In these hard economic times, it is good to have access to free educational tools that coders can use to maintain their certification. If you or your coders are certified with the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), there are some helpful avenues to getting free CEUs.
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[Editor’s note: As of 2015, we have confirmed that this offer for free CEUs is not available from the ACR, but directly through the AAPC and CMS. If you would like additional information, you can contact the AAPC directly at http://www.aapc.com or CMS at www.cms.hhs.gov.]
All coders certified through the AAPC will need at least 18 CEUs per year—and more if they also have additional specialty certifications. The AAPC offers free CEUs through their publications, EdgeBlast and Coding Edge. Anyone certified with the AAPC can sign up for these two publications, and there are coding quizzes in these publications that are worth .50 to 1.0 CEUs each.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) also offers opportunities that have been approved by the AAPC to gain CEUs. CMS offers Web-based training for coders to earn educational units. You can find this on the CMS Web site at www.cms.hhs.gov under MLN Products, Web-based training. The CEU’s credits range from 1.0 to 1.50. All that is required of participants is to go through a training session lasting from 60 to 85 minutes, which is followed by a quiz that requires a minimum score of 70% to pass.
For any questions on how to find and access these courses, contact Melesia Tillman, CPC, CRHC, CCP, by phone at (404)633-3777, ext. 820 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last month’s “From the College” (August 2009, p. 13) incorrectly listed Blanche Lincoln as a senator from Arizona; she is a senator from Arkansas. We apologize for this error.
Take your Coding to the Next Level at the Annual Meeting
Coders with sufficient experience and expertise in rheumatology coding are encouraged to sit for the Certified Rheumatology Coding Credential Exam (CRHC).
The CRHC course and examination will be available for physicians and their staff members on Sunday, October 18, from 9 AM to 5 PM during the 2009 ACR/ARHP Annual Scientific Meeting in Philadelphia. This will be an interactive workshop that will highlight real-life rheumatology coding scenarios and prepare participants for the exam.
For more information and to register, visit www.rheumatology.org/annual.