Medical Coder Biller or Phlebotomy Technician – Which is better?
It’s impossible for someone else to decide for you whether a phlebotomy technician or a medical biller is a better job.
Both are very different jobs and have different pros and cons. Taking a look at the differences between the two will help you figure out which is better for you. Your situation may dictate which job suits you better.
Medical biller/coder job description
A medical coder or biller assigns codes to procedures and diagnoses for a patient’s insurance claim. These codes are entered onto a particular system by certain regulations. As a medical biller, you are primarily responsible for turning medical information into code.
There is a big list of codes you can choose from, so knowledge of the human body and diagnoses is fundamental. Having this knowledge will enable you to select the right code for the right procedure. You will often be in contact with healthcare providers and insurers to make sure the correct coding is used.
How do you become a medical biller/coder?
As it stands, there is no official qualification required for you to apply for a medical biller or coding job. But there are courses you can attend that enable you to gain professional certification, which will help you get a job.
Having these qualifications will help you stand out from other candidates and help you negotiate a higher wage.
Many of these courses to become a certified medical biller or coder can be done online. They shouldn’t take you any longer than a year to complete, and most people will finish them in less time.
On these courses, you will learn about anatomy and physiology of the human body. This will help you determine the right code to apply to the procedure or condition. The Certified Professional Coder qualification (CPC) is the highest you can be awarded and is the industry standard.
What is the job like?
Average medical billing and coding salaries are around $39,000 a year. The lowest paid and more entry-level positions are around $27,000. With some of the most well paid medical billers and coders earning up to $54,000 a year.
This career can also be quite flexible. As a medical biller, work from home is an option, all you will need is a high-speed internet connection and the right access. This will suit those who need to be at home more or would like to enjoy increased flexibility.
Phlebotomy technician job description
Many people use this career choice as a stepping stone into something more sophisticated in the field of medicine. A phlebotomy technician is an entry level position which will allow you to experience working with patients. If you aren’t sure whether further medical training is right for you, this could be a great job to give you an idea. Nonetheless, it is a great job in its right.
How do you become a phlebotomy technician?
Before you can be accepted onto a course to train as a phlebotomist, you will need to have a High School Diploma. If you do not have this or an equivalent, you will need to pursue that first. You will also need to be a minimum of 18 years old to enroll in a course.
These courses can cost up to $1,400 in a technical school and up to $700 for an online course. During your course, you may also need to purchase some training equipment, like practice veins.
Once you have started, the course should take any longer than a year for you to complete.
Upon completion of this course, you can begin looking at gaining certification. Phlebotomy certification from the American Society of Phlebotomy Technicians (ABST) can be awarded once the criteria are fulfilled.
You will need to have at least six months as a phlebotomist, have completed accredited training and have a membership with ASBT. Certifications will need to be renewed on a yearly basis at the cost of around $75.
What is the job like?
Once you are certified, you are likely to be able to negotiate better pay. The average phlebotomy technician salary is around $32,000 a year.
But it could be more or less depending on your level of skill and where you are working. Phlebotomists almost always work in a clinical environment, so there if no work from home option here!