Sep 19,2022      BY   Time Admin

How to Become a Medical Coder?

If you’re thinking about becoming a medical coder, it’s a great career choice. However, if you think medical coders just look up medical codes and it is easy, it’s not that simple and takes a lot of training. There are some basic things that you should know about before you look for employment as a medical coder. 

This blog will help you with the basics of becoming a medical coder, starting with where to get your training and ending with what will be your salary in your first job out of school.

Read Also: Medical Coder Skills

Step-by-step Guide To Becoming A Medical Coder

Becoming a medical coder is no easy task. If you want to become a medical coder, there are a lot of steps to tackle first. It ranges from understanding the job responsibilities of a medical coder to getting certified as a medical coder to finally landing a job as a medical coder. The following explains the process involved.

Step One: Do your research 

Before becoming a medical coder, you should have a concise knowledge of what it entails- its meaning, importance, advantages, disadvantages, and career opportunities.

You should learn about the different ‌medical coding systems and their specific uses. It will help you narrow down your options and find a position that will be the right fit for you.

Here are some simple Q & A’s ‌asked about medical coding.

Q1. What is Medical Coding?

  1. Medical coding is the translation of medical reports into short codes used within the healthcare industry. Medical coding is a crucial part of the healthcare industry and is a growing field with many job opportunities. 

Q2. What are the benefits of learning medical coding?

  1. Learning medical coding can help you get a job in the healthcare industry. It can also open up career options that you might not have considered before. 

Q3. Is medical coding a good career option?

  1. Medical coding is a great way to learn about the healthcare system and how it works. Being a medical coder can be rewarding and challenging, as you will translate physicians' reports into medical codes.

If you want to become a medical coder, keep reading for more information on how to become a medical coder.

Step Two: Enroll and get medical coding certification 

There are many ways in which to become a medical coder. 

  1. You can attend a coding school and get certified, get a certificate from an online program, or earn a degree in health information management. 


  1. You can become certified through the American Health Information Management Association or the American Academy of Professional Coders. 

Whichever route you choose, get accredited training from a reputable source. 

The best path for you depends on your learning style and schedule. If you can commit to attending a coding school full-time, that would be the best way to go about it. However, if you don't have time to devote yourself fully to the coursework, then taking an online certification course is what you should do. And if you're looking for something more challenging, completing self-study materials with practice exams is a great option!

Here are the Certifications required for becoming a medical coder

  1. First, you should have a high school diploma or an equivalent. 

  2. The next step is to complete an accredited coding program. 

  3. You will also need three years of hospital experience in the health care industry before applying for certification with the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). 

  4. Last, many employers require prospective employees to pass an entrance exam and background check. The AAPC also requires applicants to take a proctored skills assessment examination before getting their certification. 

Once you complete your training, it's time to find work! Some employers will require certification before hiring. If they don't, then it is still recommended that you take the time and expense to attain your credentials as soon as possible.

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Step Three: What to do after getting certified?

Once you have your certification, there are a few things you can do to set yourself up for success. 

  • First, start networking with other medical coders and professionals in the healthcare industry. You should also stay up-to-date on the latest coding news and updates. 

  • The next step is to join a professional organization, such as the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). 

  • Next, ‌create a strong portfolio of your work and start looking for job opportunities.

Step Four: Reach out for the job

Once you have completed an accredited medical coding program and got your certification, you can start looking for jobs in the medical sector as a medical coder. 

In the medical sector, you can find work in hospitals, clinics, and physician offices. You can also ‌work from home as a contract medical coder.

Before looking for work, you should have a resume that includes all relevant qualifications, work experiences if any, skills, education level, certifications, etc. You can also mention your language skills in your resume as it might improve your chances of getting the job.

And don’t be afraid to negotiate your salary and benefits when you land a job.

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4 Tips to follow when applying for a job as a medical coder

Getting a job as a medical coder when you are a beginner can prove to be tough. The 4 tips following might help you in landing a job.

  • Become familiar with professional associations in the medical coding industry. Some associations offer conferences and events specifically for students, so take advantage of these opportunities to learn more about how to break into this profession. 

  • Consider internships as an alternative way to gain valuable experience before graduation. Most companies prefer interns to be college students, but some companies allow high school students if they have consent from their parents.

  • Don't forget to add a reference section to your resume when you apply for jobs. When applying for a position online, attaching your resume instead of writing it on the form is preferred. For offline applications, write ‘See Resume’ at the bottom of the application form and attach a copy of your resume. 

  • Follow up with hiring managers after applying; this is especially important if you don't get any feedback after two weeks.

Those who are just starting should look into entry-level positions that offer on-the-job training with their employers. As you gain more experience, you may start looking for jobs that are not only high-paying but also come with more responsibility.

Read Also: Benefits of Medical Coding Career

In conclusion 

You might imagine that the job of a medical coder is highly repetitive and boring, but there is much more to the job than sitting at a desk and writing codes. It can be challenging and stimulating sometimes. With experience, you can advance your career and get yourselves job positions that pay well. Hence, medical coding is a good career choice if you’re genuinely interested in it. Your medical coding course can prepare you for a career as a medical coder by helping you grasp all essential concepts.


Time Admin

Time Training Center (TTC) is a leading education institute in Abu Dhabi that focuses on providing quality education and training programs. We provide authoritative info and blogs on various topics in which we focus our training programs. 

Through our expert blogs, we aim to hone and develop the human capital of Abu Dhabi in the field of Computer and Management education, fostering professional competencies in diverse areas. 

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