We’re working on this new Top 5 Reasons series to help you become familiar with all of the Career Step programs—not just the one you’re enrolled in or graduated from. This month we’re featuring the Professional Medical Coding and Billing program. Next to our Medical Transcription course, Career Step has been training medical coding and billing professionals the longest. There’s a lot that we could talk about, but since we have to narrow it down to 5, here’s what we chose:
- AHIMA-approved curriculum – In the medical coding and billing industry, the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) is one of the leading and largest industry associations. They work very hard to ensure that medical coding professionals have the skills they need to excel by offering a number of employer-trusted certifications, offering lots of continuing education opportunities, and monitoring the education available for entry-level professionals. Having the stamp of AHIMA approval on your training program means that it was carefully evaluated against their model curriculum and judged to prepare students not only for their certifications, but also for the workforce.
- Practical, hands-on experience – Every Career Step program is designed to prepare you to not only get a job, but to excel in the workforce. In the Professional Medical Coding and Billing program, this means lots of hands-on experience actually coding genuine medical records and reports (there are 300+ in the course!). Students have access to a complete online library of references and receive printed versions of the most up-to-date industry codebooks. They then get lots of practice using all of those resources in real-world situations, making sure they’re prepared to earn employer-recognized credentials and start working right after graduation.
- Certification preparation – Though certification is not always required for employment, the industry is moving in that direction, so earning an employer-recognized credential after graduation is a big step toward standing out in the job market and gaining employment. The Career Step Professional Medical Coding and Billing program prepares students for the CCA (Certified Coding Associate) credential offered by AHIMA and the CPC (Certified Professional Coder) credential offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), both of which can open doors to employment and increase a graduate’s earning potential. We even provide a free exam voucher for the exam of your choice (a $300 value), making it even easier to earn your credential after graduation.
- ICD-10 experienced school – Currently medical coders use the ICD-9 codes. However, the healthcare industry is preparing to transition to ICD-10. To ensure students have the skills they need to start working right away, our Professional Medical Coding and Billing program teaches students the ICD-9 code set and new students also receive a free enrollment in our ICD-10 FastTrack course. This ensures students have the ICD-9 skills they need to earn credentials and start working as well as the ICD-10 skills they need to be successful long term. Career Step is also heavily involved in helping employers train their employees for the switch. This means that students are training with the same curriculum employers are using for their employees!
- Affordability – The Career Step Professional Medical Coding and Billing program offers incredible value. For about $2,995 students are prepared for a career with staring salaries of $40,000 a year. This gets graduates in the door of a field that also has lots of opportunity for advancement and specialization (which all increase earning potential) with just a little experience or additional education.
Let’s hear from a few Medical Coding and Billing graduates. What do you think of our list? Anything else that should be included?