While most people recognize medical professionals such as doctors and nurses as being very important to the proper function of a medical facility, not very many understand or even realize there is a health care professional known as a medical record coder. However, the person who is engaged in the process of medical record coding in a medical facility plays an important role in providing health and healing to people who are dealing with injuries, sickness, and chronic health issues. Here are some reasons the work of the coder really makes a difference.
What Does a Medical Record Coder Do
Essentially, a medical record coder is involved in the health management component of the healthcare process. The coder collects and arranges data that is relevant to the needs of the patient.
This will involve understanding how to create a base record that is in compliance with current state and federal regulations so that the data is complete but does not allow access to proprietary information.
The coder will make use of this database of information to aid in many support functions within the health care community, such as billing, the compilation of statistics that can aid in health-care research, and even the obvious task of keeping the medical history of persons treated within a given facility current and complete. All these functions can have both immediate and long term ramifications.
From the perspective of the individual patient, the work of the medical record coder means that details about procedures, treatments, and medication is found in one easy search. When time is of the essence, easy access to this data by physicians and others who are caring for the patient can mean the difference between life and death.
From a wider perspective, the data compiled by the medical record coder can help determine the direction of research and development of new surgical procedures and medications, based on the apparent demand for more tools to fight particular illnesses.