Medical billing and coding what they do

How To Get Government Certification For Medical Billing And Coding

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics expects above-average employment growth in this area.

Medical billing and coding specialists are responsible for collecting and documenting patient records. The codes they use represent illnesses, treatments, and medications taken. They, in turn, use the codes to request reimbursement from insurance companies. The median salary for this career was 32,350, according to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, and most specialists worked in hospitals or doctors' offices.

Earn your high school diploma or GED. Medical billing and coding specialist training requires post-secondary education, which means you must complete your high school education before you can apply for registration.

Choose an accredited medical billing and coding course. Accreditation is important because many professional certification organizations, such as the American Health Information Management Association, require an accredited course to be completed before certification can take place. The Internet Health Informatics and Information Management Accreditation Commission ( has a list of all billing and coding courses accredited in the United States.

Graduate with either a Certificate of Completion or an Associate Degree. Remember that getting a certificate after completing a non-degree program is not the same as applying for a professional certificate after school. The certificate of completion only shows that you have completed the medical billing and coding specialist training requirements. The voluntary post-educational certification is a symbol of high work ethic and high professional standards.

Apply for certification with the organization of your choice. There are many of them, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For example, two of these are the American Health Information Management Association and the American Academy of Professional Coders. Every organization has a set of standards that you must meet before you can apply. These vary depending on which one you are applying to. In many cases, you will need to have completed accredited training and passed an exam with the organization. Exam fees differ. The American Academy of Professional Coders charges starting at $ 245 in 2013 per exam, including a free retake exam.

Items you need

  • Abitur or GED
  • Post-secondary certificate or associate's degree
  • Up-to-date billing and coding reference material


  • According to the American Academy of Professional Coders, medical bills and codes change every year. So it is important that you keep yourself up to date on the code sets prior to testing.
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Author: Lucas Burton

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