Nurse Coders

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awsmom in Bakersfield, California

70 months ago

Melony in Palmdale, California said: Hello All,

I am currently a CPC medical coder, due to sit for my CCS. I have a BA in general biology with a minor in english literature. I have always wanted to be a nurse. I am wondering if it would be feasible for me to become an LVN or RN and still work as a medical coder? Are any of you in this field and how do you enjoy it? Also what is the average pay? I currently make $28.50 per hour. I live in Southern California if that helps.

Where do you work? Are you a certified coder? I live in Tehachapi and would like to become a coder.

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Melony in Palmdale, California

70 months ago

My post specifically says I am a CPC medical coder. Please read before you respond to something. This is a nursing board, not a board to ask about becoming a coder. thanks.

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awsmom in Bakersfield, California

70 months ago

I am new to researching coding and was not familiar with the term CPC. Nurses in Bakersfield start at about $23.00 hr day shift. LA County pays a little more. Then you get night shift differential and once you specialize (ICU,Surgery}.
Think twice before becoming an RN. There has never been a nursing shortage--just nurses fed up working under poor management and tired of hospitals BS. Look up how many RN's are in any given state and how many are actually working as an RN and you will see a large disparity. Rather than improving working conditions, employers would rather shout, "Nursing Shortage" in order to allow foreign nurses to be imported. The last study I read stated 50% of RN in the USA were foreign born. Foreign nurses generally do not rock the boat, are not assertive and will work under any conditions, which help keep wages lower. Nope, never been a nursing shortage, just a shortage of nurses working! There are HUNDREDS of new nursing graduates right now that are unable to get jobs, even in LTC. And hospitals are now laying off RN's due to low census. And you would fit right in--nurses are notorious for eating their young!

Th

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Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina

69 months ago

And you would fit right in--nurses are notorious for eating their young!

Too funny! I even thought wow...how could she be so rude.

I am a CPC (Certified Professional Coder). I work as a Mass Torts auditor. I have my BA in English and am currently taking pre-nursing classes. I am 40 years old and often wonder if this is the right road to take. If not, I am thinking about switching to a RHIT degree(Registered Health Information)

By the way, love your post. You might want to be a comedian. I didn't even see that coming. Best laugh of the day.

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Melony in Lancaster, California

69 months ago

I love being called rude when I ask a question and get a question asking something totally different. Anyways, good luck to you both.

Beverly,

I am working on an HIT program, I would stick with that regardless and do the nursing if you can. You would make about the same money, but maybe you wouldnt be bitter and from bakersfield if you stayed in coding. Have an awesome day!

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Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina

69 months ago

Actually it's both. I audit for medical class action lawsuits. I do a lot of research...simply love it. I am just preparing for that next step in my life. For that day when I am ready to move on.

I guess if I were to ever marry or become a full-time foster parent instead of a part-time foster parent, I would not be so education driven. Oh, and by the way, I also have my certification in paralegal studies. blah...blah..blah...as the world turns I guess. I just love learning. Asian cooking classes are also on my list of things to do.

Your not so bad! (hahahahehehe)

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Melony in Lancaster, California

69 months ago

Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina said: Actually it's both. I audit for medical class action lawsuits. I do a lot of research...simply love it. I am just preparing for that next step in my life. For that day when I am ready to move on.

I guess if I were to ever marry or become a full-time foster parent instead of a part-time foster parent, I would not be so education driven. Oh, and by the way, I also have my certification in paralegal studies. blah...blah..blah...as the world turns I guess. I just love learning. Asian cooking classes are also on my list of things to do.

Your not so bad! (hahahahehehe)

That sounds way more interesting than what I do! Anyway, I am on the waiting list for the local community college for their lvn program as I have a few more classes to finish to get into the RN. I wish you luck in your endeavors!

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Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina

69 months ago

Melony in Lancaster, California said: That sounds way more interesting than what I do! Anyway, I am on the waiting list for the local community college for their lvn program as I have a few more classes to finish to get into the RN. I wish you luck in your endeavors!

What does LVN stand for and what is the difference between that and a RN? I am beginning to see LVN a lot...I never heard of it. Hmmm...

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awsmom in Bakersfield, California

69 months ago

Actually, I'm not bitter--just tired of nurses eating their young and others with that attitude...and I don't live in Bakersfield. I live in the best community in the world www.BearValleySprings.com which is in the Sierra's Mtn 1 1/2 hr from Bakersfield. The website automatically assigned me Bakersfield based on my zipcode. We are all here to learn and support each other.

For those of you interested in nursing be sure to check out the web site www.allnurses.com as it is a great reference area. Even has a section for pre-nursing students and *GASP* even RN coders!

An LVN is a licensed vocational nurse and is called Licensed Practical Nurse in some states. They are classified in the food chain between a nurse's aid and an RN. They can do dressing changes, pass meds and in some states IV's. They are used a lot in SNF's (pronounced SNIFFS) which are skilled nursing faciliy's--or nursing homes. But they have to have an RN supervisor as they can't work independently.

I have a company that provides medical standby for special events. My work is spotty, esp in today's economy but I set up first aid booths for fairs and open houses for corperations and company picnics. I also provide medical standyby for extreme sports events and Olympic Level gymnastic events.

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Melony in Lancaster, California

68 months ago

awsmom in Bakersfield, California said: Actually, I'm not bitter--just tired of nurses eating their young and others with that attitude...and I don't live in Bakersfield. I live in the best community in the world www.BearValleySprings.com which is in the Sierra's Mtn 1 1/2 hr from Bakersfield. The website automatically assigned me Bakersfield based on my zipcode. We are all here to learn and support each other.

For those of you interested in nursing be sure to check out the web site www.allnurses.com as it is a great reference area. Even has a section for pre-nursing students and *GASP* even RN coders!

Thought I recognized your writing, you wrote me on allnurses as well asking where I work. Shocker.
An LVN is a licensed vocational nurse and is called Licensed Practical Nurse in some states. They are classified in the food chain between a nurse's aid and an RN. They can do dressing changes, pass meds and in some states IV's. They are used a lot in SNF's (pronounced SNIFFS) which are skilled nursing faciliy's--or nursing homes. But they have to have an RN supervisor as they can't work independently.

I have a company that provides medical standby for special events. My work is spotty, esp in today's economy but I set up first aid booths for fairs and open houses for corperations and company picnics. I also provide medical standyby for extreme sports events and Olympic Level gymnastic events.

yeop, I am on that site too and got messages from a person who wanted to know where I work, hmm.

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Melony in Lancaster, California

68 months ago

Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina said: What does LVN stand for and what is the difference between that and a RN? I am beginning to see LVN a lot...I never heard of it. Hmmm...

What she said. I have already been offered a job that pays a bit more in my current company once I finish LVN. Then I go on to my RN masters. As it were, good luck to you both.

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Melony in Lancaster, California

68 months ago

OK and for those who dont want to hijack my post any longer.

Are they actually ANY NURSE CODERS who could offer advice?

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awsmom in the mtns above in Bakersfield, California

68 months ago

You are so funny cant spell--yes, only the strong survive in nursing! It's part of Darwin's Law! A coder is some one who reviews charts to determine what procedures were done as well as the ICD-9 so the can bill the insurance company for maximum reimbursement. Here is a link:www.aapc.com/index.aspx

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Patty2009 in Kalamazoo, Michigan

67 months ago

Melony in Lancaster, California said: OK and for those who dont want to hijack my post any longer.

Are they actually ANY NURSE CODERS who could offer advice?

Hi I am a nurse auditor and I do some coding.(mostly I got cert as coder to help me understand all the codes as nowadays most charges are driven by codes...I got my LPN 25 years ago..went into auditing in 1989...I love it...if I had to do it over I would have gotten
my RN. I make as much as an RN now...but I am 49 HA HA... If I gave any advice
to anyone who is interested..it would be. Coding is the wave of the future..
if you have your nursing..that will be a great asset. I audit primarily but I am also certified as a CPC. So I can grasp the coding, billing, documentation
all together. It certainly helps. As time goes on...codes are all there will be...and you'll have to know it to keep going...It certainly helps me to be able to do the nurse side and know the codes...Hope I did not bore ya

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Melony in Palmdale, California

67 months ago

Patty2009 in Kalamazoo, Michigan said: Hi I am a nurse auditor and I do some coding.(mostly I got cert as coder to help me understand all the codes as nowadays most charges are driven by codes...I got my LPN 25 years ago..went into auditing in 1989...I love it...if I had to do it over I would have gotten
my RN. I make as much as an RN now...but I am 49 HA HA... If I gave any advice
to anyone who is interested..it would be. Coding is the wave of the future..
if you have your nursing..that will be a great asset. I audit primarily but I am also certified as a CPC. So I can grasp the coding, billing, documentation
all together. It certainly helps. As time goes on...codes are all there will be...and you'll have to know it to keep going...It certainly helps me to be able to do the nurse side and know the codes...Hope I did not bore ya

You definitely didnt bore me. Thank you so much for your reply!

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Dee in Riverton, Utah

65 months ago

I am a RN and have a BSN. I am considering HIS opportunities. I am not sure if I should consider coupling coding or auditing training. What jobs are available for this specific skill set?

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Patty2009 in Kalamazoo, Michigan

65 months ago

Dee in Riverton, Utah said: I am a RN and have a BSN. I am considering HIS opportunities. I am not sure if I should consider coupling coding or auditing training. What jobs are available for this specific skill set?

Hi DEE: I would suggest contacting National Healthcare Inc
they have their homeoffice in Woodland Hills Ca. That was my
first audit job...they trained me. After 20 years they are still going strong...Rare these days as some have changed name 10 times HA HA...I have worked for 2 audit companies since then...Taking a coding class might help too..I find it very helpful as many times you must know the codes to
add charges and what can and cannot be billed together...
If your are an RN you can pick up on the auditing quick..
Good Luck

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Laurall01 in White Lake, Michigan

65 months ago

Melony in Palmdale, California said: Hello All,

I am currently a CPC medical coder, due to sit for my CCS. I have a BA in general biology with a minor in english literature. I have always wanted to be a nurse. I am wondering if it would be feasible for me to become an LVN or RN and still work as a medical coder? Are any of you in this field and how do you enjoy it? Also what is the average pay? I currently make $28.50 per hour. I live in Southern California if that helps.

Stay a coder, good money, no back ache, good hours, no exposing yourself to unknown contagious diseases.

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Leigh in Carmel, Indiana

64 months ago

I too am an RN w/ a BSN, and interested in coding.
What kind of programs/schools do you recommend???
thanks, in advance!

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Stacie in Silver Spring, Maryland

64 months ago

I am a RN/BSN and have also been researching becoming a RN Coder. I have been a nurse for 15 years and am already burned out and tired of nursing politics. I feel nurses are unappreciated and have to find another outlet. I just saw a job posting here in Atlanta for a RN Inpatient Coder starting at 80,000-150,000 per year. I just registered for a class to become CCS Certified (actually CCA Certified until I get coding experience). I spoke with the instructor and she stated that RN's will be considered golden in this field b/c we have medical terminology, anatomy, and disease process knowledge. She stated that RN's start out anywhere from 80,000 and up here in Atlanta. So basically to answer your question, I would get the RN degree. I hope this helped.

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Leigh in Carmel, Indiana

64 months ago

Stacie,
thanks for the encouragement!
Can I ask where ou found the class?
I am in Indiana - so I know it will be different --
Yes, nursing is something a person can only do for so long .......
I appreciate the info!
Leigh

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Kandya in Somerset, Kentucky

63 months ago

Melony in Palmdale, California said: Hello All,

I am currently a CPC medical coder, due to sit for my CCS. I have a BA in general biology with a minor in english literature. I have always wanted to be a nurse. I am wondering if it would be feasible for me to become an LVN or RN and still work as a medical coder? Are any of you in this field and how do you enjoy it? Also what is the average pay? I currently make $28.50 per hour. I live in Southern California if that helps.

I just completed the certification class for clinical coder (nurse). Check out their website at aacca.net

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Leigh in Carmel, Indiana

63 months ago

Melony,
I know in the midwest, there is a new position for RNs at many local hospitals -- RNs w/ coding experience! They are called clinical documentation specialists -- and they use both their nursing and coding experience!
As an RN, do you have any tips as far as going to school - ? Is it best to go the CPC route as you did?
Thanks -- and good luck to you. You have great background already!

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Marilyn B in Flagstaff, Arizona

59 months ago

For the nurses or coders who audit in this blog -- please visit
American Association of Medical Audit Specialists www.aamas.org/ - the national organization of medical auditors.
If you have the experience as an auditor - consider becoming certified as a CMAS - Certified Medical Audit Specialists.

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Meerio in Anaheim, California

57 months ago

Melony in Lancaster, California said: What she said. I have already been offered a job that pays a bit more in my current company once I finish LVN. Then I go on to my RN masters. As it were, good luck to you both.

Melony in Lancaster, I love your enthusiasm and determination. You kind of remind me of myself. I started as a volunteer with the Red Cross, then I became a CNA, LVN, RN, and I just completed the RN-BSN program at Vanguard University. Now I'm seriously looking into getting my CPC or the equivalent. I've considered my Masters. But keep going and don't lose sight of your dream.

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della in Farmington, New Mexico

57 months ago

Beverly in Charlotte, North Carolina said: And you would fit right in--nurses are notorious for eating their young!

Too funny! I even thought wow...how could she be so rude.

I am a CPC (Certified Professional Coder). I work as a Mass Torts auditor. I have my BA in English and am currently taking pre-nursing classes. I am 40 years old and often wonder if this is the right road to take. If not, I am thinking about switching to a RHIT degree(Registered Health Information)

By the way, love your post. You might want to be a comedian. I didn't even see that coming. Best laugh of the day.

it is true nurse eat their young....but....you need to look at the whole picture...I have been nursing for over 20 yrs...and yes I have torn new nurses apart but my reason is the lack of love for the art of nursing...many young nurses have told me that they wont put a patient on a bedpan cause that is the aides job....if you are going into nursing for just money or the prestige then change professions...if you are going to make a difference or assist people who need your knowledge and talent...then...go girl go

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leigh in Carmel, Indiana

57 months ago

Beverly --
Just curious -- why are you going into nursing? I say that, because I am presently an RN, and wish I had the CPC credentials that you do! (if you already said why, and I missed it - sorry!)

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Melanie in Irvine, California

56 months ago

Patty2009 in Kalamazoo, Michigan said: Hi I am a nurse auditor and I do some coding.(mostly I got cert as coder to help me understand all the codes as nowadays most charges are driven by codes...I got my LPN 25 years ago..went into auditing in 1989...I love it...if I had to do it over I would have gotten
my RN. I make as much as an RN now...but I am 49 HA HA... If I gave any advice
to anyone who is interested..it would be. Coding is the wave of the future..
if you have your nursing..that will be a great asset. I audit primarily but I am also certified as a CPC. So I can grasp the coding, billing, documentation
all together. It certainly helps. As time goes on...codes are all there will be...and you'll have to know it to keep going...It certainly helps me to be able to do the nurse side and know the codes...Hope I did not bore ya

The company I work for is in need of one or two nurse auditors. If you are interested in some extra work or if you know anyone else who is, send your resume to newportjobs@gmail.com

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Angela in Ventura in Ventura, California

55 months ago

I am a registered nurse of over 12 years ICU,TELEMETRY,MED-SURG, ER nursing and I am looking to start my own business. I am working per diem as an oncology infusion nurse but really want the get out of the bedside nursing ,especially that. I have my legal nurse consulting certificate but have not been able to find any work. I am wondering if being a coder might be something I should consider. Any of you coders work for yourself? I really want my independence. Any prospects or advise is much appreciated. Thanks

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Angela A. in Columbia, South Carolina

53 months ago

I am actually an RN Coder . I have my BSN and I am certified coder (CPC - through the AAPC). I understand the RNs frustrations since I worked in the hospitals for over 10 years (in mostly critical care areas) but please be careful when it comes to switching professions. The $80,000-$100,000 salary range for RN Coders is not accurate. Coders make much less than RNs (even inpatient settings). I began coding in 2001 and became certified in 2003, I got paid $25.00 per hour at my last job as a Medical Auditor for a 400 bed hospital facility. Salary ranges are posted on the AAPC website. Hope this helps.

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lh in Carmel, Indiana

53 months ago

Thanks Angela, for that info. Do you know much about CDI or Clinical Documentation Improvement Programs? Angela or anyone?
Again, thanks.

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Marilyn in Beltsville, Maryland

53 months ago

Consider exploring the medical audit field combining nursing, coding, medical record review, UM, case management in ONE. The American Association of Medical Audit Specialists (website: aamas.org) would be an organization to consider. It is comprised of nurses, health information mx or coding professions, physicians and allied health professionals. Get certified as a CMAS - Certified Medical Audit Specialist and be recognized in this field. Read the 2010 AAMAS salary survey.
• CMAS Certified: 60% earn an average annual salary of $72,083.
• Not CMAS Certified: 78% earn an average annual salary of $63,890.

Read more: www.aamas.org/news/2010-salary-survey/

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Angela A. in Columbia, South Carolina

52 months ago

Hello again - I am familiar with CDI programs and I do believe they could be of great benefit to an organizations. Not all hospitals have these programs in place however (only about half in our area). Try HCPro for information on this subject (Clinical Documentation).

Please note that my last job (ending Decemeber 2009) was as a Medical Auditor where I was paid $25 per hour (or $52,000 annually). I think nurses make excellent coders and some of the salary differences can be attributed to demographics and demand. My current job is the first time (in almost ten years of coding) that my RN and CPC were required. Most jobs require either or but not both. You could agrue that there are not many RNs that are certified in coding therefore why require both? But my point is that there are not many jobs for RN Coders and my experience has been that employers will pay for your RN or your coding certification but not both.
Finially, there are many certifications available but let me share the following information that was taken off the AAPC website last year:
“AAPC's CPC® certification credential for physician and outpatient coding, and AHIMA's CCS for inpatient coding are currently the only medical coding credentials recognized by employers, payers and government agencies, including the Department of Labor (Occupational Handbook (www.stats.bls.gov/oco/ocos103.htm)).”
Good luck to everyone!

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fooledonce in South Gate, California

52 months ago

Hello all,

Please avoid RN-Coder boot camp. Very unprofessional outfit-basically a scam. I showed up to their week long "live" seminar (this is an addition to their online study)and no one was there. I was not informed that it was cancelled and my calls and emails were not returned. You also have to join(pay another fee) their unrecognized association in order to take their unrecognized RN-C credential. Should have followed my instincts. Now I will study for the CCS through AHIMA.

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abjk in London, Kentucky

52 months ago

I agree totally! It is an unrecognized certification that employers graciously "ignore." The week long course that we took was extremely unprofessional. There were questions on the certification exam with no correct answer, actually there were quite a few. We were also given workbooks that hadn't been updated and so we were given "old" information that conflicted with the new ICD-9 coding manuals. It was a joke and I'm embarrassed to even use the initials behind my name, much less put it on my resume. Avoid this like the plague!

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Jennifer in Newport News, Virginia

51 months ago

I was an LPN (licensed practical nurse which is basically the same as an LVN or licensed vocational nurse) for 5 years and have been a RN for 3 year. I am 27 years old and quickly became "burnt out" with nursing on the floor after so short a period. I have been employed by an insurance company doing coding auditing for the past 8 months and I am able to work at home. I consider myself extremely fortunate because I had no prior coding experience. They are paying part of the money for me to be certified by the AAPC through a 16 week CPC program. I love coding and the office enviornment and I am so happy to be away from the hospital. Being an RN and having a clinical background is helpful when I am reading through medical records.

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angela in Ventura, California

51 months ago

thank you for your comment. What insurance company do you work for? How do you think I could get a position like that working from home? I would love to be able to do that. Thanks again...:)

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busy rn in Anaheim, California

51 months ago

fooledonce in South Gate, California said: Hello all,

Please avoid RN-Coder boot camp. Very unprofessional outfit-basically a scam. I showed up to their week long "live" seminar (this is an addition to their online study)and no one was there. I was not informed that it was cancelled and my calls and emails were not returned. You also have to join(pay another fee) their unrecognized association in order to take their unrecognized RN-C credential. Should have followed my instincts. Now I will study for the CCS through AHIMA.

I tried to get into this "live" seminar and could never get any information and nobody I talked to had heard of this. It sounded good getting your certification and all. After reading your post, I'm glad I never heard back. Thanks for the info.

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busy rn in Anaheim, California

51 months ago

Jennifer in Newport News, Virginia said: I was an LPN (licensed practical nurse which is basically the same as an LVN or licensed vocational nurse) for 5 years and have been a RN for 3 year. I am 27 years old and quickly became "burnt out" with nursing on the floor after so short a period. I have been employed by an insurance company doing coding auditing for the past 8 months and I am able to work at home. I consider myself extremely fortunate because I had no prior coding experience. They are paying part of the money for me to be certified by the AAPC through a 16 week CPC program. I love coding and the office enviornment and I am so happy to be away from the hospital. Being an RN and having a clinical background is helpful when I am reading through medical records.

I am drawn to coding and would love to get the opportunity you had. I've been an RN for over 21 years and just got my BSN. Can you share or recommend what or where to go from here?

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abjk in London, Kentucky

51 months ago

Even those of us that are certified through the "boot camp" can't get a call back from them. There was a list of companies on their website that allegedly hired and "loved" their graduates but when I talked to those companies, they all said that they didn't hire anyone with that "certification" and instead recommended I attend a "real" coding course and take the "real" certification exam. Some of the people I talked to at those companies said that their clients (mostly insurance companies) wouldn't allow anyone that was not certified by AAPC to audit or code their claims/medical records. Therefore there was no sense in the company hiring anyone with this bogus certification! I called it bogus, they didn't) They were nice and apologetic but said they were bound by contracts with the insurance companies---they didn't want anyone that was not REALLY certified! As I said before, run the opposite direction from the boot camp!

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Jennifer in Newport News, Virginia

51 months ago

busy rn in Anaheim, California said: I am drawn to coding and would love to get the opportunity you had. I've been an RN for over 21 years and just got my BSN. Can you share or recommend what or where to go from here?

to "busy rn in Anaheim, CA" I looked up every insurance company and medical office in my area and put in an application along with a cover letter. I wish there was more I could tell you but I was so frustrated with the floor that I was really, really persistent. The official AAPC website offers accredited online CPC classes. Having that under your belt could really put you ahead of the competition. Depending on what you would like to do for work, you would then possibly qualify to become an office manager at a doctor's office, work in a hospital billing department, or for an insurance company. There is also the field of consultation which I would like to look into once I have some more experience. Congratulations on your BSN and I wish you the best. I have a question for you (off of the subject). I'm interested in moving to California. Could you give me some advice on if there is a region south of LA(I love San Diego but is that asking too much?) that can be affordable for a nurse? I don't want to take up room on this discussion...would you mind emailing me at chica3000@juno.com? Best wishes to you!

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Pat in Seattle, Washington

51 months ago

I attended the RN-Coder boot camp about 4 years ago. I knew before I finished that week that I would not be continuing my membership with them and I would not be pursuing a certification through them. I have since become a member of AAMAS (American Association of Medical Audit Specialist) and received my certification through them last year. I have found them to be professional and the 2 conferences I have attended have given me information that I can use every day as a nurse auditor.

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Chris B. in Gilbert, Arizona

51 months ago

I agree with Pat in Seattle Washington and had a similar experience with the boot camp. I, too, have since become a member of and am actively involved in AAMAS (American Association of Medical Audit Specialists). The AAMAS-sponsored educational conferences, held in a different region of the country each year and featuring speakers who are experts in their field, are packed with auditing and coding information for all types of medical auditing, from the Basics (Auditing 101) to the more complex. I would highly recommend this very professional, career-enhancing organization. The website is www.aamas.org.

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Marylin in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in Christiana, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

fooledonce in South Gate, California said: Hello all,

Please avoid RN-Coder boot camp. Very unprofessional outfit-basically a scam. I showed up to their week long "live" seminar (this is an addition to their online study)and no one was there. I was not informed that it was cancelled and my calls and emails were not returned. You also have to join(pay another fee) their unrecognized association in order to take their unrecognized RN-C credential. Should have followed my instincts. Now I will study for the CCS through AHIMA.

My gut agrees with you. I am an RN who was laid off and unable to find another job. I went through some state career testing which showed I would be good at accounting and bookkeeping. A recruiter from a school that has a bookkeeping course called me. When she found out I was an RN, she suggested that I become a coder. I thought she was nuts. Meanwhile, I found out the attorneys had so little work, they were doing bookkeeping. So, I started researching coding. YES! The code certifications that are respected are CPC from AAPC and CCS from AHIMA, as stated previously. If you want to be MORE secure and have more choices of types of jobs, get an Associate of Applied Science of Health Information Technology. I choose to go to the CPC Boot Camp from HCPro. My instructor was Jillian Harrington. She was EXCEPTIONAL! I wrote down everything she said, marked my coding books like she told me to, and did the exercises she assigned. I asked many questions. She cared very much that we understood the content. The Boot Camp was intense. She told us the first morning that we were doing the equivalent of 12 week college course, in terms of amount and complexity of content. My brain was so fried, I couldn't think, and slept instead of doing the evening exercises. She recommended taking the CPC exam between 1-2 months after the course. I had a lot going on and did not start studying until the last week. (To be continued, next post.)

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Marylin in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in Christiana, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

(Part 2 of my response) I studied every day. I was SHOCKED and DELIGHTED that with all the notes I had written in my coding books, I remembered and either understood or was able to figure out all the content. My mistake: I should have done the homework at night to solidify the learning. And I should have studied more and sooner. I DID pass the exam, however, my score was not as high as it could have been. A couple of sections I did not study much. And if I had studied more, I would have gone through the test faster, and would not have had to guess at the questions I hadn't answered when the time was up. Fact: Sleep increases retention. So, study a little, sleep. Repeat on a regular basis. Back to the associations: I suspect AAMAS is as well respected as the other two I mentioned. However, the RN-Coder is not main stream, whatever it is. I think the RN/coder combination will become very valuable. But, it will probably take networking and cold calls to figure out where the jobs are. The salaries should be close to RN salaries or more. Did that help?

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Trisha in Coldwater, Michigan

51 months ago

It is good to hear your comments regarding AAMAS. I have been an AAMAS member and certified (CMAS) for 10 years. I love the organization. I am a nurse and CPC.

Thanks for joining us! We love our new members!!! As was stated above "check us out" @ www.aamas.org

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Marylin in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in Christiana, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

Trisha in Coldwater, Michigan said: It is good to hear your comments regarding AAMAS. I have been an AAMAS member and certified (CMAS) for 10 years. I love the organization. I am a nurse and CPC.

Thanks for joining us! We love our new members!!! As was stated above "check us out" @ www.aamas.org

Thank you Trisha. I would like to correspond with you personally. I have questions that relate to me and not the group. My email is alpacabelles@live.com.

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Marylin in Lancaster, PA in Christiana, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

Trisha and others: I would like to start my coding (and some day auditing) career with a coding job. I am an RN with a wide variety of clinical experience (not ER, OR, ICU)and QA and UR chart review experience. I audited E/M for a residency family practice office setting for 2 years. I passed my CPC. I am going to take Carol Buck's on-line internship (code 500 charts) $99. Then I plan to identify large physician groups and outpatient surgical centers to apply to. I am wondering if a temporary agency would be a reasonable option. I have no experience in all that is described in coding positions. I only know how to code. What do you think of my plan? Do you have any recommendations? How did you start your career with a CPC? Thank you very much in advance. Oh, and one more question. What are the major differences between AAMAS and NAMAS, which has some affiliation regarding auditor testing, with AAPC? Thank you so much for being on this site.

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lh in Carmel, Indiana

51 months ago

I would be interested in an answer to Marilyn's question also. I had great interest in coding, but it is waning, aftering hearing that at local institutions, RNs are not being utilized in coding type positions as regularly anymore? Thanks all!

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Marylin in Lancaster, PA in Christiana, Pennsylvania

51 months ago

lh---In my area, Clinical Document Specialists are very much in demand, especially if you have med/surg clinical experience snd inpatient coding experience. The online internship plus med/surg clinical experience might get you one of these jobs. Go to indeed.com and put in "coding". Also AAPC has a Clinical Document Specialist certification. RAC's in your area are also probably interested in RN's with coding. Good luck. Marylin

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