Health claims specialist training programs prepare its students to work in medical billing and claims. They will learn how to code patient treatments and records for insurance and billing purposes and operate the electronic records systems used by most medical facilities and insurance companies. Curriculum covers medical terminology, basic health care procedures, computer science, human anatomy, diseases and epidemiology, coding procedures, billing techniques and reimbursement strategies. Direct experience is gained through a supervised internship at a nearby medical center. These 2-year programs are primarily offered by community colleges and vocational schools and are also known as health information technician or technology training. Applicants must have a high school diploma, at least one course in biology, strong reading and writing comprehension, and working knowledge of computer operating systems and keyboarding.
- Program Fields: Health information technician and health information technology
- Prerequisites: A high school diploma or GED and an educational background/proficiency in biology, reading and writing comprehension, computer operating systems and keyboarding
- Program Length: On average, 2 years
- Other Requirements: Completion of a practicum for graduation
Health Claims Specialist Training
These programs cross disciplines, focusing on subjects that involve technology, science and medicine. Some course topics include:
- Human physiology
- Basic computer science
- Health information management principles
- ICD-9-CM coding systems
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical records and health information technicians earned a mean annual wage of $38,860, as of May 2014. Employment for these professionals is predicted to grow at a rate of 22% over 2012-2022 (www.bls.gov).
Certification and Continuing Education
While certification is not required in the field of health information technology, potential employers prefer those with a credential. Health claims specialists training graduates can gain coding certificates from organizations such as the American Academy of Professional Coders or the Board of Medical Specialty Coding. They can also gain certification as Registered Health Information Technicians (RHITs) by completing an exam given by the American Health Information Management Association. Those interested in management positions might consider enrolling in a Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management program.