Online Medical Billing Courses Must Be

This is part 2 of the article entitled “Medical Billing Courses Should Not Be”. This article reviews the top 7 essential online course topics that a prospective medical biller must learn to successfully start a home based medical billing business.

Did you know that almost 80% of people end up choosing the wrong types of online medical billing courses to start their home based business? What’s shocking is that the percentage is probably higher than that because if you do a search for medical billing courses, medical billing training, etc., you will find about 1.5 million results. Now to a beginner that’s more than overwhelming and it’s why the wrong course is usually chosen!

There are 7 subjects (I refer to them as essentials) that must be covered by an online course before you decide to enroll. Some medical billing courses give additional subject matters but 95% of them are just add-ons to justify the cost of the course and have no real bearing on you starting a home based medical billing business. Here are the 7 essentials and a breakdown of each one so you know exactly what they entail:

1.) Introduction to Medical Billing and Office Procedures

– What Medical Billing Is
– The Basic Overview of Office Procedures
– How To Collect and Enter Data
– The Paper Claims Process
– The Electronic Claims Process
– The Payment Posting Process
– How To Create and Edit Reports
– How To Charge Your Clients and Their Patients
– Exam (If the course is really good they should test your understanding of each topic before moving on to the next.)

2.) Documentation: Understanding Office Forms

– Essential Office Forms You Must Be Familiar With
– Patient Demographic Form and How To Complete Them Properly
– Insurance Cards, How To Read and Process Them
– Insurance Forms and Verification Procedures
– What Superbills/Daysheets Are and How To Read/Complete Them
– The Basics of the CMS 1500, UB92 and ADA Forms
– Step-By-Step Instructions for Completing a CMS 1500
– Commonly Made Errors On Forms You should Avoid
– Exam

3.) Code Usage: Understanding Codes

CPT (Current Procedural Technology) Coding
– The Definitions
– Proper Usage of CPT Codes
– The CPT Manual, How To Read and Use It Properly

ICD (International Classification of Disease) Coding
– The Definitions
– Proper Usage of ICD Codes
– The ICD Manual, How To Read and Use It Properly
– Exam

4.) Billing and Reimbursement: Understanding the Life Cycle of an Insurance Claim

– The Collection of Claim Data
– Claim Information Data Entry
– The Claims Submission Process (Paper Claims, Electronic Claims, Secondary Claims, Claims Attachments)
– The Posting Payments (Full Payment, Partial Payment, Deductible)
– Exam

5.) Software Usage: Working with Practice Management Software

Medical Billing courses at this stage in the process should supply you with medical billing software, software training workbook, a mock data manual for data entry purposes and a supply of CMS 1500 forms. This is a must because you will need to get all the hands-on experience you can get. You will be actually be doing the following like you were already in business:

– Entering Clinic Data From Superbills and Daysheets
– Entering Physician Data From Superbills and Daysheets
– Entering Patient Data From Superbills and Daysheets (Demographics Information, Insurance Information, Procedure Information, Diagnosis Information)
– Using Your Software to Generate Claims
– Using Your Software to Generate Reports
– Exam

6.) Operating Procedures Of A Medical Billing Business

– Steps to Creating a Business Plan
– Naming Your Business
– Setting Up Your Business
– Office Equipment & Essentials
– Services You Will Provide For A Client
– Relationship Selling
– Steps to Writing a Proposal
– Exam

7.) Effective Marketing Procedures Of A Medical Billing Business

– Promoting Your Business
– The Benefits of Selling
– Targeting Specialties
– Your Market
– Revenue Enhancement
– Sample Documents (Brochures, Flyers, Post-cards, Letters, Contracts, etc…)

A Word To The Wise: Anything beyond the 7 essential mentioned above is overkill for starting a home based medical billing business and will lead to TIO (Total Information Overload). TIO is known to accomplish two things:

a.) Kill Your Motivation and
b.) Make You Quit.

Anything less than the 7 essentials will leave you not knowing enough about the medical billing business for you to pursue it professionally.

OK, remember when I said that many medical billing courses offer all types of add-ons to justify the cost of the course but they are not crucial to you starting your business right now. Here’s a list of some of the topics:

Introduction to Computers

Keyboarding and Office Technology

English and Written Communications

Professional Development and Medicolegal Ethics

Medical Terminology, Medical Terminology 2, Medical Terminology 3, Medical Terminology 4

Anatomy 1 & 2


Introduction to Pharmacology

Even though the above mentioned topics are not necessary for you to learn right now for your business I do suggest that later on you look into expanding your education to include them. Knowledge is the key and if you know every aspect of doing billing and coding you’d also be expanding upon the types of services that you could provide potential clients, Which Means More Money!).

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