College Resources

Career Tracks: Medical Coding & Billing

As the name implies, coding is the process of assigning formal, standardized codes to diagnoses 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.

Duties

Graduates in this field may be required to:

  • work with medical records, documents, and patient charts

  • identify diagnostic and procedural information and convert this information into simplified numerical codes that can be electronically processed for payment by 3rd party payers (Insurance companies, Medicare, etc.)

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

Working Conditions

Graduates in this field commonly:

  • work in doctors' offices, hospitals, long-term care facilities, industry, homes, and community settings

  • also work in coding and billing services, insurance companies, government agencies and consulting firms

  • work under little supervision

  • work under stress

  • keep very busy

  • are required to complete considerable paperwork 

  • are required to have computer skills
     

Characteristics & Temperament

Graduates in this field should have:

  • excellent oral and written communication skills

  • ability to work with people

  • deal effectively with cultural diversity

  • patience/tolerance

  • caring, positive attitude

  • flexibility - ability to deal with change

  • ability to prioritize/perform multiple tasks/skills

  • critical thinking

  • preciseness

  • ability to be responsible/take initiative/have self-discipline

  • ability to follow directions

  • ability to reason, make good judgments and decisions

  • ability to record information accurately/proofread

  • attention to details
     

Employment Outlook

These employment statistics come from the Occupational Outlook Handbook published by the United States Department of Labor, and are as follows:

  • employment of medical records and health information technicians is expected to increase by 22 percent from 2010 to 2020, faster than the average for all occupations.
  • employment in cities and towns of all sizes
     

Employers

Some recent graduates have found work at: