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Medical Billing and Coding Salary

By: CareerFactsheet editors- Updated: Jun 21, 2017

Money certainly isn't everything in life but it is certainly very important and for anyone considering a career in the medical billing and medical coding field gaining a basic idea about what they may be able to earn in the future can help them decide if the path really is the right one for them and if so just what factors - in terms of things like education levels, geographical location and employment setting - will impact their eventual earning potential.

US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Data

One of the most trusted resources for salary information of any kind are the figures released by the US Department of Labor. This government organization analyzes the data about a certain class of occupation and not only reports current available data but uses that data to make predictions about the future of field as well.

The one difficulty for potential medical billers and medical coders when it comes to these figures is that the Bureau does not differentiate between medical billers and coders and other administrative professionals like medical records technicians and medical registrars. Instead they categorize all of the professionals as Medical Records and Health Information Technicians even though the job functions of these individuals tend to be very different.

As a basic guide though these numbers and recorded trends are still helpful. The most recent available salary figures relate to 2016 data and are broken down in a couple of different ways.

Salaries by Geo-Location

Where you intend to work in terms of geography can impact your earning potential. As is the case with any other occupation the salaries available in one area of the country are often rather different than another. In 2016 the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the following for the whole category that includes medical billers and medical coders (as just described above) in terms of location and salary amounts:

Top Paying States
New Jersey $60,000
Alaska $56,920
California $48,840
Maryland $48,730
Colorado $48,730
Source: BLS 2016 Wages Data for Medical Records and Health Information Technicians

The good news about these variables is that in areas where the salaries are lower the cost of living in general tends to be lower as well.

Salaries by Employer Type

Many different medical providers employ billers and coders, some more commonly than others. According to the 2016 statistics the average salaries ranked by major employer type broke down like this:

Annual Salary Ranges By Employer Type
Hospitals $44,160
Physicians Offices $35,490
Nursing Homes $38,340
Outpatient care centers $38,400
Management Companies and Enterprises $47,150

You will of course notice that the salaries for management companies and enterprise employees are much higher than for everyone else. This is a little deceptive though as out of the 200,140+ people employed in the field only about 7,270 of them are actually employed by this industry.

These are also certainly not the only types of employer out there looking for medical billers and medical coders. Home healthcare services and equipment companies need their services as do large pharmacies. There are also some specialist medical billing agencies who serve a number of smaller medical providers on an outsourced basis who hire certified and trained medical billers and coders as well.

Salaries by Education Level

Medical Billing and Coding Salaries
The US Bureau of Labor statistics has less to say about the impact of education level on salaries. A survey undertaken in 2016 by a professional body - the American Academy of Professional Coders - found that the average salary for a non credentialed medical billing and coding employee was $39,956 versus $52,588 for a certified employee with the average medical coder salary (certified and non-certified) being approximately $49,872 per year. They also found that those with a higher degree - at least an Associates Level - earned more than those with a 12 month Certification, with a degree holding professional earning an average of $51,000.

Wherever you might choose to work or whatever level of education you pursue the general outlook for medical billing and coding for the future is one of growth. According to BLS data there will be a 15% growth in the number of people employed in the field between 2014 and 2024 and the expectation is that salaries will increase with this demand as well, making medical billing and medical coding a relatively stable and lucrative career path to follow.

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