A medical coding specialist works in the medical records billing department of healthcare organizations. Their main job is to classify a diagnosis and/or procedure in order to help facilitate billing and reimbursement from health insurance companies.

In order to be a medical coding specialist, one must have an associate’s degree, as well as special certification. Most programs that are dedicated to medical coding will often include coursework in the following:

*Health data standards.

*Coding and abstraction of data.

*Quality improvement methods.

*Medical terminology.

*Anatomy and physiology.

*Aspects of health information.

Those who work in this specific field will generally choose to specialize in a specific type of medical coding, like cancer treatment. A medical coding specialist’s job is to assign a special code to each diagnosis and treatment. Medicare and health insurance programs will use this coding to then reimburse hospitals.

Specialists will typically work in an environment similar to that of an office, as well as have a 40-hour work week. On the other hand, hospitals that have 24-hour health information departments may require some medical coding specialists to work nights and weekends as well.

Some other important facts regarding medical coding specialists include the following:

*On-the-job training is not provided.

*Some states require that cancer registrars be licensed.

*Some of the most important key skills of a medical coding specialist include analysis, attention to detail, interpersonal skills, ability to use appropriate computer systems and software, and discretion with confidential material.

*Some similar occupations include medical and health services managers, medical transcriptionists, receptionists, and medical assistants.

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