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If you can't get your foot in the door... Kick a hole in the wall!!!

  1. Default
    Medical Coding Books
    Thank you for that blast of inspiration, I am also a NEW CPC-A and I am applying for jobs and sending out resumes daily. Where are the enry level positions??

  2. Talking Awesome
    Great! I love it! I think we all feel the same way...appreciate the post.. I kick and scream every day.. Learning to cope with the rejection is hard but i do what i have to ...i still get up , dust myself off and keep on keeping on!! :d

  3. #13
    You go, girl!!! Let me rephrase that....You go, ALL you girls (and boys) Yes, I agree that it's tough out there. I am pretty good at staying as positive as possible, but this post gave me an extra boost of positivity! Thank you, vwash!

  4. Talking Thanks!!
    I needed the reminder. Been trying just to get an interview since last year October - nothing.

    Will NOT give up:

  5. Default Incredible
    Hello vwash. 2500 resumes? THAT is incredible. You have to get an offer soon, it's just inevitable. I finished my AAS in HIT back in February of 2009, then took my RHIT exam in September of 2009. I was told when I graduated with my degree that once I obtained my RHIT certification, employers would let me code. Nothing has been further from the truth. Whenever I have applied for coding jobs, I am told that I can't be hired due to lack of coding experience. I can't tell you how ridiculous it has been trying to get a position in a medical records department doing anything, not just coding. I am constantly told that my degree makes me overqualified or that I don't have medical office experience. I knew while I was working on my degree that coding was the area that I wanted to pursue. I plan to take the CPC exam in June. I hope to pass the first time, but if not, at least I will know how the exam is structured and what to expect the second time around. I do hope that a door opens for you soon in your desired field, and if so, please be sure to tell us all about it!

  6. Lightbulb If you can’t get your foot in the door… kick a hole in the wall!!!!!

    TYVM for reminding me to hang on. I've been searching for a job (any job) since Sept. I passed my CPC exam first time in October. All my teachers were really happy for me and told me it would be easier to get a job with those credentials. Since I have the -A, the hopsitals won't hire me, because they don't hire apprentice. So I've been trying for billing, receptionist, filer, anything. But since they see that I have my certification they think i don't want this job and only use it as a stepping stone to be a coder.

    Honestly, I was about to give up. Your poem has me inspired again. I'll keep sending my resume's out. Hopefully one day I will get past the first interview.

    Thanks again!!!!!

  7. #17
    Talking Great update!!! I KICKED A HOLE IN THE WALL!!!!
    Hi Everyone,

    First let me start by saying thank you so much to EVERYONE who has responded to this message. Your words have encouraged me and given me hope. Thank you very much. I have great news…I kicked a hole in the wall! Well…really, I had to get my “Tom Cruise” on and parachute down from the helicopter onto the roof, break a hole into the solar panel, and slide down the rope to get into the building because this definitely seemed like a mission impossible. Hopefully my story can be the rainbow after the storm in someone's life.

    In response to, yes sir, really over 2500. Closer to 3,500 to 4,000…no kidding. It took a LOT of work. Honestly, I got so tired of applying for jobs and getting rejected. Sometimes I wanted to just throw my computer against the wall, but then I realized I could not afford to replace it. But, after thousands of rejections, literally THOUSANDS, someone finally decided to give me a chance. I am extremely grateful and thankful for this opportunity. Words cannot explain how I feel because I worked so hard to get this opportunity. I want to encourage ALL CPC-As to PLEASE DO NOT GIVE UP. Don't despise the CPC-A certification. I know many of us, including myself, sometimes questioned was it worth all the blood, sweat, and tears. I am here to say in the long run, yes it is. It can open up opportunities to you that may not have been available beforehand. It might not be the door to a coding position just yet, but it could be the start of something wonderful.

    This has definitely been an arduous endeavor. It might not be easy, but it is definitely worth the effort. No matter what happens, DO NOT quit. I am the BEST person to tell you not to quit because I have had plenty of opportunities to quit on this coding journey:


    I had to bury my Dad my first week of school. He passed away on Feb 14, 2009, two days before I started class. It was by far the hardest thing I have had to do. This was extremely hard because I grew up in a single father home and my Dad was my very best friend. My Dad is where I got my positive attitude from. I started to give up then. I started to not even go to class and put off school for later. I was in so much pain and shock. But I went to class on that Monday driving down the freeway listening to “Cowgirls Don't Cry” with tears streaming down my face. I could barely see the road through my tears. But I showed up to class early, wiped my tears away and began this journey. During school, I was in so much pain…and shock. Sometimes I couldn't think straight and had trouble concentrating when it was quiet. I couldn't stop thinking about what just happened. It was a struggle to go to class, but I finished!!!! With only a medical coding certificate, but it meant so much to me.


    I took the CPC exam twice… and failed...TWICE. I was devastated and also embarrassed because I told so many people I was taking this test. I didn't want to tell them I failed…twice. I did not know where I would get the money to take another test. But I knew this is what I really wanted to do. I mustered up enough money to take it all over again. I also invested in some helpful study materials and read every single letter in those books until I got it. All that reading was mentally overwhelming at times. I had to take frequent breaks and read things several times until I got it. I read all the guidelines in the ICD-9 and CPT-4 manuals. It was imperative I passed the third time for so many reasons. So, I learned from what I did wrong the previous two times and kept going. I literally blocked out everything, studied furiously and it paid off. I passed in November 2011. I was SO happy to receive my CPC-A. I thought, “Ahhh man, I am on my way now! Look out, here I come.”


    It was frustrating to work SO hard for a certification only to realize you need experience to be considered. It was extremely discouraging to check my email only to see countless rejection letters. I started to quit and say FORGET IT, but I told myself “I have come too far to quit.” I knew I had worked extremely hard to get through school and to pass my test. Quite frankly, I was a mentally exhausted after going through all of that. But I knew I would have to work just as hard or even harder to get my foot in the door. Also, I knew I would have to successfully handle rejection. So when I checked my email and a rejection letter was there, instead of getting down about, I just said to myself, “Well, that was not the job for me” or “Oh well, that just means there is a better job out there for me.”


    I sent out thousands of applications and FINALLY got an interview…for a Certified Professional Coder position!! I thought, “Oh my goodness, this is it...finally the job for me!” BUT, I did not get hired for the position because I did not have any “real world” coding experience. I was hoping they would look past my inexperience and see my drive, determination, positive attitude, and work ethic, but they didn't. All they saw was no experience. So, as soon as I got home from that interview, I went back to my computer and immediately began applying for jobs…again.

    THE VERY NEXT DAY someone called me for an interview from the BEST hospital system in my area. It was not a coding position, but I knew it was a great opportunity. I told her I did not have any experience, but I was willing to learn whatever I have to to remain relevant in the position. She called me in for an interview and they liked me. (Who wouldn't, I am a great person inside and out once you get to know me.) So I was called into the HR department for a second interview. The person who interviewed me, hired me. Before he offered me the position, he let me know that he ALSO hires ALL THE CODERS FOR THIS ENTIRE HOSPITAL!! I told him I am interested in a coding position and he told me how to go about getting hired as a coder. WOW, are you kidding. What are the odds?

    AFTER I got hired into this organization, guess what happened? I got a call from four (4) other great organizations inviting me for an interview!!! Are you kidding me…really…FOUR? I thought to myself, “I have waited ALL this time to get a call from somebody, anybody.” Now people are calling me left and right, literally. I declined three of the FOUR offers. I did go on an interview for one of the positions and they liked me. Hopefully I get this job too. Then I will work at the TWO BEST healthcare systems in my area. I will let you know how it turns out. Wow, what a huge blessing!

    If I had given up when times got hard, when I was in pain, when I got rejected, and when I no longer wanted to continue, I would have never been able to have these opportunities today. I just wanted to share my open, honest experience because “stuff” happens to every one of us. I know I am not the only person who has experienced difficulties on this coding journey. Hopefully this gives hope to anyone who feels like quitting because I definitely know how that feels. There is a place for you, just keep going until you find it. Don't worry, someone will see how great you are and give you a chance! Do not quit and just keep going until you get that chance. And when you do, be the greatest employee they ever hired!!

    I wrote all of this stuff to say, DO NOT QUIT!!!! Sometimes you may not be able to see through all the rejection and discouragement you have faced in your life. You might not be able to see through all the other stuff life throws at you on your way to achieving your dreams. But just keep going and driving down the road of life. You might have to take a break, re-evaluate, and readjust some things. Sometimes, you have to take your car in for a tune-up. We all have to stop at the gas station from time to time to get fuel to get to our next destination. Hopefully this message is the fuel that will help you get to your next destination!!!

    *******Also, I would like to thank Adam Shoop. I don't know you, but your words have encouraged me along with so many others. I know without God, I would not have made it through this process and have these opportunities. I thank Him for being my strength when I was weak and opening doors no man can shut. He helped me to study and remember things. He healed my broken heart and He can heal yours too. I really thank God for helping me. Without Him, I would not have made it.*********

    Sincerely with all my heart,

    (tears running down my face)

  8. Default
    Hello Pam,
    Thank you for your encouragement! I have been certified (1st time through) since 2010 and needless to say, I've been kicking ever since. What persons in management positions can do is promote training programs or some type of apprenticeship (even if at below minimum wage) so that the CPC-A's are able to obtain the required 3-5 years experience demanded from the healthcare facilities. Your help and commitment would be extremely appreciated. Bless you and have a fulfilling year. Linda Sanford, BDG, CPC-A

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