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No Coding Jobs for inexperienced Coders

  1. Default I agree, what can be done?
    Exam Training Packages
    Hi, my name is Cynthia. I live in Detroit, MI. Although I recently finshed a Medical Insurance Billing and Coding course at Everest with a 4.0/4.0 GPA (HONORS) I have not been able to land a job. This is crazy. I went through the entire 8 month program with stella grades 4.0 from day one, and I am sitll not able to land a job in this field. I participated in the Student Leader program (Ambassador Igniters), I even worked as a student work study during the same time period, and still graduated with honors. The last month of the course we were required to work in an externship. I worked for a Billing Company. They did every type of billing imaginable. I worked on follow-up (I loved it) I found thousands as errors, and dollars that needed to be resubmitted for payment. I think that because I was new and found all of these errors committed by veteran staff with an average 5 years of work experience, I was not hired. If it was me, I would think that I had found a jewel. I would have though: wow this person is just coming out of school and can help this much with recouping moneys that would have not been seen, oh I need to hire her. But not so much.

    I read your entry, and I think that something should be done. There should be an incentive for employers to hire new students that graduate from Billing programs with good grades. Also those that receive certification should receive a signing bonus for doing so before being hired. How is the world of Billing going to change and become better if those that are already in the field are scared for new talent to correct errors that are made. How are the new people supposed to learn about how the system works -- and then change it or tweak it so that it gets better. The system is broke and it needs to be fixed.

  2. #202
    Smile I think you just learned how the system works !
    I have been looking since April. And like you, I see the inequity in the system. However, as many before me have found out, without networking, you will not get in this field. It is very much like the "Good Ole Boys" political system. It is not what you know, but who you know. By finding those errors, you found a chink in the armour of the supervisor, dept mgr, human resources, etc. There is no way any one of those supervisory people can go to their boss and say, our seasoned people are costing us money, so lets hire this new person to correct it. They look at it like that would be admitting they are not on top of their job and possibly put it in jeopardy. They fail to realize the boss would be thrilled to recoup more revenue and probably thank them for correcting the problem. Keep looking, keep your head up and when you feel down and out just remember ICD-10 is coming and many of those people will not be able to make the switch. Our job is out there it is just a matter of time.

    Another path you might want to look into is auditing. RAC is doing spot audits and have been hiring people to do that. I don't know where you are, but with a little research, you can certaily find out how to apply. You have a proven track record for finding errors, they would love you. It stands to reason if they were undercoding in that office, chances are they were making other mistakes also. Just a thought. Keep me posted

    Quote Originally Posted by CCrooms View Post
    Hi, my name is Cynthia. I live in Detroit, MI. Although I recently finshed a Medical Insurance Billing and Coding course at Everest with a 4.0/4.0 GPA (HONORS) I have not been able to land a job. This is crazy. I went through the entire 8 month program with stella grades 4.0 from day one, and I am sitll not able to land a job in this field. I participated in the Student Leader program (Ambassador Igniters), I even worked as a student work study during the same time period, and still graduated with honors. The last month of the course we were required to work in an externship. I worked for a Billing Company. They did every type of billing imaginable. I worked on follow-up (I loved it) I found thousands as errors, and dollars that needed to be resubmitted for payment. I think that because I was new and found all of these errors committed by veteran staff with an average 5 years of work experience, I was not hired. If it was me, I would think that I had found a jewel. I would have though: wow this person is just coming out of school and can help this much with recouping moneys that would have not been seen, oh I need to hire her. But not so much.

    I read your entry, and I think that something should be done. There should be an incentive for employers to hire new students that graduate from Billing programs with good grades. Also those that receive certification should receive a signing bonus for doing so before being hired. How is the world of Billing going to change and become better if those that are already in the field are scared for new talent to correct errors that are made. How are the new people supposed to learn about how the system works -- and then change it or tweak it so that it gets better. The system is broke and it needs to be fixed.

  3. #203
    Default Wait
    I took everyones advice from this forum and called the local hospitals, doctors, and billing companies and did my research. Before you spend any more money on AAPC call your local billing offices and ask them if they will hire you without the "A". I did that and not one company was willing to hire me because I still didn't have 2 years CODING experinnce. I was told time and again, with the economy the way it is they can hire coders with 5-10 yrs exp for the same money they would pay me. My rebuttal to them was; but do they know the new codes, and updates that we were taught in the class and have kept up with after our schooling ended. Do they go to regular update seminars or do they just code what they know from the past and have their claims returned and dont know why. Some of the people were honest and admitted they didn't send their employees for continuing education refreshers. Others didn't answer, but you could see the wheels in their head start to spin with the thought that maybe they did have a complacency problem that might be costing them money.

    Quote Originally Posted by semaxwell1 View Post
    This just came out last week. This sounds very promising and wonderful. As soon as I get certified, I am definitely going to try this out.

    http://ht.ly/2CmAe

    Virtual Experience: Apprentice Removal

    As an alternative to on-the-job experience, a CPC-A may earn the removal of the apprentice designation by accurately coding 800 operative notes virtually. The operative notes are real, redacted notes representing 17 specialties and are available to code online. We believe this experience will closely simulate coding in a multi-specialty practice. This will serve two purposes for the CPC-A. First, it will enable the removal of the apprentice designation without having to get a job, which is often difficult to obtain without experience. Second, it gives the coder a proficiency score to show to potential employers to provide evidence of coding skills.

  4. Default CPC-A Shares Your Frustration
    I earned my CPC-A in November of 2009 and have been searching for a paid medical office position since. Currently, I work five days a week at my (non-medical ) paying job and two days a week at my free job as a retrograde chart auditor in a family practice. In the past seven months, I took just 10 days off from both jobs to catch my breath. This pace is the hardest thing I have ever done and I see no end in sight. I am in too deep to quit now! I have determined that my problem is that I have no mentor and I am not well-connected in the medical field because I am a career transitioner. I was having too many hopeless feelings and decided to take up weighlifting to increase my endorphins and improve my outlook--I seem to have less hopless feelings now, so that's a good thing. In our Great Lakes region, this is a typical scenario. No one I went to classes with has a job, either. In fact, our AAPC chaper has almost 500 members and 80% of them are unemployed CPC-As. What can I say? Keep putting one foot in front of the other and give yourself a hug.

  5. #205
    Default
    I too am a bit nervous about the future prospect of finding a coding job. Although I have my RHIT, CTR and a BS degree in Health Science I spent the bulk of my HIM career in Cancer Registry work. I have many years experience with chart review, abstracting and ICD-0 coding (ICD-0 coding though is not even in the same intense league as inpatient coding) BUT I am hoping that it will carry some weight with a prospective employer. I recently contacted a former supervisor (she is an RHIA and HIM/Director) and asked her for some solid advice on how best to build my resume and market myself. She is familiar with my work and has encouraged me to build upon my exsisting strength(s) in Oncology and has advised me to get my CCS-P (via AHIMA) since I have an RHIT and my CPC and CHONC (via AAPC). She further advised me to take formal classes on ICD-10 (via AHIMA & AAPC) and make certain to highlight these courses on my resume. She made a very valid point in that effective October 1 2013 we will all be beginners again and that the playing field will be more level as no one will have "3 - 5 years experience with ICD-10." She told me that she will be looking at "where coders received their training, and what steps they took on their own to prepare for ICD-10." She also informed me that she expects to lose coders who have been at it for years and do not wish to make the transition. Above all she said keep studying Anatomy and Physiology as those who are strong in A & P will be the ones who will excel. I certainly hope she is right as I plan to take her advice.....any thoughts???

  6. Red face Looking for coding job in maryland area.
    Hello, I'm looking for a coding job in the MD/DC area. I obtained by CPC in Aug 2009. I have been working in the healthcare field for over 10 years. I currently work for a physician at a hospital in the Baltimore area but they do not hire new coders. I'm greatful for having a job, but I would like to focus on coding. If anyone know of any openings please let me know. I am willing to travel if I have to.

    Thanks,

    Gail.

  7. #207
    Default Huge increase in memberhip
    I agree with the previous posts regarding the ooportunities that will present themselves
    with the implementation of ICD-10. It struck me last night when I was reading my latest issue of the Coding Edge that in five years, AAPC membership has literally doubled.
    Forgive me if not exactly correct as I do not have the publication in front of me, but I believe it went something like this:

    Membership:

    1990's - 2,000
    2000 - 5,000
    2005 - 50,000
    2010 -just hit the 100,000 mark!!!

    Again, these could be off in the earlier years as it is just from memory, but I am certain of the jump from 2005 to 2010 because it was so astronomical. That is not to say that all of the members were able to pass their exam and get certified, and of course many of them I'm sure are CPC-A's. However, we can all agree that the number of positions for coders and the jobs that are needing to be filled has not increased by 50,000 in the last five years. I found this figure very interesing.

  8. Unhappy No coding jobs for entry level!
    I am also a new coder and have found it very difficult to get my foot in the door. All I read is experience only, usually they want more than 3 yrs of experience. It is very fustrating that they wont give us entry level a chance.

  9. #209
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,101
    Default
    Folks:

    Networking is very important. It allows you to know someone who may help you land a job. However, tantamount to networking is the technical skill behind it. I once worked with a grade "A" networker. This person could market better than the drug companies. Catch was, he didn't have any substantial skill to act as his foundation. The perception may very well be that you have to "know someone" to get where you're going. In all but one (1) job I've had, I knew no one when I walked through the doors. It was technical skill and soft skills that helped me edge over the other candidates.

    Please remember that your foundation begins at the bottom--not the second story. Spend time looking for jobs on the employment searches that are not necessarily coding or billing. There are multiple opportunities for experience that translate to coding out of the following HIM and revenue cycle jobs:
    • File Clerk*
      Release of Information*
      Data Entry*
      Chart Completion Analyst
      Customer Service
      Patient Registration
      Financial Analyst/Counselor
      Medical Administrative Asst*
      Claims Specialist
      Medical Receptionist
      Accounts Receivable
      Claims examiner
      Dental office assistant
      Medical Records Tech*
      Medical Collections Specialist
      Enrollment Specialist/Insurance Verification
      Patient Advocate
      Medical Customer Service Rep
      Insurance Reimbursement Specialist*
      Revenue Analyst/Tech
      Admissions Clerk


    These are just to name a few that I encountered on job boards. Point being, your skills as a certified coder can be put to great use outside of production coding jobs. Although you may aim to be a production coder (or something else), consider any of these options to help you in attaining that goal.

    As demonstration that we all start somewhere, the * above represent duties and/or positions that I held prior to becoming a coder.
    Last edited by kevbshields; 12-02-2010 at 08:37 AM.

  10. #210
    Default
    Kevin,
    Just wanted to thank you for your comments. However, do I use CPC-FC to indicate I want to be a file clerk, or CPC-DE for data entry. I spent a year of my life getting a good education to become a coder. I lost a years salary, combined that was more than 45K. I have had the opportunity in the past to do customer service, data entry, file clerk, and other entry level jobs and none of them required a CPC.
    I want to believe you meant well with your comments, but next time think about your words before you demean us. Your bio indicates you have 9 years experience. Is that all with the same company? Did you start in data entry or as a file clerk? Again, I hope you meant well, but I cannot afford to take a 20K annual pay cut to be a file clerk.

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