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How To Prepare For Medical Coding Interview

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Questions On Hard Skills


Medical coding interview questions are sure to involve queries on your hard skills to make sure that you can work the job correctly and file claims efficiently. As many health insurance regulations change daily, you will also have to answer how you stay up-to-date with the latest industry regulations.

If you are not keeping up, that may be a worry to employers as you may be billing incorrectly. Employers may even quiz you by asking how you would resolve a denied claim.

Questions relating to hard skills for medical billing and coding jobs include:

  • Do you hold a medical billing certification? If not, are you in the process of becoming certified or are you planning to become certified?
  • How do you keep up-to-date with insurance and healthcare coverage regulations and best practices?
  • How long does it take you to process a days worth of patient visits or claims?

Regarding the last question, usually, employers seek billers that answer within two days or similar. This is so you are able to keep up with the workload.

How To Prepare For An Interview

Getting back into the workplace can be overwhelming, difficult, and downright scary at times. This pandemic has changed not only the way you job search but also the way you go about preparing for your interviews. Sometimes, you tend to overthink and over analyze every little detail about what the interview will be like before you have even picked out your best outfit to wear. You start reciting your best answers to questions you think you may get asked. Honestly, a job interview is not as complicated as you have been led to feel. It can be quite simple. With a lot of employers doing virtual interviews, I want to give my fellow Medical Coders some insight on how to prepare and totally WOW your future employer.

What Are The Three Main Types Of Medical Coding

There are a few key types of medical coding systems and software. Show industry knowledge by discussing the types of coding software you have used for different coding systems.

Example:”I have experience coding with all the three main healthcare code systems: HCPCS Level 1, CPT and ICD-9 and ICD-10. I mainly worked with CPT at my last position, where we used a combination of computer programs to communicate with insurers and store medical billing data.”

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How Do You Stay Current On Your Understanding Of Medical Codes And Ongoing Developments In The Field

Healthcare is a rapidly evolving industry that regularly produces new codes and best practices. Explain to your employer that you are committed to continuing your education and describe your strategies for staying up to date when it comes to medical codes.

Example:”As a certified medical coder, I am committed to keeping my certification current by taking all required continuing education courses. I also subscribe to the American Academy of Professional Coders newsletter to ensure that I know about any major changes to industry practices.”

Read more:26 Medical Coding Certifications

Binary Tree Programming Questions

Medical Billing Interview Preparation: Medical Billing Software ...

The binary tree data structure stores data hierarchically instead of in a linear fashion. A hiring manager may ask you questions about binary tree programming to determine how familiar you are with different tree data structures and popular traversing algorithms. Here are some common questions about binary tree programming algorithms:

  • How are leaves printed?

  • Can you traverse a binary tree in post-order traversal without recursion?

  • How do you implement a binary tree?

  • What is the depth-first search algorithm for a binary tree?

  • How do you traverse a binary tree in preorder without recursion?

  • What are the differences between preorder, in-order and post-order traversals?

  • What is a post-order traversal algorithm, and how do you use it?

  • What steps would you take to perform a binary search in a given array?

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Common Questions To Expect About Hard Skills

A good deal of the job interviewing process will be related to a candidates hard skills. For example, the interviewer wants to make sure you can file claims in a reasonable time frame with as much accuracy as possible.

The rules about health insurance go through daily changes, which means candidates will receive assessments regarding how well they can keep up. Employers want to be certain candidates are up-to-date because outdated billing practices are incorrect billing practices.

The first meeting with an interviewer will probably not involve in-depth scenarios. However, candidates should be prepared for potential scenarios if they are called back for a second or third interview. An employer might ask candidates for an explanation of how they would handle a claim that was denied.

Medical billing specialist job interviews might include hard skill questions.

  • Are you certified in medical billing?
  • If you dont have your certification yet, do you have plans to become certified? Has the certification process started yet?
  • What methods do you use to keep track of changes in health care and insurance coverage?
  • How long will it typically take you to process patient claims or visits spanning one day?

The industry standard deadline for medical billers to submit claims is two days or less. This helps billers keep up with the workload and ensure insurance companies are billed and claims are resolved in a timely manner.

How Did You Perform In Your Medical Coding Classes

  • How to Answer

Be honest when you answer this question, be sure not to tell the interviewer what they want to hear if coding wasn’t your strongest class. If isn’t your specialty you can refer to this as being one of your weaknesses and that you are working on it to become better. If you did well in your coding class go ahead and brag a little.

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In What Medical Billing Specialties Are You Experienced

Medical billing specialties are based on the type of care patients receive from the provider. This question allows you to showcase how your experience meets the needs of the facility. In your answer, outline what patient procedures you’ve billed for and any that you would like to gain more experience in if applicable. Some specialties include billing for internal medicine, family medicine, anesthesiology, dermatology and neurology.

Example:”In my previous role, I did medical billing for an oncology practice, which I had to research and teach myself since it was my first time billing those specialized procedures. Additionally, I also have experience billing for hospitals, family and internal medicine as well as pediatrics.”

Related:How Long Does It Take To Become a Medical Biller?

Question #: A Client Is Upset Because The Individual’s Insurance Information Is Incorrect How Would You Handle This Situation

How to prepare for coding interviews

How to answer:This behavioral interview question is used to assess your problem-solving, communication, conflict resolution, and customer service skills. Describe the steps you would take to handle this situation. Describe using your active listening skills, empathy, and verbal communication. Explain how you’d relay the problem to your supervisor, make a formal apology to the client, and work with the insurance company to correct the error promptly.

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What To Do If You Don`t Know The Answer

If you cannot answer the question, do not say it directly. Instead, show your ability to find a way out of any situation, e.g. I havent used this technology yet, but I know a similar one that performs this task. I assume that it has identical functionality, so I will be able to figure it out very quickly.

Foreign clients expect a person to praise themselves and to show themselves in the best light. They will smile and not show that they are dissatisfied with the answer, little can be read on their faces. They ask more conceptual things how do you see business, how do you develop .

Mentality difference:

  • Americans tend to ask how you feel about working on the weekends. Since it is their pace of life, they often demand it from the people they work with.
  • Europeans may have a different understanding of life-work balance, and they usually do not ask about overtime.
  • The British clients are always very polite, but even their conventional complex language structures can confuse a person.

I strongly advise you to thoroughly study the information about the client, considering that questions like What do you know about our company and why do you want to work with us? occur quite often. It is essential for some clients that a person chose to work with them consciously.

Mention Tips And Rules For Another Clinical Coder Who Comes To Work Under You


The association anticipates that an accomplished coder should train a fresher. The inquiry helps the questioner to know their capacity to move the information.


  • It is critical to code all the reports. The clinical records and code must match with each other. Recollect not to add or pass any data.

Reporting the code:

  • The first code utilized the justification behind the patients hospital visit.
  • Adhere to the NCCI and MUE rules avoiding any coding errors. As a coder, you keep yourself refreshed with the advancement.
  • Try not to abuse or use erroneous modifiers.

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Tips For Acing Your Interview For Medical Coding Jobs

Open-ended interview questions have no right or wrong answers. In-depth responses are expected, along with a description or explanation. Here are some examples of open-ended interview questions and suggested answers:

Tell me about yourself. The best way to answer this is to tell the employer how you are today it should not be a recap of your resume.

What is your greatest strength? How will this help you to perform the job? This is a great opportunity for you to connect your qualifications to the job being offered. Have some achievement stories ready in case the employer asks for examples.

What is your greatest weakness? There are a few ways to answer this. You might wish to focus on a skill that is not really related to the job. For example, I am not great at speaking in public, but I will do it if I have to. You may also turn a negative into a positive. For example, Organization was never my best trait, but in a previous job I implemented a time-management system that really helped with this.

How do you handle stress and pressure? Some good replies include: I react to situations, rather than stress so the stress does not get the best of me I deal with stress by exercising after work so it does not get out of control or Im not a person who has a difficult time with stress. When under pressure, I focus and get the job done.

For example, some questions may include: What would you do if you received a rejected claim?

What are your long-term goals?

How To Prepare For Your Phone Interviews

Medical Billing Interview Preparation: Part 3

These types of questions arent going to be different from what we have already discussed previously.

But because the purpose of these interviews is to weed out the sub-par candidates in a limited amount of time, expect your interviewer to jump straight into coding questions.

There is no time for lengthy resumes or behavioral questions.

Steve Yegge wrote an excellent article about what he expects from potential candidates during their phone interviews.

There are a few tips that will help you make the best out of this experience

After your phone interviews, take a deep breath and relax!

It is a waiting game now.

Your recruiter will get back to you in a few days or weeks with general feedback on your performance and the decision they have come to.

If everything went well, then your recruiter will congratulate you and schedule some time for your next big milestone.

Your on-site interviews!

On-site interviews are fundamentally different from phone interviews.

I personally like on-site interviews more.

I mean I like to be interviewed face to face rather than be interviewed on the phone.

It is just easier to communicate with your interviewer face to face and it makes the whole process much simpler.

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How To Get Your Foot In The Door

Health informatics isnt just coding and billing. Theres a huge range of positions that support healthcare providers and help them run their practices.

If you cant get into coding right away, try working the office or front desk of a physician. Make connections with the doctors and provider offices you visit on a regular basis and see if theyre hiring or if they know of someone who is. Clerical work might seem like a dead-end, but this type of work demonstrates a commitment to the field and hands-on experience with how the business of healthcare works.

Example Interview Questions: Medical Coding And Billing

Medical billing and coding is a great profession for people who want to work in the health industry, like to file paperwork, and enjoy daily challenges. For example, the job involves interaction with insurance companies, doctors, nurses, patients, and other health professionals to ensure all medical billing and coding is completed properly.

When a candidate prepares for a medical billing and coding specialist job interview, there are a number of things to know. The most important thing to bring to the interview is your knowledge. You should have a good background in medical billing and coding from both prior work experience and/or vocational classes in medical billing and coding.

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How Do You Handle Patient Complaints

As a medical office assistant, you are likely to come across patients that may not agree with your treatment plan. The employer wants to see if you can take criticism courteously and professionally and how far you’re willing to go to ensure patient satisfaction. Depending on how you handle the situation, you may calm the situation and reach an understanding.

Example:”First, I listen to the patient and validate their concern. I then empathize with them to show them I understand their complaint. Finally, I take steps based on the complaint and become an active part of getting a solution.”

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Linked List Programming Questions

Coding Interview Tips

Linked list data structures complement array data structures, which makes it very common for programmers to use. A hiring manager may ask you questions about linked list data structures to determine how much experience you have working with them and how much you know about recursion. Here are some common questions about linked list programming:

  • How would you merge two sorted listed links?

  • What steps would you take to identify the middle element of a singly linked list?

  • What is the difference between a linked list and an array data structure?

  • How do you reverse a singly linked list without recursion?

  • How do you find the start of a loop?

  • How do you remove the Nth Node from the end of a linked list?

  • How do you find a cycle’s starting node?

  • Using Stack, how would you identify the sum of two linked lists?

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How Do You Protect Patients’ Rights And Adhere To Healthcare Confidentiality Requirements

Many regulations dominate the medical profession, and the government requires health care professionals to comply with these regulations. A prominent federal law is the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act , which dictates that healthcare professionals need to protect the confidentiality of patient data. The employer will ask you this question to assess your knowledge of the PIPEDA regulations and the steps you take to comply to avoid lawsuits and uphold their reputation.

Example:”I ensure I protect my patients’ rights and uphold the confidentiality of their medical data by complying with HIPAA guidelines. For example, when interviewing patients, I conduct the exam in a private office. I also take medical record safety seriously. I store all the physical records in a secure and locked file cabinet to avoid unauthorized access and destroy these files when appropriate. To protect electronic files, I ensure that I regularly update my password to make sure no one can access this information online. Finally, I only share patient information when the patient or their representative allows it.”

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Get More Coding Experience

Have you ever tried to do something for the first time? When I was first learning how to play guitar, it would take me 30 seconds to get the fingering for a basic chord. In theory, I could play any song if I had enough time and had the chord charts in front of me, but it wouldnt sound very good.

Sometimes I work with students who are in a similar position with their coding. They simply have not reached a level of proficiency yet where they can easily write up the code in their interview.

In theory, the coding component of the interview should be the easy part. As long as youve practiced on a whiteboard, the hard part of your interview should be developing a solution in the first place before you ever write a line of code. If this is not true, then you probably need to improve your coding skills.

There are also some groups that are more affected by this issue than others. Primarily, those who have less experience coding. I often see bootcamp grads, Masters students who switched into Computer Science for their Masters from a different field, or long term managers who simply havent coded in a while struggling the most with coding.

If youre new to working with open source, First Timers Only is a great resource for those looking to get started. They share tutorials on how to contribute, and have compiled a list of potential projects that would be good for beginners.

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Medical Coding Interview Questions You Should Be Prepared For

By Space Coast Daily // January 7, 2022

Interview prep takes many forms, and one of the best ways to improve your chances of getting your dream job and settling your nerves on the day is to look at the kinds of questions you are likely to face.

This is particularly important if you want to work in a specialist field, like that of medical coding. As such, here are just a handful of interview questions that prospective medical coders must be ready to answer.

Image Source: Pixabay

What does medical coding involve?

It might seem obvious, but interviewers will definitely want you to demonstrate that you understand the basics of medical coding.

When you are learning how to become a medical coder, you need to be able to explain what the job involves to experts and laypeople alike.

A simple explanation is that medical coders take clinical statements relating to a patients diagnosis and suggested treatment plan, then translate that into codes that are defined by a standard classification system. In turn, this allows insurers to deal with claims made by customers and for healthcare providers to get paid for the work they do.

Which classification systems do medical coders use?

Brushing up on the ICD, HCPS, and DRG codes is definitely worthwhile. Even if you know your stuff, rehearsing a reply to this type of question is sensible, as it will save you from becoming flustered under the pressure of interview conditions.

What are the practical applications of medical coding?

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