Every professional aspires to do good work and gain recognition from peers and seniors in the industry and medical coding professionals are no different in this aspect. Medical coding is a perfect example of a profession that is routine yet fascinating as the medical coders have to assign the accurate codes to the different medical procedures performed that are sometimes even complicated and difficult to comprehend. Medical coders are needed in every kind of healthcare practice and the more experienced and experts they are in their chosen field, the better prospects of earning higher salaries and option to work from home. To show proficiency in the field, medical coders can earn certifications that are either core certifications or certifications for a speciality. Let’s see the various certifications that can be earned by the people in medical coding jobs.
There are two prominent organizations that provide certifications in medical coding – AAPC and AHIMA. AAPC provides both education and credentials to medical coders working in various facilities. This organization also provides a job database along with continuing education opportunities. AHIMA (The American Health Information Management Association) is a respected organization among the medical coder fraternity and it offers a range of training programs and credentials, primarily for people in medical coding jobs at hospitals.
Some of the core certifications offered by AAPC are:
CPC: The Certified Professional Coder credential evaluates the proficiency of a medical coder’s knowledge and application of various code sets such as CPT, HCPCS Level II, and ICD – 10 – CM used for coding and billing purposes in a physician’s office set up.
COC: The Certified Outpatient Coder credential evaluates the knowledge and application of various code sets by the professionals in medical coding jobs who do the coding and billing for outpatient hospital or facility.
CIC: The Certified Inpatient Coder credential evaluates the knowledge and application of various code sets by the medical coders who do the coding and billing for outpatient hospital or facility.
CRC: The Certified Risk Adjustment Coder credential evaluates the knowledge and application of ICD–10–CM diagnosis codes by medical coders in risk adjustment payment models. Apart from these certifications, there are speciality certifications like CASCC, CIRCC, CPCD, CGIC, and others that evaluate the medical coders with higher levels of experience and expertise in a particular speciality discipline.
Some of the certifications offered by AHIMA:
CCA: The Certified Coding Associate credential evaluates the coders’ commitment, competency, and other capabilities as required by the employers in both hospital and physician practices.
CCS: The Certified Coding Specialist credential evaluates the expertise of coders ICD-10-CM and CPT coding systems usually in a hospital setting.
CCS-P: The Certified Coding Specialist-Physician-based credential evaluates the coders specializing in physician-based settings like physician offices, multispecialty clinics, and group practices. People working in medical coding companies can choose a certification according to their level of expertise and experience they have to prove their proficiency and improve their career prospects.