Medical billing and coding classes in Utah are growing in demand every year and the next decade looks to only grow even more. The biller and coder is a popular allied health career because it requires comparatively little training. See all the details about the training, the growth and the demand below.

How to become a medical biller or coder in Utah

medical billers and coders are not required by law to be certified but it is highly recommended. Being regulated at a national level, the industry is lead by the associations listed below.

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 Utah?

The relatively short process for becoming a medical biller or coder in Utah is shown below in the following steps.

Step 1 – Make the choice if you are going to get certified

Deciding whether or not to get certified is the very first step you’ll have to take if you want to begin a career as a medical coding and billing specialist. This particular choice will impact your career in two significant ways: the kinds of opportunities you will be able to apply for, and how long it’s going to take you to find a job.

Of course, there are many more benefits than drawbacks to holding a certification. Because of the increased amount of litigation that healthcare providers face and the corresponding rise in insurance premiums, most facilities now require their employees to have a certification.

The trend toward compulsory certification has additionally begun to have an effect on non-certified workers who have been employed for many years. As a condition of continued employment, non-certified personnel are frequently being asked by their employers to earn a certification.

With all of that said, it is possible to start searching for a job as a non-certified medical coding and billing specialist immediately should that be your choice. The remainder of the process outlined in this guide only applies should you make the decision to become certified.

Step 2 – Finish the necessary education

You’ll find a few different kinds of credentials that can be earned by finishing a formal medical billing and coding training course – diploma, an associate degree, and a four-year bachelor’s degree. While all three credentials could make you eligible for starting medical billing and coding opportunities, there are a number of important differences between them.

Diplomas and Certificates

The standard course that gives a diploma or certificate will last about 12 months and concentrates only on training students to handle the daily duties of a coder or biller. These classes are offered through a wide range of institutions, and might also be provided online. This is a significant change from associate and bachelor’s degree programs which hold the same additional requirements as regular college courses.

Associate Degree

Intended for individuals who would like to work in specialized jobs and progress into other opportunities, associate degree programs are comprehensive and last no less than two years. Training programs awarding this credential are usually located at junior colleges and trade schools, so there are usually also higher admission prerequisites that need to be met.

Nevertheless, with the additional commitments required to earn an associate degree, comes a greater number of benefits.

Bachelor’s Degree

For students who want to gain the deepest understanding of billing and coding, while also getting a nicely balanced education, bachelor’s degree courses are usually the best choice. Since these programs are provided exclusively by four-year educational institutions and trade programs, the cost of getting this degree is normally much higher.

The benefits of holding a bachelor’s degree are many, and consist of things such as greater pay and increased opportunity for advancement.

Regardless of the program you choose, you’ll want to base your decision on your future career aspirations and economic situation. If you want to begin working right away, and are concerned with college tuition costs, then the diploma route is probably the better choice. Many medical coding and billing specialists choose to return to school later and complete a degree after starting with a diploma, so bear this in mind as well.

Should you have a clear long-term career objective in your mind, though, then investing in an associate degree might be the right choice.

Comparing coding and billing programs in Utah

Medical billing and coding training in Utah is governed by the Commission of Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) and the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). Only those students who finish their classes at a program accredited by one of these organizations will be allowed to test for certification. Click on the links above to search their listings of programs in your area.

Deciding on the right training for your particular situation typically involves some considerations. Think about the following things in a program when comparing it to another:

  • Pick and take courses accredited by CAHIIM or AAPC
  • Get the exact percentage of graduates that successfully passed their certification exam
  • Get your classes to fit into your time schedule
  • MAke sure that all of the programs actual costs will be managable within your budget

You should begin by ranking, in order, the things that are most-important for you about a class. If you’re worried about tuition costs, begin your search by seeing which programs match your budget. You would then give some thought to the second-most important thing to assist in narrowing your list down even further.

Using this approach, it’s possible to reduce your possibilities down to only a handful of schools. By choosing between programs that meet your needs, you are a lot more likely to have a good outcome with your classes.

Step 3 – Complete an internship or accumulate some work experience

A precondition for almost all coding and billing certification tests is that the test-taker must have previously completed work experience or completed a formal internship. For this reason, it’s strongly recommended that you either find an internship or an entry-level non-certified position during your schooling.

Many accredited coding and billing programs make it possible for pupils find internships with area companies. It’s strongly recommended that you have a talk with your teacher to see which opportunities are available to help you gain the experience needed to be approved for certification evaluation.

Step 4 – Finish the certification process

Medical billing and coding specialists in Utah must pass one of the national certification tests in order to earn their certification. The assessments contain sections on every major area of knowledge you would have covered in your program.

Several of the main national certification tests recognized in Utah are shown here.

Certified Professional Coder (CPC) and Certified Professional Biller (CPB) from AAPC – One of the best-known, and most-highly regarded of the medical billing and coding certifications, the CPC and CPB certifications are awarded by the AAPC.

Certified Billing and Coding Specialist (CBCS) from NHA – The NHA credential is recognized by facilities all over the United States, and shows that its owner holds a broad set of medical billing and coding competencies.

Certified Coding Associate (CCA) from AHIMA – The Certified Coding Associate (CCA) is presented to students who have finished a diverse curriculum in medical coding studies, and is respected by virtually all facilities.

Insurance and Coding Specialist (NCICS) from NCCA – The NCICS credential signifies a specific specialization in the skills needed to stand out in the billing and coding world.

Certified Medical Billing Specialist (CMBS) and Certified Medical Records Technician (CMRT) from MAB – The Certified Medical Billing Specialist (CMBS) and Certified Medical Records Technician (CMRT) national credentials signify advanced competencies in the tasks that are required in order to manage the record-keeping and insurance billing at a professional medical facility’s office.

Medical coding and salary salary and jobs in Utah

In Utah, as well as the remainder of the country, demand is very high for medical billing and coding specialists. Through the year 2024, the Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts a 32% gain in new opportunities for medical coding and billing specialists in Utah. Hospitals, physicians offices and outpatient clinics are anticipated to fill the vast majority of all added openings. There should additionally be some need at registrar agencies.

Due to the fast growth of EHRs (electronic health records) inside the healthcare industry, the coding and billing profession is very popular among people planning on working in health information.

Below is a list of the major towns and cities in Utah and further data on medical billing and coding salary by area and county.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$12.05$18.29$30.21
Salt Lake City, UT MSAHourly$12.24$18.55$30.07
Provo-Orem, UT MSAHourly$12.11$17.57$28.31
Eastern Utah BOSHourly$12.56$16.90$22.97
Logan, UT-ID MSAHourly$12.08$15.83$28.91
Ogden-Clearfield, UT MSAHourly$11.18$15.76$26.29
St. George, UT MSAHourly$12.74$15.11$18.82