I started my career as a teacher and coach at the junior high school level, before deciding to change careers to healthcare. My first job was billing and collections for the ophthalmology department of a medical school. They hired me because I had a college degree, but I admit I wasn't exactly sure what billing and collections involved.
I owe a great deal of my career advancement to AAHAM certification and networking
Very shortly after I got involved with AAHAM, and became active in the Illinois chapter. The educational opportunities were fantastic. The best part was the networking. I met and exchanged business cards with so many people I could call to get a fresh perspective on issues in the industry outside of the people in my organization.
At first, the AAHAM certification scared me, because I was new to the healthcare arena. Once I studied and took the exam, I gained so much additional knowledge. It gave me a boost my career knowing that I really knew what I was talking about.
I was able to attain the position of Executive Director of Revenue Cycle. I owe a great deal of my career advancement to AAHAM - its certification and the ability to network with people who have the same issues.
When physicians ask me why they should encourage their staff to join AAHAM, I emphasize the networking. For example, if the doctor starts doing a new procedure, will the staff know how to code it and how to get the maximum reimbursement? As AAHAM members, they can pick up the phone and talk to people who have the answers.