When you are looking to work at home or remotely as a medical biller or coder, there are two ways to do it. You can be either an employee of a company that allows remote billers and coders who work at home, or you can be your own boss and start a business at home by doing medical coding and billing.
This article explains the steps involved in starting your own medical billing or coding business remotely at a home office or another location and will give you an idea on how to go about it. If you are looking to work from home as a medical coder or biller employee or consultant, check our article about it here. While there is a huge demand for medical billing and coding professionals, with many medical offices and doctors looking to hire independent vendors and contractors who work-at-home, it could be very difficult to start on your own and be successful. You should be ready to be persistent, work hard and market yourself aggressively in order to be able to get clients and retain them for long term to be able to run your own business and sustain it. If you are willing to do it and interested to know how a medical coding and billing business can be started from home, below are steps to get your business up and running.
Before you even start thinking about the business, make sure you know how the healthcare industry and business operates. If you do not have experience in healthcare services, it would be helpful to get a training or take courses that provide you with this basic understanding. Along with the industry knowledge, you also need to know about medical coding and/or billing that you want to do as your own business. You can choose to attend a community college for a certificate or diploma course, or pursue a graduation depending on how much money and time you have to do this. Please check the learning section to find out more about these options.
Now that you are prepared and ready to start the business, create your goals and the steps you’ll take to reach them. For example, you might want to land your first client within six months of obtaining your business license and have three clients by the end of your first year. Then create a plan to achieve them and the steps that would involve in this process. This business plan and strategy creation would help you to think through the future in advance and possibly find gaps which you may not be able to do if it is only in your mind and not on paper.
You should be applying for the business license in the state for which you are starting your business to get the approval. Many states have websites where you can download all the necessary paperwork, fill them appropriately and mail them or take them to the concerned office in person. The paperwork is state specific and can be easy or difficult depending on where you are.
You would need to arrange for few basic equipments to start medical billing and coding business such as a good computer with internet connection, a printer and phone. It is also preferable, depending on your finances, to create few printed marketing materials about your business and a business card. It also helps to be on the internet for potential clients to find you, so create a basic website with your contact details included.
Finally, you would need a software that can handle the job you are looking to do. There are numerous coding and billing softwares available in the market, both free to try and paid versions. You would have to find out the software that best suits your needs and install it on your computer to start working.
Once you’ve completed the above steps, it’s time to start actively seeking clients for your medical coding and billing business. Network in person when possible by attending events where your potential clients and partners are available. Also, send out flyers and pamphlets describing your services to the potential clients and then follow up with phone calls. also look at the job portals and newspaper advertisements for medical coding and billing opportunities and apply for them.
Make up your mind to market consistently (even after you start landing clients) as you won’t get anywhere unless you do this for the long term. You may lose some clients along the way if you’re not very knowledgeable, but you’ll learn as you go and will eventually get to a stable state with a manageable set of stable clients for your business. How much time you would need to get to this state depends a lot on your marketing skills, competition in the market you are in. A word of caution though, choose legitimate clients and contracts whom you have known previously or are well known companies as there are lot of scams to get you tricked to giving away your money for getting work.
The type of work that you may get could vary, especially in your initial days when your business is not well known in the area. Depending on the type of work that you get, you could bill your client for the number of claims submitted, a percentage of the amounts collected or a flat hourly rate. Determining which type of invoicing to choose depends on the type of work and the engagement that you have with the potential client.
Growing your business
It could be really difficult to sign your first client, especially if you are new to medical billing and coding. And if you have signed your first client, it takes a lot more to retain them. But if you believe in yourself and is ready to the hard work, nothing is impossible.
When you have found clients and have started billing it coding for them, it is important that you are helping them in every way to keep the business. You should be honest in your dealings, open to change your ways for good, and be consistent on delivering with quality. These are the behaviors that retain your clients and help you gain referrals to new clients
Now that you have understood the steps to start your home business for remote billing and coding, decide your next steps and act on it. We wish you all the best and feel free to contact us or add your comments below.