Inside Medical Biller Careers

Things you need to know, but nobody tells you

Biggest Surprises

"Technology Advancement More Important In Today's Computerized World...
I was surprised to find that U.S. overall is far behind other countries with the implementation and use of the ICD-10 code-set. Other countries are already in the works of migrating to ICD-11.We are still using ICD-9. I thought this is very interesting." (Medical Biller And Coder; 2013)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in California, male
School: Studied Medical Biller And Coder at Fresno Adult School. in California; completed Certificate degree in 2012

"Bigger Job Field Pool...
That I am able to use my degree generically in different fields (Insurance, general office administrators, etc.). It's a nice thing to realize, especially if there are hard times in a specific field where you can hop around in different fields. This also aides a person if they are wanting a higher salary since they will have more experience in general office duties that need to be done (bookkeeping, administrative assistant, etc.)" (Billing Administrator/Administrative Assistant; 2014)

Career: 4 years of experience, currently based in New York, female
School: Studied Business Administration In The Resort And Recreation Service Management at Morrisville State College in New York; completed Bachelor degree in 2006

"Learning Anatomy Is More Important Than You Think...
I was surprised how many medical conditions there are and how picky the insurance companies are in the coding. If you get even one little detail wrong with your code, the insurance company will reject it and not pay. Then you have to re-code it and re-submit it. You need to know medical terminology extensively and anatomy. I was surprised how important knowing anatomy is in getting the correct codes." (Medical Coder; 2013)

Career: 6 years of experience, currently based in Arizona, female
School: Studied Medical Coder at Carrington College in Arizona; completed Diploma degree in 2005

"You Need Certifications (Testing) Not Just A College Education...
Without certifications it's impossible to get a job in this field. Even with certifications it's hard." (Medical Billing & Coding; 2013)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in Pennsylvania, female
School: Studied Medical Billing & Coding at Butler Community College in Pennsylvania; completed Certificate degree in 2008

"My Job Wanted People That Have Already Had Experience In The Field...
I noticed that I really did Not have to go to school for this. Anybody can be a medical biller" (Medical Billing; 2013)

Career: 3 years of experience, currently based in California, female
School: Studied Medical Biller at American Career College in California

"Not As Easy As It May Seem...
I was surprised to discover the level of difficulty for a medical coder to get a foot in the door. I was also surprised about the complexity of this field." (Medical Biller And Coder; 2013)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in North Carolina, female
School: Studied Medical Billing And Coding at Southeastern Institute in North Carolina; completed Diploma degree in 2012

"Based On Knowledge Not Just A Case Number...
I am surprised that my medical profession is one of the most important. The medical biller keeps hospitals and doctors revenue ongoing. A accurate medical billing team keeps accounting happy as well as patients. I review each patients case with the knowledge I have learned from my professors. I try not to look at each case by a patients number." (Medical Biller; 2013)

Career: 3 years of experience, currently based in New York, female
School: Studied Medical Coding at Queens College in New York; completed Associate degree in 2010

"Wide Range Of Procedures...
The thing that has most surprised me about being a medical biller is just how many different medical procedures there are out there, and how even the slightest change in something results in a completely different billed procedure." (Coder I; 2014)

Career: 3 years of experience, currently based in Idaho, female
School: Studied Medical Billing And Coding at North Idaho College in Idaho; completed Associate degree in 2009

"I was surprised that in order to work in Medical Billing and Coding, it required me to be a lot more attentive than I thought I needed to be." (Medical Billing; 2013)

Career: 2 years of experience, currently based in Michigan, female
School: Studied Medicine at Kalamazoo Valley Community College in Michigan; completed Associate degree in 2010

"Ongoing Training Necessary...
I am surprised to find that medical billing takes updated training knowledge. Codes change and you have to know which ones to use to get the insurance companies to pay. If you use the wrong or outdated codes, you could not get paid or get the payment delayed." (Medical Biller; 2013)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in Oregon, female
School: Studied Medical Billing at University Of Phoenix in Arizona; completed Bachelor degree in 2012

"Importance Of Coding Correctly...
I was surprised at how careful that you have to be when coding. If you code a chart in error that mistake sticks with the patient forever. For instance if you accidentally enter that the patient has a heart condition and they really don't. That incorrect diagnosis could potentially prevent them from obtaining life insurance in the future." (Certified Coder; 2013)

Career: 2 years of experience, currently based in Kentucky, female
School: Studied Medical Coding at Bluegrass Community And Technical College in Kentucky; completed Associate degree in 2011

"Coding Takes Experience And Patience...
The one thing I'm surprised about are the opportunities. It really varies from situation to situation but for the most part, medical billers and coders have ways to make the best of out their careers. What surprises other people is the fact that medical coders learn most of what they do on the job, not from getting a degree. Also, a medical coding degree doesn't really open doors to jobs, experience does." (Medical Coder; 2014)

Career: 3 years of experience, currently based in California, female
School: Studied Medical Coding And Billing at Santa Monica College in California; completed Associate degree in 2006

"How Much Medicare Is Focused On The Wrong Things...
When I first started billing in 2000, it was easy, you could obtain a few documents, a Rx, and submit the claim to be paid within two weeks. Then everything started changing, it got harder and harder to obtain information to the claim, the doctors would have to work with you more and they felt like they didn't need to do that, but Medicare said you have to have this in the file. Then the payments started coming slower and slower. Now you are lucky to receive payments within a month sometimes they audit the files just so they don't have to pay right away. I am not so sure if the stress is worth learning all you need to know to do this job to Medicare standards." (Medicare Specialist; 2014)

Career: 13 years of experience, currently based in Arkansas, female
School: Studied Medicare Billing And Coding at Medicare Medlearns in South Carolina; completed Certificate degree in 2005

"I was surprised when I learned this job lets you work from home after you have had some experience. Usually you can start working from home after two years." (Medical Coder; 2013)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in Massachusetts, female
School: Studied Medical Billing And Coding at Quincy College in Massachusetts; completed Certificate degree in 2012

"More Involved Than Entering Codes...
I didn't realize how much went into learning Medical Billing and Coding. You had to learn the computer, language, the body, etc. Not just punching in numbers. You have to know the why and the how." (Medical Billing And Coding; 2012)

Career: 1 years of experience, currently based in California, female
School: Studied Medical Billing at PTI Training in New Jersey; completed Certificate degree in 2012

Best & Worst Things About This Career

Medical Billing & Coding Specialist: "The worst part about my career is when claims are not able to be submitted due to missing information. Or when there is not enough information in the patient's chart in order to bill properly. There are also times when the incorrect codes are used for certain procedures and diagnoses which causes the claims to be paid at a lower rate, thus generating less income than possible. This is a problem because the goal of the biller is to generate as much income as possible." (2011)

Healthcare Compliance Manager: "The best part of my job is helping people understand how to do things in better ways. This brings a satisfaction, because people are happier when they are able to do their work better. The company is better off, too, because there will be fewer complaints they have to deal with, and also there is less chance of getting into trouble with the law. The worst part of my job is getting managers to understand why compliance is good for the company. Managers look at compliance as if it gets in the way of them doing their work and sometimes it makes their work harder." (2010)

Career Background

Medical Biller

  Job Tasks
  Work Environment
  How to Prepare for the Job
  Job Outlook

Career Tips

"Work Experience...
In order to be successful with a Business Administration field, make sure to accumulate job experience while you're studying. Getting a part time job is easier than it was a few years ago and this will aide you in job security after graduation. Also, it will help if something happens with your job (job loss, quit, etc.) where you can find one quickly since you have that experience." (Billing Administrator/Administrative Assistant; 2014)

"Organization Is Key...
If you want to be a successful medical biller, you need to be very thorough and organized, and you need to be prepared to keep up with all the changes in the medical field." (Coder I; 2014)

"Be The Best At What You Do...
If you want to do this type of work, you need to be the best you can be at it cause you will get caught up in an audit. And you better know your billing rules." (Medicare Specialist; 2014)

"Experience Determines Your Pay In Medical Coding...
If you want to be a successful medical coder/biller, the first thing is to get an accredited degree from a college. But a degree alone won't get you the jobs. What you need to do next is experience. Entry level is always hard because most employers already want experienced coders. Find a small clinic that will train you. Do this for about 2 years. Then once you get experience, you can move on to higher paying jobs. The more you know, the better your pay will be." (Medical Coder; 2014)

"The Puppet...
Do what you love. Don't take a course because your friends are doing it or family is pushing you . Do what you want when you want , because at the end of the day your stuck with the job and the student loan." (Medical Billing; 2013)

"Importance Of Knowing Coding Guidelines...
Make sure that you study and learn the guidelines for coding. You would be surprised at how much that something comes up that you need to have knowledge of or refer to the guidelines. There are many gray areas when coding, it is not always a black and white situation." (Certified Coder; 2013)

"Patients Deserve The Best ...
All anatomy and pharmacology course you can take in a semester. Review each patient case efficiently remember, you are dealing with patients not a case number." (Medical Biller; 2013)

"The More Rounded Your Education Is The Better Off You Are...
Don't look into just billing and coding go with IT or assisting." (Medical Billing & Coding; 2013)

"Working In The Healthcare Industry Offers Many Rewards And Benefits...
When you realize it??s time to change careers, select a career path that encompasses as many of your talents as possible. Research and see what might be the right fit for you. With job growth projected to increase in Healthcare industry, choosing to work in health care could be a smart career move." (Medical Biller And Coder; 2013)

"See Example Above...
Being a medical biller and coder can be very rewarding, but understand that it takes complete devotion and can be very stressful." (Medical Biller And Coder; 2013)

"Use My Advice To Be Successful In Coding/Billing...
Coding is never boring. You are always learning new things. Make sure you work with your coworkers and get their input if you're unsure about a code. Better to ask for a second opinion than get the claim rejected. Anatomy is very important. You need to know what part of the body the doctor is examining since some medical terminology is so close in the way they sound or are spelled." (Medical Coder; 2013)

"Making Tough Calls...
You may have to call people to get them to pay so you should brush up on interpersonal skills so that it goes smoother for you." (Medical Biller; 2013)

"More Math Than Expected...
Get as much math experience as you possibly can! I went into it thinking it would be basic, but there is a lot more to it than that!" (Medical Billing; 2013)

"Formal Training A Must...
Definitely do not pursue this career without taking classes in Medical Billing and Coding. This will help to familiarize yourself with the procedures that will be used in a medical office. If you are looking to pursue the coding side rather than the billing side, make sure to take your coding certification test prior to applying for coding positions. Also, be aware that you will have to start out billing before any company will hire you as a coder. Become great at interviewing. The hardest part of my career has been interviewing. This career field is very competitive and they want the best people for the job and who appear to be confident in their abilities." (Medical Billing & Coding Specialist; 2011)

"Explore Medical Billing Programs...
Look into Medical Billing Certificate programs first. Or healthcare law. These will give you the background you need to be able to get into this field. Or go into business or healthcare administration and work in healthcare finance for awhile. Joining one of the compliance associations as a student is a good idea. There are many on the web. When you have a little experience, look for compliance coordinator jobs. They are a step into doing the actual work and give you invaluable insight into how things really work in healthcare." (Healthcare Compliance Manager; 2010)