A valuable part of your health records management is your medical coding process. This is the backbone of your healthcare business. It is after all how you get your billing done. Although medical coding specialists and health information technicians do not provide direct patient care, they work regularly with physicians and nurses to clarify diagnoses or to get additional information to make sure that records are complete and accurate.
Before the days of insurance companies, everyone was self-pay, there was no need for a doctor to submit a form that was coded with all sorts of notations; the patient paid the doctor and he/she was on to the next patient. Now, however, there is a very complex procedure physicians and hospitals must endure if they are to get paid for their services.
Medical Coders’ Part in the Process
This is where medical coders come in to save the day. When a certified coding specialist looks through a patient’s medical file, they decipher what the diagnosis, treatment and services were provided and assign a unique code to each.
Getting More Accurate Reimbursement Through More Accurate Medical Coding
In order for the healthcare facility or the doctor to be paid from the insurance companies, Medicare or Medicaid these codes must be accurate and undisputable. Medical coding companies supply practitioners with the best medical coding services available.
These medical coders are highly trained, certified through various organizations and some even hold associate degrees. They know the various health care laws with regards to privacy and are very professional when handling a patient’s file.
Enter Electronic Health Records
With health information technology moving towards electronic medical records systems not only will doctors continue to need meticulous medical coding, physicians and healthcare facilities will also need medical coding companies that are knowledgeable about the electronic health records implementation process and have a vast security network in place to insure proper privacy protocols.
This new era of medical coding can be a lucrative transition for hospitals and doctors through the current incentive program available. Hospitals can be paid up to 2 million dollars and doctors up to 44, 000 dollars in incentives from the government.
There are problems that need to be worked out with EHR systems, but that will only happen through a process of trial and error. Once fully implanted throughout the entire medical community, physicians will be able to see a complete picture of a patient’s medical history. Similarly to the system that national pharmacy chains currently use that allows a pharmacist to view a patient’s complete prescription history enabling them to identify potential interactions and work with doctors to establish better drug care; electronic health records will provide doctors with the same ability plus more information.