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A health information specialist is in charge of overseeing and developing strategies to optimize information management procedures in hospitals, physicians' offices, and other similar environments. Their responsibilities revolve around gathering and updating medical records, receiving and organizing files, and updating databases according to the appropriate coding systems and procedures. Furthermore, as a health information specialist, it is essential to coordinate with nurses and other staff to ensure accuracy in documentation, all while adhering to the company's policies and regulations.

Health Information Specialist Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real health information specialist resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Manage chart completion (ICD-9-CM and CPT coding/abstracting), chart assembly and analysis, patient admission and patient information privacy/security.
  • Review and audit medical records for correct DRG and APC assignment.
  • Certify requests for subpoenas, court orders, legal cases and training of employees.
  • Utilize Cerner and Centricity systems to assist in ancillary services.
  • Abstract medical records with ICD9-CM, CPT and DRG coding.
  • Scan documentation via DCS into HPF to be index under ROI.
  • Release patient information according to the HIPPA laws and regulation which requires proof of identification.
  • Utilize Cerner, Invision, and Doma to locate and create charts for patient records.
  • Used gold standard coding techniques to increase productivity and quality while assigning diagnoses and procedures via ICD-CM and CPT-4 codes.
  • Assign ICD-9-CM diagnostic and procedure, CPT, and E/M codes to medical information consistent with regulatory guidance and best practices.
  • Receive subpoenas and verify for validity.
  • Follow all HIPAA guidelines pertaining to patient confidentiality.
  • Maintain productivity and quality standards in accordance with ROI department standards.
  • Perform other relate clinic duties uphold departmental guidelines and observe HIPAA regulations.
  • Communicate with patients, physicians and legal representatives in regard to processing requests as well as additional information.

Health Information Specialist Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 26% of Health Information Specialists are proficient in Patients, HIPAA, and Medical Terminology. They’re also known for soft skills such as Analytical skills, Detail oriented, and Integrity.

We break down the percentage of Health Information Specialists that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Patients, 26%

    Admitted patients for surgical procedures by collecting and processing payments, verifying insurance, and collecting patient demographic information.

  • HIPAA, 11%

    Assured all releases of information complied with HIPAA Regulations and company confidentiality policies and procedures.

  • Medical Terminology, 10%

    Screened health records for confidential information not covered under a general authorization using medical terminology.

  • Patient Care, 10%

    Assist all three departments to ensure optimal patient care and smooth daily functioning of the office.

  • Data Entry, 4%

    Maintained and processed medical records; Distributed health information to clients and affiliates, Data Entry, Switchboard, clerical assignments.

  • Office Equipment, 3%

    Used general office equipment, Sorted documents from patient charts and scanned into computer

"patients," "hipaa," and "medical terminology" aren't the only skills we found health information specialists list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of health information specialist responsibilities that we found, including:

  • Arguably the most important personality trait for a health information specialist to have happens to be analytical skills. An example from a resume said this about the skill, "health information technicians must understand and follow medical records and diagnoses, and then decide how best to code them in a patient’s medical records." Additionally, other resumes have pointed out that health information specialists can use analytical skills to "retrieved patient medical records and performed data entry of medical record information. "
  • Another trait important for fulfilling health information specialist duties is detail oriented. According to a health information specialist resume, "health information technicians must be accurate when recording and coding patient information." Here's an example of how health information specialists are able to utilize detail oriented: "analyze inpatient and outpatient charts physician's detail report"
  • Health information specialists are also known for integrity, which can be critical when it comes to performing their duties. An example of why this skill is important is shown by this snippet that we found in a health information specialist resume: "health information technicians work with patient data that are required, by law, to be kept confidential" We also found this resume example that details how this skill is put to the test: "handle confidential information with integrity and professionalism within hipaa guidelines. "
  • A health information specialist responsibilities sometimes require "technical skills." The responsibilities that rely on this skills are shown by this resume excerpt: "health information technicians must use coding and classification software and the electronic health record (ehr) system that their healthcare organization or physician practice has adopted." This resume example shows how this skill is used by health information specialists: "designated as the primary point of contact for all users and provided first and second-tier technical support relative to user accounts. "
  • Another common skill for a health information specialist to be able to utilize is "interpersonal skills." Health information technicians need to be able to discuss patient information, discrepancies, and data requirements with other professionals such as physicians and finance personnel. A health information specialist demonstrated the need for this skill by putting this on their resume: "possess strong customer/goal orientation and excellent interpersonal communication and pc skills. "
  • See the full list of health information specialist skills.

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    What Medical Biller Coders Do

    A medical biller coder is responsible for handling the billing processes and insurance within a hospital, clinic, or similar facility. They must gather patient information and records to analyze and translate them into codes according to the insurance and medical guidelines. Moreover, it is crucial to verify all patient forms and ensure their accuracy as it will serve as a basis on essential documents and medical record-keeping. There may also be instances where a medical biller coder must devise payment plans for patients, communicate with families and guardians, and coordinate with physicians.

    We looked at the average health information specialist annual salary and compared it with the average of a medical biller coder. Generally speaking, medical biller coders receive $5,413 higher pay than health information specialists per year.

    While the salaries between these two careers can be different, they do share some of the same responsibilities. Employees in both health information specialists and medical biller coders positions are skilled in patients, hipaa, and medical terminology.

    There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, a health information specialist responsibilities require skills like "patient care," "excellent organizational," "cycle management," and "office equipment." Meanwhile a typical medical biller coder has skills in areas such as "medical billing," "customer service," "cpt-4," and "hcpcs." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

    Medical biller coders really shine in the professional industry with an average salary of $39,875. Whereas health information specialists tend to make the most money in the health care industry with an average salary of $33,177.

    On average, medical biller coders reach similar levels of education than health information specialists. Medical biller coders are 2.9% less likely to earn a Master's Degree and 0.1% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Medical Coder?

    A medical coder's role is to interpret and analyze a patient's medical record and translate particular details according to the universal medical alphanumeric code. Moreover, a medical coder is primarily responsible for ensuring that the translations are accurate, as this will play a vital factor in processing insurance and receiving treatments. Aside from accuracy, it is also crucial for a medical coder to coordinate with other hospital personnel at all times, especially when there inconsistencies in the records.

    Now we're going to look at the medical coder profession. On average, medical coders earn a $18,220 higher salary than health information specialists a year.

    Not everything about these jobs is different. Take their skills, for example. Health information specialists and medical coders both include similar skills like "patients," "hipaa," and "medical terminology" on their resumes.

    In addition to the difference in salary, there are some other key differences that are worth noting. For example, health information specialist responsibilities are more likely to require skills like "patient care," "excellent organizational," "office equipment," and "federal regulations." Meanwhile, a medical coder might be skilled in areas such as "cpc," "icd-10-cm," "ahima," and "clinical documentation." These differences highlight just how different the day-to-day in each role looks.

    Medical coders may earn a higher salary than health information specialists, but medical coders earn the most pay in the health care industry with an average salary of $52,925. On the other side of things, health information specialists receive higher paychecks in the health care industry where they earn an average of $33,177.

    On the topic of education, medical coders earn similar levels of education than health information specialists. In general, they're 1.3% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.1% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a Medical Records Clerk Compares

    Medical records clerks are employees in hospitals or clinics who manage office records. They are in charge of creating, updating, and filing patient-related medical records and other related documents. They ensure that all documents are correctly filled out and labeled before storing them safely in their respective storage areas. They may also be in charge of digitizing forms for easier access to files and back up purposes. They ensure that medical records are exact and updated. Medical records clerks should be organized and must always be on top of all tasks related to patient or medical records.

    The medical records clerk profession generally makes a lower amount of money when compared to the average salary of health information specialists. The difference in salaries is medical records clerks making $852 lower than health information specialists.

    By looking over several health information specialists and medical records clerks resumes, we found that both roles utilize similar skills, such as "patients," "hipaa," and "medical terminology." But beyond that the careers look very different.

    As mentioned, these two careers differ between other skills that are required for performing the work exceedingly well. For example, gathering from health information specialists resumes, they are more likely to have skills like "excellent organizational," "cycle management," "cerner," and "home health." But a medical records clerk might have skills like "customer service," "basic math," "math," and "english language."

    Medical records clerks make a very good living in the health care industry with an average annual salary of $32,510. Whereas health information specialists are paid the highest salary in the health care industry with the average being $33,177.

    Medical records clerks typically study at similar levels compared with health information specialists. For example, they're 2.6% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.1% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Medical Service Technician

    A medical service technician provides health care and treatments to patients under the supervision or directives of a more experienced physician. Most of their responsibilities revolve around assessing a patient's condition, administering required aid, diagnosing patients, conducting check-ups, and counseling patients. There are also instances when a medical service technician may prescribe medications, conduct inspections at facilities to ensure sanitary conditions, and coordinate with hospital staff for requesting supplies. Furthermore, it is crucial to have accurate documentation of all processes and transactions, all while adhering to the hospital's policies and standards.

    The fourth career we look at typically earns higher pay than health information specialists. On average, medical service technicians earn a difference of $4,600 higher per year.

    While their salaries may vary, health information specialists and medical service technicians both use similar skills to perform their jobs. Resumes from both professions include skills like "patients," "hipaa," and "medical terminology. "

    Even though a few skill sets overlap, there are some differences that are important to note. For one, a health information specialist might have more use for skills like "patient care," "excellent organizational," "cycle management," and "data entry." Meanwhile, some medical service technicians might include skills like "customer service," "pet," "vital signs," and "infection control" on their resume.

    In general, medical service technicians make a higher salary in the government industry with an average of $39,185. The highest health information specialist annual salary stems from the health care industry.

    The average resume of medical service technicians showed that they earn similar levels of education to health information specialists. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 1.3% less. Additionally, they're more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 0.5%.