Article

Top 10 Billing Specialist Certifications

This article provides an overview of the top certifications for billing specialists to consider in order to advance their careers.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 17 min read

Certifications are important for a billing specialist in the job market because they demonstrate their knowledge and competency in the field. Having certifications can help a billing specialist stand out in the job market because it shows employers that they have taken the initiative to become educated and trained in the area of billing. Certifications also show employers that a billing specialist has kept up with new industry trends and standards, which can give them an edge over other candidates who do not possess certifications. Furthermore, many employers prefer to hire individuals who are certified in their field due to the assurance of quality work and customer service that comes with having such qualifications.

The purpose of this article is to review some of the top certifications for Billing Specialists and explain how they can help to advance a billing specialist's career.

What are Billing Specialist Certifications?

Billing specialist certification is a professional credential that demonstrates knowledge and proficiency of billing and accounting procedures. It is typically earned by completing a course or program that covers the fundamentals of billing, collections, accounts receivable, and other related topics. This certification can be beneficial for individuals looking to pursue a career in the field of billing or those already employed as billing specialists who want to increase their knowledge and stay up-to-date on industry standards.

Having this certification can help individuals demonstrate their commitment to excellence in the field and make them more attractive job candidates. It also serves as proof of expertise in the area of billing, which can help employers feel more confident when hiring new staff members. Earning this credential may also lead to higher salaries, bonuses, promotions, and other career opportunities. In addition, having this certification can help individuals network with other professionals in the field which may lead to new job prospects or business opportunities.

Pro Tip: If you're looking to become a certified billing specialist, consider taking an accredited online course. These courses offer comprehensive training in the latest billing practices and can provide you with the necessary skills needed to successfully manage your company's billing needs. Additionally, many of these courses are self-paced and can be completed at your own convenience, allowing you to get certified without having to take time away from your current job.

Related: What does a Billing Specialist do?

Top 10 Billing Specialist Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Billing Specialists today.

1. Certified Medical Billing and Coding Specialist (CMBCS)

A Certified Medical Billing and Coding Specialist (CMBCS) is a professional who is responsible for the accurate coding of medical services and procedures. This includes assigning codes to diagnoses, treatments, and other medical services in order to ensure that insurance companies receive accurate information when processing claims. The CMBCS must be knowledgeable of all current coding systems and regulations in order to accurately code claims.

In order to become a CMBCS, an individual must complete a certification program that typically takes between 6-12 months to complete depending on the program. These programs are offered by various accredited organizations such as the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) or the National Healthcareer Association (NHA). Most programs require completion of courses in medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, pathology, ICD-10 coding systems, CPT coding systems, HCPCS Level II coding systems, as well as other related topics.

The cost of these certification programs can vary depending on the organization offering them; however most range from $1,000-$2,000 for the entire program. Once completed and passed with a passing grade, individuals will receive their certification which is valid for two years before needing renewal.

2. Certified Professional Biller (CPB)

Certified Professional Biller (CPB) is a credential offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). The CPB credential is designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated a high level of proficiency in medical billing and coding. This certification proves that an individual has the knowledge and skills necessary to accurately code and bill for healthcare services.

To obtain the CPB credential, applicants must pass a comprehensive exam that covers topics such as medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, reimbursement methodologies, compliance regulations, and software applications. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and takes approximately three hours to complete.

In order to be eligible to take the exam, applicants must have at least two years of professional experience in medical coding or billing; however, those with less than two years of experience may qualify if they have completed an AAPC-approved training program or course.

The cost for the CPB exam is $299 for members of the AAPC and $399 for non-members. After passing the exam, there is an annual fee of $50 to maintain the certification status.

3. Certified Medical Reimbursement Specialist (CMRS)

A Certified Medical Reimbursement Specialist (CMRS) is a professional credential that indicates expertise in medical reimbursement and billing. It is offered by the American Medical Billing Association (AMBA). The CMRS certification demonstrates mastery of the knowledge and skills required to effectively manage revenue cycle operations in healthcare settings.

It takes approximately six months to prepare for and take the CMRS exam. Preparation may include self-study, attending classes or seminars, or working with a mentor. The exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within three hours.

To become certified, you must meet certain eligibility requirements including being 18 years old or older, having at least two years of experience in medical reimbursement or billing, and completing an application form with the AMBA. After submitting your application, you will receive an authorization letter from AMBA containing instructions on how to register for the exam.

The cost of taking the CMRS exam is $299 USD plus applicable taxes. This fee includes access to online study materials and a practice test as well as one attempt at the actual exam.

4. Certified Healthcare Financial Professional (CHFP)

The Certified Healthcare Financial Professional (CHFP) is a professional credential designed to recognize individuals who have demonstrated expertise in healthcare financial management. The CHFP credential is awarded by the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA), a leading professional organization for healthcare finance professionals.

To obtain the CHFP credential, applicants must meet certain educational and experience requirements and pass an examination. Applicants must have at least three years of full-time work experience in healthcare finance or related areas, or two years of full-time work experience plus a bachelor’s degree in business or accounting. They must also complete an approved HFMA course in healthcare financial management and pass the CHFP examination.

The CHFP exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as financial reporting, budgeting, reimbursement systems, cost accounting, managed care, and legal/regulatory issues. The exam takes approximately four hours to complete and costs $495 for HFMA members ($595 for non-members).

Once an individual has passed the CHFP examination, they will receive their official certification from HFMA. The certification is valid for three years; after that time, individuals must recertify by completing continuing education activities or retaking the exam.

5. Certified Revenue Cycle Representative (CRCR)

A Certified Revenue Cycle Representative (CRCR) is a professional certification for individuals who work in the healthcare revenue cycle. A CRCR is responsible for managing and optimizing the financial performance of a healthcare organization by ensuring that all patient accounts are accurately billed, collected, and managed in accordance with applicable regulations and industry standards.

The CRCR certification is offered through the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). To become certified, applicants must have at least two years of experience in the healthcare revenue cycle, pass an exam, and complete continuing education requirements. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as medical coding, billing, collections, reimbursement methodologies, compliance laws and regulations, health information management systems, and more.

It typically takes about 3-6 months to prepare for the CRCR exam. During this time you should review relevant material related to the healthcare revenue cycle and practice taking sample exams. You can also enroll in an online course or attend a live seminar to help you better understand the material.

The cost of becoming a CRCR varies depending on your chosen preparation materials. The exam fee itself is $399 USD if you are an AAPC member or $499 USD if you are not a member. Additionally, some courses or seminars may require additional fees for registration or materials.

6. American Academy of Professional Coders Certification (AAPC)

The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) is a professional organization that provides educational resources, certifications, and networking opportunities to medical coders. The AAPC offers several different certifications for medical coding professionals, including Certified Professional Coder (CPC), Certified Professional Coder-Payer (CPC-P), Certified Outpatient Coding (COC), and Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC).

It typically takes around 3 months to prepare for the AAPC certification exam. The preparation process includes studying the official AAPC coding books, taking practice exams, and attending an AAPC approved training course.

To get certified by the AAPC, you must first become a member of the organization. Once you are a member, you can register for the certification exam online at www.aapc.com/certification/. The cost of membership is $99 per year and the cost of the certification exam is $399. After passing the exam, you will receive your official certificate from the AAPC.

7. Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS)

A Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS) is a professional who has been certified by the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) to demonstrate proficiency in the implementation, management, and maintenance of electronic health records (EHRs). The CEHRS certification is designed to recognize individuals who have the knowledge and skills necessary to properly use EHRs in a healthcare setting.

The CEHRS certification requires that applicants pass an exam that covers topics such as EHR systems, data security, privacy regulations, and patient safety. The exam consists of 125 multiple-choice questions and takes approximately 3 hours to complete.

To become certified as a CEHRS, applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements. These include having a high school diploma or equivalent, completing an approved training program or having at least two years of experience working with EHRs in a healthcare setting. Applicants must also pass the NHA’s CEHRS exam with a score of 70% or higher.

The cost for taking the CEHRS exam varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it costs between $200-$400 USD.

8. Healthcare Financial Management Association Certification (HFMA)

The Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) is a professional organization that provides certification for healthcare financial management professionals. The HFMA Certification Program is designed to recognize individuals who have met the highest standards in their field and demonstrate a commitment to excellence in healthcare finance.

To obtain the HFMA certification, applicants must first complete an online application and pass an exam. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and takes approximately three hours to complete. Applicants must also have at least three years of experience in healthcare finance or related fields, such as accounting or auditing.

Once the applicant has successfully passed the exam, they will receive their certification from the HFMA. The certification is valid for two years and can be renewed by completing continuing education credits or taking additional exams.

The cost of obtaining the HFMA certification varies depending on whether you are a member of the HFMA or not. For non-members, the cost is $395 for the initial application fee and $195 for each renewal period. For members, the cost is $295 for the initial application fee and $95 for each renewal period.

9. National Healthcareer Association Coding Certification (NHA-CCS)

The National Healthcareer Association Coding Certification (NHA-CCS) is a nationally recognized credential that validates an individual’s knowledge and skills in medical coding. It is designed to assess the ability of the candidate to accurately assign codes for diagnosis, procedures, and services provided by healthcare providers.

In order to obtain the NHA-CCS certification, applicants must pass a comprehensive exam that covers topics such as anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, coding systems, reimbursement methodologies, and compliance regulations. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and has a three-hour time limit.

To be eligible to take the NHA-CCS exam, applicants must have either completed an accredited health information technology program or have at least one year of experience in medical coding. In addition, all applicants must submit proof of completion of either an approved training program or coursework in medical coding.

The cost for taking the NHA-CCS exam varies depending on where you take it. Generally speaking, it costs around $200 for members of the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) and $300 for nonmembers.

Once you have passed the exam, you will receive your official certification from the NHA within four weeks after passing the test. The certification is valid for two years from the date it was issued. After two years has passed, you will need to renew your certification by passing another exam or completing continuing education credits.

10. American Health Information Management Association Coding Certification (AHIMA-CCS).

The American Health Information Management Association Coding Certification (AHIMA-CCS) is a professional credential for individuals who work in the field of medical coding. This certification is designed to demonstrate a mastery of the skills and knowledge necessary to accurately assign codes for diagnoses, procedures, and services related to patient care.

To become certified, applicants must pass an examination that covers topics such as anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, medical terminology, ICD-10-CM/PCS coding systems, reimbursement methodologies, legal aspects of coding and data quality initiatives. The exam consists of 150 multiple choice questions and takes approximately 4 hours to complete.

In order to be eligible to take the exam, applicants must have at least two years of experience in medical coding or have completed an AHIMA approved program in medical coding. Applicants must also submit proof of their education and work experience along with the application fee.

The cost for the AHIMA-CCS exam is $399 USD plus any applicable taxes. The cost includes access to study materials such as practice tests and webinars. Once an applicant has successfully passed the exam they will receive their certification within 6 weeks.

The AHIMA-CCS certification is valid for five years from the date it was issued and can be renewed by completing continuing education units (CEUs). CEUs are earned through activities such as attending conferences or taking courses related to health information management.

Do You Really Need a Billing Specialist Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on a variety of factors, such as the job market in your area, the type of billing work you are interested in doing, and your current experience level. Having a Billing Specialist Certificate can certainly give you an advantage when it comes to finding and securing a job as a billing specialist or even advancing your career in the field.

Having a certificate will demonstrate that you have taken the time to learn about specific billing processes, which can be beneficial if you are looking for entry-level positions or are trying to switch careers. It can also show potential employers that you are dedicated to staying up-to-date with the latest technologies and trends in the field.

Additionally, having a certificate will provide more opportunities for continuing education and professional development, which is essential for staying competitive in any field. A certification can also help demonstrate your commitment and dedication to being knowledgeable about best practices and regulations related to billing processes.

In conclusion, whether or not you need a Billing Specialist Certificate will depend on your individual circumstances. However, having one could offer many advantages that could benefit you both now and in the future.

Related: Billing Specialist Resume Examples

FAQs About Billing Specialist Certifications

Q1. What is a Billing Specialist Certification?

A1. A Billing Specialist Certification is a professional certification that demonstrates expertise in billing processes, accounts receivable and accounts payable management, financial reporting and other related areas. It validates an individual’s knowledge and skillset as a billing specialist.

Q2. How do I obtain a Billing Specialist Certification?

A2. To obtain a Billing Specialist Certification, you must complete the relevant educational requirements and pass the relevant examination from one of the approved certification bodies, such as AAPC or AHIMA.

Q3. What are the benefits of obtaining a Billing Specialist Certification?

A3. Obtaining a Billing Specialist Certification can help you advance your career by providing employers with evidence of your expertise in billing processes and financial management, increasing your marketability for jobs in this field. Additionally, having a certification may also lead to higher wages and better job opportunities in the long run.

Q4. How much does it cost to obtain a Billing Specialist Certification?

A4. The cost to obtain a Billing Specialist Certification varies depending on which organization you choose to certify through (e.g., AAPC or AHIMA). Generally speaking, the cost ranges from $500-$1000 USD, including registration fees and exam costs.

Q5: How often do I need to renew my Billing Specialist Certification?

A5: Most certifications require renewal every two years in order to remain valid; however, this depends on the specific organization you certified through (e.g., AAPC or AHIMA). Renewal may involve completing continuing education requirements or taking additional exams in order to maintain your certification status