You’re not alone if you have a goal of working in the healthcare field, whether on the front lines caring for patients or behind the scenes in an administrative or support role.
I will graduate from Herzing University’s medical billing program in August 2018 and begin my career as a billing and coding professional. Even though billers and coders don’t work with patients directly, our jobs are still a vital part of the healthcare team.
If you think you’d like to pursue a career in healthcare but you’re not sure what you’d like to do, ask yourself these questions:
What are you good at?
Are you a people person who enjoys caring for and working with others? If so, you might consider a career as a nurse or a medical assistant. If you are more comfortable working independently and using computers and software, then you might enjoy an administrative or a health information role.
I chose to pursue a career in medical billing and coding because I am very detail-oriented. A billing and coding professional needs to be meticulous and accurate when processing claims because mistakes can be costly.
What are you interested in?
Choose a specialty that interests you and makes you excited to learn more.
For example, imagine sitting at your desk with a stack of case studies from the hospital ER. The reports might seem like a foreign language to some, but you know exactly what every sentence means. You understand the difference between the primary and secondary diagnosis, which medical equipment was used during the procedure, and which medications were dispensed and why. You code the report and key it into the hospital billing software.
As a billing and coding student, I had to learn about medical terminology, diagnosis and procedure coding. If those topics or skills sound intriguing to you, consider pursuing a medical billing degree.
What is your ideal work environment?
Think about what kind of work environment will allow you to be most successful. Do you thrive in a fast-paced, unpredictable environment? You might be well-suited for a nursing career in the ER. Do you like working on a small team? Consider working at a clinic or a private practice.
Working from home has always been a dream for me. Medical billing and coding is one of the best jobs I found that I can do from home, and I plan to someday start a small business of my own.
Understanding what you want to achieve in your career will help you determine what healthcare degree you should pursue. No matter where your interests lie, there’s a place for you in the healthcare field.