Medical coding is a process of transforming the healthcare diagnosis, dealings, medical services, and equipment into universal medical alphanumeric codes.
The diagnoses and process codes are collected from medical record documentation like a copy of physician’s notes, laboratory and radiologic results, etc.
The professional medical coders make sure that the codes are applied correctly during the process of medical billing.
If you are aspiring to be a medical coder then you need to acquire the requisite training and formal education.
What does a medical coder do?
A medical coder’s duty is to determine a patient’s diagnoses and any procedures performed by reading his medical chart and analyzing it.
He is then responsible to categorize those diagnoses and procedures in accordance with a national classification system.
Each diagnosis and procedures are assigned a specific numeric or alphanumeric code by the coder. To be precise, a medical coder is responsible to interpret the documents given in a patient’s chart into codes.
The profession of medical coding is a very useful part of the healthcare team and often works as a source for physicians, administrators, and other related health providers for information on documentation, regulations, compensation, and data collection.
Today, coders can use computer software to code, fill in the blanks in handwritten notes, or work with some combination of paper and digital files. Each hospital, clinic, or physician’s office does the work of coding a little differently.
However, to be able to read a patient’s chart accurately and document the information within, one must be a professional with extensive knowledge of anatomy and physiology, disease processes, pharmacology, the different classification systems, and more.
Below, we have listed five books that one should study if he is aspiring to be a professional medical coder.
This is one of the most important books that every medical coder should study. It helps one to learn the ins and outs of medical coding and billing procedures and services.
CPT AMA Professional is very important for new medical coders. Experts say that the book- CPT AMA Professional was created with the assistance of physicians representing all specialties of medicine, and with significant contributions from many third-party payers and government organizations.
HCPCS Level II is another important book that every medical coder needs. It is a reference guide for the latest HPSC codes.
The book is sure to help coders to comply with coding regulations, confidently locate specific codes, supervise reimbursement for supplies, report patient data, code Medicare cases, and more. It also provides dental codes, surgical codes and illustrations.
This book helps the medical coders to select diagnosis codes. This book is sure to help them to learn the most accurate billing and compensation codes for medical services — in both physician offices and outpatient settings.
ICD-10-CM Physician Edition is one of the most recommended books, as it comes with durable spiral binding, and includes a companion website that provides the latest coding news and updates.
Another important book that all medical coders need is Medical Billing and Coding For Dummies.
This book gives coders the practical, easy-to-follow information and advice on what to expect in a billing and coding career, ways to find a training program, certification options.
The book also helps the coders to learn how they can stay competitive in the field, and the laws and other regulations that they will encounter in their work.
Medical Billing and Coding For Dummies is a definitive guide to starting a successful career in medical billing and coding.
Students who are aspiring to appear for the CPC and other coding certification exams, then the book- Medical Coding Certification Exam Preparation is a must for them.
The book provides a comprehensive assessment of topics that the students need to know for these exams. The topics included in the book are anatomy, medical terminology, pathophysiology, as well as concepts, guidelines, and rules of medical coding.
The authors of the book Cynthia Stewart and Cynthia Ward tried to provide a fresh approach to exam prep based on their teaching experience and thus help students prepare for certification exams.
The book provides the necessary tools for making students understand how to break each case down and translate services, procedures, and diagnoses into the most appropriate codes for reimbursement.