What Education Is Required to Be a Medical Coder?

It is highly recommended that anyone interested in becoming a medical coder completes a postsecondary certificate or associate's degree program. Keep reading for more information. Schools offering Insurance Billing & Coding Specialist degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Educational Requirements

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical coders are considered health information technicians. Overall, most technicians hold at least a certificate in health information technology or medical coding; some of these professionals may have an associate's degree.

Postsecondary Education

Common courses in a certificate or associate's degree program in health information technology include medical record coding, medical coding systems, medical terminology and anatomy. Courses familiarize potential medical coders with codes and their creation, making them more effective on the job. In addition, you may need to complete hands-on clinical practicums in order to graduate. The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA, www.ahima.org) has a list of schools with approved coding programs on its website.

Certification

The BLS reports that employers often prefer medical coders who are certified. In general, certification can make you more marketable and lead to a higher salary. The American Medical Association adds that certification helps medical coders stay on top of changes in the industry, because every two years, certified coders need to complete a certain number of credits to retain their certification. Possible certifications through the American Academy of Professional Coders include:

  • Certified Professional Coder (CPC)
  • CPC-Outpatient Hospital
  • CPC-Payer

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:

Popular Schools

  • ITT Technical Institute

    ITT Technical Institute responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at ITT Technical Institute:

    • Associate Programs

    Campus-Based Programs Available:

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    • California: Orange, San Bernardino, Sylmar
    • Indiana: Orange, San Bernardino, Sylmar, Indianapolis
    • New Mexico: Orange, San Bernardino, Sylmar, Indianapolis, Albuquerque
  • Baker College Online

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    Online Programs Available

  • Trevecca Nazarene University

    Trevecca Nazarene University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Trevecca Nazarene University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

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  • Colorado State University Global

    Colorado State University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado State University Global:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • TCI College

    TCI College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at TCI College:

    • Certificates

    Campus Locations:

    • New York: New York
  • Ferris State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: Big Rapids
  • Goodwin College

    Campus Locations:

    • Connecticut: East Hartford
  • Southwestern College

    Campus-Based Programs Available:

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    • California: Chula Vista
    • Ohio: Chula Vista, Cincinnati
  • Yavapai College

    Campus Locations:

    • Arizona: Prescott