Posted in Career Insights
Medical Billing Specialist Skills

Interested in becoming a medical billing specialist? If so, this is a great time to consider a career in healthcare.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for medical records professionals is set to grow by 9% until 2030. So what skills do medical billing specialists need to succeed in their career?

Here are ten medical billing specialist skills that may give you an edge in the hiring process.

1. Problem Solving

The first item on our medical biller skills checklist is perhaps the most important. Since the goal of medical billing specialists is to provide accurate information in patient records and insurance claims, they need tremendous problem-solving ability. 

When it comes to medical records, mistakes are costly for many parties. Thus, a medical billing specialist needs to know how to verify patient records and accurately use classification systems to file insurance reimbursement claims. They may hit roadblocks during this process that require analytical thinking to overcome.

2. Communication

Despite the solitary nature of the work, medical billing specialists often need to communicate with other people. In fact, a major portion of their job is discussing patient health information with nurses, doctors, or other healthcare workers to clarify diagnoses.

This helps keep a patient’s file up to date and assists in the insurance reimbursement process. Some medical billing specialists may even speak directly with patients regarding account status or payments. For this reason, medical billing specialists need excellent communication skills.

3. Organization

One of the most important medical billing skills is organization. To keep track of patient records, medical billing specialists use electronic databases for collection, storage, and retrieval.

This is key to maintaining accurate records and protecting patient confidentiality. For medical billing specialists, organization skills go a long way in reducing the risk of errors while managing patient records.

4. Attention to Detail

Being a medical biller involves more than just receiving payments from patients and insurance companies. In fact, whenever a medical billing specialist receives a payment, they must check that it matches their records. 

Oftentimes, they may encounter payment discrepancies, both large and small. With attention to detail, it’s easier for medical billers to notice these issues and bring them to the attention of their supervisors. It may also save their employer from preventable lawsuits or tax consequences.

5. Intuition

Most medical billing specialists end up working with several software systems. In this case, one of the most underrated medical billing specialist skills is intuition. This is especially true for billers who work for different companies throughout their careers.

Since not every employer uses the same billing software or management programs, a medical billing specialist must learn these systems quickly. Becoming familiar with shortcuts and workflows, as well as the unique challenges of a particular system, is essential to succeeding as a medical biller.

6. Time Management

Out of all the medical biller resume skills that are in demand, time management is probably one of the most important. The independence of a medical biller’s job requires a lot of self-monitoring and discipline.

Instead of working hour by hour, many medical billing specialists tackle pressing tasks in order of importance. So if a biller has several bills or follow ups due on a particular day, they may spend most of their time accomplishing those tasks.

However, if they need to set up a collection account or consult with a doctor on a particular patient’s treatment, they may do that the day after. Not every day is the same, so medical billing specialists must use their time wisely.

7. Adaptability

As healthcare technology evolves, medical billing specialists must be ready for any changes. For example, the ICD-11 classification system went into effect January 2022 and requires medical billers to learn a new coding process.

This is just one example of why medical billing specialists must be adaptable and have the ability to learn new information quickly. Learning these new systems helps integrate different workflows into one, but only if implemented properly.

8. Conflict Management

In medical billing, there is no shortage of conflict. Patients may frequently make late payments or outright refuse to make payments for their treatment.

As a medical biller, you might need to negotiate payment plans with patients. Some may be cordial, while others might have heightened emotions. Knowing how to manage conflict with different types of people and reach solutions is an essential part of the job.

9. Teamwork

The ability to work with a team is one of the most overlooked medical billing specialist skills. Medical billers are the bridge between patients, providers, and insurance companies. This means that they work with a variety of people within and outside of their own organization.

For larger practices, such as hospitals, teamwork is even more important since there are dozens of medical billing specialists under one roof. In situations like this, knowing how to work in a team helps prevent major setbacks and overcome time restraints.

10. Empathy

While medical billing specialists primarily work with numbers and coding systems, they still work in healthcare. As such, it’s important for medical billers to have empathy for patients that they end up contacting. 

It’s no secret that many conditions put an emotional and financial strain on patients and their families. By understanding their circumstances, you may have an easier time setting up a payment plan that helps both your employer and the patient. You might even be able to help patients navigate the specific requirements of their insurance policies and assist in getting treatments covered.

Want to Take Your Medical Billing Specialist Skills to the Next Level?

If you have a passion for both detail-oriented work and healthcare, consider enrolling in Stratford Career Institute’s Medical Billing Specialist course.

During this course, students learn the fundamentals of medical terminology and coding. This includes the different classification systems used in the healthcare industry and the insurance reimbursement process. 

For more information about our course, please contact us or enroll today!

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Become a Medical Billing Specialist!

Become a Medical Billing Specialist!

Stratford Career Institute offers a convenient and affordable online course to teach you the fundamentals of medical terminology and coding.