How recent should CPC-A certification be in order to find a coding job?


Overbrook, KS
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Many job postings for coder positions require "recent" experience. How do employers usually quantify "recent" in terms of experience (or training) in coding?

I trained online in medical billing and coding part time from 2008 to 2011 while working full time in my original career (lab tech) and passed the CPC exam in 2011. The plan was to use coding as a "fallback" in case of downsizing or as a part time occupation during retirement. However, I stayed at my old job until 2014 when illness forced me to stop working. Meanwhile, it has been nearly 5 years since obtaining my CPC-A, without any job experience in coding.

Other CPC-A posters state it is especially hard to get a coding position without experience; several were credentialed within just the past year or two. How much harder would it be for CPC-A's who trained several years ago but still have no experience? Even with maintaining the credential, it is difficult to stay current with the rapidly changing HIT environment.

Any information, experiences or perspective about these questions would be very useful and appreciated.
Thank you all! :)

Kelly McPhail, CPC-A
formerly Microbiologist III
KDHE Labs, Topeka KS