Page 12 of 17 FirstFirst ... 234567891011121314151617 LastLast
Results 111 to 120 of 165

Elimination of “A” Designation: The Apprentice designation is not needed anymore

  1. Default KMadding
    Exam Training Packages
    They are NOT discontinuing the Virtual Experience . I just finshed beta testing. The Virtual Experience can be done in your home at your own pace. 800 questions is a lot but I think the 20 being proposed in the Elimination of the A Designation is too few. Having done the beta for Virtual passing 20 qestions at 90% is going to be almost impossible. I think they should compromise between 20 and 800 questions and lower the price of Virtual and keep it.
    Has everyone forgotten about the testing we are going to have to do to KEEP certification after ICD-10 Its not going to do you an good to get the "A" removed in 2012 if you loose the entire cerification a few years later now is it.

  2. Default
    I think that we need to get rid of the "A" all together. I hear of so many people out there coding who aren't CPC's and yet they were able to get into an office because they knew somone who was willing to give them a job and train them on the job. Then you have the people who took the time to learn coding, take and pass the grueling test and still can't get a job because they have that A after the CPC.

  3. Smile Virtual Experience.
    Quote Originally Posted by karnmadding View Post
    They are NOT discontinuing the Virtual Experience . I just finshed beta testing. The Virtual Experience can be done in your home at your own pace. 800 questions is a lot but I think the 20 being proposed in the Elimination of the A Designation is too few. Having done the beta for Virtual passing 20 qestions at 90% is going to be almost impossible. I think they should compromise between 20 and 800 questions and lower the price of Virtual and keep it.
    Has everyone forgotten about the testing we are going to have to do to KEEP certification after ICD-10 Its not going to do you an good to get the "A" removed in 2012 if you loose the entire cerification a few years later now is it.
    Was the beta testing done by AAPC, and when and where can you find the Virtual Experience in order to sign up for it?
    I agree with you 100% and sent my response to AAPC. I so hope that we are able to do the Virtual Experience as I feel it is a much better indication of a coder's abilities than a 20 question exam. If I can code 800 notes at 90% accuracy on my own, that shows I already know something about what it takes and can learn what is necessary to be sucessful to insure that claims are coded and billed correctly for whatever facility I am employed.

  4. Default
    Quote Originally Posted by karnmadding View Post
    They are NOT discontinuing the Virtual Experience . I just finshed beta testing. The Virtual Experience can be done in your home at your own pace. 800 questions is a lot but I think the 20 being proposed in the Elimination of the A Designation is too few. Having done the beta for Virtual passing 20 qestions at 90% is going to be almost impossible. I think they should compromise between 20 and 800 questions and lower the price of Virtual and keep it.
    Has everyone forgotten about the testing we are going to have to do to KEEP certification after ICD-10 Its not going to do you an good to get the "A" removed in 2012 if you loose the entire cerification a few years later now is it.
    karnmadding,

    I just wanted get your thoughts on the beta testing. I, was also a beta tester for the Virtual Experience. What, if anything, did you find difficult about the notes? And what did you like about what was changed? How did you find out that the AAPC is keeping the program?? I just sent an e-mail out this morning, to my contact at the AAPC to inquire about the progress of the program. What have you heard about what they are planning to do?

    Also, I agree with you that 20 notes for the Elimination of the A Designation is too few as well, and passing with a 90%, with so few is going to be almost impossible. Also, the issue that seems to be the major problem with aquiring a job, is not having the experience. That is why I thought the idea of having an apprentice program was a good opportunity to get the much needed experience that is required. However, I am not sure how to get a potential employer to recognize this as real experience...

    I actually had about 700 of the notes done when the web site went down, and I'm sure you will agree, this is alot of work. I think anyone who goes through this program deserves to be recognized for their hard work. I also think this is a great way to prove they are willing to work hard to get the "A" removed, and to show they are serious about working in the field. I just felt that the AAPC should have had some way of actually providing a mentor to aid in the process, as if this was an internship. someone to go to for advice...

  5. Default
    Here is the problem that I see with this change; for those of us who went to school, passed the test and have been looking for a job-sometimes for YEARS-to have to pay to take another test, buy coding books because if you're not working you don't have up to date books...it's just frustrating! I have tried everything I can think of to break into this field and can't get any experience, I don't think I can afford to keep going on with it.

  6. Default
    Quote Originally Posted by dclark7 View Post
    Many moons ago when i took my exam you were required to have at least two years of experience (and a letter stating such fromyour employer). Why the AAPC moved away from that I don't know. Pam is right the AAPC can't leave alll those CPC-A's hanging out to dry, but in order for the credentials to be taken seriously (and for years they weren't) there has to be some sort of segue. I like the idea of actually coding from the notes rather than a multiple choice test. As difficult as people feel the test is, it doesn't begin to compare with abstracting information from a patient record where not everything is neatly in place for you.

    As for other fields requiring apprentices, physican are not allowed to hang up a shingle once they complete medical school, they are required to go through both an internship and residency. Plumbers, electricians and carpenters all have apprenticeships. And nurses are required to go through clinical rotations PRIOR to graduation.

    Years ago before managed care, HIPAA, the ACA, CERTS, RACs and ZPICs it was easy to walk into a medical office and do any job. Now all that has changed and from my experience, most of the coding courses do not adequately prepare new coders for the "real world". People who have other experience in the medical field are more prepared, but most new coders have never set foot in a medical office except as a patient. One thing the AAPC has accomplished with the apprentice designation is to over saturate the field with inexperienced coders. What is the answer? I'm not sure, but I agree with Pam, I think the AAPC is heading in the right direction.
    I have a son who is now an E-1 Electrician and while yes had to do a specified number of hours for an apprenticeship it is a PAID apprenticeship with a company who is willing to hire apprentices and they are in our state subsidized for this. It is fine to designate one as an apprentice if once you have studied very diligently and passed the exam there is some way to GAIN that experience. I have years of experience in a different field, I also have a certificate as a Medical Secretary I obtained years ago, I am now a CPC-A and even if I were to take the exam you are talking about I don't think anyone would hire me as I have no experience.

    The courses and program that I have taken was through my local College as an HIMT Coding Specialist. It was my choice to go on, become a member of AAPC and sit for the credentialing exam. The courses entailed everything you need to know from Medical Terminology to Anatomy and Physiology, including Health information Management courses, the legalities of HIPAA and medical documentation and more. It was very intensive and I am proud to say I graduated from the program with a GPA of 3.86. You would think with two certificates in the Medical Field, some experience in Medical Offices and years of experience with computers, litigation support and other areas someone would want to hire me on an entry level basis. It is not happening and I find it very discouraging. Maybe what is needed is to start within some of these facilities a real apprenticeship program where you can work through your apprenticeship and be paid reasonably for the skills that you have.

    What I really find aggravating is the fact that most of the ads ask for only a High School education with no formal training but a CPC with 2 or more years of experience. While it is nice to volunteer to work somewhere to gain experience I don't think anyone who has gone to school for this or has retrained to be in another profession can afford to volunteer for two years?

  7. #117
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,101
    Default
    You've really hit the nail on the head: our industry does not require certification or licensure. Electricians are normally required to be licensed in their states.

    If we (as an industry) could compel adoption of mandatory certification (and probably an associated licensure fee with repsective states), then the keys to the kingdom are there for the graduates and those seeking employment.

    Every certified coder I know would happily support efforts at more closely regulating workers in our end of the industry. It's remarkable to note that our part of the health care field is more heavily regulated than many others, yet our practitioners are not required to demonstrate competence through professional affiliation and credentialing. The hiring managers certainly lean that way in larger organizations, but it's an open field for the rest...

    Just some thoughts for AAPC, readers here and credentialed coders who need their day in the sun.

  8. #118
    Location
    Honolulu, HI
    Posts
    20
    Default
    I also agree with Pam, I believe the AAPC is headed in a great direction. I have worked in this field for 10 years in billing, I started out as a receptionist that was required to do charge entry. I later went to a billing company as data entry rep and learned my way up through the ladder to coding. I took the exam and now I am a CPC, I have been coding under my boss for 4 years and I had a letter stating my abilities. I think that these "career schools" need to stop lying to people that they are going to come out here in the real world and make $25/hr as a CPC and then, they take the certification exam and find out they are a CPC-A and can't even get a job. I like the idea of doing away with the "A" and making people meet the work expreience requirement OR test their true knowledge of coding.

  9. #119
    Location
    Fayetteville, NC
    Posts
    300
    Default
    The real issue here for the employers I think is the fact that most of them (especially the smaller offices) do not hire people just to code. The "coder" they hire also has to be able to file the insurance, follow up, work the denials, work collections.....the list is endless and none of this is covered by the CPC exam.
    I agree that there should be a multiple choice section but I think to really give the certification true marketable value insurance issues should also be addressed. I know that would be a daunting prospect but in my opinion employers would have more confidence in hiring a CPC-A with no experience if they felt that the training a CPC goes through addressed the issues that affect their bottom line.
    As we go forward in this industry it is going to be more important than ever for claims to be filed cleanly (which involves a knowledge of LCDs/NCDs, Medicare guidelines, modifier usage, global packages, what constitutes a chargeable visit during the global period, ICD 9 guidelines, CPT guidelines, etc) and the RAs will need to be worked properly (which involves knowledge of redetermination filing, appeals filing, what you can and can not bill the patient for, the various rules of the various insurance companies, etc). Currently the CPC does not prepare coders for the "real" world that they are trying to step into and employers know it. Many of the smaller offices do not have the funds or time to train a person in all of the areas that the CPC lacks and so they will hire someone with no certification who has the experience they need to just jump right in and get the cash flowing.
    How could this be addressed in the context of the CPC? I do not honestly know. Adding this to the exam would probably increase the cost to take the exam and the cost of creating it but I really do think that it would be a win-win for all concerned.
    A. McCormick, CPC, CGSC
    Walters Surgical Associates

  10. #120
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    1,101
    Default
    Perhaps the Advisory Board needs to look at the target markets for the CPC credential. In most organizations that I've worked with, the assignments were generally not dumped on a single worker (though I recognize from my contact with health care offices, that is the practice at many).

    Your suggestions that a CPC does not prepare folks to be coders is not entirely correct. However, the gaps between what needs done in a small physician practice is entirely different than what is accomplished by a CPC working in a corporate environment, where some of that suggested material will be unnecessary.

Similar Threads

  1. Elimination of "A" Designation
    By JCain350@aol.com in forum Medical Coding General Discussion
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 01-17-2012, 09:08 AM
  2. Apprentice designation
    By hmgriffith in forum Medical Coding General Discussion
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 07-12-2010, 07:20 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Enjoying Our Forums?

AAPC forums are a benefit of membership. Joining AAPC grants you unlimited access, allowing you to post questions and participate with our community of over 150,000 professionals.

Join Now Continue Reading Without Full Access

Already a Member?

Login

Close Message

In addition to full participation on AAPC forums, as a member you will be able to:

  • Access to the largest healthcare job database in the world.
  • Join over 150,000 members of the healthcare network in the world.
  • Be a part of an industry leading organization that drives the business side of healthcare.
  • Save anywhere from 10%-50% with exclusive member discounts on courses, books, study materials, and conferences.
  • Access to discounts at hundreds of restaurants, travel destinations, retail stores, and service providers. AAPC members also have opportunities to save on heath, life, and liability insurance.
  • Become a member of a local chapter and attend regular meetings.