Medical Billing and Coding Education in Michigan - MI
Becoming a billing and coding specialist in Michigan
Although this profession is not one of those that are required by law in Michigan to be licensed, many employers prefer that medical records and health information technicians, including medical billing and coding specialists, are certified. Surveys indicate that the majority of hospitals, healthcare facilities and physicians’ offices look to hire candidates who have achieved the Registered Health Information Technicians (RHIT) certification. Only graduates from a program recognized by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) are eligible to be certified as an RHIT in Michigan.
After completing a course of study from a Michigan medical billing certificate program, coding program, or a comprehensive program for medical billing and coding certification in Michigan, students are eligible to take the certification examination administered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). As the national organization for medical records and health information technicians, AHIMA is the acknowledged “gold standard” for this profession.
For those wanting to advance in the medical records field, specialized training or promotion to management are avenues that are open. One of the up and coming areas of specialization within the area of medical records and health information and coding is that of tumor registrars. Tumor registrars compile and maintain records of patients undergoing treatment for cancer. This data is valuable for research studies being conducted by both the government and private sector. Tumor registrars in particular are often able to obtain positions whereby they can access the tumor registry data system remotely and work from home. Additionally, there is often flexibility in work schedules, with part-time work available.
Candidates require good analytical skills because accuracy and attention to detail within precise standards and codes is essential. Those with good communication skills and the ability to grasp medical terminology are successful as billing and coding specialists.
Steps to becoming a medical billing and coding specialist in Michigan
1) Graduate from a 2-year associate degree program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).
2) Pass an examination offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).
3) Apply for certification as a Registered Health Information Technicians (RHIT).
4) Health information technicians can specialize within their profession. Two of the most in-demand specialties:
- Coding patients' medical information according to diagnosis and procedure.
- Registering patient records for patients treated for tumors or cancers utilizing the tumor registry data system. Cancer registrar is the fastest growing medical coding specialty.
5) Beginners in this field work in hospitals, physician’s offices, clinics, insurance companies, public health research groups, or billing and coding service firms.
6) Senior professionals are eligible to earn increasingly higher levels of AHIMA accreditation. Members in the organization pay dues.
The following organizations offer more information on careers in medical records and health information technology, including medical billing and coding, certification details, and a list of accredited training programs:
- American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), http://www.ahima.org
233 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 2150,
Chicago, IL 60601-5800
- Michigan Health Information Management Association (MHIMA), http://www.mhima.org/
3311 David-Bee Street
Muskogen, MI 49444
Any active member of AHIMA is automatically an active member of the Michigan HIMA.
- American Academy of Professional Coders, http://www.aapc.com
The training and certification organization
2480 South 3850 West, Suite B,
Salt Lake City, UT 84120
- National Cancer Registrars Association http://www.ncra-usa.org
1340 Braddock Place Suite 203,
Alexandria, VA 22314