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Difference Between AHIMA and AAPC

AHIMA vs AAPC

Medical coding is a very lucrative career nowadays because of the connectivity offered by local area networks and the Internet. In the past, medical personnel have relied on written records as the only way to store medical data. Thanks to technology, medical data can easily be coded into spreadsheets, which makes it easier for medical personnel to store and access relevant medical data. It is the medical coder’s job to input medical data, and at times be able to transcribe and interpret real-time medical data. Once medical data is coded, medical personnel would find it easier to locate the health profile of a certain patient, get to know drugs used in a certain treatment, or refer to a particular case study. Thanks to medical coders, medical personnel such as doctors and nurses can easily get hold of data by accessing the medical database. Medical coders can work in a variety of settings, such as hospitals, clinics, and company offices. Because of the internet, some medical coders can even work from home. The raw data is sent to them via e-mail, and they encode the data on an online spreadsheet. In this way, medical coders can work at any given time and place, enabling medical personnel to get the data they need as soon as possible.

Those familiar with medical coding have most likely heard of the AHIMA and the AAPC. However, people who aren’t familiar with these terms easily mistake these two abbreviations as minor medical organizations, or worse, types of medicines or diseases. The AHIMA and AAPC determine the AHIMA stands for American Health Information Management Association, while AAPC is also known as the American Academy of Professional Coders. Both organizations provide certification for would-be medical coders, who have to undergo a lot of training before they get accepted in the medical field.

The AHIMA was founded in 1928, and has since then provided for CCA, CCS, RHIA, and RHIT credentials. These credentials, collectively termed as CCS, are focused on mastery of in- and out-patient coding. The AHIMA also provides credentials on records management. The AAPC, on the other hand, certifies prospective medical coders for outpatient coding. The AAPC is also recognized at the main source of CPC credentials since 1988. CPC credentials allow a medical coder to handle data on physician services, outpatient claims, and to adjudicate physician claims.

Both organizations have more or less fifty thousand members. However, before a would-be medical coder takes the certification exam, he should first consider what type of credentials are required for his future career. For example, if the medical coder would like to work in a particular clinic, physicians’ group, or insurance company, he should first inquire whether they require CCS or CPC credentials. If the employer is looking for CCS credentials, then the would-be medical coder should take the AHIMA certification exam. On the other hand, if the employer prefers CPC credentials, the would-be medical coder should seek certification from the AAPC.

Summary
1. Medical coding is a popular employment option nowadays because of internet connectivity.
2. There are two organizations which provide certification for would-be medical coders: the AHIMA and the AAPC.
3. AHIMA stands for American Health Information Management Association, while AAPC is also known as the American Academy of Professional Coders. The AHIMA provides certification for are focused on mastery of in- and out-patient coding. The AAPC, on the other hand, certifies prospective medical coders for outpatient coding and CPC credentials. This allows a medical coder to handle data on physician services, outpatient claims, and to adjudicate physician claims.
4. A medical coder should first consider the requirements of his future employer before seeking for certification from either organization.


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2 Comments

  1. Thanks for the blog post.Many thanks. Awesome.

  2. Thank you for providing information on the difference between AHIMA and
    AAPC

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