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Salary Details of Medical Billing and Coding

Updated on October 2, 2010

Medical billing and coding is one among those industries which continues to grow with greater speed and its demand for the specialists in billing and coding is ever increasing. And that’s the first reason for the fairly high salary for the workers in this field. So this is undoubtedly a great source for a full time income.

Factors affecting Salary

The factors which influence the increase or decrease in salary are mentioned in the following paragraphs. The most prominent ones are listed below.

  • Places of Work (Bigger and Busier cities or not)
  •  Countries or States
  • Field of work (small or big office)
  • Experience
  • Expertise in both domains (knowing billing as well as coding works)
  • Independent contracts (Work-at-home category of billing and coding)

Like most of the other niches, the salary of this particular industry also varies with locations, country, etc. If you are working in bigger and busier cities like New York, Boston, Chicago or similar places, then your wages will be high compared to the normal locations. Yet another reason that adds to the difference in salary of the medical billing and coding professionals is where they are assigned to work. That is, if the specialists are working in a doctor’s office which is considered to be small, then consequently their income is also found to be low, but not too low just like other niches. At the same time, if they work in good organizations, large hospitals or nursing homes, then their earnings are fairly high. There’s nothing too much to think about here – It’s just the difference in their work (more or less work) that makes the so called difference in their salary.

What it makes this niche different from most other common niches is that a degree or such certificate is not an immediate requirement for working in this section of medical billing and coding. And it’s because of the reason that you have may already know – too much of technical aspects are not needed in billing and coding tasks. But it’s a usual practice for the most of the big doctors or nursing homes to hire those ones with a good knowledge in the field of area assigned to them. And consequently, they are going to get a good salary when compared to those without a degree or associated certificates and that makes the difference here. As per the stats of the survey conducted in the past years, it is clearly found that there is a salary difference of about $8000 (per year) in between those with and without certificates or degree.

It is usual thing that people often confuse that coding and billing are one and the same or closely similar when they often hear the term ‘billing n coding’ together. Actually these are 2 separate things but closely related to one another. Specialists from both sections (billing and coding) use to work together since billing is found to be a subcategory in the domain of coding. So it’s already understood that one who knows both is going to earn more than the one who knows just one, no matter the degree of specialization the latter has, except in matters regarding experience, but that too in some rare cases. So it is always recommended to go for the course which offers training in both departments.

Salary of medical billing and coding specialists

Experience in billing-coding jobs

Experience, just like in other jobs is one among the most influential factors that affect the salary of medical billing and coding. The reason for this is quite simple. An experienced coder is naturally able to save a lot of codes in his or her memory and this saves them a lot of time and thus avoid too much reference to code books. This is the major reason for hospitals or organizations to give priority to one such person even though his competitor or neighboring applicant is found to be complete with degree and certificates. So the salary is undoubtedly high for experienced guys and is of the order of $50k per year or more.

Even though it is mentioned that a degree is not so important in this work, knowledge of the professionals need to be constantly updated. This is not a rule particular to the organization or hospital but it’s the rule of the entire profession since this niche faces a lot of changes and improvements in a faster rate every year. So it has become a necessity to continue his or her education even though they need not spend 24x7 for the same. While working, you can continue your education. Or else, you may specialize it up to the desired scale. This causes an added benefit to the job – Increase in salary again.

Persons who work in this field are usually working for consulting companies, small big or medium scale industries or organizations, hospitals, insurance companies and more. And the thing is that they are provided a known amount of salary which ranges $25k to $50k per year. This causes a kind of restriction to those who are able to work more than what they do at present. And that’s where work-at-home profession came into being. Like we find various work-at-home opportunities online, this niche also supports it pretty well. That means, you are able to get more contracts by working at home and thus you need not confine your workaholic nature to a limited scale. This opens door to the emergence of a lot of independent contractors in the field of medical billing and coding. But the common negative found in this one is: Absence of guarantee that offline firms offer. But still, the opportunities are endless because you can switch to any other programs out there if your job opportunities are found to be limited or close to ending.

The most important thing is awareness about the huge number of scam programs floating online particularly. So if you want to work independently from your home, then you may need to take special care in distinguishing and finding out the legit programs out there. This applies to buying of products and services like billing services in the form of software, discs, coding books or ebooks, and a lot of such similar stuffs. Learn to find out the legit ones and it is going to help you getting a nice hourly wage if you prefer to work as medical billing and coding specialist from your home.   


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