Alicia: OK. We're going to go ahead and jump in with our slides. The first one was pretty interesting.
Q: She says, "I am just about to finish the Medical Billing and Coding training program at a local technology center. What credential should I look at obtaining first?"
A: First of all, congratulations! That's great that you are about to complete that. There are two main groups that you can go to for credentialing for coding: the AAPC is one we talked about quite a bit, but AHIMA is equally as good as the AAPC. The AAPC is geared a little bit more towards the physician-based coder, and the AAPC has a lot of specialty credentials. AHIMA is known for doing inpatient coding and they have been around since the 1920s, and the AAPC has been around since I think the early 80s. Both are equal in number of members, and maybe the AAPC has a little bit more now, I'm not sure. Last I heard they were getting a little bit more. But both of those websites, the AAPC.com or AHIMA.org are excellent organizations to get certification in.
If you go to the AAPC, the basic certification is the CPC and that Certified Professional Coder. You can also get their new Certified Professional Biller (CPB) that if you went through that program for coding and billing, some people just really enjoy billing, and now you can get certified in that. And we're working on getting this for us as well, getting a CPB course started and it's almost ready to go.