One of the key requirements for perfect medical billing and accurate reimbursements for the services provided is accurate medical coding. Every healthcare provider should check if its medical coders are diligent enough and have an eye for detail. Professionals in medical coding jobs also need to be alert and have good communication skills so as to communicate properly with physicians and other staff if necessary. However efficient the hospital management and coders are, there is scope for medical coding errors that impact the organization adversely. Here listed are some common reasons for coding errors often seen in medical coding companies that have to be avoided.
Getting comfortable: After certain years of experience and expertise in medical coding jobs, the coders get comfortable with their work. With this comfort level, the veteran coders believe that there is no point in using the code books and other references as they are already familiar with all the codes and it’s a sheer time waste. However, the fact is that it is not possible to memorize all the thousands of codes that get updated from time to time. Hence, to avoid such errors, it is required that the coders don’t get too comfortable with their knowledge and keep updating and referring to coding books if required.
Incomplete information: Some of the common claim denials that we come across are due to incomplete or missing information in the records from which the coders take inputs. Few examples of errors that cause such denials are selecting the wrong code for a new or established patient and giving a wrong procedure code of diagnostic instead of routine. To avoid this kind of errors, medical coding companies have to emphasize quality by cross-checking and evaluating coders on a regular basis.
Inefficient management strategy: Any kind of coding mistakes if unnoticed create mayhem and lead to claims denials and revenue losses. What is required is developing a strong coding leadership that is working on of identifying process improvement opportunities and analyzing the latest trends and denial reasons.
One thing that has to be taken note of is that even veteran coders may sometimes commit errors that lead to an increase in the claim denial rates and increase revenue losses thereby affecting the bottom line of the healthcare providers.