Medical Billing And Coding Salary

The field of medical billing and coding has grown significantly over the past two years with continued growth predicted at the rate of 14% through the year 2016. As the health care industry continues to grow, the need for medical billers to process payments from insurance underwriters and patients continues to grow. Medical billing and coding clerks are the ones to make sure health care providers are reimbursed for the services provided, and the insurance industry is paying their share of the cost.

Level Of Training

The demand for well trained medical billing and coding clerks will often have an effect on the salary paid for this phase of health care. The work might be clerical, but there is a need for the clerk to be attentive to detail as well as have a thorough understanding the billing process.

The billing process is based on a 5 digit coding system that must be exact in order to bill the right parties for the exact level of care provided. To make sure the proper billing code is in place means a thorough understanding of not only the billing system, but a general knowledge and understanding of heath care and medical practice in general is necessary.

That level of understanding comes from education and job experience. Those are the two biggest factors that will affect salaries. How well the clerk does their job and how well they understand the numbers. In addition to billing, the medical billing and coding clerk must have the know how to settle disputes when they arise.

The disputes often come from a claim being denied and the patient, being the party responsible for paying that bill when the insurance company will not, refuting that refusal. Often times the claim denial will come with recommendations to fix the problem, and resubmit the claim. The clerk has to have the ability to apply those recommendations without causing the billing code to change that might ultimately get the health care provider less than what they are entitled to.

Geographic Location

Also affecting the salary paid to a medical billing and coding clerk is geographic location, the facility where the clerk works and supply and demand. As a general rule of thumb, facilities in and around major metropolitan cities have a higher cost of living and command higher pay rates than cities in the suburbs or rural, where the pay rate will be lower.

A larger facility will often require more billing services than a smaller facility based on work load alone. The larger facility will often hit the top of the pay spectrum while the smaller facility will hit the lower end of the pay spectrum.

Supply And Demand

Salaries are just an average

  • The average salary is between $36,000 per year and $44,000 per year
  • The high range is high as $55,000 per year
  • The low range is as low as $24,000 per year

Supply and demand will affect salary at odd times and not necessarily when economic conditions are good. The more demand there is for a skill and the less people there are to provide that skill, will raise the salaries to an attractive level where people will want this job.

As of early 2011, the average entry level salary is about 24k per year. The salary for a clerk with over 20 years of experience will top out at about $55k per year.

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