Coding Specialist Salary
The larger portion of Coding Specialists in the United States are women. Median pay in this female-dominated area goes for around $18.01 per hour. Location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. For the most part, Coding Specialists enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Medical benefits are awarded to a strong majority, and a fair number earn dental coverage. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Job Description for Coding Specialist
The coding specialist prepares patients' information so that their medical facility may properly receive payment from medical insurance companies and government-run healthcare programs. This specialist works in a medical environment such as a family practice, assisted living facility, or hospital. Using special medical classification tools, the coding specialist assigns the proper diagnostic and procedural codes to insurance claims, making them ready for filing. Additionally, they review claims to make sure that all of the coding is correct and that all required signatures are affixed. If problems or inconsistencies arise after the fact, the coding specialist works to resolve them by researching records and contacting insurers and program operators.Read More...
The most common path to becoming a coding specialist is to acquire an associate's degree in a field such as health information technology or medical coding. Additionally, prospective applicants can obtain the certified professional coder (CPC) certification, which is offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). This certification is required by many employers and is essential in job advancement.
Coding specialists should have strong analytical skills, precision, and attention to detail. Coding specialists often work at in an office setting and communicate with many different internal and external individuals over the phone, via email, and/or in person.
Coding Specialist Tasks
- Protect the security of medical records to ensure that confidentiality is maintained.
- Identify, compile and code patient data, using ICD-9-CM and CPT and other standard classification coding systems.
- Enter data, such as history and extent of disease, diagnostic procedures and treatment into computer database.
- Compile, abstract and maintain patient medical records to document condition and treatment.
- Review records for completeness, accuracy and compliance with regulations.
Common Career Paths for Coding Specialist
As Coding Specialists transition into upper-level roles like Certified Professional Coders, it's possible that they won't see a change in salary. Certified Professional Coders earn the same amount as Coding Specialists on average. Many Coding Specialists choose to become Medical Coders and Medical Records Coders as their careers advance. However, folks in those positions report median salaries of $4K less and $6K less, respectively.
Medical Coding Specialist Job Listings
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Popular Skills for Coding Specialist
Coding Specialists generally report applying a varied skill set to their work. Most notably, skills in International Statistical Classifications of Diseases - 9 Coding, Medical Terminology, International Statistical Classifications of Diseases - 10 Coding, and Medical Coding are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 3 percent and 15 percent. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include Electronic Medical Records and Current Procedural Terminology Coding. Those with knowledge of International Statistical Classifications of Diseases - 10 Coding tend to be skilled in Medical Coding as well.
Pay by Experience Level for Coding Specialist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Coding Specialists, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Average salaries for inexperienced employees average out to around $36K, but folks who have five to 10 years of experience earn a higher median of $41K. On average, Coding Specialists make $44K following one to two decades on the job. Veterans who have worked for more than two decades do tend to make the most in the end; the median pay for this group is $51K.