Oklahoma Medical Billing Schools Online

Many Oklahoma medical billing schools online and on campus are available to meet your employment goals. The Sooner State has many post-secondary educational institutions, ranging from community colleges and technical schools, to universities and colleges--many of which offer programs in medical billing and coding.

Finding the best Oklahoma medical billing schools online or based on a college campus takes research. Quality can vary widely, especially with those found online. Spending time up front selecting a solid program will pay dividends later when you search for a job. By doing your research , you should be able to determine which programs will not only best fit your employment goals, but also will help the quality programs rise to the top of your list.

Match Your Goals to the Coursework. If you are planning to apply for medical coding jobs, for example, be sure the program you choose includes an in-depth study of coding in addition to billing. A good quality general medical billing course will give you the skills to handle billing, but not necessarily medical coding. If you plan to open your own medical billing business from home, be sure coursework includes topics such as how to choose the best medical billing software, how to write a business plan, and how to price your services appropriately.

A full Associate's Degree is not typically necessary for someone who is planning to open their own business; a good working knowledge of the billing and reimbursement cycle is. Most medical billing specialists who run their own business have little or nothing to do with medical coding and thus that coursework is probably not necessary. But be aware that having a coding background may help you gain employment in a professional setting.

Look for Accreditation. While some of the shorter certificate and diploma programs may be of good quality without accreditation, if you are planning to earn an Associate's Degree, accreditation is a must (and accreditation for Oklahoma medical billing schools online is also a big plus). Accreditation ensures certain quality standards are in place, and that the education offered meets or exceeds a certain level.

Accreditation is conferred by a number of entities; ask any program you are considering what type of accreditation the school has earned, and then do an internet search to be sure it comes from a legitimate source. Students who are planning to concentrate on the medical coding side of billing and coding typically need an Associate's Degree since potential employers tend to expect a more in-depth knowledge of specific medical codes.

Students whose employment goal is to work in a medical practitioner's office, or working at their own medical billing home business, where the primary focus is on billing may only need the shorter Certificate program.

Hands-On Learning is a Must. Most programs advertise hands-on learning, but not all deliver on those promises. Students should work with materials that mimic the billing and reimbursement cycle, so they can practice how to do medical billing, not just view a power point presentation showing it.

Some programs, though not all, offer internships that give real-world experience, and ideally can also provide a reference to take to a job interview. The best way to ascertain if the hands-on portion is truly hands-on is to speak with both current and former students.

Ask them what kind of hands-on work they have been provided, and if they feel adequately prepared for a job. Find out if they feel the program has lived up to their expectations, and whether it has delivered what they thought it would.

Post Oklahoma Medical Billing Schools Online Employment

After your education at one of the Oklahoma medical billing schools online or on campus is complete, the best prospects for employment will be found in urban areas. In addition to those found in the table below, a larger concentration of medical practitioner offices can be found in the cities of Norman, Broken Arrow, Edmond, Midwest City, Enid, Moore, and Stillwater. The U.S. Department of Labor (www.bls.gov) reports the mean annual wage of Oklahomans in the medical billing field is $33,670 as of 2014 (the most recent data available). In addition, specific areas of Oklahoma report the following:

Area Mean Hourly Wage Mean Annual Wage +/- Change Since 2012
Oklahoma City, OK $16.04 $33,370 +3.5K
Lawton, OK $18.50 $38,480 +7K
Tulsa, OK $16.87 $35,090 +2.5K
Northwestern OK $13.87 $28,850 +4.5K
Southwestern OK $16.71 $34,760 +5K
Northeastern OK $15.77 $32,800 +1.3K
Southeastern OK $15.77 $32,810 +5.3K
Fort Smith AR - OK area $13.60 $28,280 +$100

The U.S. Department of Labor further reports that Oklahoma ranks #5 in the nation for states with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in the medical billing field, with 3,690 people employed at $14.79 per hour and $30,760 per year.  This represents a net gain of 440 jobs an an annual salary increase of almost $3,000 over the last DOL report in 2012.

The relatively plentiful numbers of jobs currently available for medical billing and coding professionals, coupled with an 8.7% population increase from 2000 to 2010 (according to the U.S. Census Bureau) which will mean an increased need for healthcare and related services like medical billing, makes this a promising career for the long term.

› Oklahoma Medical Billing Schools Online

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