Posted on November 19, 2015

Let’s Learn About the MBC Program

Contributed By Maurice Stebbins

Are you interested in working in the medical field but are not comfortable working with patients in a medical setting?  The Medical Billing and Coding program at Tucson College can help you get started in the business side of the medical field.  If you are more comfortable in an office rather than a hospital, this program might be for you.   

Beginning Oct. 1, 2015, the United States will join the rest of the medical world in diagnosis coding using the International Classification of Diseases 10th Edition (ICD-10). This general classification was originally established by the World Health Organization (WHO), a division of the United Nations, in 1993. Countries such as Mexico, Canada and Great Britain have been using this system for numerous years – Great Britain started in 1995 meaning the United States is 20 years behind “the Brits.”

Tucson College has been at the forefront of preparing students for ICD-10. It was originally slated to begin Oct. 1, 2013, but government delays have pushed it back to 2015. Maurice Stebbins, the MBC program director, imple-mented ICD-10 training in the program in the spring of 2013 anticipating that it would begin that fall. When the federal government delayed the startup to 2014, Tucson College stayed with ICD-10 education – preparing for the future. When Congress delayed the program for another year to 2015, Tucson College stuck with preparation for the future.

Over the years, Tucson College MBC graduates have found employment in numerous fields. Some have obtained employment within the health insurance field, such as Aetna (Coventry), that has hired more than 60 graduates. Others have employment within hospitals, including Banner University Medical Center, Northwest, Tucson Medical Center, St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s, as well as a number of out-of-state hospitals when graduates have moved from Tucson.

Many more have joined medical practices from pediatrics to dermatology. Still others have found employment in more unlikely venues. Several have gone to work with fire departments doing billing and coding for the ambulance services. MBC students at Tucson College are frequently seen pulling the wheeled suitcases around seeing as their nine books weigh upwards to 40 pounds. The books include reference material for diagnostic and procedure coding in all medical environments and insurance situations.

The MBC student graduates have a placement rate of more than 90 per cent, with a great deal of help from career services.