Before you dive head first into medical coding school, you’ll want to know what type of medical coding classes you’ll be taking. How will medical coding courses prepare you for your certification and work in the field? And, how many medical coding classes do you actually have to take?
An Overview of Medical Coding Classes
Technical and community colleges that offer medical coding programs typically offer a 2-year curriculum, totaling four semesters of medical coding courses. Areas of focus in your medical coding classes will include:
• Anatomy and physiology
• Medical terminology
• Health information
• Health care systems
• Laboratory medicine
• Medical finance
• Coding (ICD coding, CPT, etc.)
• Computer skills
Expect to take between 4 to 5 medical coding classes per semester, as well as an internship. A medical coding internship will help you apply the principles you learned through your medical coding classes in a real work environment. Depending on your schedule, you may also have one semester where you will only take a minimum of 3 medical coding classes.
Learning Achievements From Medical Coding Classes
Upon completion of your medical coding classes, you should be able to perform important duties of a medical coding specialist, including:
• Abstraction of medical documentation from patient charts
• Application of policies and procedures surrounding disclosure of personal health information
• Translation of diagnoses and procedures performed into numerical coding
• Ensure accuracy of diagnostic and procedural groupings, patient records, and more
• Comprehension of various health care information, processes and procedures
• Utilization of medical coding software programs and other electronic applications
The objective achievements listed above are only some of the outcomes that you can expect from your medical coding classes. Successful demonstration of knowledge for these objectives is dependent upon your performance in your medical coding courses.
Taking Medical Coding Classes Approved by AHIMA
Some technical and community college medical coding programs are approved by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), which denotes that the medical coding classes you took have been reviewed against a minimum set of standards for entry-level coding professionals.
Graduates from AHIMA-approved medical coding courses are eligible to take national certification examinations, including the Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) and Certified Professional Coder (CPC) exams.