It’s imperative that you have the correct coding resources available to you. It does not matter if you hire someone to code for you, or if you do it all yourself. You need the learn how to code (something that got left out of my program). It directly affects your bottom line.
So where can you learn this mysterious art? There are lots of resources available to you on line, books, forums and email lists just devoted to coding and billing.
If you are in a specialty area, often times, the professional associations will publish for their members, codes that are specific to that area of practice. For those of you in general practice|primary care|family practice, here are some resources for you.
Family Practice Management – They have loads of resources for your office. Templates for documentation, coding resources, and much more. Every year they publish a short and long list of ICD-9 codes that are most commonly used in Family Practice. Even though I have lots of stuff on my PDA, I keep a copy of this list in each exam room….and I use them.
Medical Economics Magazine – When you go to their site, you’ll find all sorts of information on practice management, coding and daily operations.
I don’t own this book, yet…but I’ve been hearing lots of positive things about it. It’s written by a physician who has been struggling just like the rest of us to get paid. I understand it’s very practical, full of examples and tips to make sure you are coding correctly. Not an easy task these days…I can tell you.
Physicians Practice – Another website that is geared toward office operations with a bit of clinical information thrown in. Again, good information.
Coding911 – If you can get past the bright colors and busy website, you can find all sorts of good information. Several of the mailing list around coding comes from here…I belong to one, and it’s an excellent source of information.
Modern Medicine – A new site with a coding section. You will have to register, but it’s free.
Flash Code – This is one of my favorites. It’s a yearly subscription, plus with their special you get the books. I like it, as Ican log in and search for any code I want – ICD9, CPT, HCPCS, J-Codes, etc. To me, much faster than searching a book. And since our workstations all have computers with internet access, everyone can have access.