Diamond Bar, CA (PRWEB) September 8, 2004
One of the most difficult aspects of healthcare is keeping hospitals, clinics and emergency rooms afloat amidst increasing medical costs and patient needs. In Los Angeles County alone, 9 emergency rooms have closed in the last 14 months. Los Angeles County Public Health Department closed 13 public health clinics prior to these ER closures. When Healthcare facilities move out of the community, everyone suffers. However, new career opportunities for Registered Nurses are changing this trend, putting hospitals back into the black. Record number of senior-level RNs are returning to healthcare jobs working as ÂRN-CodersÂ and ÂRN-AuditorsÂ resulting in immediate reimbursements for hospitals and less out-of-pocket expenses for patients.
ÂCodingÂ is the translation of medical terms, procedures and diagnoses into procedural and diagnostic codes. These codes, developed by the American Medical Association (Current Procedural Terminology) and the International Classification of Disease-9th edition, updated by the Department of Health and Human Services, are required by HIPAA. Only through these essential codes can hospitals, physicians and other healthcare providers obtain payment for services rendered.
ÂSince Medicare altered the way it pays for all outpatient services in August 2000, it has become clear that many hospitals have not implemented coding compliance programs, resulting in poor reimbursements, fraud cases, and hospital closures,Â states Joyce Thomas, Executive Director of the American Association of Clinical Coders & Auditors. Previously, all coding was undertaken by the clinically untrained clerical staff. ÂAACCA certifies RNs and other clinical personnel in coding and chart audit activities,Â Thomas continues, Âgiving hospitals and medical groups competent personnelÂ which results in Âa 30% - 40% increase in reimbursements to hospitals in a short time, Â concludes Hilary Falconer, a senior nurse manager responsible for chart audits and a member of the AACCA Board of Directors.
It is a proven fact that Âwhen hospitals and physicians work with RN-Coders to produce quality documentation and coding, correct and expedient reimbursement will result,Â Thomas emphasized. ÂThese new opportunities for senior-level RNs re-entering hospitals will ensure hospitals get paid correctly the first time around.Â
About American Association of Clinical Coders & Auditors, (AACCA)
American Association of Clinical Coders & Auditors is a non-profit, 501(c)3 educational organization. AACCA is currently the only organization to certify clinical personnel in coding and auditing. AACCA also launched the nationÂs first computer-based examination for coding certification last year and has certified over 150 RNs, MDs, Physical Therapists, and other clinical personnel in coding.
Joyce L. Thomas, MHA, Executive Director
3233 Grand Avenue #N291
Chino Hills, CA 91709
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