The Sad Hunt as a CPC-A

triviamber

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I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
 

Victoria323

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Yes you need to make the sacrifice and get a job within the healthcare industry if no one will hire you. Do billing, front desk.... something. You can’t just get your dream remote coding job overnight because you passed an exam or got a degree, that’s an insult to the rest of the coders who worked their butt off to get where they are at now- working from the bottom up (with still a degree and a certificate).
 

hperry10

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Unfortunately, in most organizations, coding is not an entry level position. That being said, it is not impossible to get a coding job without coding experience, some companies will hire people with no experience. The last two coders in my organization were internal hires with no experience. Keep in mind that there are lots of people in your shoes, if a coding job for a non experienced coder opens up you may be competing against hundreds of other candidates. If you truly want to break into this field you may need to take an entry level job. Having coding knowledge can lead you down many different paths - there is so much more than just coding. The AHIMA career map might give you ideas of where to start....and where you can go.

https://my.ahima.org/careermap
 

Pathos

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I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.

I would not go as far as to call your hard work and money spent worthless or wasted. No credentialing company can guarantee a job after certification, and AAPC is not exempt of that either. Even new grad nurses don't automatically have jobs lined up for them. Granted, they don't have to step down to a CNA before they can work as an RN, however perhaps coding is unique in that sense.

You write that you currently have a non-health care job which pays more than a receptionist job. Jumping into coding without any medical office experience is a gutsy move, which might put you at a disadvantage at the get-go. CPC-As has so much to learn just about the coding portion, and without having a solid foundation on medical office/insurance (I am assuming), then you might set yourself up for failure. I believe this is one of the reasons why so many companies want coders with medical/coding experience.

I think what this really boils down to is what you really want to end up doing. If you really want to work as a medical coder, then you may have to do what it takes to get your foot in the coding door. Whether that means switching over to an entry level medical office job (receptionist, patient registration, billing, claims, etc.), getting hired straight up as a CPC-A (there are some companies that do hire freshly minted CPC-As, but as hperry states you'll be competing against many other CPC-As unless you're transferring internally; and even that is a non-guaranteed move.

If you're ready to give up then you already have your answer, but is now out time and money. Your certification and degree have then been rendered pointless and for naught. I hope the latter is not the case as a career in the medical coding field can be very rewarding and versatile in the same sense.

Hope this helped and good luck!
 

LenaDowd

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I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
Yes, It has been 2 years for me so far looking for a coding job.
 
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I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
Yep, I am finding the exact same thing as you are. I got my CPC-A in October 2019 and I am still looking for someone to hire me without experience. I too have a non-medical job. I guess I will have to bite the bullet and take an entry level medical-related job instead just to get a foot in the door. This sucks!!
 

Achum2sum

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I am feeling the same way. I was in healthcare many years though, paying claims and doing billing and I also had the brick wall trying to get coder jobs they all want 2 years experience. I suggest the 'stepping stone' job strategy where you work in customer service or billing preferably for a clinic or hospital, then look to transfer into coding when those jobs open up as they will. That worked for me started as a biller January 2019 got into coding November 2019. Also the coding jobs for specialty like home care, DME, ophthalmology, are not the full spectrum of the CPT manual and they should be less strict about experience level. Keep at it.
 
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All of the previous comments are correct, coding is hard to get into without experience and the best way to get into is to take an entry-level position in another healthcare position as a bridge. Use this position as an opportunity to continue your training because you will still be building skills and knowledge that will be important to your coding career. Coding is not an entry level job and it is a misconception that one can pass a certification test and be all set for this career. It is complex and challenging, and employers know that the proper skill set comes from experience. Once you get your foot in the door, the pay is there, the remote work is there, but you have to start from the bottom like everyone else.
 

fwnewbie

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I am an RN with many years of clinical experience. I got my COC-A this month and I'm having trouble getting my foot into the coding world! And I thought my knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy and physiology would make me desirable. There's something wrong with this scenario. All I want to do is work in peace in a corner somewhere doing a job I find fun and challenging.
 

Rhyde520

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To put things in perspective, I started as an assistant to the Senior Director of Patient Accounts department at a local community hospital. After two years I was hired as a Medicare/Medicaid Outpatient Biller. About 1,5 years into the billing position I made the decision to enroll into an AAPC course. It took me 6 months to finish the prerequisite classes (Anatomy/Medical Term) & another 6 months to finish the COC coding prep course. I sat for the exam in December. I failed, miserably, but my employer acknowledged the hard work and determination & they personally contacted me and said to apply for an open ER facility/professional coding position. So, after 2 years of working as a glorified secretary and 2.5 years of an outpatient biller, i was granted a coding position. I have a year to get certified to keep my job. I have never been so eager to learn this area of the revenue cycle. It's truly awarding and it most certainly has real potential for growth in every respect of the word. My point is, I started from the bottom of the bottom and management noticed. Like anything else in life, nothing good comes easy. Keep your head up and realize the sacrifices you have to make in this field really never go away. It's too complex, involved and even with a certification, it does not automatically make you a qualified candidate.
 

fwnewbie

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Well, I have been noticed for an RN Revenue Auditor position which I'll take in a heart beat. I'll still get to do the coding puzzles and be better paid than an entry level coder.
 

dragonclawz70

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It is frustrating to be in that vicious cycle of you need experience to get the job and it seems like nobody wants to give you the chance to get that experience. Every coder out there with experience eventually found someone who gave them a break and let them get started. Don't give up hope! Just try to get yourself job-wise into a medical setting so you'll be in the right place at the right time.
 
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sriojas

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I started coding/billing back in 1987 not realizing that I was doing coding. I did not get my CPC certification until 2008 which I did not pass the first time (very frustrating cuz I was already 20 years experience in coding). But did pass the 2nd time and now I have three credentials and will continue working on another. I have even worked as an auditor in a compliance setting and continue to learn more skills. The point is never give up. Having that certification will take you places and you will see the potential as you continue to work hard and move forward in your medical career.
 
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I also have found this employment hunt very discouraging. When I went to college to earn my degree and earned my certification for coding. I was under the impression that there were jobs for out there for apprentice coders (at least that is what I was told). I feel like, (and I'm sure I'm not the only one here), that we were mislead. I am very disappointed. These certifications aren't cheap, as everyone here knows. So the hunt continues for the many all over the country trying to break into this medical system. Sad...
 

Capecodtenor

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Pathos said,
You write that you currently have a non-health care job which pays more than a receptionist job. Jumping into coding without any medical office experience is a gutsy move, which might put you at a disadvantage at the get-go. CPC-As has so much to learn just about the coding portion, and without having a solid foundation on medical office/insurance (I am assuming), then you might set yourself up for failure. I believe this is one of the reasons why so many companies want coders with medical/coding experience.

Like the original poster, I'm coming at this from a non-medical field job. I'm not sure what field the original poster is in, but I have 20 years in the legal field doing a variety of jobs, the last 13 years as either a Records Clerk, a Litigation Docketing Clerk (essentially complex data entry), and I'm finding it difficult just trying to get in the medical field, and I've applied to all kinds of positions, even entry level positions. So, for me, I'm either over qualified, under qualified, or qualified, but not with the right information on the resume, in other words: medical. I have a friend who's a talent acquisition recruiter for a major Boston area hospital. I've sent her my resume, who she then forwarded it on to friends of hers, and I still can't get a call for an interview. I just don't know. I'm going to get certified, but getting a job will be very difficult, and I will admit to already being discouraged.
 

jasrsing

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I can so relate to this thread and the comments here . I too have non medical experience and went on to do my medical billing and coding course from career step and even cleared my CPC-A in first try . This just goes on to show my determination but the job front has been so demotivating and sad . I can’t even set the foot in the door with the patient rep jobs . I have been applying non stop since October but no luck . The irony is they want not even coders but all medical billing profiles with experience but then how will someone get experience if no one is ready to give you a chance .
 

Capecodtenor

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I can so relate to this thread and the comments here . I too have non medical experience and went on to do my medical billing and coding course from career step and even cleared my CPC-A in first try . This just goes on to show my determination but the job front has been so demotivating and sad . I can’t even set the foot in the door with the patient rep jobs . I have been applying non stop since October but no luck . The irony is they want not even coders but all medical billing profiles with experience but then how will someone get experience if no one is ready to give you a chance .

Back to that old saying, "Can't get a job without experience, but can't get experience without a job. "
 

Pathos

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Pathos said,


Like the original poster, I'm coming at this from a non-medical field job. I'm not sure what field the original poster is in, but I have 20 years in the legal field doing a variety of jobs, the last 13 years as either a Records Clerk, a Litigation Docketing Clerk (essentially complex data entry), and I'm finding it difficult just trying to get in the medical field, and I've applied to all kinds of positions, even entry level positions. So, for me, I'm either over qualified, under qualified, or qualified, but not with the right information on the resume, in other words: medical. I have a friend who's a talent acquisition recruiter for a major Boston area hospital. I've sent her my resume, who she then forwarded it on to friends of hers, and I still can't get a call for an interview. I just don't know. I'm going to get certified, but getting a job will be very difficult, and I will admit to already being discouraged.

After I graduated from college, I had a bachelor of science and couldn't get nothing for 6 months. I applied, interviewed, did my "song and dance" but no-one seemed to want me. I didn't have any medical experience. It literally boiled down to the point where if I didn't get a job within next month, I was going to flip burgers at the local McDonalds, or move back home. Then my local hospital finally gave me a chance with an entry level Patient Registration job at Admitting Services. Not exactly my dream job right out of college, and definitely wasn't making 100k/year!

But that first job was my stepping stone into the medical field, and I have gradually climbed up from there. I have done insurance, compliance; and then finally went into coding working for a provider owned clinic. They put me through coding as I was coding/auditing at the same time. This actually made perfect sense even though I had never given medical coding much thought prior to that job. But because of coding, many doors have opened up for me. My current job is a direct result of my past achievements, and I wouldn't want it any way.


My purpose behind sharing my coding story is to sum up what I have often shared on these forums whenever I see frustrated new grad coders. I get it. I have struggled with the "no experience, no job offer; but can't get experience because no one wants to hire me" adage for years! My experience on this whole ordeal boils down to two things: Preparation and timing.

  1. I have heard that "If you are prepared, you shall not fear". Do everything in your power to nail that first medical job. Make sure your resume/application is top notch. Spar mock interviews with trusted people that could help you prepare yourself for a dynamite job interview. Apply, apply, apply. And then apply some more! Job hunting is at least a part-time job, perhaps even another full time job. It takes a lot of work, sweat, tears and maybe even blood (paper cuts?).
  2. Even if you are the perfect candidate for a job, you have the best application/resume and you totally nail your interview, you might still not get the job you just applied for. It took me almost a whole year to get the job I have today, from the time I seriously started applying to the time I showed up to my first new work day. I can't even count how many applications I have sent out (several out of state), done many job interviews (including management), but I persisted and suddenly I had two good jobs lined up for me. I ended up choosing the one that made the most sense to me at the time, and I haven't regretted that choice since.
Although my path to medical coding did not include coding school, but I was supported by the company I worked for as they put me through coding; I am seeing more and more discrepancy of what coding instructors are "promising" coding students and reality. At least that is the feedback I am seeing here on the forums. I too would be discouraged and upset if I was promised a pretty much guaranteed job right out of school, only to learn that thousands of other CPC-As are vying for the same job I am. It's unfair and unjust, but apparently that's the landscape at the moment. My best advice is still to get into the medical field any way you possibly can, and earn that medical experience. Stay on top of current coding changes so you can be ready when a coding spot opens up.


I hope this is helpful.
 

Rhyde520

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After I graduated from college, I had a bachelor of science and couldn't get nothing for 6 months. I applied, interviewed, did my "song and dance" but no-one seemed to want me. I didn't have any medical experience. It literally boiled down to the point where if I didn't get a job within next month, I was going to flip burgers at the local McDonalds, or move back home. Then my local hospital finally gave me a chance with an entry level Patient Registration job at Admitting Services. Not exactly my dream job right out of college, and definitely wasn't making 100k/year!

But that first job was my stepping stone into the medical field, and I have gradually climbed up from there. I have done insurance, compliance; and then finally went into coding working for a provider owned clinic. They put me through coding as I was coding/auditing at the same time. This actually made perfect sense even though I had never given medical coding much thought prior to that job. But because of coding, many doors have opened up for me. My current job is a direct result of my past achievements, and I wouldn't want it any way.


My purpose behind sharing my coding story is to sum up what I have often shared on these forums whenever I see frustrated new grad coders. I get it. I have struggled with the "no experience, no job offer; but can't get experience because no one wants to hire me" adage for years! My experience on this whole ordeal boils down to two things: Preparation and timing.

  1. I have heard that "If you are prepared, you shall not fear". Do everything in your power to nail that first medical job. Make sure your resume/application is top notch. Spar mock interviews with trusted people that could help you prepare yourself for a dynamite job interview. Apply, apply, apply. And then apply some more! Job hunting is at least a part-time job, perhaps even another full time job. It takes a lot of work, sweat, tears and maybe even blood (paper cuts?).
  2. Even if you are the perfect candidate for a job, you have the best application/resume and you totally nail your interview, you might still not get the job you just applied for. It took me almost a whole year to get the job I have today, from the time I seriously started applying to the time I showed up to my first new work day. I can't even count how many applications I have sent out (several out of state), done many job interviews (including management), but I persisted and suddenly I had two good jobs lined up for me. I ended up choosing the one that made the most sense to me at the time, and I haven't regretted that choice since.
Although my path to medical coding did not include coding school, but I was supported by the company I worked for as they put me through coding; I am seeing more and more discrepancy of what coding instructors are "promising" coding students and reality. At least that is the feedback I am seeing here on the forums. I too would be discouraged and upset if I was promised a pretty much guaranteed job right out of school, only to learn that thousands of other CPC-As are vying for the same job I am. It's unfair and unjust, but apparently that's the landscape at the moment. My best advice is still to get into the medical field any way you possibly can, and earn that medical experience. Stay on top of current coding changes so you can be ready when a coding spot opens up.


I hope this is helpful.

I found your post very insightful and direct. I truly empathize with those seeking employment. You're right about how applying for jobs is a full-time job in itself. I have worked plenty of undesirable positions throughout the years - from fast food, manual labor, retail and sales. I have also struggled finding work & was unemployed for 6+ months. I'm sure others can relate, as we have all faced a competitive job market at some point. I believe coding appeals to most people because of the flexibility. But some fail to realize coding isn't exactly an entry-level position. I won't reiterate what other's have already said. There's plenty of great advice on this thread and Pathos does a fine job with shining light on the subject. I'd just like to conclude saying do not give up. Having a certification in coding is already a huge step up from the vast majority. You've taken a huge step and gained invaluable knowledge. Best of luck to everyone.
 

Casstavia

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I found your post very insightful and direct. I truly empathize with those seeking employment. You're right about how applying for jobs is a full-time job in itself. I have worked plenty of undesirable positions throughout the years - from fast food, manual labor, retail and sales. I have also struggled finding work & was unemployed for 6+ months. I'm sure others can relate, as we have all faced a competitive job market at some point. I believe coding appeals to most people because of the flexibility. But some fail to realize coding isn't exactly an entry-level position. I won't reiterate what other's have already said. There's plenty of great advice on this thread and Pathos does a fine job with shining light on the subject. I'd just like to conclude saying do not give up. Having a certification in coding is already a huge step up from the vast majority. You've taken a huge step and gained invaluable knowledge. Best of luck to everyone.

"But some fail to realize coding isn't exactly an entry-level position."

Add myself to that list. Very well put.

It is that exact reasoning that has helped to put my future medical coding/Health Information career into perspective. Now, I don't fret about not having a coding job immediately. Now, I am more open to the idea of an entry level position in the medical field.

Accurate, timely coding isn't easy. Not necessarily a job you can walk right into.

But it IS attainable. With some time, effort, and fortunate circumstances, those who wish to continue on this path just may reach their destination. One way or another!
 

slasha90

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I just signed up for my AAPC membership and CPC exam. I have felt so discouraged already and have not made it pass the exam. Pathos post really helped me feel better about the journey. I took this step to start coding because I have done billing, financial counseling, and Registration for patients and reviewed coding a lot. It is unfortunate for me because I no longer work in the medical field and it has been a pain to get back into. I loved this post because it gives me hope.

Thank you




After I graduated from college, I had a bachelor of science and couldn't get nothing for 6 months. I applied, interviewed, did my "song and dance" but no-one seemed to want me. I didn't have any medical experience. It literally boiled down to the point where if I didn't get a job within next month, I was going to flip burgers at the local McDonalds, or move back home. Then my local hospital finally gave me a chance with an entry level Patient Registration job at Admitting Services. Not exactly my dream job right out of college, and definitely wasn't making 100k/year!

But that first job was my stepping stone into the medical field, and I have gradually climbed up from there. I have done insurance, compliance; and then finally went into coding working for a provider owned clinic. They put me through coding as I was coding/auditing at the same time. This actually made perfect sense even though I had never given medical coding much thought prior to that job. But because of coding, many doors have opened up for me. My current job is a direct result of my past achievements, and I wouldn't want it any way.


My purpose behind sharing my coding story is to sum up what I have often shared on these forums whenever I see frustrated new grad coders. I get it. I have struggled with the "no experience, no job offer; but can't get experience because no one wants to hire me" adage for years! My experience on this whole ordeal boils down to two things: Preparation and timing.

  1. I have heard that "If you are prepared, you shall not fear". Do everything in your power to nail that first medical job. Make sure your resume/application is top notch. Spar mock interviews with trusted people that could help you prepare yourself for a dynamite job interview. Apply, apply, apply. And then apply some more! Job hunting is at least a part-time job, perhaps even another full time job. It takes a lot of work, sweat, tears and maybe even blood (paper cuts?).
  2. Even if you are the perfect candidate for a job, you have the best application/resume and you totally nail your interview, you might still not get the job you just applied for. It took me almost a whole year to get the job I have today, from the time I seriously started applying to the time I showed up to my first new work day. I can't even count how many applications I have sent out (several out of state), done many job interviews (including management), but I persisted and suddenly I had two good jobs lined up for me. I ended up choosing the one that made the most sense to me at the time, and I haven't regretted that choice since.
Although my path to medical coding did not include coding school, but I was supported by the company I worked for as they put me through coding; I am seeing more and more discrepancy of what coding instructors are "promising" coding students and reality. At least that is the feedback I am seeing here on the forums. I too would be discouraged and upset if I was promised a pretty much guaranteed job right out of school, only to learn that thousands of other CPC-As are vying for the same job I am. It's unfair and unjust, but apparently that's the landscape at the moment. My best advice is still to get into the medical field any way you possibly can, and earn that medical experience. Stay on top of current coding changes so you can be ready when a coding spot opens up.


I hope this is helpful.
 

Capecodtenor

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After I graduated from college, I had a bachelor of science and couldn't get nothing for 6 months. I applied, interviewed, did my "song and dance" but no-one seemed to want me. I didn't have any medical experience. It literally boiled down to the point where if I didn't get a job within next month, I was going to flip burgers at the local McDonalds, or move back home. Then my local hospital finally gave me a chance with an entry level Patient Registration job at Admitting Services. Not exactly my dream job right out of college, and definitely wasn't making 100k/year!

But that first job was my stepping stone into the medical field, and I have gradually climbed up from there. I have done insurance, compliance; and then finally went into coding working for a provider owned clinic. They put me through coding as I was coding/auditing at the same time. This actually made perfect sense even though I had never given medical coding much thought prior to that job. But because of coding, many doors have opened up for me. My current job is a direct result of my past achievements, and I wouldn't want it any way.


My purpose behind sharing my coding story is to sum up what I have often shared on these forums whenever I see frustrated new grad coders. I get it. I have struggled with the "no experience, no job offer; but can't get experience because no one wants to hire me" adage for years! My experience on this whole ordeal boils down to two things: Preparation and timing.

  1. I have heard that "If you are prepared, you shall not fear". Do everything in your power to nail that first medical job. Make sure your resume/application is top notch. Spar mock interviews with trusted people that could help you prepare yourself for a dynamite job interview. Apply, apply, apply. And then apply some more! Job hunting is at least a part-time job, perhaps even another full time job. It takes a lot of work, sweat, tears and maybe even blood (paper cuts?).
  2. Even if you are the perfect candidate for a job, you have the best application/resume and you totally nail your interview, you might still not get the job you just applied for. It took me almost a whole year to get the job I have today, from the time I seriously started applying to the time I showed up to my first new work day. I can't even count how many applications I have sent out (several out of state), done many job interviews (including management), but I persisted and suddenly I had two good jobs lined up for me. I ended up choosing the one that made the most sense to me at the time, and I haven't regretted that choice since.
Although my path to medical coding did not include coding school, but I was supported by the company I worked for as they put me through coding; I am seeing more and more discrepancy of what coding instructors are "promising" coding students and reality. At least that is the feedback I am seeing here on the forums. I too would be discouraged and upset if I was promised a pretty much guaranteed job right out of school, only to learn that thousands of other CPC-As are vying for the same job I am. It's unfair and unjust, but apparently that's the landscape at the moment. My best advice is still to get into the medical field any way you possibly can, and earn that medical experience. Stay on top of current coding changes so you can be ready when a coding spot opens up.


I hope this is helpful.

This is a great post, Pathos. It shows how hard it is to get a job in this field, especially as a new coder. I know some of the frustration, for me at least, is just trying to get a job in the medical field, and it'll happen, it'll just take time. I would like to point out that directly working in the medical field as a coder isn't the only way to go. Insurance companies use coders, as do law firms that do medical malpractice. I've worked for a couple of firms that had nurse paralegals on their staff. You may not be directly working in the medical field, but it'll be using your new skills. The first time I showed up to my local chapter meeting, I met a guy who worked for an insurance company and he's a coder. So there are other options until a medical field position opens up for you.

Edited to add: You had said, "I have heard that "If you are prepared, you shall not fear"' I believe this is true. If you have everything you need to be successful, then something will open up, it might not be what you want right away, but something will open up.

I found your post very insightful and direct. I truly empathize with those seeking employment. You're right about how applying for jobs is a full-time job in itself. I have worked plenty of undesirable positions throughout the years - from fast food, manual labor, retail and sales. I have also struggled finding work & was unemployed for 6+ months. I'm sure others can relate, as we have all faced a competitive job market at some point. I believe coding appeals to most people because of the flexibility. But some fail to realize coding isn't exactly an entry-level position. I won't reiterate what other's have already said. There's plenty of great advice on this thread and Pathos does a fine job with shining light on the subject. I'd just like to conclude saying do not give up. Having a certification in coding is already a huge step up from the vast majority. You've taken a huge step and gained invaluable knowledge. Best of luck to everyone.

I've been looking for a full-time permanent job since Jan. 2019 when I was laid off, so I feel your pain. I've been lucky in that I've been working temp jobs, the current temp job has kept extending me, so I'm doing something right, but still...not permanent job with benefits. I'm not certified yet so I'm not looking for a coding job in the medical field, but I am looking for a job in the medical field, and they are hard to get into...even reception work.

"But some fail to realize coding isn't exactly an entry-level position."

Add myself to that list. Very well put.

It is that exact reasoning that has helped to put my future medical coding/Health Information career into perspective. Now, I don't fret about not having a coding job immediately. Now, I am more open to the idea of an entry level position in the medical field.

Accurate, timely coding isn't easy. Not necessarily a job you can walk right into.

But it IS attainable. With some time, effort, and fortunate circumstances, those who wish to continue on this path just may reach their destination. One way or another!

I was like you when I first started, but learned quickly how hard it is to get a job as a coder. I'm hoping, with hard work, starting from the bottom, entry level, that I'll be a coder some day.

I just signed up for my AAPC membership and CPC exam. I have felt so discouraged already and have not made it pass the exam. Pathos post really helped me feel better about the journey. I took this step to start coding because I have done billing, financial counseling, and Registration for patients and reviewed coding a lot. It is unfortunate for me because I no longer work in the medical field and it has been a pain to get back into. I loved this post because it gives me hope.

Thank you

Keep at it and work hard, your day will come. Persistence and determination.
 
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Messages
1
Location
Fergus Falls, Minnesota
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0
I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
I received a diploma for Medical Coding and Billing in Dec 2018. I attended one more semester to obtain AAS - Medical Administrative Assistant and graduated May 2019. I passed the CPC exam in May 2019 right after graduation.
I found out that the diploma counts for one year experience. I completed the Practicode offered by the AAPC and passed to get the other year of experience. This removed my apprentice (A) letter. This may be an option for anyone wanting to have just CPC after their name.
 
Messages
3
Location
Catano, Puerto Rico
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0
I just finish college in this field and I started to work as a medical receptioist and yes the pay is low but... I had to understand that in order to have my foot on the medical coder job door I need to start at scratch. So, i have to be patient in order to do so...
 

Capecodtenor

Networker
Messages
63
Location
Cotuit, Massachusetts
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0
I just finish college in this field and I started to work as a medical receptioist and yes the pay is low but... I had to understand that in order to have my foot on the medical coder job door I need to start at scratch. So, i have to be patient in order to do so...

And a lot of people don't understand that and don't want the low pay as a receptionist, but that's what you have to do to get in. I'm willing to put up with the low pay to get in, but just getting one of those jobs are damn near impossible to get.
 

Leandra

Guru
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165
Location
Grand Rapids, MI
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0
I started coding/billing back in 1987 not realizing that I was doing coding. I did not get my CPC certification until 2008 which I did not pass the first time (very frustrating cuz I was already 20 years experience in coding). But did pass the 2nd time and now I have three credentials and will continue working on another. I have even worked as an auditor in a compliance setting and continue to learn more skills. The point is never give up. Having that certification will take you places and you will see the potential as you continue to work hard and move forward in your medical career.

My experience is very similar to yours - started as a Medical Assistant in a small physician office about 30 year ago (yikes!). I was responsible for coding/billing for three providers, transcription and also working as a medical assistant. It was a perfect mix of things and I really got to experience the clinical side as well as the business side. After five years I decided to stick with the business side and moved on to various coding positions. Now, all these years later, I have four certifications and work for a payor in a job I never imagined I would be able to "have". I feel very fortunate for how my path led me and I'm glad I followed it without really knowing or expecting where I would end up. I learned so many things along the way that put me where I am today.

To everyone just getting started - it's so different now from when I started but the main thing is get your foot in the door and learn as much as you can. Take your experience and move forward when the opportunities present themselves.
 

Capecodtenor

Networker
Messages
63
Location
Cotuit, Massachusetts
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0
My experience is very similar to yours - started as a Medical Assistant in a small physician office about 30 year ago (yikes!). I was responsible for coding/billing for three providers, transcription and also working as a medical assistant. It was a perfect mix of things and I really got to experience the clinical side as well as the business side. After five years I decided to stick with the business side and moved on to various coding positions. Now, all these years later, I have four certifications and work for a payor in a job I never imagined I would be able to "have". I feel very fortunate for how my path led me and I'm glad I followed it without really knowing or expecting where I would end up. I learned so many things along the way that put me where I am today.

To everyone just getting started - it's so different now from when I started but the main thing is get your foot in the door and learn as much as you can. Take your experience and move forward when the opportunities present themselves.


I've mentioned this before, but having a CPC behind your name opens up so many doors, so if the one door you want doesn't open, wait and see what does. And, after working in that area for a while, see if the one door you want does open.
 
Messages
2
Location
Little Rock, AR
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0
I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
 

carlystur

Guru
Messages
135
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1
It's either that or volunteer for a healthcare facility to get experience during your off-time, if you can. My certification was just a plus for my job. What they were looking for at the time was my previous experience in the legal field. I took the entry-level position of Personal Injury Accounts Receivable Specialist for $14/hr and I've impressed them enough that they are going to make me one of their coders.

Before COVID hit, I was a volunteer at a healthcare facility close to where I live and gained a few months of experience there, but not in coding - just general healthcare experience like I was in a regular business office with filing paperwork.

I agree with other people who have said that it's a growing field is rather misleading. It's only a growing field if you have previous experience in healthcare and with coding in particular since that is what the overwhelming majority of job postings say they require. I've only seen a few job applications that don't require any coding experience, but want the applicant to have experience in EMRs of their choice. I had neither, other than Practicode. Now, I've got some experience working with eClinicalWorks, at the very least, for if/when I move on to another facility.
 
Messages
2
Location
Little Rock, AR
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0
I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
I’m getting discouraged too. It’s only been three months since I past my CPC exam so I realize I haven’t been looking long but it feels like forever. I have a ton of medical experience. I’ve been a diagnostic medical sonographer for 22 years. I have a bachelors degree and a very in-depth knowledge of anatomy and physiology, pathology and medical terminology. I’m comfortable communicating with physicians and medical staff. I thought these would be valuable assets really doesn’t seem to matter if you’ve had no coding experience. Keep hitting brick walls. I could do the job if someone would be willing to train a newbie. Getting frustrated but will keep trying.
 

Afrimp53

New
Messages
1
Location
Raleigh, NC
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0
I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
I would encourage you to keep trying. It is very difficult to get that first job, but the demand for coders is there. Employers don't know that you are looking if you don't apply. "Coding with Blue" on Youtube was very helpful for me, as well as making sure that my resume fit the position I was applying for. It took me a year to find a position. It can happen!
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
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0
I’m getting discouraged too. It’s only been three months since I past my CPC exam so I realize I haven’t been looking long but it feels like forever. I have a ton of medical experience. I’ve been a diagnostic medical sonographer for 22 years. I have a bachelors degree and a very in-depth knowledge of anatomy and physiology, pathology and medical terminology. I’m comfortable communicating with physicians and medical staff. I thought these would be valuable assets really doesn’t seem to matter if you’ve had no coding experience. Keep hitting brick walls. I could do the job if someone would be willing to train a newbie. Getting frustrated but will keep trying.
It seems so odd to me that someone like you with a firm grasp of A/P and medical terminology isn't grabbed up. Same for RN's. Why employers don't consider this knowledge as "experience" is beyond me. It's a stupid waste of resources IMO. Coding is so much more than finding a number - you have to know how to Read and Think your way through an OP note to match it with a code. So how a job as a receptionist in an office magically creates that's ability in a non-medical person is also beyond me.
Just reading some of the questions on this forum makes me cringe!! And these are working coders supposedly with that elusive experience? :/
 
Messages
1
Location
Colorado Springs, CO
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0
I am an RN with many years of clinical experience. I got my COC-A this month and I'm having trouble getting my foot into the coding world! And I thought my knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy and physiology would make me desirable. There's something wrong with this scenario. All I want to do is work in peace in a corner somewhere doing a job I find fun and challenging.
Did you ever find a job? I'm an RN and got my CPC-A in March and so far can't even get an interview.
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
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0
Nope, no job here. Had one phone interview and have been applying since Feb 2020. I'm sick of hearing "get your foot in the door" and "nurses usually work in auditing and make a lot more money.
I hardly think my foot needs to start out in billing before I'm allowed to enter the hallowed walls of coding. It's like a clique and RN aren't allowed in.
Well, I'm done with the whole lot. If companies like to hire non-medical candidates that's what they will get.
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
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0
I took the COC and CIC through AAPC and the one interview I had was with a local hospital. I've seen their ad repeatedly since then so they are holding out for something/someone who fits their spot perfectly.
I've decided I just won't work any more since I am disabled and unable to do any kind of nursing. Just had a dream to keep my mind busy an use my medical knowledge for a few more years.
 

jonnie44

New
Messages
1
Location
Zimmerman, MN
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0
In the same boat since 2016. I got my AS in computer science and easily passed my CPC examination in February, 2016. After working 20+ years in the automotive industry I wanted something different so I went back to college and tried a similar route my ex-wife took in 2010. She went the AHIMA route (certification only, no degree. She previously worked in the banking industry) and was hired as a coder immediately. I tried AAPC and despite 1000+ applications to various hospitals, clinics and offices within a 200 mile radius of Minneapolis, I have yet to receive one call much less an interview. I've applied for medical positions ranging from entry-level data entry to help desk associate to medical coder and everything in-between. Over 5 years of crickets. I was a regular at the local AAPC meetings until the Covid lockdown hit, but will probably not resume attending meetings. I'm not a felon, I've never been dismissed from a job, and have experience programming and using thousands of different programs (EPIC being one of them) but still can't even get a phone call. Luckily, I'm still valued as an automotive and IT specialist or else I would be starving while waiting for any kind of medical job. Either AAPC is not a desirable credential or there is something within the industry against hiring competent people. I'd like to keep the credential, but I think it's considered much more inferior to others in the medical field. I do believe that you need to put a lot of effort into gaining a new position in the field (which I did for the first 2 years), but constant silence has all but ended my run.
 

carlystur

Guru
Messages
135
Best answers
1
In the same boat since 2016. I got my AS in computer science and easily passed my CPC examination in February, 2016. After working 20+ years in the automotive industry I wanted something different so I went back to college and tried a similar route my ex-wife took in 2010. She went the AHIMA route (certification only, no degree. She previously worked in the banking industry) and was hired as a coder immediately. I tried AAPC and despite 1000+ applications to various hospitals, clinics and offices within a 200 mile radius of Minneapolis, I have yet to receive one call much less an interview. I've applied for medical positions ranging from entry-level data entry to help desk associate to medical coder and everything in-between. Over 5 years of crickets. I was a regular at the local AAPC meetings until the Covid lockdown hit, but will probably not resume attending meetings. I'm not a felon, I've never been dismissed from a job, and have experience programming and using thousands of different programs (EPIC being one of them) but still can't even get a phone call. Luckily, I'm still valued as an automotive and IT specialist or else I would be starving while waiting for any kind of medical job. Either AAPC is not a desirable credential or there is something within the industry against hiring competent people. I'd like to keep the credential, but I think it's considered much more inferior to others in the medical field. I do believe that you need to put a lot of effort into gaining a new position in the field (which I did for the first 2 years), but constant silence has all but ended my run.
The problem is that you lack real-world experience in medical coding. Another way to get that, besides an actual paying job, is to look for healthcare volunteering opportunities so you can put that on your resume. Ask for any kind of volunteering position in any healthcare setting you can find that suits your skills. I think many will appreciate your IT skills. Once you've excelled at that, ask if you can shadow a coder so you can get closer to real-world experience in coding. Also, have you been customizing your resumes to each job posting your applying to? That would help you immensely because HRs are much more likely to accept your resume if you include keywords from the job posting in your resume where you can. That's partially how I got my job at a neurosurgeon's office.
 

csperoni

True Blue
Messages
1,477
Location
Selden
Best answers
3
I have the exact opposite experience from a hiring perspective.
Listen, I know many employers are not keen on hiring CPC-A. From my experience, not many CPC-As want to work.
I currently am looking for a coder. Have it posted that I am willing to hire CPC-A. NOT remote, but potential for hybrid after 3 month training period - located in Suffolk County, NY. I have it posted on Indeed. I posted it on my local chapter's forum. I asked friends and friends of friends. The recruiting dept for my employer has it posted on the company website among other places.
10 CPC-A applicants in 4 weeks.
2 never returned my 2 emails and 1 phone call.
1 never showed for the interview (confirmed via email for date/time), and sent me an e-mail the FOLLOWING day that she can't make the interview.
1 cancelled the interview a few hours prior stating that for my salary range of $18-$23 (right in the ad), she can't afford childcare.
1 did interview, but did not seem like a good fit and when I sent her the standard "I don't think you're not a good fit for this current position. Good luck on your career path...." told me I was rude and made her feel humiliated, and would never want to work for me anyway.
5 told me they would only consider fully remote even though they never worked a day in coding.
I've frequently been willing to hire entry level positions and train for our exact needs. I don't know if it's the current job market overall, or specific to CPC-A, but filling this position has been very frustrating.
 

trarut

True Blue
Messages
673
Location
Columbus, OH
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0
I so feel your post, Christine! It's taken me over a year to fill two Accts Receivable Specialist positions for many of the same reasons you've experienced. I have a coding position open and am fortunate to have an internal candidate waiting in the wings. She can't move into the new role until I can hire a Precert Specialist to replace her. Despite posting on Indeed and on my chapter's forum as well, I've received a grand total of ONE resume from our HR team in the last month and declined to interview her because she wasn't even remotely qualified. I had one candidate - well qualified - who scheduled an interview and changed her mind the day of because she was afraid it was too far for her to drive. I am willing to train and am not requiring years of experience (it's hard enough to find someone with precert experience, much less an experienced Oncology precerter) but I need the candidate to have a reasonable baseline of knowledge to start from.

As I've often said here, I was lucky to begin work as a coder/biller when it was the norm to train on the job - I fell into the work as a part-time second job in 1994 and never climbed back out. I often joke that after doing this for (egads!) 27 years, I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up ;) I cringe when I see ads in magazines or on TV to "become a medical coder!" Make six figures a year!! Work from home and set your own schedule!! That's not how it works and as that misperception spreads, it leads to the discontent I see in this thread and others like it on the forum. My heart goes out to everyone who is struggling to find their place in the coding world and I wish you the best of luck.
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
Best answers
0
The problem is that you lack real-world experience in medical coding. Another way to get that, besides an actual paying job, is to look for healthcare volunteering opportunities so you can put that on your resume. Ask for any kind of volunteering position in any healthcare setting you can find that suits your skills. I think many will appreciate your IT skills. Once you've excelled at that, ask if you can shadow a coder so you can get closer to real-world experience in coding. Also, have you been customizing your resumes to each job posting your applying to? That would help you immensely because HRs are much more likely to accept your resume if you include keywords from the job posting in your resume where you can. That's partially how I got my job at a neurosurgeon's office.
See, that tweaking the resume by adding "keywords" to get past HR rubs me the wrong way. If the content of my resume doesn't create interest in my medical experience then I'm not right for the job.
Anybody can put a keyword in their resume, but if it doesn't MEAN anything as it relates to their life experience, what good is it? Sure it gets you pulled out of the crowd, but I think what's happening is the unqualified are using keywords to get their foot in the running for a job they're not qualified for in the first place.
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
Best answers
0
In the same boat since 2016. I got my AS in computer science and easily passed my CPC examination in February, 2016. After working 20+ years in the automotive industry I wanted something different so I went back to college and tried a similar route my ex-wife took in 2010. She went the AHIMA route (certification only, no degree. She previously worked in the banking industry) and was hired as a coder immediately. I tried AAPC and despite 1000+ applications to various hospitals, clinics and offices within a 200 mile radius of Minneapolis, I have yet to receive one call much less an interview. I've applied for medical positions ranging from entry-level data entry to help desk associate to medical coder and everything in-between. Over 5 years of crickets. I was a regular at the local AAPC meetings until the Covid lockdown hit, but will probably not resume attending meetings. I'm not a felon, I've never been dismissed from a job, and have experience programming and using thousands of different programs (EPIC being one of them) but still can't even get a phone call. Luckily, I'm still valued as an automotive and IT specialist or else I would be starving while waiting for any kind of medical job. Either AAPC is not a desirable credential or there is something within the industry against hiring competent people. I'd like to keep the credential, but I think it's considered much more inferior to others in the medical field. I do believe that you need to put a lot of effort into gaining a new position in the field (which I did for the first 2 years), but constant silence has all but ended my run.
I think you hit the nail on the head - AHIMA sounds like the better way to IMHO.
I didn't renew my COC at $180/2 years as it is useless to me. I will renew my RN license even though I don't plan to use it; it's only $55/2 years and a good value.
 

fwnewbie

True Blue
Messages
540
Location
New Haven, IN
Best answers
0
I have the exact opposite experience from a hiring perspective.
Listen, I know many employers are not keen on hiring CPC-A. From my experience, not many CPC-As want to work.
I currently am looking for a coder. Have it posted that I am willing to hire CPC-A. NOT remote, but potential for hybrid after 3 month training period - located in Suffolk County, NY. I have it posted on Indeed. I posted it on my local chapter's forum. I asked friends and friends of friends. The recruiting dept for my employer has it posted on the company website among other places.
10 CPC-A applicants in 4 weeks.
2 never returned my 2 emails and 1 phone call.
1 never showed for the interview (confirmed via email for date/time), and sent me an e-mail the FOLLOWING day that she can't make the interview.
1 cancelled the interview a few hours prior stating that for my salary range of $18-$23 (right in the ad), she can't afford childcare.
1 did interview, but did not seem like a good fit and when I sent her the standard "I don't think you're not a good fit for this current position. Good luck on your career path...." told me I was rude and made her feel humiliated, and would never want to work for me anyway.
5 told me they would only consider fully remote even though they never worked a day in coding.
I've frequently been willing to hire entry level positions and train for our exact needs. I don't know if it's the current job market overall, or specific to CPC-A, but filling this position has been very frustrating.
I don't believe the work force really wants to work these days, but you'd think your local chapter would have been able to find someone for your position.
 

trarut

True Blue
Messages
673
Location
Columbus, OH
Best answers
0
See, that tweaking the resume by adding "keywords" to get past HR rubs me the wrong way. If the content of my resume doesn't create interest in my medical experience then I'm not right for the job.
Anybody can put a keyword in their resume, but if it doesn't MEAN anything as it relates to their life experience, what good is it? Sure it gets you pulled out of the crowd, but I think what's happening is the unqualified are using keywords to get their foot in the running for a job they're not qualified for in the first place.
I don't advocate throwing keywords into resumes just to bypass computer algorithms or to get the attention of an HR rep. That may get your resume in front of someone but if you don't have the required skills and abilities, it's still going to the circular file.

I do, however, think it's a good idea to have a few versions of your resume - if your work experience supports it - for different career paths so that it draws focus to the critical skills and work history for the position you are seeking. My resume submitted for a coding position is going to highlight different things than one I submit for an A/R position. Or for another management role.
 
Messages
1
Location
Austin, TX
Best answers
0
I just got my Associate's coding degree in December and I became certified just this month in February. The vibe I'm getting is that it is all meaningless without actual coding experience.
Anything I find wants 2-5 years coding/billing experience or is an entry level receptionist type job that pays less than my current non-healthcare job. Is that a sacrifice I will have to make just to get an in with the medical industry and hope to maybe move up? I am utilizing as many networking resources as I can and it seems like PractiCode is a good first step for a CPC-A, but I feel like it doesn't even matter if you have apprentice status or not until you have actual on-the-job experience. Please tell me there is some hope to just keep applying and searching.
Hi! I'm in a similar boat; I got certified as a CPC-A almost a couple months ago, and couldn't find any coding jobs that would take anyone with little to no experience. Like the others here, I recommend starting off in a job in administration or something similar, and that might lead to a position more relevant to coding. Good luck!
 
Messages
6
Location
Fresno, CA
Best answers
0
Yes you need to make the sacrifice and get a job within the healthcare industry if no one will hire you. Do billing, front desk.... something. You can’t just get your dream remote coding job overnight because you passed an exam or got a degree, that’s an insult to the rest of the coders who worked their butt off to get where they are at now- working from the bottom up (with still a degree and a certificate).
wow.... rude...
 
Messages
6
Location
Fresno, CA
Best answers
0
Hi! I'm in a similar boat; I got certified as a CPC-A almost a couple months ago, and couldn't find any coding jobs that would take anyone with little to no experience. Like the others here, I recommend starting off in a job in administration or something similar, and that might lead to a position more relevant to coding. Good luck!
Theres plenty of offices willing to hire entry level...grab a billing job and you will do basic coding from there... apply in billing and put that you have your CPC-A and good luck to you, def not an insult to some of that have put in years props to you for NOT having to do half a million years in the field to get that cert- its a hard test nice job passing it...
 

Pam Brooks

True Blue
Local Chapter Officer
NAB Member
Messages
2,196
Location
South Berwick, ME
Best answers
1
Sorry about the long post, but I've addressed this at least a dozen times in the past, but it bears repeating.

There are entry level jobs out there, but it's a global market with qualified certified coders all over the world earning their credentials every single month. If you are truly comitted to a career in healthcare business, you may have to think outside the box. Many (many...) years ago when I started in this field, a smart biller could land a job as a coder without a certification and with the opportunity to learn on the job. Due to the increased regulatory, financial and payer rules and guidelines, most practices and hospitals cannot take the risk of hiring (and training) an inexperienced coder. That's the reality, but your education, training and certification have provided you with insight and familiarity into a very broad range of healthcare business jobs. To gain experience (or even visibility) in any organization, you're going to need to be willing to take a position that may appear to be 'lesser' than you anticipated when you started your coding education. Let me assure you......jobs like registration, payment posting, medical records, front desk representative are all very important and critical pieces of the revenue cycle, and as an eventual coder, you're going to need to know what they do. In fact, exposure to such positions may influence your career trajectory. No career training program (including AAPC or AHIMA) is going to promise you a job. They will only promise that if you're successful in passing their coursework and examination that you have baseline knowledge and a set of skills that can start you on a career path. Out of curiosity, I looked at AAPC's marketing for training--they provide "training for those interested in getting into this field". Period.

I've been a hiring manager since 1992, and I'm here to tell you that I have often hired smart, inexperienced coders. More imporantly for me is whether or not you present yourself in a professional manner, whether you have the personality and demeanor that will be a good fit for my organization and its culture, and whether or not I think that you'll get along with the rest of my team. And if someone didn't quite meet my expectations, then it's a lot easier for me to say 'You're not qualified" than it is to come right out and tell them, "you know..... I just didn't love your personality".

That's the uncomfortable news, but there are things you can do to at least get yourself noticed. Make sure your resume is pristine and illustrates any job experience that would translate well into a position in a professional healthcare. I have tossed out resumes where an applicant boasts "attention to detail', in a misspelled sentence. Is your email weird or revealing? ( I got one once from 'monkeyballs'). Practice interviewing with a friend. And if you're getting a series of rejections, go back and ask.....'what was it about my interview that made you decide to not hire me?' Maybe you'll gain insight that will help you in the meantime. Still, it's the rare new CPC-A that gets a coding job right after getting certified, so set your sights to simply getting healthcare experience and you're probably going to be better off in the long run.
 
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I am a cpc-a and can't find anything. I have been a business owner for 20 years and have the work ethic but can't find anyone to take a chance on me.

I wish you all the best. Keep knocking.
 
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