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Medical Billing Firms and Outsourced Medical Billing on the Rise

February 8, 2009 0 Comments

With the rapid growth of the healthcare industry as reported by the Department of Labor, the medical billing field is also becoming larger. And as agencies, insurance companies, and hospitals struggle to control issues of fraud and misuse of insurance policies, the need for skilled medical billing professionals who have completed medical billing and coding certification is in high demand.

The primary goal of medical billing is to make sure that healthcare providers receive fair compensation for their services and that medical bills are paid in a timely manner. Depending on the office, medical billing involves a combination of the following tasks:

  • Submitting medical claims to the insurance companies of patients
  • Keeping a medical office organized and running smoothly
  • Billing and accounting work
  • Secretarial work to support doctors and other staff members
  • Documenting patient visits and medical care
  • Organizing patient information and making sure it is easy to find

Because qualified medical billers are currently so in-demand (Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics), there are increasingly more medical billing and coding programs that provide medical billers with the skills necessary to perform these tasks.

To keep up with constantly changing medical technologies, the healthcare field must constantly update codes and medical procedures. In Cleveland, skilled medical billers, who have received medical billing and coding certification, are required to maintain uniformity and to make sure these updates remain constant. In many cases, this process is achieved when medical billing is outsourced to a medical billing company, rather than handled in-house.

When healthcare professionals choose to outsource their medical billing, they can choose from different types of medical billing firms:

  • Practice management companies: Practice management companies are larger medical billing firms, usually with more than 100 employees. These types of firms have the resources to handle all types of billing needs, and they can usually also provide marketing, scheduling, and staffing to the companies they serve. Practice management companies are ideal for offices that would prefer to outsource most of their business operations.
  • Professional medical billing firms: These mid-sized medical billing firms usually employ a dozen or more employees. Although they are skilled in medical billing, professional medical billing firms usually do not offer the range of service beyond medical billing that practice management companies offer.

No matter what their size, all types of medical billing firms should be able to offer their healthcare clients the following:

  • Claim generation
  • Dealing with claims involving workers’ compensation
  • Communication and follow-up with insurance companies
  • Generation of practice reports on the fiscal health of the healthcare provider, as well as suggestions on how to improve profitability
  • Invoicing
  • Customer support

Overall, a medical billing firm staffed with employees who have gone through medical billing and coding courses is a crucial partner for a successful medical practice. When healthcare providers outsource their medical billing to a qualified firm, they have more time and energy to focus on their patients.

Sanford-Brown College - Cleveland is close to many locations:
Elyria, OH - approximately 22.3 miles
Lakewood, OH - approximately 8.7 miles
Medina, OH - approximately 20.8 miles
Strongsville, OH - approximately 4.8 miles

Sources:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2008-09 Edition, Billing and Posting Clerks and Machine Operators, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos277.htm (visited February 06, 2009).

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