use those to help you study as well. If you are the kind of person that has really high-test anxiety, then you want to take each topic and review a little bit each day. It helps if you could create a blank calendar and assign times as well as days of the week for each topic so you are not cramming everything in on the same day.

The more you prepare for the CPC exam given by the AAPC or AHIMA, the more confident you will feel as the exam day approaches. By developing study techniques that work for you, you will also feel less nervous and more relaxed as well as having the confidence in yourself that you can ace the exam and receive a great and high-paying job.

Source by Jim H May