A health care auditor is responsible for reviewing the financial reports of a health care firm in order to ensure that it meets the health care compliance standards. Once an audit has been performed, the auditor may prescribe various business strategies to get the health care firm up to compliance standards. A health care auditor must meet hold one of three accounting certifications. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projected high growth for both the accounting and health care industries from 2008 to 2018.
A health care auditor is responsible for performing audits of health care firms in order to determine compliance with health care compliance (HCC) standards. In performing an audit, the charitable contributions, educational grants, royalties, research and development, expense reports, financial disclosures and state/federal reporting must be reviewed. The auditor may need to work as a liaison between the various department heads at a health care firm in order to fully assess internal controls. A health care auditor is under the supervision of the HCC director and may be responsible for overseeing accounting and auditing interns.
The health care auditor must have about three to five years' experience in health care compliance, auditing, quality control, finance and medical affairs. Extensive knowledge of medical devices or the pharmaceutical industry is highly relevant to the job function.
Previous experience working within a team and presenting business strategy ideas is a must. A health care auditor must have experience working autonomously as there is generally little supervision during the auditing process. A proven track record of implemented improvements and creative problem solving is preferred.
Education and License
At an absolute minimum, health care auditors should have a bachelor's degree in accounting or finance. The most competitive job applicants hold a maste'rs in business administration or a masters of science in accounting.
Accountants who perform audits must hold a certified public accountant (CPA), certified management accountant (CMA) or certified internal accountant (CIA) license. The process of attaining any of these licenses requires the satisfactory completion of an accredited accounting program, or substantial accounting courses in addition to a bachelor's degree, and a passing score on the certification exam. In lieu of an accounting degree, most states require at least 30 credits in accounting and 150 academic credits overall. Most colleges require 120 credits to attain a bachelor's degree, which is why a bachelor's degree in accounting is a five-year program. Those already holding a bachelor's degree in all other disciplines may complete a master's degree program in accounting.
The BLS projected a 22 percent job growth for accountants and auditors from 2008 to 2018. This growth in demand was much higher than the national average for all other occupations and may be attributed to an increased emphasis on greater accountability within an organization. The health care industry was also projected to see a 22 percent job growth for all health care-related professions, so it is likely that health care auditors will benefit during this time frame.
According to Indeed.com, the average health care auditor salary is $88,000, as of April 2010.