Entry Level Medical Billing Jobs – What kind of salary to expect and how to get trained. See what the typical duties of a medical billing specialist are. Are entry level jobs from home an option?
What are the duties of a Medical Billing Specialist?
Basically everything involved with getting a doctor or other health care professional paid for their services, managing patient accounts, following up with insurance companies, etc. Payments come from both the insurance carrier and the patient.
The knowledge and skills necessary are:
- An attention to detail
- Math and data entry
- Understand insurance plans
- Understanding of terminology and ICD-9 and CPT codes
- Familiarity of medical billing guidelines
If you are seriously considering entry level medical billing jobs, you may want to checkout a good introduction book to medical billing – Basics of Medical Billing. It’s written by a mother daughter team who operate a successful medical billing business. (title) is written in explains the complex issues of medical billing in an easy to understand style.
Typical duties for a Medical Billing Specialist are:
- Data Entry – Entering claim information and posting insurance and patient payments.
- Creating claims – Both Electronic and Paper CMS 1500.
- Medical Billing Collections – Patient Billing and unpaid insurance claims.
- Filing and retrieving medical billing records.
- Write Appeals – Write a letter to the insurance carrier requesting payment for a denied claim.
- Responding to Patient Billing Questions – Answer questions from patients after statement are sent out.
- Run Reports – Typically pre-formatted in the
Most smaller practices do not have a dedicated coder so it’s important to have some coding knowledge to be able to look up ICD and CPT codes and know how they are organized. It’s also important for a medical billing specialist to be familiar with the guidelines established by HIPAA and the OIG guidelines to prevent fraud.
Search for Entry Level Medical Billing Jobs
Indeed is one of the best websites to search for medical billing specialist jobs. They compile job listings from thousands of sources for both large and small local companies. They have a nice clean simple search available on our Medical Billing and Coding Jobs page:
Entry Level Medical Billing Jobs Salary
Starting salaries for entry level medical billing jobs are typically in the mid $20,000 per year with experienced medical billing specialists earning well into the 30’s. With coding experience and good managerial skills this could be higher.
Those with more credentials would typically work for a large practice, hospital, or insurance company. With the more advanced certifications offered by AAPC or AHIMA and some experience you could expect to earn $30-40,000/year range. This of course can vary a lot depending on location and employer.
If you’re pursuing entry level medical billing jobs in a setting such as a hospital or insurance company, a certificate or degree from an accredited institution and certification is a big plus. Generally the more training and credentials you have, the more your income potential.
There are exceptions. Good experience can make up for a lack of training. I’m a good example of that. Before my medical billing business took off, I was offered a conventional job for a large practice downtown near the city I live in. I got an offer near $16/hour which I thought was pretty good. The same day I got a call from a doctor who ended up being my first client and decided to work from home.
Medical Billing Training
Training for entry level medical billing jobs can cost anywhere from $300 to $15,000 and take anywhere from 2 months to 2 years.
You can spend from $3,000 to $15,000 for training from a reputable accredited school – either online or in a conventional classroom. These can vary from a full blown associate’s degree to a less demanding diploma or certificate program. Or you can do like I did and train yourself before pursuing entry level medical billing jobs.
I really didn’t have the time or money to take a formal course. And I wanted to learn it all as fast as possible. At the time I was raising 2 small kids the going to a formal classroom wasn’t a good option. I knew someone who started a successful medical billing business and found out how they got started. They had all the business they could handle and were doing quite well. Starting a medical billing business – as soon as possible – was my goal.
If you don’t have the time or funds I would recommend the more affordable alternatives like Medical Billing Home Business in a Box! for the do-it-yourselfer. If you want a more structured online training course, checkout medicalbillingcourse.com. Although it may not be accredited, you can still get a good medical billing and coding training course from these sources for a fraction of the cost.
My Experience – Medical Billing From Home
Are medical billing jobs from home viable? My experience operating a . At home medical billing jobs are possible.
Really the only options for medical billing jobs from home are to have your own medical billing business or be employed by a really trusting and understanding boss – either at a billing company or practice.
Medical billing jobs from home are possible due to the nature of the work. However you do have to be in touch with insurance companies, patients, and healthcare providers. However most of this can be done by phone, fax, and email.
A lot of the work I do at home can be done on any schedule as long as it’s done promptly. There are some nights I can’t sleep and I’ll get up and work at 2:00 AM while my family is sleeping. Coding, entering and submitting claims, is something that can be done any time of day. I strive for 24 hour turn around for entering claims. The sooner my provider gets paid, the sooner I get paid.
The benefits of working from home are the flexibility to set your own hours, not having to pay for child care, and the tax advantages of a home business.
The disadvantages are that you have to be disciplined not to let it interfere with your home life. Depending on how many providers you serve, it could be quit busy. If you don’t set boundaries, working from home can really interfere with your home life.
I moved my office to the basement of our house and that help tremendously in separating home and work. It’s important to have practices in place to make sure all patient data is handled in compliance with HIPAA requirements.