#medical #coding #and #billing #programs
How to Start a Medical Coding & Billing Business
by Jessica Jones
Medical billing and coding specialists create medical payment invoices for patients and insurance providers.
Hospital Files image by PinkSony from a href= http://www.fotolia.com Fotolia.com /a
Physicians and other medical professionals rely on medical billing and coding specialists to send payment requests to patients and insurance providers. Medical billing and coding specialists also perform record keeping and customer service duties by providing information about billing to patients and insurance providers. While some medical professionals hire specialists to work on-site, others prefer to outsource this work to small medical billing and coding businesses. Starting a successful medical billing and coding business requires an attention to detail, excellent record keeping skills and medical transcription skills.
1. Complete training in medical billing and coding from an accredited college or university. Accredited programs must meet curriculum standards created by regional educational boards. Visit the U.S. Department of Education Database of Postsecondary Institutions and Programs to research accredited schools and programs. Most accredited medical and coding billing programs provide coursework in medical terminology, medical billing and coding software, medical insurance billing procedures for public health programs, such as Medicaid, Medicare and third-party insurance companies, medical transcription and equipment and customer service. Medical billing and coding programs typically take 12 to 24 months to complete. At-home or traditional classroom training programs are available.
2. Create a home office or lease office space. You will need space to store medical transcription equipment, files, reference books and materials, work desk, computer, printer, phone, fax machine, a comfortable chair and office supplies. Lease office space if you do not have enough room in your home or if you cannot create a quiet space to work in during the day. Contact local real estate agents to learn more about available office spaces and rental costs.
3. Apply for a business license, Employer Identification Number and register your business with the Texas Secretary of State amp;#039;s Office if forming a limited liability company, corporation or partnership. Visit the Harris County Clerk amp;#039;s Office website if operating in the Houston area or the clerk amp;#039;s office that oversees the county in which you live to apply for a business license or to register your business as a sole proprietorship. Visit the Internal Revenue Service website to apply for an EIN. Use the EIN when filing tax returns.
4. Purchase equipment and software, such as headphones, foot petal, microphone, medical billing and coding reference books, medical billing software, digital recording software, medical transcription software, invoicing and bookkeeping software. Equipment and medical billing and coding software may be found online or medical supply stores. Invoicing and bookkeeping software may be found online or in office supply stores. You may also need a printer, fax machine, dedicated business phone line or computer if you don amp;#039;t already have one.
5. Market your services to physicians offices, hospitals, clinics and other medical professionals. Create fliers and brochures that include your business name, contact information and medical billing and coding experience. Attend local networking events, medical conferences, medical trade shows or other events that medical professionals in your area may attend. Join local business organizations such as the Greater Houston Partnership to learn more about upcoming small business events. Contact prospective clients directly by phone or by mail to explain your services and to set up an introductory meeting.
- Medical billing and coding training
- Business license
- Medical transcription software
- Foot pedal
- Invoicing software
- Obtaining a medical billing and coding position in a hospital or physician s office after completing a training program provides additional work experience and helps build client trust when starting a medical billing and coding business.
- Research the local medical marketplace before starting a medical billing and coding business to determine how many medical professionals and other medical billing and coding businesses exist in your area. Too much competition may make it difficult to find enough clients to sustain the business.