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How to Deal with Today’s Shortage of Certified Medical Coders


In the face of today’s uncertain healthcare financial environment brought on by the effects of the American Recovery Reinvestment Act (ARRA Public Law 111-5) and Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH) and the House and Senate’s versions of the Affordable Healthcare Act for America, how can your healthcare organization deal with the shortage of certified medical coders needed for billing and audit functions?
Now more than ever, it is critical that your facility remain current with its billing and audit operations. However, this is becoming increasingly more difficult with the shortage of certified medical coders. Many organizations are seeing their charting volumes dramatically increase and their Evaluation and Management (E&M) auditing requirements also growing significantly. Simultaneously, when healthcare facilities try to hire additional coders to handle the increased workloads, they are finding that only about one-third of the medical coders interviewed were qualified for hiring. The second challenge was that the coders who were qualified were commanding salaries that were well outside the cost containment parameters most facilities have in place.

How can your facility overcome these challenges – finding qualified and certified medical coders, while still containing costs?

solution shortage medical codersqualified medical coders business process outsourcing


Many organizations are turning to business process outsourcing (BPO) or knowledge process outsourcing companies, as they are sometimes known, to solve these challenges. These companies help healthcare organizations meet the certified medical coder shortage challenges in multiple ways:

  • They are experts at hiring certified medical coders because they maintain a large pool of these professionals to deploy at their clients’ sites.
  • They are experts at training medical coders and getting them certified by the professional certifying organizations.

The solutions provided by a business outsourcing company can solve your coder shortage problems immediately. Not only can they provide a pool of expert HIPAA-trained outsource coders, but they can also provide the supervisory personnel to ensure your coding and auditing meet all compliance regulations, while helping you contain your coding costs.

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