Coding, Classification & Reimbursement

1.  Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 23 days ago
​Hello!

When taking your Self-Assessment be sure to write down your answers.  If you spend too long researching an answer you will time out and lose all your previous work.  There is no "Save" option available.

I also had some problems with some questions missing certain information that an experienced coder would expect to see.  I will not elaborate here since I would like to start enjoying my Thanksgiving.

This is just one in a series of issues I have had with AHIMA.  In my opinion, a change of leadership should be called for, particularly regarding the coding specialty.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

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Lawrence Barr
President
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2.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 21 days ago
Lawrence,

Sorry to hear that you had some trouble with the CCS annual self- review (self assessment).  AHIMA actually posts all the annual coding self review booklets (CCA, CCS, CCS-P) on the AHIMA recertication webpage.  If you look at the top right side bar, all 2016 and 2017 self reviews are listed.  You are able to download the corresponding self review for your credential and print it out ahead of time.  The 2018 self reviews will also be posted there when it becomes available in spring 2018.  It is recommended that you complete your answers in the booklet ahead of time, and then go to your CEU Center to submit your answers electronically.  For your convience, here are the links to download all 2017 coding self reviews.

2017 Coding Self Reviews


If you completed your self-review through the CEU center and it timed out, you can contact AHIMA customer service to have them reset it for you.  AHIMA customer service has a new chat function and I have heard from other members that this is a more efficient alternative to calling or leaving an email/message.  Regardless, there is no passing score on the annual coding self reviews, and you just have to complete them each year before the due date to maintain your credential.

Of course you want to do the best you can on the self review and the purpose of the self review is to ensure that you are keeping up with changes in guidelines each year and Coding Clinic advice.  Even if you do not have access to Coding Clinic and CPT Assistant, you can usually find information about each question through google searches of AHIMA webinars and coding blogs.  You probably won't find the exact answer for the each question, but you can usually find similar scenarios that help guide you in answering questions on the self-reviews.

Additionally, there have been recent changes to AHIMA leadership with the last AHIMA election and the Board of Directors is currently undergoing a search for a new CEO.  It looks like AHIMA is moving forward in a new direction after ICD-10 implementation and is focusing on CDI, Data Analytics, Health Informatics and Information Governance  This will lead to emerging careers and opportunities for coders and HIM professionals.  As coding transitions to more of an auditing function, AHIMA is focusing on CDI and helping organizations develop best practices for instituting CDI programs in both the inpatient and outpatient setting.

A Clinical Documentation Improvement Engage Community was just launched, so that coders can communicate with one another on issues specifically relating to CDI.  The Coding, Classification, and Reimbursement Community is very active with 10-20 new discussions daily, and hopefully the new CDI community will allow more focused discussions to proliferate.

Let me know if you need any more help with your coding self-review!  


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Kristen Piccirillo, RHIA, CCS, NASM-CPT
Chair Engage Advisory Committee
Engage Community Facilitator
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3.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 20 days ago
Edited by Laurie Zawiskie 20 days ago
Kristen,

I remember you posting this last year, so I printed it this year and it was such a big help.

I went to a recent workshop that also commented on the new fields AHIMA will be focused on in the future. It's still not clear to me why coding seems to be a dying field. Is AHIMA predicting more charts will be coded by computer assisted coding software or that more hospitals will be using overseas coders to reduce cost?

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Laurie Zawiskie
Coder III
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4.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 19 days ago
​Hello!

Based on my current experience with CAC, including Autosuggest, coupled with the current state of EMR's/documentation and certain other major issues, coders should not worry.

I have also been informed that use of "overseas" coders has proven the old adage "you get what you pay for".

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Lawrence Barr
President
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5.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 18 days ago
Edited by Laurie Zawiskie 17 days ago
Lawrence,

I agree with you on both of those points. That's why I don't understand why the coding field is expected to diminish. If there's something I'm missing, I would like clarification on this topic to help me plan for my future.

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Laurie Zawiskie
Coder III
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6.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 18 days ago
I previously worked for a non-profit healthcare organization and about a year ago they contracted out their entire revenue cycle to a for-profit company. This for-profit company has coders in India and from what I have seen it seems they will be hiring only more coders in India and not in the USA. It is sad but true.

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Ashley Sparks
HIM Coding Quality Coordinator
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7.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 18 days ago
Good Morning!
Yes, a very interesting discussion and appreciate AHIMA's presentation of HIMReimagined.  My personal opinion and from working in this market for over 30 years now is that coding will definitely compress greatly over the next 5-10 years.  We have already seen some of this with the development of the CAC, EMR and technology advances for HIM overall.  Will coding completely disappear from the market/jobs?  I do not think so within this time period.  Will it continue to compress, evolve and change into more of an auditor/editor position?  I do think this will be the new face of coding but this is going to take an evolution and time.  I have worked in a couple of the CAC environments and there is a lot of room for improvement here as well as "educating" the artificial intelligence that drives the software.  This also creates positions for skilled HIM professionals with a coding background.  Another thought is that HIM coding professionals will move to positions much like data analysts/technicians or work with data sets in IG.
As technology continues to evolve and new products come on the market our jobs will morph to fit the needs of the industry.  One of the attributes that we need to cultivate as HIM professionals is the ability to be flexible, continue on our paths of lifelong learning and develop your expertise to secure your "seat at the table" for healthcare and be sure that the data that is report is correct for all of our futures.

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Cheryl Bowling
Client Compliance Partner
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8.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 15 days ago
Hi Kristen - this was VERY very nice of you to post.  I am sure there were a lot of people did not know it including me.  Is there other 2016 and 2015 self-reviews posted on AHIMA website?  These are related to the new rule and good questions, I want to practice on them more.
Also, is there a mock CCS exam on AHIMA website?  if so, please give us the link.

Thank you so much!  I am so glad to have you in our group, you post such an informative posts with links etc.
I want to be like you!  One day.....coming soon!!! LOL

Have a productive day!

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Shalini Srivastava
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9.  RE: Write down Your Answers for Self-Assessment

Posted 15 days ago
Your welcome Shalini, glad I could help!

I don't believe AHIMA posts past coding self reviews that are more than 2 years old.  Right now the Re-certification webpage has links to download both the 2016 and 2017 self reviews for each coding credential (2016 coding self reviews were due in March 2017) and even if you don't have to complete each self-review, you could use them for practice.  I would also look up recent coding blogs and webinars, or search the AHIMA store for webinars and seminars that focus on Coding Clinic, CPT Assistant, and changes to guidelines.  The AHA ICD-10 Coding Handbook that is updated each year is a great review to learn the changes in guidelines, as well as AHIMA's Clinical Coding Workout for more practices exercises and case studies.  The newest edition of Clinical Coding Workout is now available with full access to AHIMA VLab which has software and actual medical records that you would see in the real world.

The AHIMA store does have practice exams for the RHIA, RHIT, CCA, CCS, CHDA, and CDIP exams for $49.99.  While these practice exams have less questions and are not all encompassing as the AHIMA prep guides are, I found both the RHIA and CCS practice exams very helpful in determining my readiness for the exams a couple of weeks before my exam date.  I used the practice exams for the AHIMA store as more of a final "mock exam" that prepared me for the format and type of questions I would see on the actual exam.

I have also been recently using the National Government Services      website for Medicare providers and suppliers.  You don't need to have an employer account to access the information and can create a guest account and agree to the terms of use of the website.  This website can provide information about best practices and education for coding, compliance, and the Medicare program.  I have been able to search specifically for Medicare guidance and updates for my state in regards to Medicare Part A and B.  The Medicare Learning Network is also a wonderful tool that has lots of free courses to keep your skills fresh.  You will probably use both of these and other list servs in a professional capacity at some point in your coding and HIM career, so it will benefit you to become familiar with them.

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Kristen Piccirillo, RHIA, CCS, NASM-CPT
Chair Engage Advisory Committee
Engage Community Facilitator
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