What is the Difference between Medical Billing and Medical Coding?

With our fantastic reputation among online medical billing and coding schools, Blackstone Career Institute offers students the ability to obtain their medical billing and coding certification to enter today’s competitive health information industry, prepared!
As our Blackstone students know, medical billing and coding are referred to as one career in today’s health information industry. However, billing and coding really are two distinct careers. Here is a brief description of the tasks and functions associated with each job:
  • The medical coder deciphers the documentation of a patient’s interaction with a healthcare provider (physician, surgeon, nursing staff, and so on) and determines the appropriate procedure (CPT) and diagnosis code(s) to reflect the services provided.
  • The medical biller uses the assigned codes and any required insurance information, enters them into the billing software and then submits the claim to the payer (often an insurance company). A medical biller also follows up on the claim as necessary.
  • Both medical billers and medical coders are responsible for a variety of tasks, and they’re in constant interaction with a variety of people (you can read about the various stakeholders in Part V). Consider these examples:
    • Medical billers are responsible for billing insurance companies and patients and therefore have daily interaction with both patients and insurance companies to ensure that claims are paid in a reasonable time.
    • To ensure coding accuracy, medical coders often find themselves querying physicians regarding any questions they may have about the procedures that were performed during the patient encounter and educating other office staff on gathering required information.
    • Medical billers (and sometimes medical coders) have the responsibility to explain charges to patients, particularly when patients need help understanding their payment obligations, such as co-insurance and co-payments.
  • When submitting claims to the insurance company, medical billers are responsible for verifying the correct billing format, assigning the proper modifier(s), and submitting all required documentation with each claim.
In short, medical billers and medical coders collect information and documentation, code claims accurately so physicians get paid in a timely manner and follow-up with payers to make sure that the money makes its way to the client’s bank account. Both jobs are crucial to any healthcare provider office. They may be done by two separate people or by one individual.

Blackstone’s Online Courses with Certificates:

medical billing and coding certification
Blackstone Career Institute (BCI) offers a Medical Billing and Coding Certification Program that prepares you for an entry-level position in this field. Medical billing and coding job opportunities include working in a medical office, clinic or hospital. You can see additional curriculum details on this page on our website.
For those of you interested in pursuing a career as either a medical biller or medical coder, BCI also offers a Medical Billing Certificate Course and a Medical Coding Certification Course. The online Medical Billing Certification Course is designed for those interested in learning the intricacies of running a healthcare facility, or even students who want to see if this profession is right for them. The need for talented and knowledgeable medical billers is on the rise as the healthcare field continues to expand. For the same reason, the need for trained medical coders is on the rise. Medical coders work in a variety of settings, mainly submitting medical claims to insurance companies to ensure that patient appointments, services and procedures are reimbursed.


Earn your Medical Billing and Coding Certification through Blackstone Career Institutes online training programs.

Join us and begin your journey towards becoming a Medical Biller / Coder in today’s rewarding healthcare information industry. Start NOW for just $59 and save up to $356 on tuition!
At Blackstone we offer accredited, affordable and convenient online courses with certificates. With our low monthly payment options, 0% interest, all-inclusive tuition and no hidden fees, you can graduate debt-free. Take advantage of our Tuition Assistance Payment Plan (TAPP) this Summer to enhance your education through our online certificate programs.
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