Work From Home Medical Coding Jobs

By Chris Kolmar - Oct. 19, 2020

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Medical coding might sound somewhat complicated when you first hear of it.

However, one of the biggest perks of entering the medical billing and coding field is the likelihood of working from home.

Medical billing jobs have been advertised widely for a while, but sometimes it’s not exactly clear what this job entails. Companies who are looking for medical coders are searching for people who can help to categorize medical diagnoses, services, procedures, and supplies by code for healthcare billing purposes.

If these sound like something out of your wheelhouse, it’s because it probably is, unless you have been trained in these areas.

To apply for a medical coding job, you need special certification and may need a degree in a health-related field to top it off. Below, we discuss the specific requirements you may need to apply for a medical coding job.

What is Medical Coding?

Medical coding and billing require medical coders to assign codes to any given patient’s medical diagnoses and procedures. These codes keep patients organized and allow the medical biller to bill patients and insurance companies appropriately. The process normally goes something like:

  1. First, a medical transcriptionist will transcribe the doctor’s notes about the appointment.

  2. Then, medical coders will turn those files into numbers, using a standard classification system.

  3. Finally, a medical biller will use the billing codes to submit claims to insurance.

A medical coder or billing professional is an incredibly significant part of the team.

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A single person may handle both medical coding and billing. They act as the liaison between health insurance companies and healthcare facilities. Their job is to create health insurance claims and collect funds and reimbursements which is something significant to every single patient that walks through the door.

The wonderful thing about a billing or coding job is that professionals doing this type of work can work from virtually anywhere. Being able to work remotely is ideal for many families to lower commuting costs, supporting a better work-life balance, and reducing stress.

Jobs can be part-time, full-time, or per diem.

How much money can medical billers make?

Depending on your skill and certification level, you can make a variety of different incomes. However, the average annual salary for medical billers is between $35k and $42k. The outlook for these types of jobs is good, indicating that this payment will either increase or stay the same.

It is estimated that for over half of the coding specialist positions currently advertised online there are not enough available professionals to fill them. This gives medical billers and coders a key opportunity to find a medical coding job they love.

What education or experience is necessary for a medical billing or coding job?

When applying for a medical billing job, your employer may be looking for certain skills or experience on your resume. You’ll absolutely need to consider some additional education to be considered for a medical billing job.

  • Correct codes. When you are a medical biller, you’ll need to understand the distinction between correct codes assigned to each patient’s billing record. The training you should lean towards should focus on the ICD-10 medical coding system and other medical codes common for this type of job.

  • Medical knowledge. To work in this type of job, you’ll need to understand anatomy and physiology, common medical terms, billing guidelines, and what the typical industry standards are for this type of work.

  • Medical coding certification. Self-paced certification courses are available online, or you can consider a local college that may provide two-year or four-year degree options.

In order to qualify for a medical coding job, special certification is needed. Not all of the following may be required for any one job, but it’s important to understand the different certifications so that you can understand how to get yourself qualified.

  • RHIA: Registered Health Information Administrator (requires a four-year degree)

  • RHIT: Registered Health Information Technician (requires a two-year degree)

  • CCS: Certified Coding Specialist

  • CCS-P: Certified Coding Specialist, Physician-Based

  • CPC: Certified Professional Coder

  • CPC-H: Certified Professional Coder, Hospital-Based

If you are in the market for professional and reputable organizations who provide this type of coding training and certification, look at the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) and the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). Once you have received your certification, you’re ready for the next step of the process.

Skills Needed for a Medical Biller Job

Beyond the coding certifications necessary for a medical biller job, these employees must have additional skills to bring to the table.

Medical billers are responsible for communicating with physicians, patients, insurance representatives, and other individuals within the medical industry. Communication skills, both written and oral, are key to making sure you succeed in this type of environment.

You should consider how organized you are for this type of job. Billers work with an overwhelming amount of paperwork and track multiple cases at a time. You’ll need to ensure you can stay organized even with an abundance of information at your fingertips.

Attention to detail is equally if not more important than any other skill mentioned. Billing is a huge responsibility for both the healthcare office in which you work and for the patient. Numbers will become a part of your daily life and accurately recording data is key in ensuring success. Don’t forget that data is the biggest part of this type of job, so if you don’t like documenting and analyzing data, medical billing may not be the right fit for you.

Computer skills are significant especially since you will likely be working from home. You need to not only know how to run the specific programs needed for medical billing or coding, but you’ll need a teleconference system or instant message platform to communicate with your colleagues. Ensure you have a basic handle on how to develop software skills.

If you don’t have extensive experience working as a medical biller or coder before, consider highlighting other skills from previous work or education experience on your resume. These skills can be data entry, customer service, project management, any experience within pharmaceuticals or medical industries, and technology.

How flexible is a work-at-home medical billing or coding job?

Although you will be working from home, you’ll need to remember that your healthcare office likely has set hours in which the physician will see patients and other employees will be working. To that end, your medical billing or coding job will likely have set hours which you’ll be expected to work. Sometimes these types of jobs will offer shift work, so you may not have to work the typical 9-5 hours, but you will still be required to work for a set amount of time during a set amount of hours.

Additionally, this is not a job that you can jump in and out of. You’ll need to really focus your attention to detail on documents, numbers, and interactions with others. This position will not be good for parents working with kids at home or someone who has other priorities to attend to.

It’s common practice to ask this question during the interview or hiring process. In order not to go too deep with a certain job, ask the flexibility question to your employer upfront so that you are adequately prepared should you accept a job offer.

Where can I find medical coding or billing jobs?

Once you’re sure you have the skills and qualifications necessary to apply for a medical coding or billing jobs, you need to know where to look. There are a few different places to look for legitimate work from home jobs as a medical coder or medical biller.

  • iMedX. This provider of health information and clinical documentation employs at home medical coding specialists as contractors, full-time employees, or part-time employees. As long as you have the correct certifications and at least three years of relevant coding experience, you can apply.

  • Humana. This health insurance giant based out of Louisville, KY has over 13,8 medical members. At least 10% of their workforce telecommute from their home and it has been rated one of the top 100 places to work in America. Humana also hires virtual coding educations with the appropriate experience.

  • Aviacode. This popular medical coding and billing contracting firm based out of Salt Lake City employs around 850 medical coders from their homes. As a slightly smaller organization, they serve just under 9,000 physicians across 61 medical specialties. A quick glance at their available jobs shows they offer both part-time and full-time medical coding jobs for a variety of healthcare providers.

  • Precyse Solutions. This leading clinical data management company has been in business since 1998 in Roswell, Georgia. They serve clients like Fairmont General Hospital and UMass Memorial Medical Center. Their team consists of medical coders across the country.

  • Change Healthcare. Formerly Altegra Health, this independent healthcare IT company provides software, analytics, network solutions, and technology-enabled services to their clients. They hire for both part-time and full-time coders across a variety of specialty areas.

  • Conifer Health Solutions. This successful health information services firm serves over 800 medical clients. They have been recognized by Forbes as one of the top 100 employers in America. They offer work from home opportunities for medical coders.

  • The Coding Network. This organization provides medical coding and quality assurance (QA) to healthcare providers. Their remote coding jobs vary across medical specialties. However, you must have at least three years of experience to apply and five years in a specialty area.

  • Maxim Health Information Services. This organization belongs to one of the largest medical staffing companies in the entire US. MMHIS works with healthcare facilities to improve electronic patient records with outsourcing solutions. There is room to grow at this company as well, with opportunities to advance as a medical coding supervisor.

  • Medical Record Associates. This company has grown into America’s largest health information services. This business contracts with over 500 employees nationwide to provide full-suite solutions. They offer flexible and remote jobs to employees who also receive great benefits and paid holidays.

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Chris Kolmar

Author

Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar is a co-founder of Zippia and the editor-in-chief of the Zippia career advice blog. He has hired over 50 people in his career, been hired five times, and wants to help you land your next job. His research has been featured on the New York Times, Thrillist, VOX, The Atlantic, and a host of local news. More recently, he's been quoted on USA Today, BusinessInsider, and CNBC.

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