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CodersMax — Medical Coding FAQ

What is medical coding?

As the name implies, Medical coding is the process of assigning formal, standardized WHO Medical codes to diagnoses, Supplies, Drugs and procedures performed or identified by physicians. These standardized codes make it possible for health care providers to receive accurate and timely financial reimbursement from insurance companies and government programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare and Private Health Insurance.

What do medical coders do?

Medical coders spend much of their time working with medical records documents and patient charts. They are responsible for identifying diagnostic and procedural information and converting this information into simplified numerical codes that can be electronically processed for payment by 3rd party payers — Insurance companies and Medicare, for example.

Medical coders interact daily with a variety of health care professionals to ensure that payments and reimbursements are optimized.

How much money can I make as a medical coder?

Averag medical coder salary in India starts from 18,000 INR to 30,000 INR for Certified Coders with no experience. With Experience, salary will be as par with IT industry. Highly lucrative, recession Proof Career.

How long does the training take?

The CodersMax Medical Coding training program requires approximately 240 hours of study to complete. On average, the entire program will require approximately 3 months to complete on a part time basis.

Do I have to be certified?

An entry level or advanced certification is typically considered a prerequisite for entry into the medical coding profession.

How do I get certified?

Entry-level Medical Coding certification exams are offered throughout the year by two national organizations:

  • AAPC — American Association of Professional Coders
  • AHIMA — American Health Information Management Association

The CodersMax Medical Coding training program is designed to prepare you for the certification process.

Where do medical coders work?

Most medical coding is performed by medical coders working in hospitals or clinics in virtually every town and city in the country. Medical coders work in a professional environment and perform a vital behind the scenes billing support activity. Coding professionals are also employed by coding and billing services, insurance companies, government agencies and consulting firms.

What is the employment outlook for medical coders?

According to the 2022 Occupational Outlook Handbook published by the United States Department of Labor, the number of medical records and health information technicians needed in the United States is expected to grow by 30.3% through 2027. This represents approximately 44,541 new job openings for medical records and health information technicians during coming years.

The Occupational Outlook Handbook further states that “Job prospects should be very good. Employment of medical records and health information technicians is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2027, due to rapid growth in the number of medical tests, treatments, and procedures that will be increasingly scrutinized by third-party payers, regulators, courts and consumers.”

The median annual wage for health information technologists, medical registrars, surgical assistants, and healthcare practitioners and technical workers, all other was $51,840 in May 2020.

The median annual wage for medical dosimetrists, medical records specialists, and health technologists and technicians, all other was $44,090 in May 2020.

Job Outlook

Overall employment of medical records and health information specialists is projected to grow 9 percent from 2020 to 2030, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

About 34,300 openings for medical records and health information specialists are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

What kinds of skills and experience do I need to enter the CodersMax program?

You must possess a Graduation. Additionally, medical coding requires a high attention to detail and a solid understanding of medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, and disease processes. It is a challenging and rewarding career field. There are no specific skills and experience that are considered prerequisites for entry into the CodersMax training program. A desire to succeed and a commitment to learning are the most important qualifications. No previous coding experience is required.

Can I train at home to be a medical coder?

Yes. The CodersMax medical coding training program is a self-paced online program of study that can be completed entirely in the comfort of your own home.

What equipment will I need to get started?

You will need a computer and an internet connection. Everything else you need will be supplied by CodersMax.

How does medical coding compare to medical transcription?

The process of medical coding is a highly regulated and tightly supervised activity. Medical coding is also subject to frequent and rigorous audits to ensure accuracy in billing as there are literally billions of dollars on the line. It is a much more scrutinized activity than medical transcription.

As a consequence, the requirement for certification is greater for individuals embarking on a medical coding career compared to many other career fields.

Whereas medical transcription requires spelling and advanced literacy skills, coding is more analytical and objective.

Medical transcription is predominately performed by individuals working from home. At this point, most medical coding is still performed in hospitals and clinics.

Are there home-based employment opportunities for medical coders?

While there are a few companies who hire home-based medical coders, most medical coding work is performed onsite at hospitals and clinics. There appears to be a trend toward outsourcing of coding work to 3rd party vendors. As this trend catches on, it is possible that more coding work will be done in homes and coding will evolve to become more of a home based career — much like medical transcription is today. However, at this point it is important to point out that this is not the norm and that most coding is still accomplished in a hospital and clinic setting.

What is the difference between “inpatient” and “outpatient” coding?

In the world of medical coding, there are two fairly distinct groups of coders:

Those who perform coding for clinics, physicians offices, and hospital emergency rooms. These are typically referred to as “Outpatient Coders”.

Thos who perform coding in major hospitals — typically referred to as “Inpatient Coders”.

As a general rule, a procedure or health care event that requires you to be admitted to the hospital and stay overnight is considered inpatient coding. Procedures that are performed on a same day basis where the patient is not admitted to the hospital for an overnight stay are considered outpatient events.

A lot of surgeries and procedures that used to require admission to the hospital are now being performed routinely on an outpatient basis — which means that the patient goes in and has the surgery and comes home the same day without ever being admitted to the hospital. The reality is that most coding is outpatient coding. The trend is for physicians and hospitals to perform more and more of their procedures on an outpatient basis.

Well as you might expect, there is a significant difference in the skill set required to apply codes to complex inpatient operative reports vs. coding a report for a laceration or a stubbed toe in a clinic or emergency room setting.

Most entry-level coders are going to begin their careers coding outpatient records.

The CodersMax medical coding curriculum is primarily focused on outpatient coding — preparing you for entry-level certification and entry-level employment as a medical coder.

Inpatient coders are generally trained or mentored on the job and come from the ranks of outpatient coders. This creates plenty of opportunities for advancement in both career and income.

Do I need to follow the course order as it is outlined in the Syllabus?

The idea of an independent course is independence. The course has been put together in such a way that following the suggested order optimizes your chances for success. Of course, you are welcome to work through the program according to your own strategy, but you will be responsible for all of the material covered in the course, so be sure not to miss any units.

If I am already familiar with some of the subjects taught in the course, can I skip them?

The CodersMax course is competency based, meaning you move on to the next level when you are competent in the material being taught. Many of our students have had previous experience in several of the concepts taught in the course. If this is the case, we recommend that you skip directly to the test for that particular section and take it. If you do not score well above an 85%, please go back and review the material.

Can I complete the exercises or tests in the course more than once?

You can take each unit test, or complete each exercise as many times as you need to until you are confident in your performance, in fact, we encourage it! Many students like to review each test before taking the final exam. Please note that your score will be recorded each time you take a test. The gradebook will hold a maximum of three test scores: your oldest score, newest score, and best score. You should pay attention to the best score as indication of how well you have learned the material in that section.