An Introduction to Medical Coding and Billing
What do you mean by medical coding and billing?
The term ‘medical billing and coding’ actually refer to a single job, but the term, in reality, is used for a field dedicated to two different jobs. Both these are together called as the ‘healthcare administrative technicians.’ While it is true that many medical billers are also medical coders but this isn’t always the case.
Medical Billing Job Description
Let’s first discuss the medical billing job description as it is the most used acronym for all.
Most healthcare services in the world and especially in the USA now work through insurance companies. The insurance companies act as the intermediary bodies for the payment of dues whereas the physicians are only involved in the treatment of the patient.
Both, the private and the government practices, are now affiliated with insurance agencies for the payment of dues.
Medical professional provide the healthcare facility and are only responsible for the treatment. They can’t directly engage with patients to ask for fees. This is the work of the medical biller or the medical billing company engaged in this kind of work.
Think, how would a doctor look like while chasing after each patient that he has not paid his full dues?
The medical billers are responsible for carrying out these tasks. They prepare the necessary paperwork and then send it to the insurance company. The bills are normally paid within a month.
Medical Coder Job Description
Similar to the medical biller, the medical coder isn’t responsible to chase after the insurance companies an d clients for bill payments. They are involved with the billing software to check the accuracy of the bills. In the previous days, when technology wasn’t as supreme as it is now, the medical coders used to transcribe the treatments through their codes and calculate the payments. But, now as the automated software is now available for this job, the medical coders are now engaged in only the review process. They enter the data in the software and then the sheets are automatically printed. The accuracy of the medical bills also depends on the medical coders.
The insurance companies need accurate documents for the services and procedures provided by the medical professionals. They also need the specifics such as the medical records, the nature of the medical condition and the process of treatment. The medical coders write all these details and the bills are then handed over to the insurance companies.
In reality, the work of the medical billers starts even before the patients have approved of the specifics for the payment, treatment, and coverage.
If any third parties are involved, they are not the responsibility of the medical billers and they directly deal with the insurance agencies involved in-between.
Having a medical coder on the team not only increases its worth but the work runs more smoothly. This allows for even faster and efficient processing of insurance claims.
In summary, medical coding and billing are two different job roles. They both, however, fit into a single category because of their nature of work.
While hiring a medical billing professional for your company find the one that suits your needs.