The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reported that employment in healthcare occupations was projected to grow 13 percent from 2021 to 2031. Nationally, careers in healthcare services are consistently among the highest-paying occupations; the industry is continuously poised for growth.
When we think about a career in the field of healthcare, some of the roles that first come to mind might include that of “doctor,” “physician,” “nurse,” or “physical therapist,” to name a few. But the range of titles and job functions in the burgeoning industry is actually much broader.
Take the vertical of healthcare revenue cycles, for example. Revenue cycle management, in a general sense, is a set of financial and operational processes. In healthcare, these processes employ electronic health record and billing and coding software to track patient care interactions, from scheduling and registration to the final payment of a balance.
Some of the most requested skills for revenue cycle positions in healthcare today include customer billing, customer service, scheduling, medical coding, medical terminology, ICD-10, CPT Coding, HIPAA, and electronic health records. Opportunities abound, but specific training is often required.
In the Healthcare Revenue Cycle Certificate program at UC San Diego Division of Extended Studies, students explore a range of tools and resources needed to optimize the revenue cycle, including how to verify insurance eligibility and determine benefit levels, the different claim forms and the importance of collecting accurate information for submission, how to successfully appeal denied claims, and more. Students also learn how to effectively communicate with patients and provide exceptional customer service.
The program—which can be completed in either the traditional format (over nine months) or in the intensive format (over three months)—includes 90 hours of didactic education and allows students with no prior experience to gain the skills and knowledge necessary for entry-level positions in healthcare revenue cycle management. It also prepares students for Certified Revenue Cycle Representative (CRCR) and Certified Revenue Cycle Specialist (CRCS) exams, credentials deemed crucial in today’s patient-centric healthcare environment.
A cohort of healthcare revenue cycle students who completed the fall 2022 quarter of the Healthcare Revenue Cycle Intensive program gave it glowing reviews (4.69 out of 5 stars, to be exact). Several students sang the praises of course instructor Professor Laura Handy-Dineen, executive director of System Revenue Cycle at UC San Diego Health, who they described as caring, knowledgeable, flexible, and genuinely invested in the professional success of her students. Other students spoke highly of the program’s manageable workload, organized structure, and engaging and current content.
Here are some highlights from the student testimonials:
“I found the Healthcare Revenue Cycle Intensive class to be very well-structured; I learned more than I expected. I was apprehensive about taking the class from outside of the host country and in a different time zone, but I got through it very nicely. The virtual classes and lectures were set up well and the communication was clear.”
“I liked [Professor Handy-Dineen’s] willingness to challenge students to think out of the box and her ability to bring real-life scenarios to educate.”
“[Professor Handy-Dineen] encouraged questions and was extremely knowledgeable on the subject. She answered our questions with clarity and was always open to providing course information even outside of class hours. I liked how she simplified some of the information with interesting examples and videos. The presentations she created were thorough and made the understanding of the coursework very clear.”
The opportunity to improve healthcare revenue cycle management within the healthcare landscape is ongoing, as it is an ever-changing environment. Regardless of the political climate and how the U.S. healthcare system changes or stays the same, hospitals and healthcare organizations will continue to need skilled revenue cycle employees to ensure the financial health of the organization. Without a viable, effective revenue cycle management in place, hospitals and other healthcare organizations may receive lower reimbursements leading to decreased revenues.
"Healthcare Revenue Cycle is a dynamic and growing field, and this program is one of a kind in providing the education needed to develop the skills for entry-level positions,” said Professor Laura Handy-Dineen. “The partnership between myself and other healthcare professionals and UCSD Extended Studies is unique in filling this gap. We have successfully educated and hired many professionals thanks to this program."
A certificate in Healthcare Revenue Cycle from UC San Diego Division of Extended Studies demonstrates advanced skill sets for employers to differentiate applicants for entry-level positions and advancements. The 90 hours of intensive education provide students with the necessary advanced knowledge and skills necessary for job-seeking and/or career advancement. Currently, no other educational institution is offering instructor-led education in the healthcare revenue cycle.
Interested in learning more about the Healthcare Revenue Cycle Program at UC San Diego Division of Extended Studies? Visit the program website or reach the Healthcare & Behavioral Sciences department at 858-534-9278 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.