Make a Career in Medical Billing

Medical billing is one aspect of medical facilities that is often overshadowed by doctors, nurses, surgical assistants, medical technologists and so on. However, it is as important a part of the process as any other, and can provide a decent medical billing salary.

Average Medical Billing Salary by Percentiles

The average medical billing salary in the United States is nearly $38,000 annually. Hourly wages range from $11 in the lower percentile to $28 in the upper. The median salary is $35k per year, or $2.9k per month, or $670 per week.

Hourly Wage$10.91$13.22$16.83$21.78$27.55
Weekly Wage$437$529$673$871$1,102
Monthly Salary$1,892$2,292$2,917$3,775$4,775
Annual Salary$22,700$27,500$35,000$45,300$57,300

Highest Paying Industries for Medical Billing Professionals

The highest paying industry is management of companies and enterprises, which consists of insurance carriers and brokers. This top industry for medical billing averaged $83k per year, which is about $40 an hour.

RankIndustriesHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1Management of Companies and Enterprises$40.00$1,600$6,933$83,200 10,000
2Wholesale Electronic Markets and Agents and Brokers$39.23$1,569$6,800$81,600180
3Data Processing, Hosting, and Related Services$36.15$1,446$6,267$75,200N/A
4Health and Personal Care Stores$33.94$1,358$5,883$70,600 1,000
5Other Information Services$29.04$1,162$5,033$60,400N/A
6Chemical Manufacturing$25.43$1,017$4,408$52,90040
7Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing$25.43$1,017$4,408$52,90040
8Business, Professional, Labor, Political, and Similar Organizations$23.51$940$4,075$48,90030
9Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods$23.08$923$4,000$48,000400
10Drugs and Druggists' Sundries Merchant Wholesalers$23.03$921$3,992$47,900400

States with the Highest Salaries for Medical Billing

By far, New Jersey had the highest wages for medical billing at $58k a year. California was a distant 2nd with $44k annual salary, but employed the most number of medical billers with 17k. Click here, for an entire list of states.

RankSalaries by StatesHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1New Jersey$27.64$1,106$4,792$57,500 2,000
2California$21.30$852$3,692$44,300 17,000
3Colorado$21.11$844$3,658$43,900 2,000
4Connecticut$20.48$819$3,550$42,600 1,000
6Massachusetts$20.00$800$3,467$41,600 6,000
7Maryland$19.95$798$3,458$41,500 3,000
9Minnesota$19.86$794$3,442$41,300 3,000
10New York$19.76$790$3,425$41,100 9,000

Worst States for Medical Billing Wages

All ten of the worst states to work as a medical billing professional paid between an average of $30k-$33k per year. The lowest paying states were Mississippi, Alabama, and North Dakota.

RankSalaries by StatesHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1Mississippi$14.42$577$2,500$30,000 2,000
2Alabama$14.81$592$2,567$30,800 3,000
3North Dakota$15.38$615$2,667$32,000700
4Arkansas$15.48$619$2,683$32,200 2,000
5Louisiana$15.63$625$2,708$32,500 3,000
6New Mexico$15.72$629$2,725$32,700 1,000
7Utah$15.87$635$2,750$33,000 2,000
8Oklahoma$15.87$635$2,750$33,000 3,000
9Montana$15.96$638$2,767$33,200 1,000
10Kentucky$16.01$640$2,775$33,300 3,000

Top Paying Metropolitan Areas for Medical Billing

Newark and Union were the highest paying major metropolitan cities averaging $60k a year in wages.

RankMetropolitan CitiesHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1Newark-Union, NJ-PA$28.94$1,158$5,017$60,200600
2Oakland-Fremont-Hayward, CA$27.45$1,098$4,758$57,100 1,000
3Edison-New Brunswick, NJ$27.21$1,088$4,717$56,600400
4Camden, NJ$26.01$1,040$4,508$54,100300
5San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, CA$25.82$1,033$4,475$53,700N/A
6Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV$24.47$979$4,242$50,900 2,000
7Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, CA$22.36$894$3,875$46,500 1,000
8New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ$22.16$887$3,842$46,100 4,000
9Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, WA$21.49$860$3,725$44,700 2,000
10Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA$21.01$840$3,642$43,700 3,000

Top Paying Non-Metropolitan Areas for Medical Billing

Non-metropolitan areas paid considerably less than their larger counterparts. The average medical billing salary in the top paying suburban area was North Central Colorado at $44k annually.

RankNon-Metropolitan AreasHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1North Central Colorado$20.96$838$3,633$43,60050
2Western New Hampshire$20.38$815$3,533$42,400200
3Southeast Alaska$20.34$813$3,525$42,30040
4Southern Vermont$20.19$808$3,500$42,000200
5Mother Lode Region of California$19.90$796$3,450$41,40080
6Eastern and Southern Colorado$19.52$781$3,383$40,600100
7Western Colorado$19.52$781$3,383$40,60070
8Northern Mountains Region of California$19.47$779$3,375$40,50090
9Railbelt / Southwest Alaska$19.38$775$3,358$40,300100
10West Central Wisconsin$19.38$775$3,358$40,300300

Highest Medical Billing Employment Levels

California and Texas topped the list for having the most employed medical biller, both tied at about 17k. In third was Florida with 10k employed.

RankStatesHourly WageWeekly WageMonthly SalaryAnnual SalaryEmployment Level
1California$21.30$852$3,692$44,300 17,000
2Texas$17.79$712$3,083$37,000 17,000
3Florida$17.26$690$2,992$35,900 10,000
4New York$19.76$790$3,425$41,100 9,000
5Ohio$17.64$706$3,058$36,700 8,000
6Pennsylvania$17.02$681$2,950$35,400 8,000
7Illinois$17.98$719$3,117$37,400 8,000
8Massachusetts$20.00$800$3,467$41,600 6,000
9North Carolina$16.59$663$2,875$34,500 5,000
10Tennessee$16.30$652$2,825$33,900 5,000

Job Outlook

Medical billers along with related professions are expected to grow over 20% over the next decade. This pace is nearly double that of all jobs in the US.

Employment Projections Data for Medical Billers 
Employment, 2012186,000
Projected Employment, 2022228,000
Employment Difference:42,000
Medical Billers22%
Health Technicians24%
Total, All Occupations11%

What do Medical Billers do?

medical billing salary dataWhen patients undergo medical procedures or examinations, the medical facility does not just work with the patient, but it must interact with the patient’s insurance company as well. The medical billing professional is responsible for submitting and following up on these claims to health care providers so the medical facility can receive payments for their services.

The process requires medical billers to learn various codes, each of which pertains to different diagnosis, medications and symptoms. This is a must for processing the claims properly.

The primary job of a medical biller is to make sure that the revenue process runs in a smooth and efficient manner. Once these services are performed, medical billers must also assign codes to bills for proper tracking. This requires these professionals to be proficient coders who work in a highly detailed environment where a typo in a code can lead to significant loss of income. It is because of this that the salary of medical billers can get quite high.

Many of these medical billers and coders work within the coder environment. They need to have worked with computers, telephones and other means of communication within the facility. Working hours for medical billers vary from one facility to the other but most of them work for about 40 hours in a week during standard hours. Then again, there are also those who work on a part-time basis.

The size and nature of the organization you work with determines the kind of work you will be expected to carry out. For example, some medical billers may undertake coding activities or may also be responsible for helping out patients. The job gets pretty challenging, however, because it includes interaction with patients, their relatives and friends with varying tempers and levels of frustration brought about by these financial situations.

How to Become a Medical Biller

Medical billers require a mix of the right educational qualification, training, licensing and last, but not the least, the right set of personality traits and qualities to pull off the job in the appropriate fashion.

The following are some of the technical requirements for medical billers:

1. Education

Anyone holding a high school diploma or a GED certificate of equal value can pursue medical billing as a career. Courses for medical billing are often not found in your typical degree program at a college.

You can take these courses online, however, if you are looking for a course in medical billing, make sure to pick an institution that is accredited and reliable. It always helps if the institution has a long history of training medical billers, or specializes in it.

Again, if you have still not completed high school and have already decided in this career, you have a chance to lay a solid foundation. Pick subjects such as accounting, computers, math, business and communication to make the most of the opportunities in medical billing. As with any other career, having more education can only improve your medical billing salary prospects.

2. Training

Once you are done with high school, you will be required to pick up some basic training at a medical organization. To begin with, you will need to familiarize yourself with a whole lot of medical terms and the process of diagnosis. You must understand and memorize medical coding.

Again, you will also need to get familiar with the regulations and laws of the state you are looking to work in. Apart from this, a detailed understanding about major insurance plans is also a must.

While a certified course for medical billing will prepare you for the job quite well, it is inevitable that you will pick up quite a lot of skills on the job as well. Again, you may also be required to be a part of ongoing and continuous educational courses. The more training and experience you have, the higher your medical billing salary can get.

3. Certification and licensing

salaries of medical billersWhile federal and state laws do not ask for certificates, most employers looking for medical billers always prefer candidates with the appropriate certification or licensing.

You can take up a course in medical billing from a reputed institution to ensure that you are well prepared to take the Certified Medical Reimbursement Specialist Exam. Even after you receive the relevant licensing and certification, it is important that you stay abreast of all the developments in the field.

4. Qualities and skills

Apart from all these technical requirements, you will need some inbred skills and qualities to make a successful medical biller. You must be comfortable with computers and the many software tools required for the job. You must have good math skills and must also excel in communication and organization.

Detail-orientation is another favorable quality in any medical biller as the details are very important. You will need to communicate effectively with patients, physicians as well as insurance companies on a regular basis.

Opportunities for Growth

When it comes to career advancements, medical billers can look forward to managerial positions after putting in some good work. Interestingly, many medical billers that have the proper experience and skills have started their own home business giving them freedom and flexibility in their schedules.

Make sure to network and get in touch with other medical billers in the field to make the most of your opportunities. It is important to be personable and build a strong network to maximize your potential and opportunities in the industry. It will not only help you get your foot in the door, but it will allow you to be more selective of which job you take, so that you can negotiate a higher medical billing salary.