How to Break into a Medical Coding and Billing Profession

Posted by on September 7, 2016

As the population continues to age and the new coding rolls out for ICD-10, the need for medical coding and billing professionals is continuing to grow. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statics, employment of health information technicians is expected to grow 15 percent from 2014 to 2024, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

To become a medical records or health information technician, you typically need a certificate. However, some may require an associate degree.

Duties of health information technicians

Bill from the doctor concepts of rising medical cost


  • Review records for timeliness and accuracy.
  • Maintain data for databases and registries.
  • Track outcomes for patients for quality assessments.
  • Electronically records data for collection, storage, analysis, retrieval and reporting.
    Maintain confidentiality of patient records.
  • Duties for medical coders
    Review patient information for preexisting conditions, such as diabetes
  • Assign appropriate diagnoses and procedure codes for patient care, population health statistics, and billing purposes
  • Work as a liaison between the health clinician and billing offices

Qualities needed

  • Analytical skills: Health information technicians must be able to understand and follow medical records and diagnoses, and then decide how best to code them in a patient’s medical records.
  • Detail oriented: Health information technicians must be accurate when recording and coding patient information.
  • Integrity: Health information technicians work with patient data that are required, by law, to be kept confidential. They must exercise caution and a strong sense of ethics when working with this information in order to protect patient confidentiality.
  • 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.
  • Technical skills: Health information technicians must be able to use coding and classification software and the electronic health record (EHR) system that their healthcare organization or physician practice has adopted.

At Minnesota School of Business & Globe University, our real-world medical coding and billing programs can help you get started on a path to a certified billing and coding specialist role. Learn more here.

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