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What to Expect of Schools for Medical Billing and Coding in NJ

It can be tough to evaluate your education options. A career in the medical billing and coding field gives you good job prospects with lots of opportunities. The ever-expanding health care field also includes an ever-expanding list of treatments, procedures, and medications that must be properly tracked so that patients get the right care they need.

Fortunately, there are a lot of programs that can help you get your foot in the door. Here’s a quick look at what you can expect from medical billing and coding schools in NJ.

Classes in Billing and Coding

Any school in New Jersey offering classes inmedical billing and coding is going to teach you up-to-date procedures for handling both paper and electronic documents. They’ll teach you the procedures for verifying the treatment that the patients received and help you find the proper codes that apply to each particular item of medication or procedure that the patient received. It’s up to you to keep medical records consistent and updated so that payments can be processed and medical care received by the people who need it. Medical coding and medical billing aren’t the same thing, either; for billing, you need to learn how a variety of different insurance plans work and how you can bill them properly.

Classes in Work Place Management

A good program goes well beyond the basic and fundamentals. You can expect schools for medical billing and coding in NJ to also offer office management courses that help you interact with coworkers, from nurses and doctors to accountants and office managers. You’ll have to work closely with a variety of employees across multiple departments to insure that no files are lost and patient records and billing history is kept up to date.

A Job in a Growth Industry

Jobs in the medical field are always in demand, and the administrative side of medical billing and coding is no exception. With a projected 21 percent growth rate in the next decade according to Medical Careers Reviews, you can expect that a school will put you in touch with doctor’s offices, hospitals, physical therapy centers, and more who employ Medical Coding and Billing staff to make their payment collections process as easy as possible for their patients.

While the economy is still slowing rebounding, the medical field has weathered the storm. But you don’t have to endure the type of expenses and lengthy education process that some medical professions go through. With medical coding and billing, not only will you find a stable job, but you’ll learn a skill that’s always in demand.

Do You Have What it Takes to Become a Medical Assistant Specializing in Phlebotomy?

After making the decision to become a medical assistant, one must find the appropriate training program. For those who are looking for schools for medical assistants in NJ, there are many options, but ACI NJ offers in depth training for those who are interested in becoming a medical assistant. These professionals perform a wide range of duties, but there are opportunities for those who seek a specialization. Often, medical assistants can specialize in phlebotomy.

What Does it Take to Become a Phlebotomist?

First and foremost, a student who wants to become a medical assistant in phlebotomy must have the desire to help others by collecting their blood for examination to determine what is going on with the patient medically. A phlebotomy student cannot be squeamish when it comes to blood or skittish around needles, as these professionals are the ones who collect blood for tests, research or donations.

In order to keep a patient at ease, a phlebotomist should be friendly and calm, because they often work with individuals who don’t like needles or have issues when they see their own blood being drawn.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that phlebotomists require a post-secondary non-degree award, which one can earn at ACI school, which offers a medical assistant program in New Jersey.  Our programs include courses in anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, medical laboratory procedures, infection control and clinical experience.  At ACI, students also learn about medical laws, ethics and the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) as they explore the duties and roles of a medical assistant in several special areas.

Upon completion of this program, students can go on to obtain professional certification – another element that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says can improve a medical assistant in phlebotomy’s chances of finding a job in the specialty area of phlebotomy or several others.

ACI Dental and Medical school was voted #1 out of 18 Phlebotomy Programs for 2013 by the PhlebotomyTrainingSpot.com.

 

Personal Attributes of a Dental Assistant: Do You Have What It Takes?

dentBefore you rush off to commit to a dental assistant school in New Jersey, you need to make sure that not only do you understand the technical and educational requirements, but that you also understand the personal, emotional and professional qualities that successful certified dental assistants must possess. Anyone can go through the classwork and coursework, but what is it that really makes an assistant successful professionally and personally? Plenty of information is available on the educational requirements, but what about personal qualities?

Duty of Responsibility

At the core of every successful assistant is self-discipline, flexibility and competence. You’re going to have to assume responsibility of both legal and ethical standards in the field, and you will be dealing with all kinds of different patients with varying needs, personalities and expectations. You’ll need to remain respectful to patients and appreciate the diversity of others – patients and co-workers alike.

This means you’ll also have to maintain a level of patience too. As with any other field, you can expect to have great days on the job and some not-so-great days, and regardless of what is going on either in your personal life or at your workplace, you’re going to need to continuously make your patients feel relaxed and welcomed.

Desire to Help Others

The desire to help patients feel good and stay healthy with proper oral care is going to need to be your driving force each day, and you’re going to need to take responsibility for your actions. People who are interested in enrolling in dental assistant schools in NJ should have excellent time management skills, and should routinely do well with activities that require hand-eye coordination. They need to be capable of handling expensive equipment and professional instruments, taking care and being accurate in procedures, always.

Passion for What You Do

One personal attribute of successful certified dental assistants is empathy; many, many people are uncomfortable, and even afraid, of visiting a dental professional for care, and a great assistant should be able to empathize with these patients and be able to comfort them, make them feel more relaxed and ensure them that they will be just fine! A warm smile is powerful in the dental office, and the confidence that a successful certified dental assistant displays can go a long way in making the difference between a “terrible” visit to the dentist and a “great” visit for patients!

What You Need to Know: Receiving Your Dental X-Ray License in NJ

image001If you’re interested in assisting fellow professionals in the field of dentistry, obtaining your dental x ray license in NJ might be ideal for you. You’ll work under the direction of licensed dentists and will closely work with patients to improve and maintain their oral health. It’s a very rewarding career and is one that may be just what you’ve been looking for in a long-term happy, successful job path. If you’re interested in starting on your journey to becoming licensed, there is some crucial information you’ll need to know.

The Job of a Licensed X-Ray Technician

Once you earn your dental x-ray license in NJ, the following tasks will be associated with your scope of practice: positioning patients for dental radiographs for diagnostic purposes, aligning x-ray tubes to image receptors, setting tube distance and exposure factors, always maintaining proper radiation protection protocol, and making exposures. All include conventional radiography, digital imaging, and much more.

Education Requirements

In order to be licensed and work as a dental radiologic technologist, or x-ray technician, you’ll need to successfully complete a dental radiography program that is approved by the Radiologic Technology Board of Examiners or its equivalent, as determined by the Board.

Additional Requirements

In addition to the education requirements, you’ll need to also meet the following requirements:

  1. Complete at least a high school-level education
  2. Be at least 18 years old at the time you apply
  3. Be of good moral character as determined by the Board
  4. Pass either the Dental Assisting National Board’s RHS examination within 5 years of your application or hold a current dental assisting certification, or pass an equivalent exam as determined by the Board
  5. Submit a complete application to the Board
  6. If you graduated from a Board-approved program, you’ll need to submit the appropriate program completion form signed by a program official. If you did not complete a Board-approved program, you’ll need to submit information and a form to verify any work experience.

With all the options available to you today for on-site and online education courses, receiving your dental x ray license in NJ is a rewarding and well-earned achievement that you’ll be proud of. For more information, contact ACI at 732-440-4110 or visit www.aci.edu.

Thinking of Taking Medical Billing and Coding Courses in New Jersey?

medical-billingThe medical field is a growing field, and with that comes an increasing need for professionals with extensive training from medical billing and coding schools in NJ. The skills of people who have successfully completed a billing and coding program will prove invaluable to the facilities who employ them, which makes this career choice a very promising one for those who enjoy working in an administrative setting as they are part of the health care field.

What will I learn with medical billing and coding?

So what will you learn at one of these New Jersey medical billing and coding schools? While programs vary in specific coursework and subject focus, you’ll need to review the general duties of a graduate in order to determine if this type of program is right for you. Students generally learn how to use diagnostic and procedural coding, interact appropriately and professionally with medical staff as well as with patients, manage medical office settings, and manage health records.

When a student successfully completes a program, he or she will be able to understand medical practice settings and also understand various types of managed care plans and insurance. You’ll have access to workshops and presentations and learn how to become vital to the success of the healthcare industry. Medical billers review patient and hospital records, submit claims and answer questions regarding those claims. You’ll learn about Medicare, Medicaid, HIPAA requirements regarding patient privacy, and more.

What kinds of work environments can medical billing and coding professionals contribute to?

After successfully completing a program, medical billers will be qualified to work in any number of different environments including nursing homes and long-term care facilities, hospitals and treatment centers, physician offices and even as third party billing services for companies. In addition, state and federal government bodies and organizations also employ medical coding and billing specialists. You can also develop your own business as well.

What type of training will I need?

As a medical coding and billing student, you’ll need to excel in billing, medical terminology, diagnoses and coding. You’ll also need to familiarize yourself with laws and regulations regarding your state as well as of those with insurance plans and managed care plans. While all the necessary preparation is offered and achieved via medical billing and coding courses in New Jersey, you’ll also receive much additional training on the job.

Those who are looking for a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry and you are a task-oriented person who wants to contribute to the industry without taking the long years of schooling required for other medical professions, a program at a school for medical billing and coding in NJ may be just what you’ve been looking for.

Interested in learning more? Contact ACI today and start your journey to a new career!

How Does Medical Coding Work?

With healthcare reform, accessible care, and affordable medical treatment at the forefront of the American political agenda, it should come as no surprise that careers in the healthcare field continue to be among the most sought after positions for those looking for new careers. A career in the healthcare industry offers stability and the potential for limitless growth, yet also offers the fulfilling opportunity of helping people help themselves. The medical field extends far beyond the doctor’s office, with medical careers ranging from nurses and phlebotomists to office assistants and those in charge of medical billing and coding.

Medical billing and coding is a term that many may have heard, but few are actually familiar with the roles and responsibilities of this integral job. Today, we wanted to look at a couple integral responsibilities of the medical billing and coding specialists and those that play the role of an unsung hero in the medical office.

 

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Bridging the Gap Between Office & Insurance

 

Those in charge of medical billing and coding really play an integral role between what a doctor may recommend and the actual steps that turns the confidential records into a tangible set of notes that the insurance company will then pay. The medical coding office is responsible for taking the appointment and the corresponding records and essentially translating them into an abstract for the insurance provider. By coding, professionals are able to take the medical information and appropriately assign the claims for each action. This step is crucially important to protect privacy, and ensure the uniformity of records. The range of codes which a coder might see generally depends on the type of facility–an outpatient office might see dramatically different patient notes than that of a clinical facility. However, no matter what types of scenarios a medical coder may encounter, they are a critical component of any medical office, and an exemplary skill for a medical office specialist.

 

Streamlining the Process

 

By ensuring that records are kept using succinct and uniform codes, medical billing and coding specialists streamline the process for insurance agencies and billing offices, but also help standardize records and keep records. Medical professionals tend to rely on the work of certified medical billing and coding specialists to provide records of symptoms, medical histories, test results, and medications, in addition to just billing or payment. Medical offices rely on experience with medical billing and coding to keep things efficient.

 

Medical billing and coding specialists can help improve processing time, with a meticulous eye for detail and improving efficiency, while keeping the wheels turning in a crucial part of any community — the medical office. For more information about medical billing and coding, contact us today.

Common Tools for Dental Assistant Schools

DentalAssistantToolsThere are several crucial tools used at dental offices and dental assistant schools in NJ today that professionals and patients rely on for the best dental care. As advancements in dentistry come about, many long-standing instruments become phased out and replaced with newer, lighter, more effective ones. However, some instruments remain on the table as irreplaceable, necessary and pertinent to excellent oral health care, some of which include the dental explorer, the dental mirror, and dental bite wings, or bite blockers.

One of the most commonly-used and important tools in the field of dentistry is the dental explorer. Also known as a sickle probe because of the shape of the tip, there are several types and sizes, with the most common being the No. 23.

The main use of this instrument is to search around areas of the teeth to determine whether or not tooth decay is present. The sharp, pointed tip is used to reveal soft spots and holes in teeth caused by decay. Another use for the dental explorer is for finding hard food deposits that often site under the gum line. Although there are many alternative tools and methods today that are becoming more commonplace for this purpose, such as using radiographs, many dental professionals still will use the dental explorer due to its ease of use and versatility.

You will never walk into a dental care office or dental assistant school in New Jersey without seeing a dental mirror. This has a long handle similar to the handle of the dental explorer and is used to enable dental professionals to easily access the areas of the mouth, teeth and gums that are most difficult to see, such as the backs of the back teeth. These mirrors can be made as disposable for one-time use or they may be designed for repeated use. There are several sizes of dental mirrors in common use with dentists, ranging from the very small variety for children to larger ones for adults.

Bite wings, or bite blockers, are often used in dental radiology during x-rays of the jaw, teeth and mouth. They are available in many different sizes and are used to separate the teeth a bit for a clear view of all faces of each tooth. These are normally small paper or foam inserts that require no adhesive; they are simply inserted into the side of the mouth and are removed just as easily once x-rays have been completed. Bite wings are normally 100% latex-free and are quick and easy, not to mention comfortable for dental patients.

As technology advances not only in medicine but also in dentistry, new tools, methods and machinery are quickly developing to expand the simplicity and extent of dental care. As some tools are gradually phased out of use in offices and dental assisting schools in NJ, others like the dental mirror, dental explorer and bite wings continue to be valuable assets for dental practitioners.

Medical Abbreviations Friday: Five More Medical Abbreviations

Medical abbreviations are essential to navigating the everyday life of a medical professional. Whether you are the doctor or a medical assistant in NJ, being able to instantly understand medical abbreviations and terminology is essential for guaranteeing the best possible care for each patient in your care. For the hundreds of students in our New Jersey tech schools training every day to become the best in the medical field, here are 5 common medical abbreviations to remember.

DDX: Differential Diagnosis. DDX refers to the diagnostic method which is essential for discerning the cause of a problem for a patient, when more than 1 possibility is under consideration. The medical team will work to gather enough information in order to eliminate conditions which aren’t the true cause of a patient’s symptoms. Besides referring to the diagnostic method, DDX can refer to each of the possible conditions in consideration.

SOB: Shortness of Breath. Also called dyspnea, SOB is the unusual and unpleasant awareness of one’s breathing. It is a symptom of a wide variety of conditions, including congestive heart failure, asthma, and lung disease.

CNS: Central Nervous System. Referring to both the brain and the spinal cord, the Central Nervous System has a major impact on activities in all other parts of the body. Diseases affecting the CNS include Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

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CXR: Chest X-Ray. This is a test which uses an x-ray in order to create accurate images of a patient’s lungs, which are essential for understanding the current state of their lungs. Conditions such as Pneumonia and congestive heart failure and commonly found in CXRs, and can also be used for getting a holistic understanding of a patient’s health. Our dental radiology technician training program uses the same production of radiation in theory, but instead for dental x-rays.

ENT: Ears, Nose, and Throat. ENT and Otolaryngology is the study of medical conditions affecting the 3 aforementioned areas of the body. It is one of the oldest medical specializations in the country, and the majority of patient visits to a doctor are related to the ears, nose, or throat.

How many of the above abbreviations did you already know? Let us know which ones you knew on our Facebook page!

 

The ICD-10 Transition: An Introduction

The ICD-9 code sets used to report medical diagnoses and inpatient procedures will be replaced by ICD-10 code sets, October 1st 2015.

About ICD-10

ICD-10-CM/PCS (International Classification of Diseases, 10th Edition, Clinical Modification /Procedure Coding System) consists of two parts:

  • ICD-10-CM for diagnosis coding

  • ICD-10-PCS for inpatient procedure coding

ICD-10-CM is for use in all U.S. health care settings. Diagnosis coding under ICD-10-CM uses 3 to 7 digits instead of the 3 to 5 digits used with ICD-9-CM, but the format of the code sets is similar.

The transition to ICD-10 is occurring because ICD-9 produces limited data about patients’ medical conditions and hospital inpatient procedures. ICD-9 is 30 years old, has outdated terms, and is inconsistent with current medical practice. Also, the structure of ICD-9 limits the number of new codes that can be created, and many ICD-9 categories are full.

Who Needs to Transition

ICD-10 will affect diagnosis and inpatient procedure coding for everyone covered in Health Care. The change to ICD-10 does not affect CPT coding for outpatient procedures.

Medical Abbreviations Friday: Five More Medical Abbreviations

Today we’re bringing another edition of Advantage Career Institute’s medical abbreviations blog series. Whether students are training to be a Medical Assistant in NJ or taking medical billing and coding programs, ACI is committed to making sure all of our students are prepared for real life situations in the industry. In order to better prepare our students, here are 5 commonly used medical abbreviations.

EHR: EHR stands for an electronic health record. With an electronic health record, a patient’s health information can be easily accessible to different medical professionals across health networks. An EHR can contain detailed information about a patient’s well-being including their list of medications, billing information, medical history, immunizations, and much more. The usage of EHRs has been instrumental in making sure that patient information is consistently updated, accurate, and easy to maintain. Students of our medical billing and coding program will often have to work with EHRs, and will come to be comfortable managing them effectively.

HR (heart rate): Heart rate refers to how often your heart beats per minute, expressed as bpm (beats per minute). A patient’s heart rate is essential for understanding a patient’s health and is a vital measurement in many physician offices. As our Medical Assistant program students know, normal heart rates range from 60-100bpm and heart rates outside of this range are considered abnormalities in heart rate. Heart rates can be indicative of a number of different medical conditions, including cardiovascular disease, hypothyroidism, and anemia.

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EMT: An EMT is an emergency medical technician, who is educated and trained in order to address critical, time-sensitive medical situations. There are 4 different levels of EMTs who are all able to best address different emergency situations. EMTs can respond to a wide variety of situations, which makes them sought after by a number of different organizations including the police department, fire department, and more. The swift attention from EMTs has saved countless lives over the years, and continues to play an important role in the medical community.

IV: IV stands for intravenous therapy, which is the practice of introducing fluids directly into a patient’s veins. Often conducted by nurses, intravenous therapy is one of the most efficient ways of inserting important liquids into a patient. There are a number of uses for IVs, including chemotherapy, and blood transfusion.

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Hgb: Hgb stands for hemoglobin, which is one of the carriers of oxygen in the blood stream. Hemoglobin is essential for transporting oxygen and other gases, and provides the body with the energy it needs for a wide variety of purposes. Hemoglobin makes up the majority of red blood cells, and abnormal levels of hemoglobin are indicative of patient health and can often be consulted for diagnosis. Low levels of hemoglobin have been associated with conditions such as kidney failure, sickle-cell disease, and nutritional deficiencies. High hemoglobin levels on the other hand can be connected to lung disease, dehydration, and polycythemia rubra vera.

Check in again next week for our next installment of some of the most common medical terms in the industry. Let us know how many of these abbreviations you already knew on our Facebook page!

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