“Medical coding is the transformation of healthcare diagnosis, procedures, medical services, and equipment into universal medical alphanumeric codes using ICD 10 CM, CPT, and HCPCS books. The diagnoses and procedure codes are taken from medical record documentation, such as transcription of physician’s notes, laboratory and radiologic results, etc.”American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC)
What is medical coding, really? Every time you go to see your doctor that visit has a medical code assigned which translates into dollars that are then billed to the insurance for payment to the doctor. Need stitches? That’s a code. Spent the night at the hospital? That’s a code too.
If I was going to really understand what I had just got myself into, I was going to have to reach out and meet people, talk about coding, and learn more. I’ve never networked as much as I have as a medical coder. Not only has it helped me understand my new career, but I’ve helped many people over the years. Attending AAPC Chapter meetings and Healthcon, the AAPC annual conference, has really sharpened my networking skills. It’s helped me connect with my peers and understand how medical coding fits into the Revenue Cycle. And the Revenue Cycle is big!
Continuing my medical coding education has been key to my career growth. Medical coding constantly changes due to medical updates with procedures and diagnoses. I’ve learned to adapt to the changes. I seek out ways to learn more and from different perspectives. I know it’s helped me because I earned a new certification in 2018, Certified Physician Practice Management. I was also able to pass a test at work in order to be promoted in 2019.
My next step is helping more Latinas achieve the next step in their medical coding career. In California, I found Latinas represent 1/3 of the industry however are seldom in leadership positions. I’d like to help improve this through a professional development program I created called, EDGE Mindset.