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Common Medical Coding and Billing Myths



Two functions of a healthcare organization that prove to be very vital for its operational and financial success are - medical coding and medical billing. Although professionals in medical coding jobs and medical billing jobs don’t serve the patients directly, they do interact with patients and handle a wide range of responsibilities in the healthcare facilities. A typical day of a medical coder or biller may include interacting with patients, physicians, nurses or health insurance providers. They ensure that they record all the patient information thoroughly and at the same time secrecy of the information is maintained. People, who wish to get into these jobs, have some wrong notions about medical coding and billing.

Medical coding = medical billing: One myth about these jobs is that medical coding and billing are the same. No, both these professions are different and need different skills sets. It is true that both medical coding jobs and billing jobs require understanding the medical terminology and various diagnostic and procedure codes. However, both jobs are different. Coders’ responsibility is to code the different diagnosis and procedures accurately. The medical billers work with these codes given by the coders and prepare the bills and insurance claims to generate revenue for the facility.

It is easy: Many people often think that coding and billing are easy because it doesn’t require to deal with patients and their agony. Moreover, it is a desk job that doesn’t need any specific skill set. This is absolutely wrong. It is very challenging for a non-medical person to understand the human anatomy and physiology so as to understand various diagnoses and treatments to be able to code accurately. There are thousands of codes that have to be learnt and learning is a continuous process in this profession as medical science is very dynamic and sees a lot of changes from time to time. Medical billers too have similar challenges with the codes and they even have to master various insurance laws and regulations to raise accurate claims. Medical billing jobs also require expert knowledge of coding and billing guidelines and HIPAA regulations.

Just data entry: Another common myth regarding coding and billing is that it is just a job of data entry. Although, coding and billing require gathering information from different sources and filling that as required, it is not mere data entry. These jobs require good medical subject knowledge and investigative skills to interpret the data and determine which information is significant and which is not. Coders and billers may need to interact with physicians, healthcare technicians, support staff and patients if required and ensure that the facility receives its dues on time without any delay.

Medical coding and billing are professions for people who are open to daily challenges and like to learn on a continuing basis. If you are one, join Avontix, for a progressive career in coding and billing.

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