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Internships

  1. #1
    Location
    Southeast Alabama Coders
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    8
    Default Internships
    Medical Coding Books
    I just took my CPC exam on the 16th and am still awaiting results. In the meantime, I really need to find work as soon as possible and the prospects aren't looking great for someone with no medical experience. I've been thinking that maybe taking an internship somewhere would be the best thing I can do to get the experience I need, get a good reference, and get my foot in the door. I can always keep a part time job at night to pay the bills.

    The problem is that I live in a very rural area. There aren't any "official" internships I can take through the AAPC within driving distance from here. The school I took my medical coding course at doesn't offer internships either. I've gone to two different doctor's offices in town and they both say they don't fool with that sort of thing and suggested I check with the hospital. I plan to go there on Monday and ask about it.

    I just thought I'd ask for advice on this. Has anyone else been in this situation (being in the middle of nowhere, I mean) and actually been able to find an internship locally? I really can't afford to move to a bigger city until I get a decent job, and well...I can't get a decent job until I get some experience! Add on the fact that I'm only 24 years old and, despite my education and professionalism, just don't seem to be taken seriously by any of the job prospects that I've found so far. It's frustrating. I guess I'm just needing any advice I can get right now from the more seasoned coders here. Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Location
    Bradenton, Fl
    Posts
    82
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbtomberlin View Post
    I just took my CPC exam on the 16th and am still awaiting results. In the meantime, I really need to find work as soon as possible and the prospects aren't looking great for someone with no medical experience. I've been thinking that maybe taking an internship somewhere would be the best thing I can do to get the experience I need, get a good reference, and get my foot in the door. I can always keep a part time job at night to pay the bills.

    The problem is that I live in a very rural area. There aren't any "official" internships I can take through the AAPC within driving distance from here. The school I took my medical coding course at doesn't offer internships either. I've gone to two different doctor's offices in town and they both say they don't fool with that sort of thing and suggested I check with the hospital. I plan to go there on Monday and ask about it.

    I just thought I'd ask for advice on this. Has anyone else been in this situation (being in the middle of nowhere, I mean) and actually been able to find an internship locally? I really can't afford to move to a bigger city until I get a decent job, and well...I can't get a decent job until I get some experience! Add on the fact that I'm only 24 years old and, despite my education and professionalism, just don't seem to be taken seriously by any of the job prospects that I've found so far. It's frustrating. I guess I'm just needing any advice I can get right now from the more seasoned coders here. Thanks in advance!
    Do go to your local hospital. When I was in school we were required to do an internship in order to pass. I know a lot of the ladies were in rural areas and were also having a tough time. I remember them saying that they also would use the term "volunteer" and that helped them get in the door. See if you can do volunteer work in the medical records dept.

    And about your age...it's not that. I'm 41 and have a lot of experiences in other fields but because I'm new to this field I'm being treated the same way. I'm getting offers for less than what I making at your age and that was 17 years ago. Do what you can and get your foot in the door. Good luck and I hope this helps a bit!
    Angie Olson, CPC

  3. #3
    Location
    Southeast Alabama Coders
    Posts
    8
    Default
    Thanks Angie, I think saying "volunteer" rather than "intern" may help...I do know that the hospital here accepts many volunteers each year. Can't see why they'd turn down free work. Wish I had thought of this before 5pm Friday!

  4. #4
    Location
    Bradenton, Fl
    Posts
    82
    Default
    Quote Originally Posted by sbtomberlin View Post
    Thanks Angie, I think saying "volunteer" rather than "intern" may help...I do know that the hospital here accepts many volunteers each year. Can't see why they'd turn down free work. Wish I had thought of this before 5pm Friday!
    The other thing about being an intern. You are normally required to get feed back by the employer, what you did, how many hours you worked ect. Unless you are doing it for school I wouldn't say that...most of them think it's a hassle and don't want to deal with it!

    If you do get the opportunity to do volunteer work, make sure you put it on your resume also!! Every bit of experience helps at this point!! Good luck!
    Angie Olson, CPC

  5. #5
    Default
    I finished schooling 18 months ago, got my CPC certification last year, and have no luck finding a job either! Unlike you, I am in a city, 150,000 people, and the county has a half million of so -- but every job wants 3 years experience... You know the story. All I can suggest is keep on trying, Some places might take you in for no pay, and eventually hire you. I've heard stories anyways.

    Good luck.

  6. Default Internships
    Hi,

    I know you've heard this before, but I too am CPC-A looking to get my foot in the door. I'm still applying for jobs, but feel that an internship would help me immensely. Can anyone suggest an place in Massachusetts that is offering?

    Scott W. Mazzarini, CPC-A

  7. #7
    Default
    A lot of offices just don't want to deal with the hassles. Some cite HIPAA concerns and having "non-employees" around protected info as a liability. Others see it as just extra work...everyone is just so busy anymore that they don't have to the time to teach students/interns.

    You might have better luck looking for Billing or Front Office jobs. You can then "volunteer" to help in other areas like Coding and eventually make the transition. I know it's odd, but an office that won't take you for free might gladly hire you to work check-in/check-out.

    Best of luck!
    -Jeffrey Schneider, CPC, CMA(AAMA)

  8. Default
    I'm in this predicament too like some of you. I currently need an internship in the Glens Falls, New York region since I have completed both a course (Medical Billing and Coding + Anatomy and Physiology) from SUNY Adirondack's ed2go program and most recently completed AAPC's Practicode modules. I know that only takes off 1 year of internship that's required for CPC-A's but at least it gives me some experience. Now here I am finding an internship where I'm around. Recently, I attended a Chapter at Glens Falls hospital and got some advice after the meeting. One of which is don't start with online coding since I would need some mentorship, another is to look on both Indeed.com and Monster.com. So far my search has been rather fruitless until I found this place Hudson Headwaters Health Network, which I just contacted to see if they have any openings. There's no guarantee I'll be able to get it, but all I have to do is keep searching. Perhaps someone could help me?

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