Medical Administrative Assistant Field
In the field of Medical Administrative Assistant, there is a multitude of career choices to branch off into. Of these many fields, the three that I choose to discuss are Medical Billing, Medical Coding and Medical Assistant. All three careers are of high demand in the medical industry and each requires the need of basic classes, with a couple of varied courses, depending on the field. Basic requirements for all include a high school diploma or GED. Most require an Associates degree, consisting of specific major courses and general liberal arts courses. Additionally, these professions can continue to advance their careers by obtaining a higher degree or attaining alternate types of specific certifications. It can be confusing when talking about medical billing, coding and assisting. People often use these terms interchangeably, when in fact, they contain separate functions. All are within the perimeters of medical assisting job definition with both similar and differentiating roles. All three fields require a background or knowledge of medical practices and procedures, as well as special billing, coding and medical software. Medical billing and coding are often referred to as a single term; however, in terms of employment and specific roles they are quite different. Both are in high demand because of the ever-changing medical world. Hospitals, clinics and other healthcare organizations are beginning to recognize the significance of technology in the industry. With the increasing amount of patient data being transferred between locations and facilities, efficiency and simplicity is of utmost relevance. Medical Assisting takes on a slightly different role. It can be administrative, clinical or a combination of the two, depending on the employer’s industry and needs. The following is a breakdown of the specifics of the three above named careers; their similarities, differences, roles, responsibilities, tasks, trends, salaries and lifelong learning opportunities. Medical Billing
Medical billing professionals are responsible for entering patient and clinical data into practice management software, compiling amounts owed to medical facilities, reviewing and maintaining orders, invoices and records for accuracy. This information is then used to process a bill for insurance claims. Billing needs to be closely monitored. Without adequate medical billing, facilities are burdened by extensive paperwork that continuously piles up and needs to be completed before payment can be received. A medical billing professional is also responsible for the integrity and quality of the information and the running of management reports (HealthCareerChoices.com, 2010). Medical billing in particular has become a vital role in many practices, both large and small. Some employers offer work from home opportunities, which can be beneficial to parents of young children. Because of this growing need, physicians’ offices, hospitals, care centers, rest homes and various other facilities are all in search of qualified professionals. Currently, there is not an official educational standard in medical billing, however, most employers do look for some level of formal training and prefer perspective job seekers to possess an associates degree or certificate of equivalence through an accredited vocational or career training school, along with some actual experience in a medical billing office. Formal accredited programs may take from as little as nine months to as long as two years or more and may also offer assistance with career placement (HealthCareerChoices.com, 2010). The courses and content knowledge that medical billing requires would be: a strong knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy, how to properly complete various forms, industry coding for medical procedures, strong level of computer skills, typing speed of at least 35 words-per-minute, payer methods, claim submission, denial appeals and...
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