CCA: CERTIFIED CODING ASSOCIATE
Q: Why has AHIMA created this credential?
A: AHIMA recognizes that the demand for coders has never
been greater and this need is expected to continue for
some years to come. By creating an entry-level coding credential
based on job analysis standards and state-of-the-art test
construction, AHIMA aims to increase the number of qualified
new coders. The result? A larger pool of qualified coders
for employers to choose from; greater success in managing
health information; and recognition for AHIMA members as
industry experts and leaders in clinical
Q: Why does a new
coder need the CCA?
A: New coders who earn the CCA will immediately demonstrate
their competency in the field, even if they do not
have much job experience. Earning a CCA demonstrates a
commitment to coding even for those who are new in the
field. CCA holders will also distinguish themselves from
non-credentialed coders and those who hold credentials
from other organizations that do not require the higher
level of expertise necessary to earn AHIMA certification.
Q: How does the CCA compare to the CCS and CCS-P?
A: The CCA should be viewed as the starting point for
an individual entering a new career as a coder. The CCS
CCS-P exams demonstrate the mastery level skills that the CCA
would strive for to advance his or her career.
Q: How does the CCA compare to the RHIA and RHIT
A: CCA holders will have demonstrated only their knowledge
related to coding. In contrast, RHIA or RHIT holders (who
must hold a baccalaureate or associate degree, respectively)
have demonstrated their expertise in a full range of HIM
areas from data management, privacy, compliance, and other
supervisory and managerial roles as well as coding.
CPC: CERTIFIED PROFESSIONAL CODER
Q: What is a Certified Professional Coder?
A: A Certified Professional Coder (CPC) is an individual
of high professional integrity who has passed a coding
certification examination sponsored by the American Academy
of Professional Coders (the Academy). The examination consists
of questions regarding the correct application of CPT®,
HCPCS procedure and supply codes and ICD-10-CM diagnosis
codes used for billing professional medical services to
insurance companies. A CPC must have at least two years
coding experience and maintain yearly CEU requirements.
The need for skilled personnel in the field has grown
significantly with the expanding needs for information.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employment is expected to grow faster than average for HIM Professionals. The mean annual wage for HIM Professionals is $25,000 - $30,000.
American Health Information Management Association
Outlook Handbook: Health Information Technicians
Information packets containing the information on these
pages can be downloaded at this site, or copies of the
necessary documents may be requested at
If you have any additional questions, please call Terry Eusebio in the Counseling Center (757) 822-7211, or attend
the Health Information Management "Open House" which is
held on the third Thursday of each month from 1:00 p.m.
- 2:00 p.m. in the Regional Health Professions Center, Building M, Room 312 on the Virginia
Beach Campus. The program director will be
available to answer
any questions you may have concerning the Health Information Management Program.