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Medical Coding and Billing in Minnesota

Minnesota is the national health insurance leader, with an impressive 92.1% of residents having some form of coverage. 88% of Minnesota’s adults are insured, compared to 78% of those of the United States as a whole.

Insurance reimbursement requires accurate coding. Medical billing and coding specialists in Minnesota are responsible for mastering a huge amount of material, including coding taxonomies, compliance regulations, and policies of various third party payers. The result of their accurate work? Medical bills that show up in the mail where the expenses are already paid -- or at least the expected contribution has been made. Coded medical data may also be used in research, for instance, to help the Upper Midwest Rural Health Research Center improve health outcomes.

Medical coding and medical billing is not a low skill occupation. Professionals need substantial medical knowledge to correctly abstract data from patient records. They also need to be savvy in acquiring and interpreting information from a variety of sources. Interested in being a part of this rewarding field? The career path begins with a comprehensive education in medical billing, medical coding or health information technology.

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Medical Billing and Coding Training in Minnesota

Medical billing and coding training courses in Minnesota are available at different levels, at traditional Minnesota campus based institutions as well as through online schools. The medical billing and medical coding courses generally include a common core. A student can expect to take several introductory medical courses, covering such topics as human anatomy, laboratory medicine, and medical terminology. Field-specific coursework will include ICD-CM and CPT coding, medicolegal issues, and reimbursement issues. There will generally be at least one course in computing.

An associates level program may include more computing and keyboarding classes as well as such basics as composition and communications. These can actually be very valuable from the standpoint of future employers, as job duties may include communicating in person and in writing.

Longer degree programs often incorporate other related skills, and may go by different names. Health information technology is a common one; administrative specialist is another. Health information technology (HIT) or Health information Management (HIM) courses do prepare students to sit for board examinations in medical coding. Accredited degree programs allow students to take RHIT or RHIA exams, which are well respected in the coding field. Other credentialing exams have fewer formal prerequisites, but still require considerable skill to pass.

Learn more about the medical billing and coding training programs offered in Minnesota by requesting information from the schools listed below.

Medical Billing and Coding Salary and Job outlook in Minnesota

Many programs, even online ones, include externships where students put in hours at actual healthcare settings in their own location. This can be a chance to make connections as well as gain medical coding skills. A faculty member at Alexandria Technical Community College notes that a student is allowed to do an externship at any facility where medical procedures are performed and also billed and coded. This can include chiropractic offices, clinics, or nursing homes.

Some schools send out employment surveys to their graduates and make employment data available. Alexandria Clinic and St. Cloud Medical Group are among the employers that have hired Alex T & C graduates. Networking can also help new graduates find positions. Minnesota has an active AAPC community. With ten branches across the state, a person can find resources whether he or she lives in St Paul or St Cloud. AAPC has online communities, too, where members may post resumes and share leads as well as ask questions about coding.

Some of the facilities that employ the services of medical billing and coding specialists in Minnesota include United Hospital in Saint Paul, Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, Children’s of Minnesota with locations in Minneapolis and Saint Paul and St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester. These facilities may have in-house medical billers and medical coders or they may employ the services of a medical billing and coding company. reading the job postings at these facilities is a good way to learn more about what employers are looking for in their medical billing and coding specialists.

The BLS reports an hourly wage of $18.09 for health technicians in Minnesota. This figure places the state well above the national average. Nationwide, many billing and coding professionals receive a portion of their pay in the form of bonuses. It is common for medical coding proficiency tests to be included as part of the hiring process. This is a field where excellence is often quantified… and rewarded.

Take the first step toward this career and find a program that works with your schedule. You may also want to check out the Medical Assistant programs in Minnesota.

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