Top medical coder skills needed to get the job.

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Host

What are the top 3 traits or skills every medical coder must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your medical coder expertise?

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Lorraine W in Connersville, Indiana

90 months ago

Host said: What are the top 3 traits or skills every medical coder must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your medical coder expertise?

1) Education. Having been a coder for more than 8 years, it has been my experience that coders who have only had a 3- to 6-month course do not do well on pre-employment coding tests. Furthermore, they do not readily possess the knowledge required to code in a hospital setting.

2) Attention to detail. Coders I have seen fail in the workplace fail to fully read charts, proofread the codes they have entered, and also tend to miss important coding rules in Coding Clinic.

3) Cross-training. Well-rounded (ie, employable) coders strive to master more than one coding specialty--inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, ED's, etc. The challenge is to find a facility that supports coders in this endeavor--many hospitals do not take the time and effort to cross-train, so it is often a struggle to do so.

4) Communicate with other coders. Obviously easiest in an on-site position (rather than remote)--talk to other coders. I don't know of a single coder I have worked with who did not consult with their coworkers on cases. It is a wonderful opportunity to bounce ideas off one another and for you or the other coder(s) to learn something new. Absolutely invaluable.

The bottom line, however, is simply to do the job. Repetition and exposure to an array of cases is paramount and cannot be learned in school or via a discussion board. I see many coders fresh out of school or with a year of experience hoping to land that elusive consulting or remote job--but what is required is time. What I knew at my 1-year mark as a coder is miniscule compared to what I knew at 5 years, etc.

I hope this helps.

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Steph in Seattle in Redmond, Washington

84 months ago

Host said: What are the top 3 traits or skills every medical coder must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your medical coder expertise?

Knowledge, speed, accuracy. If you can afford it, attend coding seminars and bootcamps to further your coding skills.

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Katheryn

84 months ago

Speed and accuracy come natural, have ~75% knowledge......but not job

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Steph in Seattle in Redmond, Washington

84 months ago

Katheryn said: Speed and accuracy come natural, have ~75% knowledge......but not job

How many positions have you applied for, and what type of facilities were they?

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Cali in Boise, Idaho

84 months ago

Has anyone taken the CCA Exam through AHIMA? I have completed my online course through Gatlin Education Services and I am about to take the AHIMA certified CCA test. I was wondering if anyone had any tips about the test.... Thanks so much!

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Katheryn

84 months ago

Too many, hospitals, private offices, insurance companies

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Steph in Seattle in Redmond, Washington

84 months ago

Katheryn said: Too many, hospitals, private offices, insurance companies

Have you had anyone go over your resume? How do you feel you did on the coding tests by the employers?

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Katheryn

84 months ago

Had my resume critique and redone several times. The employers never left me know the scores on the coding tests. Think I can still get something on the billing side without certification and all the hassle of CEUs.

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Steph in Seattle in Redmond, Washington

84 months ago

Katheryn said: Had my resume critique and redone several times. The employers never left me know the scores on the coding tests. Think I can still get something on the billing side without certification and all the hassle of CEUs.

That's a shame, they should have. I wish you well.

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Katheryn

84 months ago

Thanks, I'll recertify if needed.

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Steph in Ormond Beach, Florida

82 months ago

Can anyone tell me what kind of skills are needed to do well in this. I am very interested but getting a little bit of a late start on this. I'm 41 years old, intelligent but feel weak in the area of Math. Any help would be great.

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sanjay in Hyderabad, India

82 months ago

Dear Steph,

medical coding is nothing its so easy u need not strain your ears, eyes, etc, one has to check codes from ICD books or software and assign codes appropriately by crosschecking, you have to pass the certification i think u are from US, recently i have completed my CCA certification from AHIMA, now planning to join some good company but here in India we don't have good company or projects, they pay less also here, if u have any thought of helping in getting placed in US, pl do forward and do register on yahoo my mail is ks_mudaliar@yahoo.com sanjay kumar, do register on yahoo messenger. bye

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sanjay in Hyderabad, India

82 months ago

Cali in Boise, Idaho said: Has anyone taken the CCA Exam through AHIMA? I have completed my online course through Gatlin Education Services and I am about to take the AHIMA certified CCA test. I was wondering if anyone had any tips about the test.... Thanks so much!

I have passed recently its so easy do contact on ks_mudaliar@yahoo.com do read guidlines and rest i will tell u important on next mail when is ur exam, date have u received ur ATT. many of them passed recently. Sanju

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Lorraine in Connersville, Indiana

82 months ago

Well that explains a lot.

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sam in Meridian, Idaho

82 months ago

I AM STUDYING 4 THE CPC TEST ON SAT. Am stressing over what are the most important things to focus on. What will help the most on the test. Any one remember what it was like?

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Sheri Angela in Cleveland, Ohio

73 months ago

Interested in having a better understanding of the Procedure book.
Can anyone explain it to me. The Code Groups?

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lhurd02@msn.com in Farmington, Connecticut

65 months ago

Lorraine W in Connersville, Indiana said: 1) Education. Having been a coder for more than 8 years, it has been my experience that coders who have only had a 3- to 6-month course do not do well on pre-employment coding tests. Furthermore, they do not readily possess the knowledge required to code in a hospital setting.

2) Attention to detail. Coders I have seen fail in the workplace fail to fully read charts, proofread the codes they have entered, and also tend to miss important coding rules in Coding Clinic.

3) Cross-training. Well-rounded (ie, employable) coders strive to master more than one coding specialty--inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, ED's, etc. The challenge is to find a facility that supports coders in this endeavor--many hospitals do not take the time and effort to cross-train, so it is often a struggle to do so.

4) Communicate with other coders. Obviously easiest in an on-site position (rather than remote)--talk to other coders. I don't know of a single coder I have worked with who did not consult with their coworkers on cases. It is a wonderful opportunity to bounce ideas off one another and for you or the other coder(s) to learn something new. Absolutely invaluable.

The bottom line, however, is simply to do the job. Repetition and exposure to an array of cases is paramount and cannot be learned in school or via a discussion board. I see many coders fresh out of school or with a year of experience hoping to land that elusive consulting or remote job--but what is required is time. What I knew at my 1-year mark as a coder is miniscule compared to what I knew at 5 years, etc.

I hope this helps.

Lorraine, I just became certified this week. I am very interested in what you refer to as well rounded exposure to gain valuable experience. I am not sure where to begin in the job application process, what companies provide the most exposure?

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CCA Tester in Lawrenceville, Georgia

64 months ago

I passed my AHIMA CCA Coding Exam today! I'm so excited. It was very tricky.

Now, I know that there are "haters" out there saying this credential don't amount to much. But, if I had listened to the "naysayers" I never would have landed my 1st Medical Coding Job with a CBCS Credential from NHA.

I'm open to opinions, but not when its negative and negating accomplishment in any sense. Sometimes you have to believe in something greater than people sharing their experiences on forums.

I say, go for it!

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Lynn in Leavenworth, Kansas

63 months ago

Cali in Boise, Idaho said: Has anyone taken the CCA Exam through AHIMA? I have completed my online course through Gatlin Education Services and I am about to take the AHIMA certified CCA test. I was wondering if anyone had any tips about the test.... Thanks so much!

Hey did you go through Central Michigan thru Gatlin?

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sushmita in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

54 months ago

sanjay in Hyderabad, India said: Dear Steph,

medical coding is nothing its so easy u need not strain your ears, eyes, etc, one has to check codes from ICD books or software and assign codes appropriately by crosschecking, you have to pass the certification i think u are from US, recently i have completed my CCA certification from AHIMA, now planning to join some good company but here in India we don't have good company or projects, they pay less also here, if u have any thought of helping in getting placed in US, pl do forward and do register on yahoo my mail is ks_mudaliar@yahoo.com sanjay kumar, do register on yahoo messenger. bye

hi sanjay,
by now u might have got the job....what r u doing? and how did u begin ur journey to coding? how was the exam? is it difficult to start....because i dont have any knowledge of coding.....did my bsc in botany.

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Sue in Ashburn, Virginia

53 months ago

sanjay in Hyderabad, India said: Dear Steph,

medical coding is nothing its so easy u need not strain your ears, eyes, etc, one has to check codes from ICD books or software and assign codes appropriately by crosschecking, you have to pass the certification i think u are from US, recently i have completed my CCA certification from AHIMA, now planning to join some good company but here in India we don't have good company or projects, they pay less also here, if u have any thought of helping in getting placed in US, pl do forward and do register on yahoo my mail is ks_mudaliar@yahoo.com sanjay kumar, do register on yahoo messenger. bye

I hate to be rude, but you are not giving a true picture and are very condescending. I believe your attitude is what is costing your jobs....

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lisalisa in Indianapolis, Indiana

50 months ago

Host said: What are the top 3 traits or skills every medical coder must have to excel?

Can you suggest any tips or insights to develop your medical coder expertise?

listen whomever you are, sorry but there is a lot more to coding, to being a an exceptional coder I as well have completed my CCA-p and I am affiliated with a few exceptional organizations. I'm afraid you are being quite condesending of the profession sister.

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lisalisa in Indianapolis, Indiana

50 months ago

Steph in Ormond Beach, Florida said: Can anyone tell me what kind of skills are needed to do well in this. I am very interested but getting a little bit of a late start on this. I'm 41 years old, intelligent but feel weak in the area of Math. Any help would be great.

who pays the most money for certified coders in indianapolis, anyone have a clue

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katerinka313 in Baltimore, Maryland

47 months ago

Lorraine W in Connersville, Indiana said: 1) Education. Having been a coder for more than 8 years, it has been my experience that coders who have only had a 3- to 6-month course do not do well .

I am a CPC have an entry level billing exp. What position you think, i can apply at this point?

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kate313 in Baltimore, Maryland

47 months ago

I am a CPC looking for an entry level, ( have entry level billing exp)what job i can apply so they don't kick me out in 3 mo?

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Sharon in Winchester, Virginia

46 months ago

Has anyone taken both the CPC exam from AAPC as well as the CCS exam from AHIMA? Are they comparable? I'm waiting for paperwork to go through for the AAPC exam and am considering the AHIMA exam just for the added credentials. Any thoughts?

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Jay in Windsor Locks, Connecticut

44 months ago

hi sushmita

I'm on the same boat. Did u get any details to start for CCA. I don't know where to start to coding?I did my m.sc and like to go for this. If u have any details let me know and my mail I'd selvaraj_jaya@yahoo.co.in

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Maggie0480 in Lawrenceville, Georgia

35 months ago

Cali in Boise, Idaho said: Has anyone taken the CCA Exam through AHIMA? I have completed my online course through Gatlin Education Services and I am about to take the AHIMA certified CCA test. I was wondering if anyone had any tips about the test.... Thanks so much!

I also would like to take the ahima test do you know where can i go to register?I took NHA CCS but i would like to take AHIMA.Please let me know I can help you if you want with NHA..
Thank you

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