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Old 12-02-2011, 02:25 PM
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Post NHA - Billing and Coding Specialist Certification

Billing and Coding Specialist Certification by NATIONAL HEALTHCARE ASSOCIATION

A Certified Billing and Coding Specialist's main focus is on converting a medical procedure, diagnosis, or symptom into specific codes for submitting a claim for reimbursement. As a CBCS, you may perform some or all of the following duties:
•Understand company claim policies •Assign codes to each diagnosis and procedure
•Rely on information of disease procEsses •Understand patient requests for an initial appointment •Code patient medical records correctly to optimize reimbursement for medical services. Beneifts to obtaining a Billing and Coding Certification may include more job opportunities, higher wages, and increased job security.

Is anybody familiar with this certification? Is it helpful for as reinforcement of the CPC?
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Old 12-02-2011, 02:28 PM
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I've never heard of this organization...My personal opinion is that unless it is a nationally recognized (within the industry at least) that it won't help you any more if you already have a CPC.
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Old 12-02-2011, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LAG.CPC@hotmail.com View Post
Billing and Coding Specialist Certification by NATIONAL HEALTHCARE ASSOCIATION

A Certified Billing and Coding Specialist's main focus is on converting a medical procedure, diagnosis, or symptom into specific codes for submitting a claim for reimbursement. As a CBCS, you may perform some or all of the following duties:
•Understand company claim policies •Assign codes to each diagnosis and procedure
•Rely on information of disease procEsses •Understand patient requests for an initial appointment •Code patient medical records correctly to optimize reimbursement for medical services. Beneifts to obtaining a Billing and Coding Certification may include more job opportunities, higher wages, and increased job security.

Is anybody familiar with this certification? Is it helpful for as reinforcement of the CPC?
I don't think it would help much. The main organizations in the U.S. that provide professional coding certifications are AAPC and AHIMA, they are the only ones recognized by CMS. This organization does not appear to sponsor any webinars or seminars. You just buy their study guides and pay to take their exam.
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Old 12-02-2011, 03:06 PM
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When I was fresh out of school, they offered the CBCS certification from the NHA. I was told at the time that the NHA was more widely utilized on the East Coast than the West Coast, but that it was well on it's way to being more nationally recognized (I just learned recently that the NHA did not receive their NCCA accredation for this certification until 02/2011) The school that I attended proctored the exams for the NHA and offered a student discount, so I went ahead and sat for it. The exam was geared heavily towards billing and Medicare and not so much coding (I didn't crack my books once). My plan was to go ahead and obtain the CBCS while I saved and studied a bit more for the CPC exam. I landed a position doing medical accounts receivable and in the way of things (such is life) put off getting the CPC certification until very recently.

The CPC is the current industry standard, so I'm very glad that I was finally able to sit for the exam and get that certification. As for the CBCS, my philosophy is; it was offered at the time, it was less than half the price of the CPC (great for a starving student), and it can't hurt to have extra bits of the alphabet behind your name. Keeping up with the CEU's for that one has kept me more current with the billing/payor side of things.

Now that I've obtained the CPC certification I will most likely not renew the CBCS when it expires soon...
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Last edited by CLCameron; 12-02-2011 at 03:08 PM. Reason: spelling!
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:05 AM
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Originally Posted by CLCameron View Post
When I was fresh out of school, they offered the CBCS certification from the NHA. I was told at the time that the NHA was more widely utilized on the East Coast than the West Coast, but that it was well on it's way to being more nationally recognized (I just learned recently that the NHA did not receive their NCCA accredation for this certification until 02/2011) The school that I attended proctored the exams for the NHA and offered a student discount, so I went ahead and sat for it. The exam was geared heavily towards billing and Medicare and not so much coding (I didn't crack my books once). My plan was to go ahead and obtain the CBCS while I saved and studied a bit more for the CPC exam. I landed a position doing medical accounts receivable and in the way of things (such is life) put off getting the CPC certification until very recently.

The CPC is the current industry standard, so I'm very glad that I was finally able to sit for the exam and get that certification. As for the CBCS, my philosophy is; it was offered at the time, it was less than half the price of the CPC (great for a starving student), and it can't hurt to have extra bits of the alphabet behind your name. Keeping up with the CEU's for that one has kept me more current with the billing/payor side of things.

Now that I've obtained the CPC certification I will most likely not renew the CBCS when it expires soon...

CL Cameron: What area of the country do you live? Also, do you feel that having the CBCS contributed to you getting the accounts receivalble position?

I have had my CPC-A since August 2009 and haven't been able to find a coding job because I have NO previous medical experience. I have recently been thinking about trying to find employment on the billing/payer side, and when I read your post, I wondered if this could be of benefit to me. I took the Billing courses right after I finished the Coding
courses and have done some billing although it wasn't Medical Billing.

Thanking you in advance for your response.

Pat.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:16 AM
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Pat,

I'm in AZ. I don't think that the CBCS certification had any bearing on my landing the accounts receivable position. I think that the education that I received prior to taking that test, and networking as much as possible while still a student, had more of an impact on the decision to hire me than the CBCS after my name. I think that had I been able to sit for the CPC exam right out of school, then I may have tried to hold out for a coding, vs. billing, position. I was lucky enough to obtain a position within the field (if not a coding position) quite a bit sooner than a lot of people. I think that my CPC certification will be much more beneficial to the furthering of my career within the industry, and as I said in my previous post, I may not even renew the CBCS certification. You have to decide what's best for you and go from there.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajs View Post
I don't think it would help much. The main organizations in the U.S. that provide professional coding certifications are AAPC and AHIMA, they are the only ones recognized by CMS. This organization does not appear to sponsor any webinars or seminars. You just buy their study guides and pay to take their exam.

AHIMA has recently partnered with the American College of Medical Coding Specialists, (ACMCS), which offers the PCS (Professional Coding Specialist) certification. They're fairly new in the industry, but are led by some fairly recognizeable people. They typically have a late summer conference in Philly. They will accept AAPC CEUs, but not the other way around. They seem to focus more on revenue cycle and coding...not just CPT/ICD-9. I hold their certification, but find that for my needs, anyway, the AAPC is much more valuable to me.
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