A medical billing business can be the ideal at home career as the world of medical treatment has changed dramatically in the past few years. Doctors are overwhelmed by the maze of complicated claim forms and insurance policy procedures. As a medical claims biller, you can earn a good income managing claims for doctors and other healthcare specialists. There`s no special training or experience needed, and start-up costs are minimal.
It`s an ideal "starter" business because you decide its size and scope. You can specialize in certain fields, chiropractic, pediatric or dentistry for example and determine exactly how many healthcare professionals you want to accept as clients.
A medical billing service is the doctor`s key to getting paid. Despite the fact that the healthcare industry is alive and well in America, most doctors and other healthcare providers have no idea how to insure payment for their services and obtain that payment quickly and efficiently. A billing expert can dramatically increase the doctor`s immediate revenue.
With legions of providers and an ever-expanding patient pool, the healthcare industry is flourishing. According to a recent study by the government`s Health Care Financing Administration, or HCFA (pronounced hick-fah by those in the know), national healthcare expenditures totaled $1.3 trillion in 2000. Medicare spending accounted for $224 billion of that total. So let there be no doubt: Healthcare is big business.
An excellent site to find out more is At Home Medical Billing that goes into greater detail on this home based career.
Besides the growing and aging population, preventive maintenance, which used to be something you performed on your car or boat, now it applies to people.
Just about everybody is into health and fitness these days, which means cholesterol tests, blood sugar tests, weekend athlete injury repairs, liposuction and psychological tune-ups. People weaned on new medical techniques as seen on television are far more apt to see a doctor for a real or perceived health problem than ever before. This again equals more patients, more bills and more insurance claims to be filed.
However, the doctor has little hope of receiving any income from all this patient activity if he can`t get reimbursement from the insurance companies. In the pre-computer world, the payment process was protracted but simple. After being treated, the patient gave his insurance form (hopefully with his portion completed) to the doctors receptionist and walked away, secure in the knowledge that the doctor would fill out all the boxes, send it in, and sit back and wait to be paid. All told, the wait could exceed six months or more. There is, however, a happy ending to this tale for the doctor wise enough to employ a medical billing service.
What can you expect to make as a medical insurance biller? The sky`s the limit, depending only on how serious you are and how willing you are to expand. Annual gross revenues for the industry range from $20,000 to $100,000. Some MIBs (that`s medical insurance billers, not Men in Black) are happy working part-time at home, bringing in enough to supplement the family income. Others have launched thriving, full-time businesses that employ dozens of assistants.
One of the Catch-22s of being in business for yourself is that you need money to make money. In other words, you need start-up funds. Your basic necessities are a computer (its hard to do electronic filing without one), a printer, a modem and a specialized medical billing software package. If you already have a computer, your biggest expense will be your software.
Many medical billing newbies opt for a business opportunity package, purchasing not only the software but also the training to go with it. Different packages, even within the same company, have different costs. For now, let`s say that you can expect your start-up costs to run from about $5,000 to $20,000 depending on the hardware and software you need.
You don`t have to have a medical background to become a top-notch medical billing provider, but it helps. Those with medical billing backgrounds insist that without that background, only fools rush in. Those who came into the business from other venues admit to the challenge of a learning curve but are proof that with preparation and hard work and the added bonus of support from a software or business opportunity vendor, it can be done.
Curt began his business with no medical background. "Basically, I was playing with my computer at home, wasting a few hours a week. I needed extra income, so I began to research how I could meet the need and work with my computer, which I was having fun doing." After a great deal of research, he went with a business opportunity vendor in Arizona. After flying out for training, he returned home to get his fledging operation off the ground. "I just started knocking on doors and visiting and sharing materials and so on and so forth," Curt says. "Now, I bill for one dentist and two chiropractors."
But he echoes the sentiments of everyone on both sides. "In my opinion, there`s no way you can just buy software and get into this business", says Curt. "I can`t imagine anybody just buying the software and doing this, unless they have a lot of medical background."
The most important step is to gather reliable information about the training and software available and make an informed decision to whether starting a Medical Billing business is right for you.
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