Medical Records Technology Associate Degree
Learn how you can become a medical records technologist and the salary you might earn in this position. Find out the classes required to earn a medical records technology degree. Schools offering Electronic Medical Records degrees can also be found in these popular choices.
How Do I Earn a Medical Records Technology Associate's Degree?
You can find medical records technology programs at community and technical colleges. In some cases, the program is called health information systems or health information technology, and you might find programs that offer concentration in medical records. Some programs offer online classes, and you can find programs that allow you to complete all of your requirements via the Internet. However, clinical rotations must be completed in the field.
What Courses Will I Take?
In a medical records or health information technology 2-year program, you take courses that teach you to maintain well-organized records for patients. You gain an understanding of updating medical charts, notes and files with test results and medical histories. Additionally, you investigate how information systems work in the healthcare industry; you explore the current use of technologies, as well as how technology affects health systems.
The curriculum includes courses in medical terminology, anatomy, computers, coding, classification systems and health records. Other courses educate you on diseases, as well as how to record them in medical records using standard codes. You also learn about business procedures, information technology project management and the laws pertaining to medical records management.
How Do I Get a Job?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), an associate's degree is usually sufficient to get you a job as a medical records technologist (www.bls.gov). However, many employers prefer you to be a Registered Health Information Technician. You can obtain this credential through the American Health Information Management Association once you've completed an accredited program and passed a written exam. Additional coding credentials can be found through the American Academy of Professional Coders, Board of Medical Specialty Coding or Professional Association of Health Care Coding Specialists.
The BLS projected that medical records and health information technicians will see a 20% increase in employment from 2008-2018. The median annual wage of medical records and health information technicians was $32,350 in May 2010, stated the BLS.
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