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What is a medical records manager?

Medical records jobs are more plentiful as the healthcare field grows in complexity. While people focus on direct care in healthcare jobs, well-trained and competent record keepers must keep track of patient data for efficient healthcare provision.

The medical records sphere is ideal for people interested in healthcare and comfortable with technology. Medical records technicians maintain and protect patient medical records at a medical facility. The technicians and managers ensure medical data is accurate, complete, and restricted for use only by the appropriate medical personnel.

What do people in medical records jobs do?

Medical records (also known as health information) specialists play a pivotal role in the organization, management, and coding of health information data. The specialists use multiple classification systems to categorize and code patient data for registries and databases, insurance reimbursement, and maintain patient medical and treatment histories.

Medical records jobs involve regular reviews of patient records for completeness, accuracy, and timeliness. The records department also organizes and updates information in clinical registries or databases. Records specialists use classification systems to assign codes for data analysis while maintaining electronic data.

Medical records specialists work with registered nurses and other healthcare providers. Many records specialists meet with healthcare workers to clarify diagnoses or get more information. The specialists also use Electronic Health Records (EHRs) software, security, and privacy practices to analyze electronic data and improve patient healthcare information.

Medical records clerks include filing patients’ medical information, transmitting relevant documents to hospitals, private practices, insurance agencies, and patients . Clerks ensure completed reports and paperwork and within deadlines. The clerks also help process admission and discharge records, supply the nursing staff with documents and forms, and create digital images of paperwork.

Electronic Health Records (EHR) technicians and consultants help keep the record growing. The technicians take a general template and customize it to specific requirements, such as creating a patient’s history. Technicians build profile demographics for large-scale data.

Medical records jobs available include the medical transcriptionist position. People in the position transcribe doctor notes onto a computer, usually. The transcriptionist will attach the notes to a patient’s medical files, so doctors have legible and accurate notes – which helps improve patient care.

Medical records managers help maintain patient data as records develop, supervise employees using the patient medical data, and manage records databases. The manager also communicates with healthcare personnel about using the patient medical documentation while adding to patient medical files as details update or change.

Where do people in medical records work?

Medical records jobs are available onsite at healthcare facilities such as medical clinics and hospitals. People in the medical records field maintain proximity to the patient medical records they maintain. Medical records officers are never too far from healthcare staff who need access to critical data.

However, the location where the medical records office work depends on the employer. Some employers offer the flexibility of work location thanks to digital patient records that allow remote access.

There are also medical records jobs available with correctional facilities, government offices, and insurance providers. Some people are in administrative and support positions, technical services, or even nursing care facilities.

What degree is required to work in a medical record position?

Positions in the medical records sphere require specialized training. However, a post-high school degree is not a prerequisite for entry-level positions. Some people in the medical records field choose to earn a diploma or associate degree in medical office administration or apply for a medical coding and billing program to improve their chances of getting employment.

An Associate of Science in Health Information Management (HIM) degree prepares an individual for entry-level positions in the medical records office. Some students complete the program in as little as 20 months.

A Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management (HIM) provides most opportunities for career advancements. All students require is 36 months to learn the basics of coding, business skills, management, and more about the health information and medical records field. A degree helps differentiate candidates in the workforce while positioning them for advancement in the field.

How much money do people in medical records offices earn?

The median yearly income of people in medical records jobs is a little above $51,000 in May 2020. Expect opportunities for individuals in the medical records sphere to increase 9% between 2020 and 2030, thanks to an increasingly aging population demanding more medical assistance.

Medical Records Job Requirements

The medical records position requires individuals with excellent organizational skills. Officers in the records office organize sensitive patient information for easy access but in a secure environment.

Strong attention to detail ensures holders of medical records jobs file information correctly. Records specialists should find the right file quickly when a medical professional requests information.

Other critical skills include staying focused on the task and file, especially considering the large amounts of information medical records specialists work with. Accurate and fast keyboarding and keen eyesight can help individuals become data entry experts.

Most employers prefer filling medical records posts with individuals with a medical records certificate or associate degree. Coursework in medical terminology, health data standards and requirements, and coding systems. Taking high school courses in biology, math, computer science, and health can help improve the chances of applicants gaining admission.

Certification also helps improve employability. The certifications available for medical records jobs include the Certified Coding Association (CCA), Certified Professional Coder (CPC), and Registered Information Technician (RHIT).

The National Cancer Registrars Association (NCRA), Board of Medical Specialty Coding (BMSC), and other specialized certification programs offer several continuing education opportunities.

However, each certification denotes distinct skill sets and career tracks. For example, the RHIA certification is ideal for those who work in medical records leadership positions. While certification is not a requirement by all employers, having one can play a vital role in earning potential and career growth.

Medical Records Career Path

The demand for healthcare services is increasing, which means a need for medical records specialists. Many in the world of medical records move on to advanced roles in the field, including medical and health services managers. Experts expect the demand for medical and health services managers to grow by 32% by 2030.

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