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how to become a medical coder

The length of time it takes for your training depends on a number of factors, including if you are going to do online classes or actual classroom learning, whether or not you are looking for a certification or a degree, and if you want physician-based coding or facility-based coding. Each mode of learning has its own separate set of costs and timelines for course completion.

The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) offers a CPC Preparation Course for physician-based coding and has an online certification program that can be completed in as little as four months for about $1,500. The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) is for facility-based coding and has both a certification program and a degree program. AHIMA’s online Coding Basics Program is self-paced, but can be completed in about 15 months.