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Letter to the President of AAPC

  1. #11
    Medical Coding Books
    Quote Originally Posted by mitchellde View Post
    I agree with Pam all the way! Why is it necessary to badmouth the AAPC or for that matter pit the AHIMA against the AAPC to see whose dog is bigger. It is extremely unprofessional. The members defend the AAPC because we are members, and we believe in what we do and have the highest respect for the organization and each other.
    As far as finding a job. Many times it appears that newly certified coders set their sights too high and want a coders job right away. This is not realistic if you have no experience in the medical field. I tell everyone interested in coding to get a job at a hospital, and that is any job, be a unit clerk or a secretary or aide. You need to be in the industry because every position offers you a unique perspective into the industry. The best hospital administrator I worked for started his carreer as a house orderly. I started as a unit secretary.
    But I agree with Pam it is not the AAPCs fault that you cannot get a job. You may need to settle for something less that the ideal to get your foot in the door.
    Personally I have never regretted my membership with the AAPC and grow to respect the association more every day.
    The unprofessionalism comes in when members come to the conclusion that the original poster is upset with the AAPC due to their lack of finding a job. As a member of the AAPC, it is very distasteful to read some of the snooty comments from those who have never been in this individuals situation, and the earn it attitude is quite unhelpful. As members shouldn't we be more encouraging and offer suggestion without the it's not the AAPC's fault you can't find a job nonsense.

  2. #12
    Default Re: Letter to the President
    Dear Pam....First I wish to both welcome and congratulate E Hines for his/her accomplishment(s) thus far in attempting to switch career(s). It is no small feat to cross over from being a legal secretary to becoming a medical coder. So much to learn. When I read his/her letter I fully empathized with E Hines frustration and not for one moment did I take it as an "AHIMA Attack"....seriously, with all due respect that kind of speculation only fuels frustration further. All of us here have had to pay our dues in one form or another and it is important that we foster positivity on these boards. I think E Hines did a very brave thing by writing this letter and it takes courage to say "out loud" what many may think in the safety of "silence". There are so many out there who can not find jobs and to assume that it means they are "not taking the initiative" or "did not research their school" is attacking the person and not the issue. The "issue" being what can we as members of AAPC do to help our fellow coding professionals? Chapter meetings are a great way to reach out to someone new. Offer to be a mentor....see if you can pull some strings at work and give a newbie (if only 1 day a week) a chance to shadow you. Correct "AAPC" is not responsible for finding E Hines a job BUT as individual members we ARE responsible IF we choose to ignore people like E Hines and not offer up some creative solutions.

  3. #13
    Columbia, MO
    Quote Originally Posted by shandellw View Post
    The unprofessionalism comes in when members come to the conclusion that the original poster is upset with the AAPC due to their lack of finding a job. As a member of the AAPC, it is very distasteful to read some of the snooty comments from those who have never been in this individuals situation, and the earn it attitude is quite unhelpful. As members shouldn't we be more encouraging and offer suggestion without the it's not the AAPC's fault you can't find a job nonsense.
    My comments are not snooty, sorry if you felt that way, however it is not the AAPCs responsibility to FIND a job for anyone. This organization provides numerous outlets for those that wish to find a job, and honestly we have all been in this position at one time or another. It is just as frustrating to discover you cannot get a position because you are overqualified as when you are underqualified. I just feel that those with no experience should not expect to get a coder position from the start it is good experience to work your way up and that is what a lot of us have had to do. If you look at past posts you will see where many times members including me have suggested other positions to apply for. But to expect the AAPC to jump in and find a job for someone is not realistic.

    Debra A. Mitchell, MSPH, CPC-H

  4. #14
    Nothing in life is guaranteed and that includes a job after schooling; I have 3 children who have gone to college and are entering the job market and I hate to tell you.... it's not just coding that people are having a hard time in finding a job. When my kids decided they wanted to go to college I asked " What do you want be" , have you researched your field, have you pick up a newspaper( local or not) to see what qualifications they are looking for, is your field in demand. These are things you must ask yourself before you jump, leap etc...

    As many of the posters, Like Machelle, Pam and Deb have said, it's not easy!! I know coders who have years of experience who are having a difficult time finding a job, so it's not just newbie coders who are having this issue it's across the board.

    And I must agree with Machelle, Pam and Deb that it does seem like the AAPC is being blamed for this, they cannot force a physician office, hospital, payor to accept the Project Xtern and then cannot force them to take a newly certified coder on either.

    These companies can pick and choose to hire and do what they want to do, thats like some companies who will only hire CCS or CCS-P's it's their choice.

    It gets really old, really fast to continue to hear people complain, remember there are several hiring managers who are on these theads, reading what you are saying....
    Roxanne Thames CPC, CPC-I, CEMC

    "Remember the greatest gift is not found in the store but in the heart of true friends"

  5. Default Reply to Ehines
    I passed my CPC-A in June and have applied numerous times for coding positions. I have had 1 interview. Which I am grateful for, but so far no others. I am getting the old adage here "we want experience", that stinks. But you can't blame the AAPC for lack of jobs, internships or externships. I wish we had some in the area I live in but we don't. I just keep trying and applying. I wish you the best but you really can't blame them. The exams aren't the easiest and congratulations on passing!!! I too want to do the CPC-H but that will wait. Good luck with your job search.

  6. #16
    Here we go again. The last time I commented on the likes of this the entire thread was removed. For me, the main problem I see is that far too many people were given a free ride into this field. Unemployable people and those that are quite employable but lost their job during the recession believed all of the hype about working from home. Through the grace of an overwhelmed and underfunded job program at their local unemployment office they went to school at no cost to themselves. They were told how good they were doing, passed all of the required exams and out the door they went. Flooding the market. Now that the reality of searching for a job in an oversaturated market has hit home they are looking for someone to blame.
    It's not the orginizations responsibility, as someone has previously stated. So instead of continuing to stick your hand out.....why not ball it into a fist and go knock on some employers doors. Knock on them till your knuckles bleed. Then tomorrow get up and go do it again, to the same doors if need be. Despite what you belive or think that you are "entitled" to there are no free rides.

  7. #17
    Please allow me to clarify one thing. As I know what I have just said is going to be misconstrued.
    I am by no means demeaning ANYONE that has sunk their savings into an education.
    If you have went without to educate yourself in this field I hold you in the highest esteem and I have no doubt that individuals as dedicated as yourselves will reap the benefits of your sacrifice.

  8. #18
    Dover Seacoast New Hampshire
    Quote Originally Posted by shandellw View Post
    The unprofessionalism comes in when members come to the conclusion that the original poster is upset with the AAPC due to their lack of finding a job. As a member of the AAPC, it is very distasteful to read some of the snooty comments from those who have never been in this individuals situation, and the earn it attitude is quite unhelpful. As members shouldn't we be more encouraging and offer suggestion without the it's not the AAPC's fault you can't find a job nonsense.

    I would respectfully ask that you reveiw my many posts on this board where I have spent a great deal of time outlining suggestions for jobs, interview skills, resume tips and other employment-securing ideas for newly credentialled coders who are looking for a break. I don't consider myself snooty, and if that is your perception, I'm afraid I am not going to apologize for voicing my experienced opinion, if you don't mind. But it's also my right to voice my opinion when I feel that someone needs to hear it.

    Oceanlivin', your response may hit a big nerve here, but you really identified the overall issue, and said it well. That, in my opinion, is the elephant in the room---Tens of thousands of CPC-As who are looking for someone to blame.

    I am one of the hiring managers who reads this board, and between the ranting, negative attitudes, poor spelling, crazy user names and overall lack of maturity and professionalism I've been seeing lately (not to mention the recent requests for off-shore coders to get a US sponsor AND the posts about having failed the CPC exam for the third time)...... I'm wondering who the heck thinks I'd be happy to have them join my team.

    And before you think I've placed myself on some kind of golden pedestal, let me tell you that I worked in a factory, as a waitress and in a government warehouse before I got into coding. I have had dirt under my nails, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I had to work my butt off to get where I am today.
    Pam Brooks, MHA, COC, PCS, CPC, AAPC Fellow
    Coding Manager
    Wentworth-Douglass Hospital
    Dover, NH 03820

    If you can dream it, you can do it. Walt Disney

  9. #19
    Default RE: Letter to the President
    The blasting of each other, especially from veterans in this field, is very unproductive, unprofessional and unattractive. Don't assume you are immune from the issues posted on these boards. Even if you are very experienced and think your job is secure once your salary is maxed out you may be replaced with a less experienced professional. Everyone is dispensable especially if we continue to farm out jobs to other countries and with the advent of CAC.

    Points to Ponder:
    Some People (not me, I have coding experience) researched and made an INFORMED DECISION to invest in AAPC's Programs which included starting out as an Apprentice knowing the advertised Project Xtern and/or virtual internship was an option. If there aren't enough available internships then the virtual internship, which I no longer see availabe, is an idea. As a Director of HIM, I would like to see certified coders have encoder experience which can be achieved virtually. AAPC would have no obligation to help people find internships or offer virtual internship if it HAD NOT BEEN ADVERTISED when people signed up for these programs. “A” is a problem if there is no way to remove it when people made this investment with the advertised options in mind. If there aren't enough internships then AAPC should either continue to offer a virtual internship or remove the “A”. Of course this does not guarantee a paying job but it certainly creates a more desirable candidate than an apprentice without experience. I am not faulting AAPC. There was no way to anticipate that there would not be enough internships. Every business must “make good” on what they advertise which is what I think Ehines was getting at.

    Some fields such as Speech Therapy limited the number of masters programs years ago so that the field would not become over saturated.

    Finding my first coding job without experience was an issue for me in 1991. Every time I saw the same job posted I reapplied. By the third time I applied to the same position they finally hired me out of desperation.
    Newbies – Look for positions that are located on the outskirts of where you live who may have more difficulty finding good coders. Keep applying even if you already applied a month ago. If the ad is still there chances are they have not filled the position.

  10. Default
    EEH, I sincerely share in your frustrations in finding employment; however, if you have not done so, objectively read Pam Brook's replies to your posts. Sooner or later, you may find it very imformative and encouraging. After being a member for a year, I found how AAPCs leaders and members can be very resouceful, supportive, informative, and encouraging. As a reminder, staying on course in obtaining our ideal career is also steered by our positive and optimistic attitude; fine tuning our job hunting and interviewing skills and knowledge; and, maintaining unwavering commitment in our progress in obtaining employment.

    Also, in this economic times, common sense will tell you that employers want to hire the right person to avoid firing anyone; they may not have it easy either; and, a lot of things may be at stake than we can ever realilze. If you objectively read Ms. Brook's advice, you would have agreed with my statement. Therefore, if we want to be hired, we need to bring to the hiring manager's, or recruiter's, table a positive, optimistic, and problem-solving attitude that has been tested and tried while looking for work, along with our Coding Certificate and Resume. Anyways, awards are rewarded for those who are relentless; and, who were encouraged and informed by the very same people who continuously support, inform, and ecourage you and the rest of us. Ms. Brook's advice is a good example; and, I found it a privilege in learning from her. By the way, congratulations in passing your CPC Exams, and good luck in your employment endeavors.
    Last edited by Jessica Garcia; 08-02-2011 at 03:24 PM.

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