Top 10 Medical Information Specialist Certifications
This article provides an overview of the top certifications available for medical information specialists.
Published 17 min read
Certifications are important for medical information specialists in the job market because they demonstrate to potential employers and clients that the specialist has a high level of knowledge, skill, and expertise in their field. Certification also serves as a signal of competence and commitment to professional development, which can set the specialist apart from other candidates. Certifications can also give medical information specialists access to higher-level job opportunities, such as management or consulting roles. Having certifications also shows potential employers that the specialist is serious about their profession and will take the necessary steps to stay up-to-date on industry trends and regulations.
This article reviews the top certifications for Medical Information Specialists, and explains how they can help to advance their career.
What are Medical Information Specialist Certifications?
Medical information specialist certification is an industry credential that demonstrates a medical professional’s proficiency in managing and analyzing medical data. This certification is obtained through the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), which is a leading healthcare organization that sets standards for health information professionals.
The certification requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in areas such as clinical coding, health data analysis, legal and regulatory issues related to health information, healthcare reimbursement, and healthcare technology. By obtaining this certification, medical professionals can demonstrate their expertise in these areas and gain recognition from employers and clients alike.
Having a medical information specialist certification can give professionals an edge when it comes to job opportunities. Medical personnel with this credential are often better positioned for higher-level positions within the industry, as they have demonstrated competency in managing and analyzing complex medical data. Furthermore, having this certification can help increase one’s salary potential due to the increased demand for certified health information management specialists.
Overall, medical information specialist certifications can be beneficial for those looking to advance their careers within the healthcare field by demonstrating their proficiency in handling medical data. With its rigorous requirements and recognition from employers and clients alike, this credential can help propel a career forward.
Pro Tip: When pursuing medical information specialist certification, be sure to research the various certifications available and select the one that best fits your career goals. Additionally, make sure to become familiar with any prerequisites for certification such as educational requirements and experience in the field. Lastly, consider taking courses or workshops that may help you prepare for the certification exam.
Related: What does a Medical Information Specialist do?
Top 10 Medical Information Specialist Certifications
Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Medical Information Specialists today.
1. Certified Medical Information Specialist (CMIS)
A Certified Medical Information Specialist (CMIS) is a professional who specializes in the management and analysis of medical information. They are responsible for collecting, organizing, and maintaining patient records, as well as verifying the accuracy of medical data. CMIS professionals may also be involved in developing new systems and processes to improve the quality of healthcare delivery.
To become a CMIS, individuals must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent and complete an accredited certification program. The certification program typically takes between six months and one year to complete. It involves courses in medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, coding systems, health insurance regulations, HIPAA compliance, medical recordkeeping procedures, computer applications for healthcare administration and more.
The cost of obtaining a CMIS certification varies depending on the institution offering the program. Generally speaking, most programs range from $2,000 to $4,000 USD.
2. Certified Health Information Technology Professional (CHITP)
Certified Health Information Technology Professional (CHITP) is a professional certification program offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). This certification demonstrates an individual’s expertise in health information technology, including electronic health records, data management, and healthcare privacy and security.
To become certified as a CHITP, individuals must have at least two years of experience working with health information technology systems or have completed an AHIMA-approved educational program. The certification exam consists of multiple-choice questions that cover topics such as health information management principles, healthcare data standards, and healthcare privacy and security laws.
The cost for the CHITP exam varies depending on whether you are taking it for the first time or retaking it. The cost for the first time exam is $350 USD plus applicable taxes; the cost for a retake is $150 USD plus applicable taxes.
The CHITP exam takes approximately three hours to complete. After completing the exam, applicants will receive their results within two weeks.
3. Certified Healthcare Information and Management Systems Professional (CHIMSP)
Certified Healthcare Information and Management Systems Professional (CHIMSP) is a certification program offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). This certification is designed to recognize professionals who have demonstrated expertise in healthcare information management systems.
The CHIMSP certification requires applicants to pass an exam that covers topics such as healthcare data management, electronic health records, and health information technology. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within two hours.
In order to take the exam, applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements, including having a minimum of three years of full-time experience in healthcare information management or a related field. Additionally, applicants must complete an application process with AHIMA and pay a fee of $395.
Once the exam is successfully completed, applicants will receive their CHIMSP certification from AHIMA. This certification is valid for five years before it needs to be renewed. Renewal requires completion of continuing education courses and payment of an additional fee.
4. Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS)
A Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS) is a professional who has been trained to implement and maintain electronic health record systems. This certification is offered through the National Healthcareer Association (NHA). It requires passing an exam that covers topics such as data integrity, privacy and security, system implementation, and more.
The CEHRS certification process typically takes 6-8 weeks from start to finish. To get certified, you must first register for the NHA exam. You will then need to complete a training program that covers the material covered in the exam. After completing the training program, you can take the exam at an approved testing center.
The cost of getting certified varies depending on where you take your training and how long it takes you to complete it. Generally speaking, it costs between $500-$1,000 for the training program and $200-$300 for the exam itself.
Once you pass the exam, you will be issued a CEHRS certificate that is valid for two years. You must renew your certification every two years by taking another NHA-approved course or by retaking the original certification exam.
5. Certified in Healthcare Privacy and Security (CHPS)
Certified in Healthcare Privacy and Security (CHPS) is a professional certification program designed to recognize healthcare professionals who have demonstrated expertise in the area of privacy and security of health information. It is administered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).
The CHPS certification requires applicants to complete a three-part exam that covers topics such as privacy and security regulations, risk management, data integrity, data access controls, and incident response. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions and takes approximately four hours to complete.
To be eligible for the CHPS certification, applicants must have at least two years of experience working with healthcare information systems or related fields. Applicants must also meet certain educational requirements such as having an associate’s degree or higher in healthcare information technology or a related field.
The cost for the CHPS certification is $395 USD plus any applicable taxes. This fee includes all study materials and access to online resources needed to prepare for the exam.
6. Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA)
A Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) is a professional who specializes in managing patient health information and medical records. They are responsible for ensuring the accuracy, security, and confidentiality of all health information. To become an RHIA, individuals must complete a bachelor’s degree in health information management or related field and pass the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) certification exam.
The AHIMA certification exam typically takes about three hours to complete and covers topics such as medical terminology, coding systems, data analysis, legal issues, healthcare reimbursement methods, and more. The cost of the exam varies depending on which state you live in; typically it costs between $200-$400.
In order to maintain their RHIA certification status, individuals must complete continuing education requirements every two years. This includes completing at least 20 hours of approved continuing education credits during each two-year period.
7. Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ)
Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ) is an internationally recognized certification that recognizes healthcare professionals who have demonstrated knowledge and expertise in the field of healthcare quality. The CPHQ certification is offered by the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ).
The CPHQ certification requires passing a comprehensive exam that tests knowledge of healthcare quality principles and practices. The exam consists of 200 multiple-choice questions and takes approximately four hours to complete. It covers topics such as quality management, performance improvement, risk management, patient safety, data analysis and reporting, accreditation standards, regulatory compliance, and healthcare economics.
To be eligible to take the CPHQ exam, applicants must meet certain educational or experience requirements. Applicants must either have a Bachelor’s degree in a health-related field or at least three years of full-time experience in a healthcare quality position within the past five years.
The cost of taking the CPHQ exam varies depending on whether you are a member of NAHQ or not. For non-members, the cost is $450 USD; for members it is $350 USD. In addition to this fee, there may also be additional fees if you choose to use any study materials or other resources provided by NAHQ.
Once you pass the exam, your certification will be valid for three years before needing to be renewed. Renewal requires continuing education credits or retaking the exam every three years.
8. Certified Medical Coding Specialist (CMCS)
A Certified Medical Coding Specialist (CMCS) is a professional who specializes in medical coding, which is the process of assigning codes to medical diagnoses and procedures. Medical coding is an important part of the healthcare system because it helps ensure accurate billing and reimbursement for services provided by healthcare providers. CMCS certification is offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).
In order to become certified as a CMCS, individuals must have at least two years of experience in medical coding and pass an exam administered by the AAPC. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions covering topics such as anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, disease processes, reimbursement methodologies, and more. Candidates are given four hours to complete the exam.
The cost to take the exam varies depending on whether or not you are a member of the AAPC. For non-members, the cost is $399; for members, it is $299. Additionally, there are other costs associated with becoming certified such as study materials and application fees.
Overall, it can take anywhere from six months to a year to become certified as a CMCS depending on how much time you dedicate to studying for the exam.
9. American Health Information Management Association's Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT)
The Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) is a professional certification offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). The RHIT certification is designed to recognize individuals who demonstrate a mastery of health information management and technology. This certification is highly sought after by employers in the healthcare industry, as it demonstrates that an individual has the knowledge and skills necessary to manage health information systems and data.
To become an RHIT, one must have completed an accredited program in health information management or technology, such as a two-year associate’s degree program. After completing the program, applicants must pass the AHIMA’s RHIT exam. The exam consists of 175 multiple-choice questions that cover topics such as medical terminology, coding systems, data analysis and quality improvement, health records management, privacy and security of patient information, and legal aspects of healthcare.
The cost for taking the RHIT exam varies based on the testing center chosen but typically ranges from $200-$400. Once certified, there are annual maintenance fees associated with maintaining your RHIT credential which range from $50-$100 depending on your membership status with AHIMA.
Once certified as an RHIT, individuals must complete continuing education credits every two years in order to maintain their certification status. This can be done through attending conferences or workshops related to health information management or taking online courses offered by AHIMA or other organizations.
10. American Academy of Professional Coders' Certified Professional Coder-Hospitalist (CPC-H).
The American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) Certified Professional Coder-Hospitalist (CPC-H) is a professional certification for individuals who specialize in coding medical services provided in hospital settings. This certification is designed to recognize and validate the knowledge, skills, and abilities of coders who work in hospital settings.
In order to obtain the CPC-H certification, applicants must pass an exam that tests their understanding of coding guidelines and principles used in hospitals. The exam consists of 150 multiple choice questions and takes three hours to complete. To be eligible to take the exam, applicants must have two years of experience coding hospital outpatient services or one year of experience coding both hospital outpatient and inpatient services within the past five years.
The cost for taking the CPC-H exam varies depending on whether you are an AAPC member or non-member. For members, the cost is $399 USD while non-members pay $499 USD. Additionally, there may be other costs associated with taking the exam such as study materials or prep courses offered by third parties.
Once you have passed the CPC-H exam, you will receive your certification credentials which are valid for two years from the date you passed your exam. After two years, you will need to recertify by passing another CPC-H exam or completing continuing education credits (CEUs).
Do You Really Need a Medical Information Specialist Certificate?
Whether or not you need a Medical Information Specialist Certificate depends on your career goals. If you are looking to become an administrative assistant in a medical office, then a certificate may be necessary. However, if you are looking for a more specialized role such as Medical Records Technician or Health Information Technician, then it is likely that additional education beyond the certificate level will be required.
The Medical Information Specialist Certificate is designed to provide students with the basic knowledge and skills needed to work in a health information setting. It covers topics such as medical terminology, coding systems, healthcare regulations and laws, patient privacy and confidentiality, computerized systems used in healthcare settings and medical records management. This certificate can be completed in as little as six months and can provide a great starting point for those who want to enter the field of health information technology.
In addition to the certificate program itself, it is important to gain experience by working in a medical office environment or completing an internship related to health information technology. This will help you develop practical skills and gain an understanding of how things work in this type of setting. It is also important to stay current with changes in technology and regulations related to health information management so that you can remain knowledgeable about best practices when handling sensitive patient data.
In conclusion, whether or not you need a Medical Information Specialist Certificate depends on your particular career goals. If you are interested in becoming an administrative assistant within the healthcare industry, then this type of credential may be beneficial for you. However, if you are looking for more specialized roles such as Medical Records Technician or Health Information Technician then additional education beyond the certificate level will likely be required.
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FAQs About Medical Information Specialist Certifications
1. What is a Medical Information Specialist Certification?
Answer: A Medical Information Specialist Certification is a type of certification that demonstrates a professional’s knowledge and understanding of medical information and the healthcare industry. It is typically obtained by taking an approved course or program, passing an exam, and/or completing a certain amount of experience in the field.
2. How do I become certified as a Medical Information Specialist?
Answer: To become certified as a Medical Information Specialist, you must complete an approved course or program, pass an exam, and/or have a certain amount of experience in the field. Depending on the certification provider, additional requirements may be necessary to obtain certification status.
3. What are the benefits of becoming certified as a Medical Information Specialist?
Answer: Benefits of becoming certified as a Medical Information Specialist include increased credibility and recognition among peers, potential for higher pay, improved job opportunities, greater access to up-to-date medical information resources, and more.
4. How long does it take to complete the certification process?
Answer: The length of time it takes to complete the certification process depends on several factors including which certifying organization you choose, how quickly you can complete any required courses or programs, and whether you need to gain any additional experience before applying for certification status. Generally speaking though, most certifications can be completed within one year if all requirements are met in a timely manner.
5. Is there any financial assistance available for obtaining my Medical Information Specialist Certification?
Answer: Yes! Depending on your location and certifying organization you choose, there may be financial assistance available to help cover the cost of tuition or other expenses associated with obtaining your certification. Additionally, some employers may provide tuition reimbursement for those who are seeking their certification status through an accredited program or institution.