List of Accredited Online Degrees
Students pursuing a degree in Health and Medicine may also consider earning a specialization in the areas of Medical Billing, Coding and/or Transcription. The integral administration duties of billers, coders and transcriptionists allow healthcare organizations to maintain efficient and effective procedures. The concentrations will introduce health science students to the intrinsic courses medical professionals are required to understand. Each concentration is related to the other, in that the individual professionals will work closely together, sometimes performing other duties, to ensure accurate information is being recorded and distributed to the needed individuals. Nurses, physicians, doctors, insurance companies and other financial institutions rely heavily on the information obtained from transcriptionists, billers and coders.
Medical transcription, also known as (MT), processes and or converts voice-recorded reports as dictated by physicians and other healthcare professionals, into a printable, downloadable sharable text format. The needed text can then be placed in a patient's record or retained in an electronic format due to the massive influx of paperwork associated with each patient. Another benefit of storing information electronically is the ease of accessibility by other professionals, regardless of location, time or other physical constraints. Transcriptionists can be current in-house administrators or healthcare facilities offer the position to non-traditional ‘work at home’ employees to complete the task.
Medical Billing is the crucial and time consuming process of submitting and following claims to medical insurance companies, to receive payments for services provided by a healthcare facility. Insurance companies follow similar billing protocols, so degree holding Medical Billers will be well-educated and trained in the basics of each system. Professional medical billers are encouraged, but not required to pass certification exams in programs such as the CMRS Exam and the RHIA Exam, among others. The important relevance of billers, patients and insurance companies to be aware of current and up-to-date information is required by law to protect all parties involved from fraud.
Medical coding is primarily responsible for assigning the appropriate coding associated for each individual medical insurance claims. A coder cross-checks the patient’s medical record, (i.e. the doctor’s notes, ordered laboratory tests, requested imaging studies and others information) to verify work completed. The coder must then assign CPT® codes, ICD-9 codes and HCPCS codes to report the performed procedures and to provide the medical biller with information to file a claim for reimbursement. It is beneficial that medical coders have a thorough understanding of basic anatomy and medical terminology in addition to becoming familiar with different types of insurance plans, regulations and compliance standards.
Graduates of a Health Science degree concentration will use the core curriculum as well as focused coursework when entering the competitive healthcare industry. A significant combination of proper transcription, billing and coding, ensure the physician’s diagnoses, recommendations and procedures while completing the patients “story” of illness or injury.