Any person who thinks there is a difference between medical billers and medical coders is right.
Because there is a difference. With defined roles, they bring the right charisma to a physician’s revenue cycle. Nevertheless, one depends on the other for the completion of the billing process.
Medical billing services hire both professionals to carry out an effective revenue cycle management process on behalf of healthcare providers. Theoretically speaking, both professions require the professionals to read, interpret, and comprehend Electronic Health Records (EHRs) and doctors’ notes. Hence, their education in science is a must.
We all know that medical billing is a complex process. But with medical coders and billers assigned to claims, medical billing becomes all the more manageable. Their capabilities provide all the help a healthcare provider needs to process medical billing claims.
For you, as a primary care physician or a specialty-specific clinician, an authentic team of health IT experts may, rightfully, carve the way to a successful practice.
Coding: Where Medical Billing Services Begin
Medical coding is a definitive structure of the medical bill. It becomes an integral part of medical billing service which reflects each and everything in a proper, organized, and coded form. At times such as this pandemic, the healthcare sky is lit with updates; new codes for COVID-19 have surfaced, so coders have a responsibility to stay in touch with CMS updates.
Moreover, they must remain proficient and knowledgeable in the ICD-10 coding system – the coding system that classifies diseases. The other one being the CPT set of codes identifies the treatment aspect of received cure.
The above systems help convert medical jargon into easier alphanumeric codes. For people inside and outside the medical industry, it may be hard to understand the names of diseases and certain procedures. Thus, the availability of these coding systems provides a comprehensive path to diseases and their solutions.
Since there are thousands of diseases, symptoms, and cures, it is not possible to write to them in complete form all the time. The only way possible is to design a coding system that classifies them.
Medical coders are required to manifest the knowledge of thousands of CPT and ICD-10 codes accordingly. Moreover, coders translate medical records for reimbursements later.
This gives us an overview of what coders are responsible for.
Medical Billing is the Social Part of Coding
After proofreading the claims, next comes the job of billing professionals to forward them to insurance companies.
A claim that is prepared by the coder has to go through a process; the person who carries it out through to the end is a medical biller. If it is a small practice, usually, there will be a small group of medical billers. However, to tend to a larger practice or hospital, there’s a whole team of billers and coders. Their times often concur with the time of the practice, but they can also work remotely to address claims as they come.
Without experienced billing personnel on your side, a health care facility, or a primary care physician’s revenue cycle would fail to function. Here, at P3, we have a whole team dedicated to medical billing outsourcing, so feel free to reach out at this number: 1-844-557-3227.
Billers to devise the billing claim use information emanating in the form of codes by medical coders. That claim becomes the first-hand information for insurance companies to release payments. A well-written billing claim without errors has a higher first-time acceptance rate. Furthermore, collections occur fast, almost within 2 weeks.
If patients have outstanding bills, the medical billing experts are required to contact them as part of the following-up process. They will walk them through the process and inform them about any deductibles, copayments, or other insurance liabilities.
Besides, medical billing and coding teams coordinate with insurance companies to get providers on board if they are not enlisted with them. Sometimes the patients visit providers who are out of network, and not on their health plan. Then, the medical billing services have an additional role to play, to enlist such providers with insurance companies. To speed up things, doctors must provide any documentation that is urgently required to complete the registration process.
Filing appeals and conversing with patients is part of their job. There is little time between denial and resubmission; therefore, we must act fast, recompile, proofread, and resubmit.
Where Do They Work?
‘Medical billing services near me’ is one of the search terms often searched on Google. Why?
Because, one, physicians are in search of someone nearby; second, if they can find them nearby, they are physically reachable. However, the remote nature of work has popularized the job amongst outsourcing companies. Therein, we hear the term, medical billing outsourcing.
Most billers and coders are present on LinkedIn with incredible job portfolios. Often you’ll find abbreviations such as CPC – Certified Professional Coder – besides their names. Also, you’ll find abbreviations such as CCA – Certified Coding Associate – and CCS – Certified Coding Specialist – with their names.
The prerequisites for this job are at least a high school diploma with a science background. However, an associate degree in medical billing helps convincingly in the long run.
You have four studying options:
- Bachelor’s degree in a health-related subject (4 years)
- Associate degree in medical billing & coding (2 years)
- Diploma (1 year)
- Certification (a couple of months)
All of these studying programs lead towards a bright future which is well-respected and well-paid.
Pro Tip – Choose schools that are recognized by AHIMA or AAPC.
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