The healthcare industry is not just filled with doctors and nursing staff. It is much more than that and offers a plethora of job opportunities to those who are enthusiastic to make a difference in the quality of patients’ lives. Medical coding is one such field in the healthcare industry that deals with the maintenance of health records in the form of universally acceptable medical codes. If you want to explore what the people in this field do, let us take you through it.
Medical coding is the process of transformation of the various healthcare procedures performed at a healthcare facility to facilitate uniformity in recording the services provided. This job involves transforming all the details regarding healthcare diagnoses, medical services, procedures, tests performed, lab reports, and equipment used to provide services to a patient. This process not only helps in maintaining records uniformly across healthcare facilities but also helps in providing accurate details for medical billing that aids in getting appropriate reimbursements for the services provided either from the insurance companies or from the patients.
Medical coding jobs require using different types of medical codes yet; all these allow uniformity in documentation across healthcare facilities. Having such standard sets of medical codes aid to conduct efficient research and analysis of various ailments suffered by people, tracking health trends, taking appropriate measures as required by the government, and the seamless transfer of patient health records between various health providers to enable providing quick and efficient healthcare services to patients anytime and anywhere.
Such an important process in the healthcare industry cannot be performed by all but anyone interested in the field can get trained and depending on the skills and efficiency levels one can really have a rewarding career in medical coding companies. Let us look at the skills that you need to possess to become a medical coder:
- Technical skills: The most basic skills that one should have to enter the medical coding jobs are the technical skills that can be gained by enrolling in a professional medical coding program. These skills which include –
- Human Anatomy and medical terminology
- ICD -10 code set
- CPT code set
- HCPCS code set
- Inpatient coding
- Outpatient coding
- Professional communication skills: In medical coding jobs, you will have to communicate with various people related to healthcare providers and patients. You should learn and gain proficiency in industry jargon, practice listening skills and maintain a professional tone in all your communication.
- Attention to detail: Paying attention to detail plays a key role in the growth of a medical coder. Medical coders need to assign codes to various services provided by the healthcare providers based on the healthcare documentation reports and other data collected from various professionals in the healthcare facility. At times, the data may not be sufficient to assign accurate codes to the services and in such instances, it is the quality of attention to detail that helps in interpreting data from various sources and arriving at the final code that needs to be assigned.
Apart from these skills what every medical coder needs to imbibe is the virtue of constant learning as the healthcare industry is ever-evolving with new ailments, symptoms, diagnosis methods, treatment methods, equipment used, etc. If the medical coders working with the healthcare providers or medical coding companies don’t update themselves with the latest updates they cannot grow in their career. If you have all these skills you are ready to take on the career of medical coding.