The medical coding CPC certification is an important certification for a medical coder to have. It shows competence, and even excellence, in areas that employers deem important and thus many times they are rewarded with higher pay, a promotion, or both.
The CPC exam is designed to test your skills at a high level. It consists of 150 multiple choice questions which must be completed in five hours and forty minutes. The pure time of the exam is the major cause of failure for many people. Five hours and forty minutes is a long time, yet the major cause of failure is running out of time.
People that do not manage their time properly fail. Without a strategy test takers simply run out of time and resort to guessing on the final thirty to forty questions or, worse yet, do not complete them at all. Either way spells disaster.
The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) are the exam administrators. The current cost is $300 unless you are a member of the AAPC is which case you receive a discount. If you fail the CPC exam you can retake it one time for free. After that you will have to pay an additional examination fee to retake the exam a third or forth time.
Exam takers should study using a practice exam and even put together an exam strategy. This will help settle your nerves and keep you focused on the task at hand. Preparation is the key, but proper preparation is a must. If you just study the codes and terminology you will most likely struggle to succeed.
Time management is what separates the successful from the non successful. The better you manage your time the more efficient you will be and the better your changes of passing. This is counter intuitive as most think just studying the material will get them through… WRONG! You must manage your time properly or you simply will not complete the exam within the required time.
A passing grade is 70%. This is 105 correct answers out of 150. This looks easy but it is not as some questions demand more of your time than others. The more you know about “how” to take the exam the better off you will be.
Concentrate on relaxing your nerves. Breath slowly and evenly. This will help you concentrate. Your mind does not function well when you are under stress. Control your emotions and open up your thought process. Make certain you get a good nights rest. This is not the time for an all night study session. This is more hurtful than helpful. Chances are you know enough correct answers to get your certification, you just need to have a plan and calm your nerves so you can function at your highest level. You can do this!