October 6, 2017 —
Photos provided by Derek Wong.
It’s not everyday that the UHP billing coders take a field trip outside of the office.
From September 6 to 8, 2017, more than 18 of our coders attended the regional AAPC (formerly known as its full title, American Academy of Professional Coders) conference at the Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort and Spa.
The coders connected with more than 500 healthcare professionals and listened to sessions with fourteen national experts in the industry, who shared their knowledge with attendees.
The AAPC Regional Conference held in Hawaii was brimming with professionals who have decades of experience in the healthcare business. Current president of AAPC’s National Advisory Board Jaci Kapreos (COC, CPC, CPMA, CPC-I, CEMC) has worked in the field of medical coding and auditing for 29 years. President-Elect Michael Miscoe, Esq (CPC, CPCO, CPMA, CASCC, CCPC, CUC) has over 20 years of experience in healthcare and over 16 years as a compliance expert, forensic coding expert and consultant. These two professionals have over 50 years of expertise in their fields.
Clara Makaipo, one of UHP’s coders current president of the AAPC Hawaii chapter, was truly inspired by the conference this year.
“The conference offered an opportunity to network with peers from around the United States and as far away as Okinawa and at all levels of their careers,” said Makaipo. Attending the conference emphasizes the large networking community you belong to as a member. You leave with a larger vision and how your role in healthcare is crucial.”
Derek Wong, UHP director of billing, says that 84 percent of coders on a national scale are female. He, along with coders Mark Flora, Kevin Fajardo, and President-Elect Miscoe, are among the 16 percent of male coders in the nation.
“As a coder, I don’t see my job as only reviewing the details of a chart,” Makaipo said. “Instead it’s communicating with my doctors to help them document the excellent care they give their patients. I’ve learned that we ‘re all facing the same issues and that we need each other to arrive at sensible solutions.
“I encourage all coders, billers and auditors regardless of your level of experience, to attend these conferences to grow in knowledge, see the bigger picture, and define your role in healthcare. You’ll meet interesting professionals like yourself who are passionate and dedicated.”
Next year’s conference is slated to be on September 7-8, 2018.
Since 1988, AAPC provides opportunities for physician-based medical coders, such as networking, education and certification. More than 165,000 members around the world have joined the organization and offers 32 certifications on business-related healthcare. Through AAPC, coders have a better understanding on operations, reimbursement, claim submission and so forth. The organization also gives resources to all levels of coders and other healthcare professionals.