Medical Coder Certificate Information Packet

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Thank you for your interest in obtaining information about our program. This guide provides information regarding the Medical Coder Certificate Program.

Education and training is key to becoming a skilled and successful medical coder. The Dallas College School of Health Sciences’ Medical Coder Program is a college credit certificate program consisting of 32 credit hours. It provides training in coding and classification systems, medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, health information systems, legal and ethical standards in health care, as well as reimbursement methodologies

Upon completion of the program, you will have the skills needed to work in entry-level coding positions in a variety of healthcare settings and prepare for the medical coder certification exams. Certification represents your expertise as a coder which can increase your income and job opportunities in the medical coding field.

Medical coding certification exams are administered by American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) and American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). 

Medical coder certifications include Certified Coding Associate (CCA), Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) administered by AHIMA and the Certified Professional Coder (CPC) exam administered by American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).

Equal Educational Opportunity

Educational opportunities are offered by Dallas College without regard to race, color, age, national origin religion sex, disability, or sexual orientation.

DISCLAIMER:

  • The Medical Coder Certificate program does not guarantee job placement in hospitals, medical offices, medical coding and billing offices or other relevant health care settings.
  • Additionally, the program does not prepare students for starting a home/office coding business.

Admission Requirements:

  1. C​omplete application for admission to Dallas College. (available online)
    • Applicants to the Medical Coder Program must meet college admission requirements of Dallas College, as outlined in the college catalog. 
    • ​Applicants must have earned either a high school diploma or General Education Development, GED, certificate.
  2. Submit official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended to the Admissions Office. 
    • Official transcripts must be sent from the applicant’s previous colleges to Admissions/Registrar’s Office
    • All official transcripts from all colleges attended must be submitted PRIOR to applying to the program. Transcripts from Dallas College campuses are not required
  3. Student pursuing this certificate are waived from the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) standards but must meet course prerequisites.
  4. Five-Year Time Limit: Any previous coursework that is being presented for transfer as prerequisite or general support courses for the Medical Coder Certificate Program must have been completed less than five years prior to the start of the class for which you are applying. 
    • No coursework will be accepted from a college outside of the United States. 
    • Dallas College reserves the right to accept or reject any coursework completed at other colleges and/or outside the five year time limit presented for transfer evaluation toward the Medical Coder Program and will be at the discretion of the program coordinator.
  5. Initial Advisement: Students pursuing the Medical Coder Program who are either new to the college experience and/or need assistance with registration for prerequisite courses, should consult an academic advisor located in the Student Services Center, Bldg. S. Contact: Chad Price, senior academic advisor, ceprice@dcccd.edu, 972-860-4923, Advising Center, Building S, Room S106. 
  6. Download the Information Packet. Review the information in the Medical Coder Program information packet in coordination with the online information session.
  7. Complete an online program information session at the college website in its entirety. This is MANDATORY to apply to the School of Health Sciences Medical Coder Program. 
    • At the end of the session, you will be directed to complete a questionnaire over the information provided.
    •  ​An email will be sent to you within 1-2 business days once you have completed the questionnaire to advise you on registration information.
  8. Submit completed program application form in either of the following ways: 
    • Electronically scanned and email to sbaker@dcccd.edu as PDF documents. 
    • Mail it to the following address:
      Dallas College
      Brookhaven Campus​
      School of Health Sciences
      Attention: Sheila K. Baker
      3939 Valley View Lane Farmers Branch, TX 75244
  9. Registration for summer and fall courses begins in mid-April and registration for spring courses begins in mid-November each year. Enrollment is on a first come first serve basis and courses fill up. Early registration is advised.
  10. For successful preparation and future employment in a healthcare setting, you are required to have the following items: 
    • ​​Social Security Number (international students are advised to contact the Dallas College Multicultural Center, Building S, Room S136, concerning this requirement.) 
    • Valid ID with photo
  11. ​If you have any questions or concerns regarding courses for which you should register or would like to meet with an academic advisor to help you register for classes, please contact Chad Price at ceprice@dcccd.edu.
    1. Program Sequence (refer to curriculum below):

      Courses are scheduled in a particular sequence and should be strictly adhered to. Knowledge, skills and practices are developed throughout each course and build upon each other, moving from the simple to the complex.

      • You may enroll in classes either as full time or part time.
      • Prerequisite courses are offered in the fall, summer, and spring semesters. Enrollment is on first come first serve basis, the program typically accepts 18 students each semester.
      • Please check college website for schedule of course offerings each semester.
      • All courses in the curriculum are offered online; On-site courses are offered as needed.
      • The following prerequisite courses must be completed with a “C” or better in each course before enrolling for the HITT 2371 and HITT 1341 courses in the first semester.
        1. POFI 1301 Computer Applications I (please enroll in specific sections listed for the Medical Front Office/Medical Coder programs each semester in the course catalog)
        2. MDCA 1313 Medical Terminology
        3. MDCA 1409 Anatomy and Physiology for Medical Assistants (at the discretion of the Program Coordinator, the combination of SCIT 1407 and SCIT 1408 OR the combination of BIOL 2401 and BIOL 2402 if completed within five years of program start date may be substituted for MDCA 1409)
      • HITT 1301 can be taken along with the prerequisite courses.
      • HITT 1311 and HITT 1253 can be taken along with either Semester I or II courses.
      • Students cannot enroll in HITT 1341 Coding and Classification Systems prior to completing MDCA 1313, and MDCA 1409 with a “C” or better.
      • Students cannot enroll in HITT 1342 Ambulatory Coding prior to completing HITT 1341 with a “C” or better.
      • Students cannot enroll in HITT 2335 Coding and Reimbursement Methodologies prior to completing HITT 1341 and HITT 1342 with a “C” or better.
      • Students cannot enroll in the final capstone course - HITT 2246 Advanced Medical Codingprior to completing HITT 1341 and HITT 1342 with a “C” or better (can be concurrently enrolled in HITT 2335).
      • All courses in the program must be completed with a minimum of “C” to be eligible to enroll in the next classes and to obtain the certificate. If a grade of D or F is earned, the student must schedule an appointment with the program coordinator before enrolling in any additional classes.

      Please note: Advisors will check your academic records for courses you have registered for, and you will be dropped from any class that you have enrolled in prior to meeting the above requirements and course prerequisites.

      Medical Coder Certificate Program

      The Medical Coder Certificate Program is a college credit certificate program consisting of 32 credit hours.

      • Upon program completion, students will have the entry level skills needed for the health information management industry as a medical coder in a variety of health care settings.
      • Successful completion of this Medical Coder certificate program provides a foundation for students to prepare and take the following certification exams:​
      • Certified Professional Coder, CPC, exam administered by AAPC
      • Certified Coding Associate, CCA, exam administered by AHIMA
      • Certified Coding Specialist, CCS, exam administered by AHIMA

      Prerequisites

      Course Pref​​ix

      Course Number

      Course Name

      Credit Hours

      POFI

      1301

      Computer Applications I

      3

      MDCA

      1313

      Medical Terminology

      3

      MDCA

      1409

      Anatomy & Physiology

      4

      Total: 10

      Semester I

      Course Prefix

      Co​urse Number

      Course Name

      Credit Hours

      HITT

      13​01

      Health Data Content & Structure

      3

      HITT

      2371

      Pathophysiology & Pharmacology

      3

      HITT

      1341

      Coding & ​Classification Systems

      ​3

      Total: 9

      Semester II

      Course Prefix

      Course Number

      Course Name

      Credit Hours

      HITT

      1311

      Health I​nformation Systems

      3

      HITT

      1253

      Legal & Ethical Aspects of Information

      2

      HITT

      1342

      Ambulator

      y Coding

      3

      Total: 8

      Semester III

      Course Prefix

      Course Number

      Course Name

      Credit Hours

      HITT

      2335​

      Coding & Reimbursement Methodologies

      3

      HITT

      2246

      Advanced Medical Coding*

      2

      Total: 5

      Program Total: 32

      *HITT 2246 Advanced Medical Coding is the capstone course for this award.

      Estimated Expenses

      • The tuition is charged according to the number of credit hours for which a student enrolls and location of legal residency.
      • Tuition includes textbook costs. These and other feesstated are subject to change.
      • A Tuition Payment Plan option is available through the Dallas College Business Office.

      Tuition and Learning Materials

      Dallas County Resident = $79 per credit hour

      Out-of-County Resident = $135 per credit hour

      Prerequisites, Semesters I, II & III

      Dallas County Resident

      Out-of-County Resident

      Tuition/ Learning Materials (32 credit hours x $79 per credit hour

      Estimated ​Cost

      $2,528

      $4,320

      Financial Aid: Determine financial needs. See financial aid counselor for questions, if needed. Apply early for the next semester! Early application assures availability of funds, if qualified, and allows the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office to prepare a realistic financial aid package. ​

      Financial aid information may be obtained by visiting the Financial Aid page of the Dallas College catalog. Additionally, email questions to FinancialAid@dcccd.edu. Following application submittal, allow an 8-to-10-week period for processing.

      NOTE: Program guidelines are subject to change. Students are advised to obtain the latest program information packet by visiting the Dallas College program website or contacting the program coordinator and/or advisor.

      Medical Coder Certificate Program

      Mission Statement

      Our Mission as the Dallas College Medical Coder Certificate Program in the School of Health Sciences is to provide a high-quality education and skills in a respectful and inclusive environment that builds a foundation for a successful career in Medical Coding.

      Program Objectives

      1. Equip students with the sound knowledge of accurately assigning ICD-10-CM/PCS, CPT and HCPCS codes for diagnoses, procedures, and services according to coding guidelines.
      1. Prepare students for successful completion of the CCA, CCS or CPC certification exam administered by American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) or American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).
      1. Instill the proficient application of coding guidelines, coding software and other medical coding resources that will contribute to successful placement as an entry-level medical coder.
      1. Develop students into medical coders with the ability to effectively communicate, establish relationships and be active contributors to the Health Information Management industry.

      The Medical Coder certificate program is conducted by the Dallas College School of Health Sciences as a contribution to the health education needs of the community it serves.