Medical Coding Student needs Med. Billing extern job

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  • Specializes in CNA/ ALF & Hospital.

I am a student through the ed2go program and I am in DESPERATE need of an Xtern/Apprentice job while I am studying for my finals and to take my CPC Exam in 2011. PLEASE HELP ME TO GET EXPERIENCE!

Daytonite, BSN, RN

1 Article; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

I have been a medical coder. Your instructors should be able to help you. One of the things they should have told you is that the first coding job is the hardest to find. You must look and look and look and be prepared to take a coding test to prove what you know in order to get a job. Many people get in the door of a facility by taking other beginning HIM jobs.

10ACGIRL

315 Posts

Specializes in CNA/ ALF & Hospital.
I have been a medical coder. Your instructors should be able to help you. One of the things they should have told you is that the first coding job is the hardest to find. You must look and look and look and be prepared to take a coding test to prove what you know in order to get a job. Many people get in the door of a facility by taking other beginning HIM jobs.

I am already doing that by studying . I am now 4 lessons away from doing my finals to take the cpc exam in 2011

Daytonite, BSN, RN

1 Article; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.
I am already doing that by studying . I am now 4 lessons away from doing my finals to take the cpc exam in 2011

What I meant is that when you walk in to places to apply for coding jobs, part of the application process is that they will probably give you a coding test to complete in about an hour or two along with the application you fill out. They will sit you down in a room with an ICD-9-CM and CPT coding manual and a test with some items they want you to code for them. These tests have specific coding pitfall situations on them (not something easy like "what is the code for otitis media?") that they are checking to see that you learned how to recognize and code for (EX: capturing the 5th digit for broken digits, including an E-code for accidents or poisonings, V-codes, combination codes, coding late effects + manifestation, how to code respiratory failure, how to code infections). These tests will be graded to see what percentage of the problems you get right. In my experience, most places will not consider you for hire if you get anything less than 90% correct.

I was told at one place that I applied that they only hired coders trained at the community college and they would consider no one else. The reason I was hired at the company I ended up in was because I scored a 95% on the coding test they had me take and because I was an RN. I had gotten my training in coding at a vocational school. They flat out told me the training I got was inferior. And in the two years I worked there + the next few years I spent at the community college taking coding classes I found out why.

When I worked as a coder we were audited monthly and had to have a 95% accuracy on our coding or we were put on probation. Companies that care about what they are doing are scared to death of getting accused of fraud by the federal government for coding errors.

If your instructors are not telling you this, they are not preparing you for getting coding jobs.

10ACGIRL

315 Posts

Specializes in CNA/ ALF & Hospital.
What I meant is that when you walk in to places to apply for coding jobs, part of the application process is that they will probably give you a coding test to complete in about an hour or two along with the application you fill out. They will sit you down in a room with an ICD-9-CM and CPT coding manual and a test with some items they want you to code for them. These tests have specific coding pitfall situations on them (not something easy like "what is the code for otitis media?") that they are checking to see that you learned how to recognize and code for (EX: capturing the 5th digit for broken digits, including an E-code for accidents or poisonings, V-codes, combination codes, coding late effects + manifestation, how to code respiratory failure, how to code infections). These tests will be graded to see what percentage of the problems you get right. In my experience, most places will not consider you for hire if you get anything less than 90% correct.

I was told at one place that I applied that they only hired coders trained at the community college and they would consider no one else. The reason I was hired at the company I ended up in was because I scored a 95% on the coding test they had me take and because I was an RN. I had gotten my training in coding at a vocational school. They flat out told me the training I got was inferior. And in the two years I worked there + the next few years I spent at the community college taking coding classes I found out why.

When I worked as a coder we were audited monthly and had to have a 95% accuracy on our coding or we were put on probation. Companies that care about what they are doing are scared to death of getting accused of fraud by the federal government for coding errors.

If your instructors are not telling you this, they are not preparing you for getting coding jobs.

But the places I have left my CV/Resume behind at, they did not have me take a coding test while I was there or even called me back to take one. How do I go about taking a coding test for a job,do I have to ask to take one, and what other HIM jobs are you speaking of(what positions)as a student applicant as myself?

Daytonite, BSN, RN

1 Article; 14,603 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, telemetry, IV therapy, mgmt.

how do i go about taking a coding test for a job?

the place you apply for the job at will include a coding test along with having you fill out an the application for the job
if
that is part of their application and hiring process.

what other him jobs are you speaking of?

admission clerk. front desk reception. telephone billing inquiry. chart preparation.

what kind of school are you in that hasn't been teaching you anything about other jobs in the him and coding profession? are you learning physician coding only? in your classes are you just coding line item after line item of medical diseases or procedures? when you said you were studying to take the cpc exam from the aapc i was puzzled why you were going to wait until 2011. the exam can be taken anytime you feel you are ready, especially once you finish your coding classes. didn't your instructors tell you that? i was working for my ccs and ccs-p from ahima (http://www.ahima.org/certification/). i attended an ahima seminar to prepare for taking the ccs exam (hospital coding) which is a 4-hour test. the person who ran the seminar told us that the community colleges are training coders to be able to take and pass these tests upon graduation (that includes the cpc exam) excluding the 2 or 3 years of on-the-job experience that they recommend before taking the exam. the problem here in california where i live is that no serious employer will hire a coder unless they are already certified, so taking the certification exam after completing the coding course is imperative. during the seminar the instructor went over just about every coding scenario my instructors in my advanced icd-9-cm and cpt coding class had drilled into us previously. i was thrilled. i had gotten an excellent community college education in coding. as a class assignment, one of the him (health information management--medical records) students went on a job interview for a coding job at a local hospital and was given a coding test. it was like taking one of our cpt and advanced icd-9-cm instructors' exams combined. we were fascinated when she came back into the coding lab talking about it. she had not taken advanced icd-9-cm coding yet so she could not answer some of the questions correctly.

i strongly recommend that you get involved in a state or local professional coding organization. that is how the jobs get posted and how you will find them. if the cpc is a commonly held credential in your area, find the others who hold this certification, their professional organization and join it as a student. http://www.aapc.com/localchapters/index.aspx there are a lot of benefits to networking with these people--like finding where the jobs are and seminars to help you pass the cpc and when to take it. the really good medical coding jobs, as a general rule, will not be advertised in the newspapers.

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