What’s the Best Guide to Becoming a Medical Billing Clerk?

So you’re considering getting into the administrative end of medicine. You’ve decided you’d like to become a medical billing clerk. Perhaps you’re investigating or have taken courses at a career school or community college to become educated and certified. That’s all well and good, but in addition to this it doesn’t hurt to have a reference work or guide to the profession. There are a number of books and web resources that can serve as your guide to becoming a medical billing clerk. The more up to date and armed you are with accurate, current information about the field of medical billing, the sharper your interviews and job prospects will be. To stay on your toes it helps to have an actual comprehensive guide that you can turn to when you’re in doubt about something or just have some free time and want to do a little review. The following is a list of guide books to consider:

Guide to Medical Billing and Coding
Author/Publisher: ICDC publishing

This thorough guide serves as both a reference volume on the field in general and a course in itself. It covers all the basic skills necessary to be both a medical coder and biller. It is structured in a course format, and upon successful completion of the exercises and tests ICDC issues a certificate in medical billing and coding. After this is achieved ICDC offers the opportunity to work toward an “honor’s certificate.”

Now, you may be wondering – is this as good as getting an associate’s degree in medical billing? The answer is probably not. However with a guide like this you’ll at least know you have all, or most, of the relevant knowledge at your finger tips.

It’s worth also noting that a medical billing clerk position is considered entry level – technically or legally speaking nothing more than a high school diploma is needed to apply for the job. The reality is that getting hired depends on a number of factors – how well you actually do know the basics of the profession, how much experience you have, at which school you completed a training program, simply impressing an interviewer, and many other variables. So if you’re the self educated type and really master the skills necessary through a book, there’s no reason why you couldn’t find a job with no other credentials. In a general sense actual class work at an institution of higher learning is likely to be more highly regarded by the average employer. But in the final analysis it really comes down to you and how well you can impress an employer.

A bit about ICDC publishing: it is basically an educational reference and text book publisher. The company produces text books on fields like medical administration, office skills, library science, and so on. Its text books may be used by instructors at various learning institutions or by students on their own.

Medical Billing & Coding Demystified
Authors: Marilyn Burgos, Donya Johnson, and James Keogh
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional

This guide is a bit more informal than the one above. It’s an all around, handy sort of manual that covers the field of medical billing and coding. It’s often a good idea to combine a guide like this with a more formalized work to get a well rounded picture of the profession. You may pick up some tips in one that aren’t contained in the other. This book has handy features like a quiz at the end of each chapter, its own “final exam” at the end, and an overview of software used in medical billing.

A Guide to Health Insurance Billing
Author: Marie A Moisio
Publisher: Delmar Cengage Learning

This guide is well respected because it tends to deal a little more in depth with some billing procedures that are being gradually phased in, namely UB-04 claim preparation and ICD-10 coding. On Amazon.com there were several rave reviews of this manual by medical billing teachers.

Learn To Be The Boss!: A How-To Guide to Owning and Operating a Medical Billing Agency At Home
Author: Hope Jones
Publisher: Authorhouse

It’s also possible, as you may know, to form your own medical billing business. This guide tells you all the ins and outs of how to do that successfully. Hope Jones founded her own medical billing school, worked extensively in the field of medical billing, and runs her own home medical billing business.

Look around on the internet and you’ll find other potentially valuable guides, manuals, and reference works. Though getting formal schooling is recommended if you want to become a medical billing clerk, getting hold of good guides and making them part of you library of reference material and using them to educate yourself shows initiative and is an all around good idea. The information is there, and you’re going to be that much better off if you can go get it yourself rather than relying on others to hand it to you, for a fee. Often people learn best when they are responsible for their own learning process. And even if you do choose to go the traditional educational route, having your own guides and manuals for reference gives you a personal knowledge base to work from and can only help in the long run.

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