A. Medical Coding/Billing Specialists work Medical BPOs.
Q. How much work is available?
A. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that the demand will increase much faster than average.
Q. Are there any extras I must buy?
A. All included-ICD-10-CM, ICD-10-PCS, CPT, HCPCS, 10 CPC Mock exams etc
Q. What is the potential for advancement?
A. As a Medical Coding Specialist, your earnings grow with your experience.
Q. How long does it take to finish the medical coding and billing program?
A. The length of the medical coding and billing program varies depending on how much time you want to commit to your studies. You can finish in as little as 45 days or take as long as 3 months – it's up to you!
Q. How do I become certified? Is certification required for my career?
A. Certification is not required to get a job as a medical coder and biller, but it will give your career an advantage. It provides you with medical coding and billing course credentials – something that is highly valued in today's medical field. Having the distinction of being "certified" can lead to better job opportunities and help you create the long-term career you want.
CPC®: A Certified Professional Coder® (CPC®) is an individual of high professional integrity who has passed a coding certification examination consisting of questions regarding the correct application of CPT, and are used for billing professional medical services to insurance companies. A CPC® must have two years coding experience, maintain a yearly membership, and submit Continuing Education Units (CEUs) every two years.
COC®: Certified Professional Coder-Hospital (CPC-H®) A Certified Professional Coder-Hospital (COC®) must pass a coding certification examination sponsored by the American Academy of Professional Coders. The examination consists of questions regarding the correct application of CPT®, ICD109-CM diagnoses and procedure codes used for billing facility services to insurance companies. A COC® must have at least two years coding experience and maintain yearly renewal and CEU requirements.
CPC-P®: Certified Professional Coder-Payer (CPC-P®) The Certified Professional Coder-Payer (CPC-P®) credential certifies that the successful candidate has knowledge and skills to adjudicate provider claims effectively. The CPC-P® demonstrates the payer coder's aptitude, proficiency and knowledge within the payer environment. Their coding is viewed by claims reviewers, utilization management staff, benefits staff, provider relations and customer service staff. A CPC-P® must have at least 2 years coding work experience that includes working with CPT®, ICD-10-CM, or HCPCS code sets and must maintain the required amount of yearly CEUs.
Certified Coding Associate (CCA®): Recent graduates of medical coding schools can get an entry-level coding credential to certify their competency. The CCA® is the starting point for graduates of medical coding schools who are beginning their career.
Certified Coding Specialist (CCS®):The CCS® credential denotes a high standard of proficiency in coding beyond the entry level certification. Medical coders must be very familiar with the ICD-10-CM coding system and the CPT® (Current Procedural Terminology®) coding system's surgery section. Clinical coders must, in addition, be apprised of medical terminology, hospital practices, pharmacology and treatment options in order to translate the information within clinical case notes into medical codes.
Certified Coding Specialist-Physician-based (CCS-P®) The CCS-P® is a medical coder who is certified to work in a physician-based environment such as physicians' offices, clinics, specialty centers or other similar settings. In addition to having a sound knowledge of ICD-910-CM® and CPT® coding systems, a certified CCS-P® will also be familiar with HCPCS® (Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System) Level II coding systems.
"Please note that upon completion of your Medical coding and Billing Program, you will be issued a Certificate of Completion from Medesun".
What are the jobs available for the Trained medical coder?
Jobs Available To A Trained Medical Coder
Outpatient Coder An outpatient coder performs medical coding in a variety of outpatient health care settings. These include emergency rooms, hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, physician offices, and clinics.
Inpatient Coder: An inpatient coder is responsible for accurate assignment of diagnosis related groups (DRGs), diagnostic and procedural codes using ICD-10-CM for inpatient health information records.
At-Home Coder: An at-home coder completes the coding process from home using electronically transmitted records.
Coding Auditor: A coding auditor performs DRG optimization audits on inpatient and outpatient records and reviews the results of audits with coding staff and coding management to resolve noncompliance and inaccuracy issues.
Consultant: The responsibility of a consultant is to assist clients and provide support for creation, maintenance and ongoing operation of an efficient and accurate system of reimbursement and documentation. A consultant also reviews billing protocols and procedures to assure compliance will all regulatory and governmental requirements.
Privacy Officer: A privacy officer oversees all ongoing activities related to the development of, implementation of, maintenance of, and adherence to the organization's policies and procedures covering the privacy of, and access to, patient health information in compliance with federal and state laws and the healthcare organization's information privacy practices.
Medical Coding Instructor A medical coding instructor educates students about diagnostic and procedural coding. The training of medical coders can be provided by an instructor in a classroom setting or an online setting. This can include the training of new coders, as well as providing continuing education opportunities for current coders.
Coding Supervisor A coding supervisor provides support for and works to plan, review, and implement the policies and processes surrounding the coding and abstracting functions and maintains responsibilities for all coding functions, including appropriate staff productivity and development, implementation and monitoring of the coding compliance plan.
Health Information Manager A health information manager is responsible for the management of all aspects of the health information department, including revenue cycle management, coding, transcription, utilization review, and chart review
Q. How does medical coding compare to medical transcription?
A. The process of medical coding is a highly regulated and tightly supervised activity. Medical coding is also subject to frequent and rigorous audits to ensure accuracy in billing, as there are literally billions of dollars on the line. It is a much more scrutinized activity than medical transcription.
As a consequence, the requirements for certification are greater for individuals in the medical coding and billing field compared with many other career fields. Whereas medical transcription requires spelling and advanced literacy skills, coding is more analytical and objective.
Medical transcription is predominately performed by individuals working from home. At this point, most medical coding is still performed in hospitals and clinics.
CPC Exam TIPS:
••• Remember CPC is an open book exam and all answers are available in the books. Those who appear for the exam should know thoroughly on how to use ICD 10 CM, CPT-4 and HCPCS books.
• Test is not about knowing all the codes by memorization. It's about knowing how to find the best correct answer.
• It’s important to keep your momentum as you take the test. You don’t want to spend too much time on any one questions.
• Skip the index. Use the multiple choice options given and go straight to the codes and start matching the code descriptions to your scenario.
• Know the complete guidelines – Read front pages of each chapters in ICD 9 and CPT books
• Skip the questions that look like they will take a long time. Work through the rest of the exam and come back to the long ones at the end. Make sure you keep your answer sheet straight when you skip!
• Attend the easiest sections in which you are most knowledgeable, you could start answering the sections from the centre or last section of the exam whichever is easier.
Skip the question that is very long or that is not easily understandable.
•Review the question and answers carefully and eliminate any answer right away that doesn't work. Don't waste your time in re-checking those incorrect answers in books. Knowing the modifiers would also help you in narrowing or eliminating the answers.
If any two of the answers are eliminated then proceed with checking of codes directly in the tabular list by skipping the index list.
• Do not keep a time frame for each question as two minutes, this is only an average time to complete the exam, one question may take more than two minutes whereas other would take only seconds. Therefore rather keeping a time frame for each question you may keep a time frame for each section.
• Move quickly but pay close attention to key words in the scenarios that change code selection. Remember, the test is timed; it’s only 5 h 40 m. You can get to the difficult questions later.
• When you working through the items you skipped and any that you get stuck on, use the process of elimination. You can usually eliminate 2 possibilities very quickly and focus on good codes.
• Don’t leave any items blank. A guess has a 25% chance of being correct, a blank has 0%.
• Be positive. Be confident. Don’t stress out. Focus on what you know. Remember – you’ve been trained and you know what you’re doing.
Be Determined and Resourceful
• Don’t USE Whatsapp and facebook for 10 days. Switch off both-Its distracting.
• Passing the exam should be a priority. Do not watch TV, use your cell phone, etc., until you have studied for the day or week.
• Plan your day to include quality study time. Quality is more important than quantity. If your schedule is hectic, include short bursts of 15-minute study sessions throughout the day instead of planning two-hour study sessions that are not productive due to fatigue, distractions, etc.
• Believe you can pass the exam. You won’t pass the exam if you have doubts. Recite positive reaffirmations. Good luck!
AAPC TIPs for CPC Exam
Good Study Habits Go Far to clear the exam
The next step is to strengthen your study habits. Consider reflection as a way to retain the information. For example, in regards to lesions:
1. Open your CPT® 2013 codebook to “Excision-Benign Lesions 11400-11471.”
2. Read the guidelines for this section in an audible, low voice.
3. Explain the key points of the guidelines to yourself in an audible, low voice:
Excision of benign lesions includes a simple, non-layered closure, so it’s unnecessary to code a simple, non-layered closure with a benign lesion. If the scenario includes a benign lesion and intermediate closure, however, I will code the lesion and intermediate closure. If the scenario includes a benign lesion and complex closure, I will code the lesion and complex closure.
I must code each benign lesion excised separately. If there are three benign lesions, I will code each lesion separately.
Note: Excision of benign lesions 11400-11446 cannot be reported with adjacent tissue transfers 14000-14302.
Review the formula for measuring and coding the removal of a lesion: excised diameter + margin + margin.
4. Turn your CPT® codebook to “Excision Malignant Lesions 11600-11646.”
Note that the guidelines for benign lesions and malignant lesions are extremely similar.
There is one paragraph regarding frozen section pathology margins that is significantly different in the malignant lesion section. Read that paragraph until you understand it well.
5. Close your book and, in an audible, low voice, explain what you read.
6. How will these guidelines help you when taking the national exam? Imagine a scenario that requires you to use these coding guidelines.
Do not arrive late for your exam.
• Your Government Photo ID
• AAPC Examinee remainder
• Layered /simple clothing is comfortable
• Get some snacks like glucose biscuits
• Maaza, Minute Maid are good during exam time
• DON’T leave any question ananswered, no negative marks
• Listen carefully – Your proctor will read the instructions and make other announcements. If you don’t understand the instructions given, ask questions before the examination begins.
• Carefully mark your answer sheet – Exams are machine graded, so make sure to correctly fill in your selected “bubble” for each question, as shown in the example on your exam grid, to ensure an accurate score.
• Scan the entire exam when you begin – Answer the easiest, shortest questions first. This gives you the taste of success.
• Remember to pace yourself – You have an average of two minutes and 15 seconds to answer each question. Stay relaxed and do not panic. You’ll be able to finish.
• Read each question carefully – Note such words in the question as not, except, most, least, and greatest. These words are often crucial in determining the correct answer. There are no “trick” questions on the exam, however, so don’t worry about hidden words or meanings.
• Answer every question – If you don’t know the right answer, eliminate as many wrong answers as you can, and then select among the remaining possible answers. If you don’t have a clue, guess. A guess is always better than a blank response and guesses often are correct.