Keeping health care offices running smoothly

Today’s health care system is a growing and fast-moving field. To help meet the demands of today’s health care workplaces, Jackson College offers an Associate in Applied Science in Health Administration/Insurance Specialist degree, now available completely online.

This degree may be a good fit for those interested in the medical field but not necessarily having clinical contact with patients. It builds on and continues the medical coder/biller certificate, providing students with additional coding and billing training and practicum experience while incorporating business and administrative topics relating to health management. Students may find careers in health administration, medical biller, medical coder, practice management, medical secretary or medical receptionist. Upon completion, students may sit for the Certified Professional Coder (AAPC) exam.

“This will offer students the skills that they will need to get a job, if they are interested in moving up in the health care field,” said Dr. Kristin Spencer, program director for the medical assistant program. “It will also prepare them for advanced study of a bachelor’s degree program, if they are interested in higher level management in the medical field.”

Skills for success

To succeed in the medical coding/ billing and administration fields, students should be self-motivated, determined, flexible and patient. In working with insurance companies, requirements may change frequently, and workers need to be able to change their ways of doing things quickly.

Careers in medical records, coding and billing are expected to increase about 10-15 percent over the coming years. Average waves are about $35,780 annually, and range from $24,090-$57,950. Medical practice managers, who typically do complete a bachelor’s degree, may earn $92,470 annual, and that field will see a 10-17 percent increase in demand.