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Thread: Relevant experience?

  1. #1

    Default Relevant experience?

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    I see that many people have posted that they are having difficulty finding work with their certification. The school I went to was very proactive in finding me employment. I had a job before I even had my cpca, but I don't know that it is really good experience for the field. I am working the front desk at a small imaging facility. I do no billing and very little coding. Can I really use this to get coding jobs in the future? If it is accepted as experience will I really be in a position to know how to do any jobs I can get hired for?
    Last edited by Johnathanleonard; 06-27-2011 at 06:00 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    http://www.aapc.com/memberarea/forum...ad.php?t=52435

    I suggest reading the post above. It's a thread about how successful coders started out. Almost everyone who responded stated they started in an un-related position.

    I think in this industry, especially in today’s market, that this is how you enter the field.

    If you have such a position I would count it a blessing; Learn everything you can, ask lots of questions, and be proactive. By proving that you are smart, reliable, and accurate you will earn more coding duties.

    Good luck to you and your coding future!

  3. #3

    Default

    I am appreciative for the position, but I was unclear. I do all the coding now it is just not very much. In a week I see maybe 15 different cpc codes and maybe twice that many ICD9 codes. While I am glad to get my foot in a door I need to know if I walked into the right one. My coding/billing duties are not likely to ever expand here there just isn't room. I am fine if I need to do this for a while until I have the experience to get something more along the lines of what I am looking for. I need to know if this kind of job is really helping me, I don't want to apply for a job in the future and not have skills they expect me too at the level they expect. I do not want to run a front desk, but I am willing to do what I need to as long as I need. Is this kind of experience enough to help me get into a job that requires a cpc, or should I be using this experience to find another job that will?
    Last edited by Johnathanleonard; 06-27-2011 at 11:06 PM.

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnathanleonard View Post
    I am appreciative for the position, but I was unclear. I do all the coding now it is just not very much. In a week I see maybe 15 different cpc codes and maybe twice that many ICD9 codes. While I am glad to get my foot in a door I need to know if I walked into the right one. My coding/billing duties are not likely to ever expand here there just isn't room. I am fine if I need to do this for a while until I have the experience to get something more along the lines of what I am looking for. I need to know if this kind of job is really helping me, I don't want to apply for a job in the future and not have skills they expect me too at the level they expect. I do not want to run a front desk, but I am willing to do what I need to as long as I need. Is this kind of experience enough to help me get into a job that requires a cpc, or should I be using this experience to find another job that will?
    Sorry, I didn't mean to imply you weren't greatful for the position, so sorry if it came across that way.

    The fact that you are getting hands on coding experience, (even though it's minimal), it is still experience. This will help you obtain another position in the future.

    I think it would be difficult at this point in time to find another position that would delegate any greater amount of coding responsibilities. Most companies that hire coders without experience will give them just a few coding responsibilities to start out with.

    It's just my opinion, and perhaps others will give their opinions as well, but I think it sounds like you are in a good entry level position that will provide some on the job experience which will help you move forward in this field.

    Good luck to you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    4,451

    Default My first position

    My first coding position was in Pediatric Critical Care - BEFORE the Pediatric specific codes were developed. We used basically three E/M codes (99291, 99292 and 99233) and a few procedure codes (CVL insertion, chest tube, intubation). This was the nature of that business. Over time my responsibilities expanded and the scope of CPT codes expanded, but still was limited to Pediatric Critical Care and Pulmonology (specialties that use a pretty narrow range of CPT codes). When I applied for my current position - working for surgeons - I had to learn surgical coding. However, by then I was familiar with the CPT and ICD9 books, the rules, regulations and guidelines. It took me longer than the experienced surgical coders, but my experience, reputation in the organization, and good recommendations from the physicians for whom I worked before were what helped me get the job.

    So the short answer, Jonathanleonard, is Yes, your experience counts. Stop looking at it in the specifics and look at it in a larger sense. You are using CPT, ICD9 and perhaps HCPCS coding daily ... whether for 10 minutes or 10 hours. You are learning what resources you have available to help - whether within or outside your organization. It's up to you to make the most of it, and to translate what you have learned onto your resume and cover letter, so that you will shine in the multitude of candidates for that next promotion.

    Hope that helps.

    F Tessa Bartels, CPC, CEMC

  6. #6

    Default

    My first coding job literally only used 3 pages out of the CPT book. I have now been coding for 6 years and worked for both inpatient & outpatient physicians.

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