New Staffing Techniques are sought to Source Qualified Billers and Coders

Demand for medical billers and coders has been increasing due to the nationwide shortage of trained medical billers and coders; along with staffing shortages cited as one of the top coding challenges.

Industry facts: AHIMA 2011- Reported that over half of coding employers had “open coding positions”, mainly due lack of qualified candidates and applicants lacking on the job experience.

Why the lack of trained staff?

  • Educational process- plays a major role in the current shortage, as coders are not being trained fast enough to fill the need- various coders learn outpatient and later move on to learn inpatient coding
  • Sheer number and detail involved- the ever-increasing demand for data collection and analysis, compliance issues and variations in coding courses has spurred the problem
  • Changing reimbursement systems & an expanded need for coding expertise - Besides hospitals, biller & coders serve clinics, long-term care facilities, home health agencies and doctor’s offices who are also investing in coding capability

Billers &coders improving job prospects proactively…

Coder’s qualifications depend on several variables: rural or urban facility, specialty areas, is it a research center, etc. Medical Coders can increase their success rate by improving their qualifications proactively:

Research American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) and the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) offer valuable aspects of the coding profession
Feedback Acquire valuable first-person feedback from a medical biller and coder currently employed to understand the requirements more clearly
Networking With peers who can provide valuable training information and also be a reference while seeking a medical coding job
Basic Knowledge Acquire mastery on knowledge about anatomy & physiology, medical terminology, disease processes, documentation needs, coding classifications & reimbursement systems
Internships Coding program may offer enrollees internships at local hospitals and health clinics, which can help aspiring coders
Online programs Carefully examine the training curriculum and ensure if the program is accredited
Volunteering At healthcare facilities which will help acquire the needed experience
Continuously upgrade Your knowledge to gain more experience in various aspects of HIM

Healthcare facilities dealing with the shortage & growing opportunities!

The Shortage of coders is likely to increase further especially as the BLS estimates:

  • 35,100 new coding-related jobs before 2018 
  • 20% increase to the medical records and health information field 
  • Much higher rate of growth than the average for other occupations

Organizations seeing the lack of experienced coders are becoming more flexible, creative, and committed while filling positions, hence medical billers and coders both fresh out of college and experienced need to make the best of these growing opportunities .

Additionally growth in the work span of medical billers and coders offers a turning point to their career which comes very rarely; especially with some companies willing to train hires that lack experience from within and grow their own coders, in exchange for an employment commitment. Salary & benefits are also improving in order to retain coders already on the job, along with alternative & remote work option like “work from home”. largest consortium of expert billers and coders offers wide opportunity to medical billers and coders across all US States to cater to this growing shortage. Our job portal and regular billing & coding updates and newsletters provides a vast pool of opportunities and knowledge to our coders; along with being continuously updated with changes like the ICD-10 transition updates through our ICD-10 training guide.

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