Why you need a Certified Rheumatology Coder

Because rheumatology medical coding standards have become increasingly complex and ever changing, a recommended best practice is for coders to be certified in rheumatology coding. According to Kathy Rock PT, MBA, CHCA, CRHC, CPC, CHC, AAPC-CRHC certification allows you to validate your proficiency in the correct application of CPT®, HCPCS Level II procedure and ICD-10-CM diagnosis codes used for coding and billing for medical claims in a physician’s office.  “The Certified Rheumatology Coder (CRHC™) is appropriate for coders with sufficient experience and expertise in rheumatology coding.” (AAPC website)

According to Kathy Rock, 3 reasons why you should have a certified coder in your office are:

  1. Earning the designation of a Certified Rheumatology Coder enable coders to demonstrate competency in superior knowledge of Rheumatology coding.
  2. As a Certified Rheumatology Coder, the practice will have an in house expert to assist with coding of difficult procedures, new services as well as train staff on new coding guidelines.
  3. Through collaboration with providers, the Certified Rheumatology Coder can ensure the coding accurately reflects the services rendered and the work performed.

NORM is upholding its mission to provide educational opportunities and expertise by once again hosting the CRHC Certification Exam from 9:30am to 3:30pm on Thursday, September 14. To support our members and their staff NORM provides a stipend that covers the following items.

  • AAPC Test and Study Guide
  • 2 nights at host hotel
  • Nine and a half hours of exam review sessions via webinar throughout the summer
  • Six hour review session
  • Study and audit tools to prepare for the exam

What do you have to provide? The practice or participants will need to pay AAPC dues and transportation to Kansas City. If the participant is a staff member and not a NORM member and wishes to stay for the conference, NORM is also offering as an option.

To maintain your certification you must earn 36 with 8 Rheumatology specific number of AAPC approved CEUs every two years. To assist you in gaining the required CEUs, NORM provides 6 or more AAPC CEU rheumatology specific approved webinars each year.

NORM members, please login to the members’ portal to learn more and to apply for the NORM stipend. If you are not a member of NORM, it is time to join this diverse community of rheumatology managers and administrators with a common goal of enhancing their practice and advocating for their patients access to care. We look forward to seeing you in Kansas City!

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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