AAPC Annual Conference Hosts 2,200 Attendees in Seattle

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The AAPC brings latest medical coding and billing education to its members.

The American Academy of Professional Coders hosted its 15th annual conference in Seattle on April 13-18 bringing more than 60 industry expert presenters, 60 educational sessions and many opportunities for networking for medical coders worldwide. The 2,100 plus attendees came from as far as Germany and Johannesburg, South Africa and as close as the conference host city of Seattle.

"Our national conference is an excellent networking and educational opportunity," says Stephanie L. Jones, CPC-EMS, vice president of member services at the AAPC. "We had phenomenal speakers, and our attendees benefited from a tremendous amount of information over a five day period."

During the conference, Cindy Parman, CPC, CPC-H, CPC-P, RCC handed over the presidency of the AAPC's National Advisory Board (NAB) to Deborah Grider, CPC, CPC-H, CPC-P, CCS, CCS-P. Grider's acceptance speech likened the AAPC to a lighthouse, lighting the way for medical coders in the increasingly important industry of medical coding and billing.

Several awards were announced at the awards ceremony on April 17, including the 2006 Local Chapter of the Year awarded to the Loma Linda, California chapter.

LuAnn Jenkins, CPC was awarded as the 2006 Coder of the Year. Jenkins is the president of MedTrust, LLC, a medical reimbursement consulting firm in Lansing, Mich. The 2006 Networker of the Year was awarded to Suzanne Quinton, CPC. Quinton is the owner of Quinton Coding, a consulting firm in Tulsa, Okla.

The conference featured the debut of new specialty exams for coders who desire a master level credential in their specialty. AAPC is offering 15 different specialty exams in 2007 and the first five were beta-tested during the conference. Also announced was the release of 2008 private labeled ICD-9, HCPCS and Procedural Coding Professional books available for pre-order today.

"As a coder in a practice with over 40 surgeons, it was important for me to test for the general surgery specialty credential," said Carmen Saralegui, CPC, of Wichita, Kan. "Our practice tries to stay current with AAPC and coding regulations so we can better educate our surgeons to dictate to the highest level of accuracy and collect as much reimbursement as they deserve."

Coders taking the other specialty exams agreed. "I'm testing for the orthopedic specialty credential because it's important to stay up-to-date on my skills," said Don Reille, CPC, coder at the Ohio Orthopedic Center of Excellence in Upper Arlington, Ohio. "I code for 22 surgeons and there are always new changes that I need to follow."

The AAPC is also hosting five regional conferences between June and October this year, which will take place in Hartford, Conn.; Des Moines, Iowa; Indianapolis, Ind.; Houston, Texas and Atlanta, Ga.

"Our regional conferences will offer the same level of quality entertainment and fun that the national conference has, just on a slightly smaller scale," Jones says. "This way we can reach a greater number of coding."

The AAPC's 16th annual conference is scheduled to be in Orlando, Fla. in June of 2008.

About AAPC:
The American Academy of Professional Coders was founded in 1988 to elevate medical coding standards and the coding profession by providing certification, ongoing education, networking and recognition. Currently, the AAPC has almost 60,000 members worldwide, and more than 44,000 are Certified Professional Coders (CPCs) in the physician, hospital and payer areas.

AAPC Contact Information:
Bevan Erickson, Vice President of eMarketing
2480 South 3850 West, Suite B
Salt Lake City, UT 84120
801-236-2200
http://www.aapc.com/

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