Though it’s an entry-level position, a medical billing and coding career isn’t easy to fall into.
Qualified medical billing and coding programs, though, can more than prepare you to enter the office with confidence. Career schools and junior colleges often provide these programs with flexible schedules, or with accessible online courses to accommodate working students.
Students in a medical billing and coding program can expect to take classes in a variety of subjects, including:
- Medical terminology
- Health information law
- Health data standards
- Medical coding
- Database management
- Computer science
- Quality improvement techniques
In addition to classwork, many programs give students the chance to gain real-world experience by working on an externship in a hospital or doctor’s office. Medical billing and coding externships are usually 40 hours a week for several weeks, and are not usually paid, though they can create valuable career connections for graduates.
Besides the two-year associate’s degree, students might also look at receiving a one-year certificate or diploma, which has a more condensed program, but which may limit employment options. Another option is a 4-year bachelor’s degree, which qualifies technicians for later career advancement into management positions.
Here you can learn more about medical billing and coding training, as well as see a general career description.