by TASHA RILEY
I’M GOING TO SCHOOL NOW TO BE A MEDICAL CODER SO WHAT IS THE MEDICAL CODER SALARY LIKE THE FIRST YEAR OUT OF SCHOOL?
The typical starting medical coding salary with under 1 year experience ranges from about $10.50 to $14.50 per hour. For a regular 40 hour week this is equivalent to $21,840 a year to $30,160 a year. The average is around $25,500. Of course this depends on things like certification, type of employer, and location. When considering offers, I think anything around the $25,000 range is a reasonable starting medical coder salary – especially in the southeast.
You are in the same area of the country that I am (Alabama). Medical coding salaries in the southeast do tend to be lower than say New York or California. But going to work for a hospital or nursing care facility will most likely pay more. In general the larger the employer, the greater the salary potential – even for entry level jobs.
Government and insurance companies also tend to pay the best, but these medical coding jobs tend to be harder to find unless you live near a larger city (Memphis, Jackson, Birmingham, Atlanta, etc.). Having lived in Atlanta several years before moving to Birmingham, I noticed there were more medical coding job opportunities in Atlanta than there are in Alabama or Mississippi.
Here’s more detail on the salary range for medical coders. The info here is based on the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics that looks at the medical coding salary by type of employer (hospital, nursing home, etc), and type of industry. There’s also data from PayScale which is probably geared more towards the health care industry and less influenced by government data.
Thanks for the question and good luck in your job search and medical coding career.