Medical Coding and Billing Organizations
Medical coding and billing play a significant role in the healthcare industry. A lot of organizations provide details to help understand and support the medical billing and coding industry. A few of them are listed here. But, first, let’s see more information about each organization.
The two primary credentialing organizations for medical coding and billing professionals are the AAPC (earlier the American Academy of Professional Coders) and the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). AHIMA certification covers medical coding in clinics, and AAPC certification covers all other parties.
Both the AAPC and AHIMA offer educational resources and programs, including certifications. In addition, both organizations provide network and mentoring opportunities.
AAPC provides education and professional certification to physician-based medical coders and elevates medical coding standards by providing student training, certification, ongoing education, networking, and job opportunities.
AAPC is the world’s most extensive training and credentialing organization for healthcare. Members worldwide work in medical coding, billing, auditing, compliance, clinical documentation improvement, revenue cycle management, and practice management.
Through the career training, continuing education, and networking events of AAPC, they provide countless opportunities for industry professionals to enhance their learning and advance their careers.
The AAPC was founded in 1988 with two goals: providing education and professional certification to medical coders working in physicians’ offices and setting a higher coding standard by adhering to accepted standards.
The AAPC is widely recognized for credentialing both physician- and hospital-based coders and is expanding to offer physician training services to practices and a credential for healthcare attorneys and IT staff. AAPC’s training programs are administered everywhere in the United States.
The organization also offers access to continuing education opportunities and job opportunities. And also, the AAPC has a national convention every year to find educational and networking opportunities. The regional conferences offer the same options and are usually more efficient.
AHIMA is working to develop the implementation of electronic health records (EHRs) by leading key industry leaders and promoting high and uniform standards. In addition, AHIMA stands one step ahead through AHIMA’s authorization of fore-front academic programs and professional development opportunities, including complete continuing learning.
AHIMA’s certifications are primarily focused on medical coders working in clinics. AHIMA Founded in 1928, and its primary goal was to improve the quality of medical documents; today, it continues to attempt for superiority in medical record integrity with the evolution of electronic medical records.
AHIMA is highly respected in the area of clinic and physician coders. The organization offers several training programs, has an annual conference, and conducts workshops lasting several days in various regions. If you wish to be accredited by the AHIMA, you will have access to training and networking opportunities throughout your profession.
Although it offers entry-level credentials, AHIMA doesn’t offer apprentice-level certifications as AAPC does. Instead, AHIMA certifications are designed for those already closely familiar with coding.
The advantages of membership in a medical coding and billing accrediting organization
In today’s world of privacy and compliance concerns, certification is the industry standard. Because certification shows that you are skilled in your area and performed quality medical care by distributing quality information, it’s one of the first qualifications companies look for when examining you as a potential candidate. It’s an asset when you are allocating a salary.
In addition, most billing companies have contracts with their clients that commit them to hire only certified coders.
As a member of one of the two major credentialing organizations —AHIMA or AAPC — you’re confidential to different professional bodies. In addition, both organizations provide various networking opportunities.
Additionally, AAPC members can have discount certification tests, preparation stuff, workshop expenses, and many other products. They also are automatically subscribed to the association’s monthly publication, The Coding Edge, which keeps members up to date on changes and offers continuing education units.
Similarly, AHIMA members enjoy membership bonuses like access to professional publications, discounts on books, and other training opportunities open to members only.
The AAPC and AHIMA aren’t the only organizations for certification for medical coding and billing. Although they are possibly the most well-known, you may discover that your professional goals would be better met by getting certified by another organization or adding certifications from other organizations to your AAPC or AHIMA certifications.
The HBMA is one of the most valuable resources in the health industry. We can ask anything from general questions about coding, research, and billing to the most precise questions related to the medical billing field. HBMA’s professional members assist you any time with their valuable experience. In addition, they can point in the direction of others who have helped on similar topics in the past. All of HBMA’s events and services work together to keep you updated with medical billing professionals.
HBMA was established in 1993 by a core group of people who had a vision of a conference rich in resources to manage their collective efforts towards a highly professional image within the medical community.
The Healthcare Business Management Association (HBMA), a non-profit professional trade association, is a vital choice in the revenue cycle management industry in the United States. HBMA members collectively submit a considerable percentage of all initial medical claims to the country’s governmental and commercial payers. Those claims are usually submitted directly by the provider, not presented by HBMA member companies.
Even though HBMA membership includes some of the nation’s largest medical billing companies (more than 1,000 employees submitting millions of claims), the typical HBMA member is small to a medium-sized business employing, on average, 40 – 50 people. In addition, nearly half of HBMA members have clients in more than one state.
HBMA is a recognized revenue cycle management (RCM) authority by the commercial insurance industry and the governmental agencies that regulate or otherwise affect the U.S. healthcare system.
HBMA values the highest level of professionalism, integrity, and compliant business practices in every part of the healthcare industry.
In 1995, the Medical Association of Billers was the leading training and approving association for medical billing and coding. The MAB schedule has been approved and licensed by the Commission for Post Secondary Education, and MAB is an authorized merchant for Federal Agencies.
MAB partners with other educational and training locations approved to offer the Certified Medical Billing Specialist certification exam as part of their programs to improve certification access to more students.
MAB is committed to the pursuance of excellence in developing medical billing and coding programs centered on the principles of encouragement, excellence, integrity, and service. To achieve this mission, they attempt to balance instructional development, teaching, and service. In addition, they work to provide leadership in partnership with medical communities throughout the country and participate in creating and promoting relevant standards and developing relationships with organizations seeking similar goals.
Nationally Recognized Credentials
The Certified Medical Billing Specialist credential is the oldest billing and coding certification in the country. It is conducted through the Medical Association of Billers (MAB) and attaches to the State of Nevada Commission on Post Secondary Education (CPE) guidelines.
For the past 20 years, the Medical Association of Billers has brought the Certified Medical Billing Specialist (CMBSTM) certification. However, some representative partners have asked for a certificate including medical billing and no coding for people new to medical billing. Because of this reason, they have designed the Certified Medical Records Technician (CMRTTM) certification.
The Professional Association of Healthcare Coding Specialists (PAHCS) is a communications network and member support system that enhances medical care coders’ agreement, documentation, and reimbursement abilities. Through increased knowledge of coding principles, changes in coding policies, and the experiences of fellow coders in resolving coding challenges, PAHCS members assuredly code for maximum and honest reimbursement.
PAHCS is a support organization that operates as a communication network for members. This organization serves primarily as a support system for coders working in medical practice, but membership is open to all coding professionals.
Certification by this organization involves submitting an application and completing a written examination that shows proficiency within the mobile healthcare delivery system. If you’ve been certified by other organizations, you may receive PAHCS certification by showing proof of current certification and paying a membership fee and a processing fee.
6. Board of Medical Specialty Coding and Compliance (BMSC)
BMSC is a bit unfamiliar provider of specialty medical coding certifications and training for coders, compliance officers, and physicians. BMSC certifications include those who work in physician offices, as well as home medical care professionals.
Because the levels of education needed in coding and compliance build from one certification level to another, BMSC certification helps coders and other professionals move up the career ladder.
The BMSC’s certifications include the following:
- Specialty Coding Professional (SCP) and Advanced Coding Specialist (ACS), both of which offer specialty certification in numerous areas
- Certified Compliance Professional-Physician (CCP-P), a certification for compliance professionals in physician offices
- Home Care Coding Specialist-Diagnosis (HCS-D) for home care coders with experience in that area
- Home Care Clinical Specialist-OASIS (HCS-O) for home healthcare clinicians
All the BMSC certifications are directed to those who already have experience in the specified areas. If you need Recertification, you have to take an exam every two years and renew your membership annually.