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Sheletha in Jackson, Tennessee

70 months ago

I am scheduled to take my CCA exam from AHIMA in two weeks. If anyone has taken this certification or any similiar certifications, Can you please tell me what to expect. I graduated from a program a few years back and have now decided to take the certification. Will the test be multiple choice. Should I brush up on medical terminology?

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Gracie Webb in Maryville, Tennessee

69 months ago

Did you take the exam? How was it? I did the same thing a few years back and I am getting ready to take the CCA. What can I expect?

Thanks!

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Gracie Webb in Maryville, Tennessee

69 months ago

Hi,

I am not scheduled yet-just studying. How was it? What can I expect? Any info. I would greatly appreciate.

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Lann in Oneida, Tennessee

67 months ago

I just recently received my diploma in medical coding and health information, can someone direct me to a web site where I can get information on getting registered to take the certification exam?
Thanks,
Lann

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Annie in Millington, Michigan

67 months ago

Lann in Oneida, Tennessee said: I just recently received my diploma in medical coding and health information, can someone direct me to a web site where I can get information on getting registered to take the certification exam?
Thanks,
Lann

AHIMA.ORG

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Lann in Huntsville, Tennessee

67 months ago

Annie in Millington, Michigan said: AHIMA.ORG

Thank you.

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olsondg in Sterling Heights, Michigan

67 months ago

planning on taking the AHIMA/CCA @ prometrics an looking for some insight for the 2 hour 100 question test. how what do they focus on how difficult are the questions????
tks dave

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Eliane Mason in New Lenox, Illinois

67 months ago

sheletha in Jackson, Tennessee said: Focus on ethics, policies and procedures not so much as terminolgy. There wasn't much coding either. Risk management. Medical Records

Taking the CCA exam in 2 days. been reviewing with Prof Review Guide for CCCA exam book.Concerned with timing.Thought coding was the #1 domain to focus on.Did you find test difficult?

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sheletha in Jackson, Tennessee

67 months ago

Actually no. It was not as difficult as I thought it was going to be. 100 questions. Majority of it was common sense. I finished with about 10 to 15 min remaining. So I had time to review questions I marked. Relax Im sure you got it in the bag.

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Gracie Webb in Maryville, Tennessee

67 months ago

Thanks, I appreciate your input. I have really bad test anxiety. I can ace classwork and everything, but when it comes to a test, I panic.

Thanks again
Gracie

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Eliane Mason in New Lenox, Illinois

67 months ago

Thanks Sheletha. Took it Thursday, wen't fine. And Gracie I also have real bad bad test anxiety. Feels like my mind goes blind. Took a couple deep breath here and there. It wen't better than I expected. Didn't have time to review my marked question but could have had 10 extra mns. Just spent more time on some when watched the clock and saw I was ahead of time. You'll be fine too.

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Ian 44 in San Francisco, California

67 months ago

The discussion above will be useful in my future; Thank you all. BUT, I need some advice to begin. I plan to enroll in an HIT program, but don't know if I should obtain a certificate for one of the specializations (such as coding) or an associates degree in HIT? Also, I understand that a private college can help you get the certificate/degree quickly simply because the classes will be available, but damn, it's a lot of $$$$. Or, should I pace myself and take the program at the community college for $20 per unit? I'm hoping someone can help me shed some light on the "typical" path into this profession.

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sheletha in Jackson, Tennessee

67 months ago

Personally I would go for the associates degree in HIT at the community college for twenty bucks per unit.

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Gayle In Fort Smith, AR in Angleton, Texas

66 months ago

MIRIAM in Zionsville, Pennsylvania said: I applaud you that you have finally chosen to become a professional. Good for you! Now let's see how I can help you. I hope that during your decisive period you were studying.

You will always need to brush up and familiarize yourself with medical terminology. You can read a medical book from front to back and will never be able to identify all the mysteries of it. Try it. Open a book and I bet you that there will be a word that you have never heard of. Not only do you need to continuously study your terminology, but you should also study anatomy more in-depth and learn more about the many similar credentials and who certifies them.

By now you should be able to manuever the internet pretty well, so here are a few sites that I constantly frequent. They offer a phlethora of information for new-comers as well as seasoned coders. Check out their CONTENTS that are generally on the left-hand side of their website.

www.codingcert.com
www.codinginstitute.com
www.him-coding.com
www.him-coding.com/studyguides.html
www.justcoding.com/

Dear Ms. Miriam:
I have researched the sites suggested by yourself and found them to be very helpful. Thank you so much for your advice on sites to check out. I have just finished a two year associates degree in medical billing & coding and am looking where to get certified, applying for jobs, checking out resources of any kind on medical billing and coding. I appreciate your sharing with everyone. Thank you!

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needinghelp in Saint Louis, Missouri

66 months ago

I will be taking the CCA exam in a couple of weeks. I am not a good test taker due to me being nervous and second guessing myself. Can somewhere tell me the main areas to focus on because I really need this. I have to do something, my husband just got laid off and it is getting hard already. I have so much on my mind. But if I don't take the test before 3/15/09 I will have to take the 2009 exam and I don't have the books for that. I only have the 2008 books. Please someone help me. Thanks

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G Michaels in Youngstown, Ohio

66 months ago

My pleasure needinghelp. I sincerly hope it helps

Gregg

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Cheryl L in Oak Creek, Wisconsin

66 months ago

I have been working processing medical insurance claims for many years. I also went to school for medical assisting but that was over 25 years ago and I never actually worked in that field but have had anatomy and med terminolgy classes. I've worked with CPT, HCPCS and ICD-9 coding but haven't had any actual classes in this field. Would it be at all reasonable to think I could pass the CCA exam without any further schooling? Are there any education requirements prior to taking the CCA exam?

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kellymc in Dallas, Texas

66 months ago

I've actually been coding for about 2yrs and would like to know if there are any study groups one could attend. If anyone knows if AHIMA OR AAPC has such groups.

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Shari in Dover, Pennsylvania

65 months ago

I am looking for some answers. I want to make a career change and would like to go into medical billing and coding. I know I want training in both because I am not sure if I want to do billing or coding. My question is can you do this training on line and receive the information you need to get a job and to be success on the certication exams?

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Britney in Birmingham, Alabama

65 months ago

kellymc in Dallas, Texas said: I've actually been coding for about 2yrs and would like to know if there are any study groups one could attend. If anyone knows if AHIMA OR AAPC has such groups.

I'm trying to take my CCA but I don't know where to go. I used AHIMA but didn't find any info on a ground location to take the test. Is it done online?

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sheila72 in Irving, Texas

65 months ago

Britney in Birmingham, Alabama said: I'm trying to take my CCA but I don't know where to go. I used AHIMA but didn't find any info on a ground location to take the test. Is it done online?

no you have to register and they will send you a letter with a number to call, I will be taking my @ a place on coit rd in Dallas TX

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Gregg in Youngstown, Ohio

65 months ago

First off, good luck on your exams! Second, If you would like a free practice exam to help prepare go to medicalcodingpro.com. You'll see the scroll at the top of the page.

Again Good Luck!

Gregg

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Jennifer in Dayton, Ohio

65 months ago

I highly suggest looking into your local community college. Its much cheaper, but just having a medical coding certificate of completion got me in the door! Now I am preparing to become Certified to start heading for a better paying job! Best to you!!

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Caitlin in Savannah, Georgia

65 months ago

The test focuses on regulations and risk management. Since I focused mainly on studying coding, I did not pass. I had 20 min extra time so no need to worry about timing. I looked over but was not familiar with working with regulations. I have no experience other than school. I needed 7 more points to pass. Im sure anyone that has any actually work experience can sail through that exam.

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Eliane Mason in Winfield, Illinois

65 months ago

Britney in Birmingham, Alabama said: I'm trying to take my CCA but I don't know where to go. I used AHIMA but didn't find any info on a ground location to take the test. Is it done online?

Hello Britney. I advise the Professional Review Guide for the CCA examination. It helped me along with one of the reference book they mention "Health Information Management of a Strategic Resource" from Mervat Abdelhak. You probably can buy used books for cheaper price than in bookstores. You register with Ahima, then you receive a letter of confirmation (mail as well). Then you book your date with Prometric (Test Center). You can go online now at www.Prometric.com to see where you can take that test. Hope this helps.

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

I pssed CCA exam on March 18 with 74/90 score. I started my medical coding class since Sept 2008. I am going to try CCS exam in April or May.

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vanessa in Bronx, New York

65 months ago

kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California said: I didn't have work experience and study medical coding course for only 5 months at adult school in Los angeles. English is not my first language. For CCA exam, there were many parts of the exam that I have no previous knowledge, but I managed to do because it mostly use the common sense.

Sample CCA question:

-What is the outpatient prospective payment method for Medicare patients?
-What code use for injectable drug for Medicare?
-What is the med term for patient with low potassium level?

Coding is only 10-12% of the CCA test. The passing score is 55 out of 90. I have 15 minutes left when I finished the test.

Kdorn 75 congratulation,

Did you take the A&P class with AHIMA. Your name sure looks familiar. I am surprised the coding section of the exam is only about 12%. Is there a book you can recommend besides the PRG? What other book can I use to learn about the regulations? If anyone can answer, please advise me.

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

vanessa in Bronx, New York said: Kdorn 75 congratulation,

Did you take the A&P class with AHIMA. Your name sure looks familiar. I am surprised the coding section of the exam is only about 12%. Is there a book you can recommend besides the PRG? What other book can I use to learn about the regulations? If anyone can answer, please advise me.

Hi Vanessa

Yes, I took A&P with Ahima Distance Learning. It was a nice surprise to see you here. I failed to explain that when I said coding is only 12%, I mean the part that I NEED TO OPEN CODE BOOKS ONLY. There is more coding question in the exam, but you don't need code book because they already had code description included in the question, so the coding question in exam is around 30%.

PRG is good. I think you should also study Health Data Content and Structure with AHIMA online before take CCA exam. I never took this class, I tried to study about keyterms on health record/documents such as DRG, SOAP, APCs, OIG, OASIS, encryption, firewall. case mix etc. I will post the name of book next Monday. I borrowed this book from adult school.

I live in Hollywood, not Beverly Hills.

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vanessa in Bronx, New York

65 months ago

kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California said: Hi Vanessa

Yes, I took A&P with Ahima Distance Learning. It was a nice surprise to see you here. I failed to explain that when I said coding is only 12%, I mean the part that I NEED TO OPEN CODE BOOKS ONLY. There is more coding question in the exam, but you don't need code book because they already had code description included in the question, so the coding question in exam is around 30%.

PRG is good. I think you should also study Health Data Content and Structure with AHIMA online before take CCA exam. I never took this class, I tried to study about keyterms on health record/documents such as DRG, SOAP, APCs, OIG, OASIS, encryption, firewall. case mix etc. I will post the name of book next Monday. I borrowed this book from adult school.

I live in Hollywood, not Beverly Hills.

Kdorn 75,

I came across this site because I was looking to talk to people who is preparing to take the CCA or plan to in the future. I think the more people I talk with who have done the exam can give me a better idea how to approach it, and you did just that when you posted the email on the Coding Basic Program boards.

I had the CPC a few years ago but couldn't get a job in the field even though I work in a hospital here in NYC. They wanted me to come in with exp. I allowed my certification to lapsed because I didn't want to keep paying yearly dues and wasn't working in the field. Of course I have regrets now, and decided to go with AHIMA. In my opinion, I belive its the better organization to join.

Someone here mentioned a book to study as well, Health Management of Stategic Resource. Is that the book you are talking about for Health Data Content? I check the price at Amazon and I can get a used one for anout $25.00, what do you think.I definitely want to try the exam before I complete the program. The program is about a year and that's too long. I took note of the courses you did at the adult education...

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

Hi Vanessa

My coding training is very cheap. I paid less than $1,000 in 5 months. The adult school charge only $70 per course and the textbooks can be borrow from school or buy second hand. The most expensive class Ia paid for is A&P with AHIMA. I didn't study Coding Basic Program. The adult school is good option for me since I don't want to end up pay $10,000 for coding training. I don't remember the name of the textbook I read, I will have to take a look at it again when I return to school on Monday. Will let you know later. Other CCA sample questions are:

-What is the disease with butterfly-like rash?
(lupus erythematosus)
-If patient has a drug interaction, which code on ICD that you have to assign?\
(E code)
-What is the outpatient prospective payment method for Medicare patients?
(APC)
-What code use for injectable drug for Medicare?
(HCPCS)
-What is the med term for patient with low potassium level?
(Hyponatremia)
-W\Which type of info display on graphic sheet?
-Vital record (pulse, temperature)
-Sending data across internet using technoly that will transform the original data into intangible code. Theis technique is called?
-data encryption
What is the best program to produce the bar graph?
-Spreadsheet
Which organization responsible for CPT?
-AMA
What is the valid ICD-9 CM principal Dx Code?
-V30.0 (Note: do not mix up with V27.0)
A computer software program that assign CPT/ICD is called?
-Encoder (Note: Grouper is use for assign DRG)
In the diagnosis, :(second and third degree burns of abdomen," a code is required for
-Third degree burn only (Note: code only highest degree burn if it is in the same area)
This code represents a HCPCS Levl II
-J7030
The form that patient must sign when the charge may not cover under medicare program?
-Advance Benefiary Notice
Patient experience alcohol withdraw syndrome, what is the principal dx:
-Delirium tremens

That is all I can remember from my test.

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vanessa in Bronx, New York

65 months ago

kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California said: Hi Vanessa

My coding training is very cheap. I paid less than $1,000 in 5 months. The adult school charge only $70 per course and the textbooks can be borrow from school or buy second hand. The most expensive class Ia paid for is A&P with AHIMA. I didn't study Coding Basic Program. The adult school is good option for me since I don't want to end up pay $10,000 for coding training. I don't remember the name of the textbook I read, I will have to take a look at it again when I return to school on Monday. Will let you know later. Other CCA sample questions are:

-What is the disease with butterfly-like rash?
(lupus erythematosus)
-If patient has a drug interaction, which code on ICD that you have to assign?\
(E code)
-What is the outpatient prospective payment method for Medicare patients?
(APC)
-What code use for injectable drug for Medicare?
(HCPCS)

Wow! Thanks; you remembered alot. I did come across similiar questions on the CCA studyguide I bought. The book has Medical Science, Health Data Content, Medical Billing. Everything is covered as per the test in the CCA.

The cost for your classes is very good. Here in NY at the adult education they charge about over $200.00 pr class. I would think California will be just as expensive.

Are you a member of AHIMA. I did write a reply to your email you wrote on the AHIMA site. There are groups you can join that is studying for the CCS. You seem to be good at studying on your own. Get a used CCS PRG. That will be helpful. I heard its a hard exam. Also talk with people on the advance forum. www.advancemagazine.com
See also www.justforcoding.com. That should be helpful sites.

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

Sorry, both links you gave to me are not working.

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vanessa in Bronx, New York

65 months ago

Sorry, type in your browser as if you are searching for a site.

I can be reached at Anicho4250@aol.com

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

I already study CCS PRG. In fact, the content of CCS Prg and CCA PRG are the same. All questions are identical. The only difference is the CCS PRG came with the coding case section, that is all.

I just applied for AHIMA membership 2 days ago. I didn't apply for CCS yet. I need to get the court order for name change comes out this Wednesday and I have to apply for US passport first so I can take the CCS under new ID.

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

CCS has only 49% passing rate. And half of them has working experiences. I have only 25% chance to be one of those since I am just a newbie & fresh graduate. My teacher said she has only once student who pass CCS exam, but he was the first one who took it. She has a high hope in me that I would pass too. I am getting lazy this week, I have to speed up my reading.

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kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California

65 months ago

-What is the med term for patient with low potassium level?
(Hyponatremia) ---> sorry for typos. The correct answer should be "hypokalemia". Hyponatremia is low sodium level.

-Which type of burn contain blisters?
(Second degree burn)

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kathy in Grand Rapids, Michigan

64 months ago

Sheletha in Jackson, Tennessee said: I am scheduled to take my CCA exam from AHIMA in two weeks. If anyone has taken this certification or any similiar certifications, Can you please tell me what to expect. I graduated from a program a few years back and have now decided to take the certification. Will the test be multiple choice. Should I brush up on medical terminology?

Be very prepared for which company regulates this and that and which system does correct coding edits, and pathology know what creatine etc.. is see if they will allow you to use a med dict. I took this exam and it was nothing like what they said it would be like 50% of the exam was things pertaining to mgt of coding which I did not know since I have always been the coder/biller and the mgt of my company dealt with that stuff. Good Luck !!!!!!!

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Dianne in Pinckneyville, Illinois

64 months ago

I'm taking on online class for Medical Billing and Coding. I'm finding it very time consuming. Will there be Medical Billing questions on the CCA test, or can I simply focus on the "coding" part of the course? I couldn't spend the time or money on an Adult Learning Class. I have lost my job in Human Resources and need to get back into the workforce ASAP? I'm glad I found this Forum. . . it sure helps to hear of other people's concerns.

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LAURIE.MADRID@YAHOO.COM in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

64 months ago

Gracie Webb in Maryville, Tennessee said: Hi,

I am not scheduled yet-just studying. How was it? What can I expect? Any info. I would greatly appreciate.

WHAT ARE YOU STUDYING JUST THE CODING PART OR DO YOU HAVE A BOOK YOU ARE STUDYING FROM. DO YOU KNOW WHERE I CAN GET SAMPLE TEST QUESTIONS?

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Kris in Sarasota, Florida

64 months ago

kdorn75 in Beverly Hills, California said: Hi Vanessa

-What is the med term for patient with low potassium level?
(Hyponatremia)

This is incorrect! It is hypokalemia.

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kdorn75 in Los Angeles, California

64 months ago

Kris in Sarasota, Florida said: This is incorrect! It is hypokalemia.

Read my comment above. I stated that it is a typos error.

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ketler in Pitcairn, Pennsylvania

63 months ago

Hello to all,

I am a graduate from the university of Pittsburgh and I am looking into taking the CCA exam. I do not have the money or time to invest into a coding program. I am relying on the self study approach. I am studying for the exam myself. I understand I need to learn medical terminology, pathology, pharmacology, medical ethics, and anatomy/physiology in addition to coding and Health Information Management of a Strategic Resource.

I currently have the following books:

1. Professional Review guide for the CCA exam 2009 edition
2. Step-by-Step Medical Coding 2009 edition

I would greatly appreciate it if someone who has gone through a formal training program for medical coding to list all the books they have used to study for the CCA exam. I can then buy those books.

Thank you

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Kris in Sarasota, Florida

63 months ago

ketler in Pitcairn, Pennsylvania said: Hello to all,

I am a graduate from the university of Pittsburgh and I am looking into taking the CCA exam. I do not have the money or time to invest into a coding program. I am relying on the self study approach. I am studying for the exam myself. I understand I need to learn medical terminology, pathology, pharmacology, medical ethics, and anatomy/physiology in addition to coding and Health Information Management of a Strategic Resource.

I currently have the following books:

1. Professional Review guide for the CCA exam 2009 edition
2. Step-by-Step Medical Coding 2009 edition

I would greatly appreciate it if someone who has gone through a formal training program for medical coding to list all the books they have used to study for the CCA exam. I can then buy those books.

Thank you

Okay, it isn't going to be something that you want to hear, but here goes.

I'm sure that you've been looking at these forums for a while, right. Do you see the number of coders who have the CCA, CCS and others still trying to find work? If you don't have a medical background, it's not the way to go. A CCA is really not going to help, especially if you don't have some structured study program. Why don't you check into AHIMA's basic coding program. It'll better prepare you for the CCA exam. You also don't have to lay out a whole lot of money to get started. If finances are tough, do one course ($225 at a time), and during this time, get yourself any kind of job in the medical field that you can.

Believe me, I'm in the same boat and even have the same books, but I know that the resources I can get from the AHIMA program (starting this week), will be great and I have almost 20 years working in the medical field.

Kris

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ketler in Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania

63 months ago

Hi guys,

thank you for your advice. I am not working in the medical field right now but my long term goal is to goto medical school. I am going to apply to grad school for the anesthesiologist assistant program in 2 years. I just wanted work in the medical field til then but from what you guys are saying I think it would not be fruitful to pursue the medical coder certification. I cannot get any jobs in the medical field because right now I'm working in the IT field. My long term goal as I stated is to get into medical school. To that end I am planning on going to grad school for 2 years and then applying to medical school. As I stated before I don't have the money to do the AHIMA program but how many courses do I have to take to complete the medical coding program in order to prepare for CCA exam?

thank you for your valuable input.

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Kris in Sarasota, Florida

63 months ago

ketler in Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania said: Hi guys,

thank you for your advice. I am not working in the medical field right now but my long term goal is to goto medical school. I am going to apply to grad school for the anesthesiologist assistant program in 2 years. I just wanted work in the medical field til then but from what you guys are saying I think it would not be fruitful to pursue the medical coder certification. I cannot get any jobs in the medical field because right now I'm working in the IT field. My long term goal as I stated is to get into medical school. To that end I am planning on going to grad school for 2 years and then applying to medical school. As I stated before I don't have the money to do the AHIMA program but how many courses do I have to take to complete the medical coding program in order to prepare for CCA exam?

thank you for your valuable input.

Ketler, have you considered health informatics (computer technology)? Check out St. Petersburg College in Florida, I believe they have an online certificate for this program, and with your IT background, it might be just the thing for you. With this major push for Electronic medical records, there is going to be a major need.

Why are you going to grad school if you want to go to medical school? There is no guarantee you'll get into med school with grad school, because they don't use those grades to get in.

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ketler in Columbus, Ohio

63 months ago

Thanks for your input Kate. I think CPT and Diagnostic Coding (ICD), Med Term and Insurance Billing are all covered in the "Step-by-Step medical coding" book. For the rest, you said I should look at the study guide. I am at a lose as to what else you are referring to. can you clarify that? thanks

Kris,

For personal health reasons my undergraduate transcript suffered a great deal. So, I am planning on doing a grad degree to show medical schools that I am academically qualified. So are you saying that it would be fruitless to do a grad program for medical school admissions? what do you recommend that I do?

Thanks

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ketler in Columbus, Ohio

63 months ago

??

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Kris Leitz in Sarasota, Florida

63 months ago

ketler in Columbus, Ohio said:
Kris,

For personal health reasons my undergraduate transcript suffered a great deal. So, I am planning on doing a grad degree to show medical schools that I am academically qualified. So are you saying that it would be fruitless to do a grad program for medical school admissions? what do you recommend that I do?

Thanks

Hi Ketler,

What I might suggest that you do is a post-bac program that emphasizes the sciences (biology, physics and chemistry and maybe some advanced science classes). A post bac would fold into your UG-GPA, where as a Graduate level GPA would really not be counted. Also, you might want to consider the osteopathic medical schools as they are more forgiving than allopathic schools and have a larger percentage of nontraditional students. I believe that there are a coupleof good osteopathic schools in Ohio...I would suggest that you might see if you can talk to someone and get their input of what you can do to improve your chances. Also, make sure that when you take the MCAT, you are really prepared. Do well in that and it will lessen the negative effect of the low GPA.

Kris

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ketler in Columbus, Ohio

63 months ago

thanks Kris. I will definitely look into the post bac option. thanks again.

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Kate in Los Angeles, California

63 months ago

ketler in Columbus, Ohio said: Thanks for your input Kate. I think CPT and Diagnostic Coding (ICD), Med Term and Insurance Billing are all covered in the "Step-by-Step medical coding" book. For the rest, you said I should look at the study guide. I am at a lose as to what else you are referring to. can you clarify that? thanks

Thanks

Step-By-Step don't cover on insurance part. I used that book too. I have the book called Understanding Health Insurance that I used at the school.

For study guide, PRG that you have is good book, I post sample of CCA questions on previous page under the name kdorn75. You will have to read the answer explantation on PRG carefully and make sure that you understand all key words such as MDS, DRG, UHDDS etc. I will take CCS exam on May 14. I don't have much time to read book lately, but I will try my best.

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