Medical doctors commit to many years of University, outlay a lot of money on tuition fees, and spend many long hours studying. Why? To apply for medical billing jobs of course. I am sure that you can see that this statement is meant to be facetious.
A Doctor puts in all of this time, money, and hard work to practice medicine – not to become an administrator. This is, however, great news for those who have their sights set on a career in medical billing, and who are in search of medical billing jobs. I may get slapped for this but, in general physicians are not good administrators, or business people for that matter.
Although a medical biller or medical coder will likely not achieve the same level of notoriety, status, and obviously compensation, as a doctor, the fact remains that a qualified, efficient, and competent biller is highly regarded and respected by the medical profession.
I recently spoke to my physician about his hiring practices for medical billing jobs, and his general philosophy is that if a medical biller is out of sight and out of mind, they are doing a great job. This was not to say that he did not like them or felt superior to them, but rather, if they are not constantly wasting his time with questions, and taking the initiative to figure things out for themselves, he has made a good hire.
Let’s take a look at the role and see why the position is so important. A medical biller is generally employed by a physician, hospital, insurance provider, or other medical facility such as a senior’s home. The ultimate responsibility is to manage the entire process pertaining to patient billing. The process begins by creating a patient file and entering all pertinent patient information and insurance provider information and medical history into a database.
Once the medical practitioner has seen the patient and determined the diagnosis, and potential procedure, if any to be performed, the medical biller will obtain the medical billing codes and cross reference these to ensure that they are included in the healthcare insurance policy. If they are, the claim is submitted by email for reimbursement.
If the insurance claim is rejected, the medical biller must undertake a review of the claim, make corrections, resubmit, and follow up until the claim is settled. Additionally, general accounting functions such as posting, tracking, and reconciling receivables is part of the responsibility.
The less glamorous aspect of medical billing jobs is dealing with the collecting of past due and overdue accounts from patients. In the event that an account is deemed noncollectable, the medical biller is responsible for turning the file over to a collection agency.
A qualified medical biller should have a good working knowledge of computers and some of the most common medical billing software programs. Further, a basic understanding of medical accounting procedures, various aspects of the major healthcare insurance programs, fee schedules, medical codes, and good communication skills also are important attributes.
Finally, with a little initiative, motivation, willingness to learn, and a good attitude, anyone choosing a career in medical billing jobs, can find themselves in a rewarding and lucrative long term career.