With the medical industry expanding at a record pace throughout the state, there is plenty of opportunity for people who wish to become a medical biller at one of the top notch medical coding and billing schools in Ohio. See all the data from bls.gov below! The allied health sector is flourishing and shows no sign of slowing down!
Becoming a medical billing and coding specialist in Ohio
Medical billing and coding specialists in Ohio and across the country are regulated at a national level by the associations listed below. Although it is not mandated to be certified, it is strongly recommended.
Certifications for billing and coding are recognized from several different national bodies. Employers in the state recognize a wide range of certifications from the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), National Healthcare Association (NHA), American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), and the Medical Association of Billers (MAB).
What is the process for becoming a certified biller or coder in Ohio?
The process for becoming a medical biller or coder in the Buckeye State is summarized in the following four steps.
Step 1 – Determine if you plan to pursue your certification
Before anything else, you will first need to figure out if you are planning to get a medical billing and coding certification, or try to find a job without one. Not only can this choice determine the roles you will be eligible to apply for, but it can furthermore determine the amount of time it will take before you are able to start working.
While there is going to be a commitment of time and money required in order to get certified, the benefits that doing so provides are considerable. With the amount of litigation that medical providers have to deal with and the corresponding surge in insurance costs, most facilities now want their medical billing and coding specialists to have a certification.
This is additionally true for employers who’ve traditionally hired non-certified personnel. As a requirement of continued employment, non-certified team members are often being asked by their employers to earn a certification.
Nonetheless, it is possible to start looking for a position as a non-certified medical billing and coding specialist right away if you’ve decided against enrolling in professional training. The rest of the process described in this guide only applies if you make the commitment to become certified.
Step 2 – Finish the necessary education
There are three different types of credentials that may be received by graduating from a professional medical billing and coding training program – diploma, two-year associate degree, and a four-year bachelor’s degree. Any of these credentials may help you find your first medical coding and billing position, but you need to be informed about the positives and negatives to each prior to choosing one.
Diplomas and Certificates
The curriculum for certificate or diploma courses focuses solely on teaching you the daily skills you are going to depend on as a biller or coder, and can usually be finished in less than 12 months. A wide range of institutions offer these popular programs, and many of them are offered in an online format too. This is in contrast to associate and bachelor’s degree courses which require general education and many other university classes as well.
If your career objective is to advance into specialized healthcare or a professional-level career, two-year associate degree courses are generally the better way to go. As traditional college degree programs, coursework for this credential is typically offered by junior colleges and trade schools.
Nonetheless, along with the additional commitments needed to get an associate degree, comes a greater range of advantages.
For students who want to gain the deepest comprehension of coding and billing, while also pursuing a well-rounded education, bachelor’s degree programs are typically the preferred option. Because these programs are provided exclusively by four-year universities and vocational schools, the price of acquiring this degree is normally much higher.
Holding a bachelor’s degree is typically regarded by employers as a huge advantage, and someone can typically look forward to higher salary and responsibilities as a consequence
Each of these alternatives is a good way to start your professional career, provided that it fits your personal goals and economic situation. For those worried about the money and time necessary to get an associate or bachelor’s degree, the diploma route is likely the better option. There is always the option of going back later and pursuing a degree after earning one of these credentials as well.
The best choice is probably the associate or bachelor’s degree in situations when you have a clear career objective that will call for college at some point.
Comparing billing and coding programs in Ohio
Medical coding and billing education in Ohio is managed by the Commission of Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) and the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). You need to graduate from a program approved by one of these organizations if you wish to be eligible to challenge for certification in the state. Above are direct links to each organization’s databases of schools.
It is very important to check for a few things when deciding where to enroll for classes. As you weigh your possible choices, you should take the following into account:
- Take classes currently accredited by CAHIIM or AAPC
- Gather the current percentage of course graduates that have passed their exams
- Fit time for studies and training into your personal schedule
- Get all costs of training and education in your budget
Just like any decision, you have to first determine what your main concerns are. If you happen to be concerned with tuition costs, begin your search by finding out which programs fit into your budget. You should then consider the second-most important thing to assist in narrowing the list a little bit more.
By sticking to this methodical process, you can refine your choices to a handful of programs. Being sure that the program you go with fits your individual situation can significantly enhance your chances of graduating.
Step 3 – Complete an internship or accumulate some work experience
The majority of the medical coding and billing certification exams will require you to have finished an internship or acquire a certain amount of on-the-job experience before becoming eligible to sit for testing. Consequently, it’s strongly suggested that you either find an internship or an entry-level non-certified job while finishing your schooling.
Area business employers sometimes work with accredited medical billing and coding schools to help coordinate internships or on-the-job experience for students. It’s strongly recommended that you speak with your educator to see what opportunities are available to help you acquire the experience required to become qualified for certification assessment.
Step 4 – Finish the official certification process
In the State of Ohio, you’ll be required to pass one of the nationally-recognized exams for medical billing and coding certification. These exams include sections on every main area of knowledge you would’ve been exposed to in your course.
Several of the major national certification tests administered in Ohio are outlined below.
Certified Professional Coder (CPC) and Certified Professional Biller (CPB) from AAPC – every workplace.
Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS) from NHA – This credential is respected by virtually all business employers, represents a nicely balanced competency in medical billing and coding, and may qualify its owner for just about any medical billing and coding job opening.
Certified Coding Associate (CCA) from AHIMA – The Certified Coding Associate (CCA) is granted to students who have finished a diverse course of study in medical coding studies, and is respected by the majority of facilities.
Insurance and Coding Specialist (NCICS) from NCCA – The NCICS offers a certification for medical billing and coding specialists.
Certified Medical Billing Specialist (CMBS) and Certified Medical Records Technician (CMRT) from MAB – The Certified Medical Billing Specialist (CMBS) and CMRT national credentials signify advanced skills in the responsibilities needed to be able to handle the record-keeping and insurance billing at a medical care business office.
Medical billing and coding salary and jobs in Ohio
There’s a very high need for medical billing and coding specialists around the United States and in Ohio. Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects a 15% increase in brand new jobs for medical coding and billing specialists nationally through 2024, the government is expecting to see a 13% growth in Ohio. The majority of new openings are likely to be produced in physicians offices and hospitals. Some registry services additionally employ health information technicians.
The potential to become acquainted with EHRs (electronic health records) makes the medical billing and coding field ideal for individuals planning on moving on into another job in the health information industry.
Below you will find a list of the major metropolitan areas in Ohio and more information on medical coding and billing salary by area and county.
|Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN MSA||Hourly||$13.64||$19.71||$31.21|
|Toledo, OH MSA||Hourly||$13.17||$18.15||$27.78|
|Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, OH MSA||Hourly||$11.35||$17.83||$27.40|
|Lima, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.81||$17.52||$27.94|
|Columbus, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.92||$17.40||$25.35|
|Springfield, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.38||$17.18||$24.10|
|Akron, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.61||$16.74||$23.26|
|Wheeling, WV-OH MSA||Hourly||$11.36||$16.40||$24.97|
|Canton-Massillon, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.36||$16.35||$22.28|
|Eastern Ohio BOS||Hourly||$11.91||$16.32||$21.65|
|Other Ohio BOS||Hourly||$12.09||$16.27||$23.27|
|West Northwestern Ohio BOS||Hourly||$10.67||$16.00||$22.37|
|Dayton, OH MSA||Hourly||$12.25||$15.58||$23.54|
|Mansfield, OH MSA||Hourly||$10.75||$15.12||$23.51|
|Huntington-Ashland, WV-KY-OH MSA||Hourly||$10.92||$15.10||$26.63|
|Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, OH-PA MSA||Hourly||$11.35||$14.73||$22.47|
|Southern Ohio BOS||Hourly||$9.96||$14.29||$24.07|