How Long Does It Take to Complete the CRC Course?

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Alright. Let’s go to the next question. This one you could probably help a lot with, Alicia. How long does it take to get through the CRC course? Alicia is the main coach for that course. She is the ra-ra cheerleader for risk adjustment and HCC coding. I’ll let her answer that.

Alicia: I have a bit of bias and lean towards that credential. The CRC has not been around as long as some of the other credentials. It picked up a lot of traction. We just launched last year our version 2.0 where Chandra went in and did excellent lectures and updating the course. We had some fabulous subject matter experts that helped with that. The first one was great, but this one is even better. It takes about two months. That’s how long it takes to get through. If you’re a coder already—and this is going to be another credential you want to pick up—two months is easy. If you’re going to take the path that you want to just do risk adjustment, so you’re going to do ICD-10 and then do this course, give yourself three months. But still it’s very doable in two months. The reason is because Chandra went in and streamlined it. We kind of have stuff spread out before. It’s got a narrow focus, a specialty focus. The content is just out of this world. I think it’s the best course out there. There’s a few others, but ours is amazing.

Laureen: What I showed is we looked at the competencies and we backed into it and made sure that we had education in each of those pieces. The risk adjustment exam, it does have some coding on it. But it’s got a lot of what I call the theory, how does risk adjustment work and why are we doing it this way and why is it only diagnostic coding and chronic conditions.

Alicia: It’s still 150 questions. You still get the five hours and 40 minutes. I think there’s only about 50 coding questions there all in ICD-10. Again, you need to know who does what, why they do what they do, and the big power players I always say. The one thing that I really like and Laureen went past it where it was telling you what’s in the course is the pearls. We at CCO not only are we excited about getting you certified, training you to do this. We also assist you in focusing with the Blitz on how to take the exam. We train you. We tell you how to take the exam. And then we want you to stay with us in our community and let us be your subject matter experts.

These pearls are tools. They’re almost like little cliff notes of disease processes. One of the ones I worked on was GERD. It was so much fun putting that together. It’s like this little cliff note of the codes that are involved, the disease process, the body systems that can be involved, the medications that you need to be aware of. All of this is what a risk adjustment coder does. It’s not just a person has GERD and this is the code. No, you go through and you see the whole disease process develop and what it could develop into. If a person has GERD, then they might get Barrett’s esophagus, etcetera. These pearls, which we are still expanding them, major chronic conditions that you’re going to be working with in risk adjustment, they’re a tool that will be helpful for you in the workplace going forward.

All of our full time students get to be part of the CCO Club. Once your membership or your time, there is that one. I did that one. I’m so proud of that one. Once you get through the course and your course expires, you stay in the CCO Club. You get to keep this content. You can go back and say, “I’ve got a person that I think has Barrett’s esophagus. They have GERD and I’m seeing this progression as a disease process. Let me see if I can capture this HCC because it is a little bit different than GERD.” Therefore you’re pulling HCCs that are higher specificity, more money is involved and you’re getting more money for your providers. Statistically it’s a good thing too.

We’ve got several of these. I think we’ve got more than 20 now and it’s growing. Chandra’s been working on a lot of these. It’s something that a lot of the interns will be working on in the future too.

Laureen: That’s a fun thing. We figure if each intern does one pearl, wow, what a great education they’ll get. They have the subject matter experts double-checking, fact-checking if you will. But it’s a great way to learn is to try and do this. How do you go out and find an image that is not copyright. Like it’s free to use. There’s all these techniques.

Alicia: She actually went in and hand-drew the aortic arch and some of the other stuff. You could look at it, and if you draw that yourself, she did that for something, I think a presentation or something. It’s like yeah, so you can do that. All that’s in here. She’s looking at CVAs now. There are some really interesting nuances that you overlook. This helps you with general coding as well. Not just if you want to go into risk adjustment. This is advantageous to have as a coder in general.

Laureen: And then we have these mindmaps. I’m a big mindmap person as you can tell because that’s what I’m currently using to do this presentation.

Alicia: Look at the diabetes one, Laureen.

Laureen: Okay. I’m hoping this opens correctly. Yes. This just centers it. We’ve made it so it’s like the good old-fashioned decision tree. If yes, go down this line. If no, go down that line. When you look at this, you’re asking yourself, “Is it type 2? Type 1? Is it undocumented? Is it secondary? Is it secondary to a pancreatectomy? Is an insulin pump involved? Is it related to pregnancy?” Once you figure out the answer to that, then you click the plus sign. It’s type 2. This tells you the sequencing, what you should put first and what you should put second and if there’s any other additional information. If it’s type 1, age doesn’t matter but usually occurs before puberty. It’s just a different way to look at the diagnostic code. This is something that we share with all of our courses that have anything to do with ICD-10. They’re mindmaps.

Alicia: People learn differently. I think by and large a lot of people are visual learners. But some people, like Laureen, Laureen’s brain works really well with this typographic and this thought process with the mindmap. Another person might do really well with a video and then they retain it more and stuff. We teach you how to code. We also want to teach you how to pass the test. But we want you to come back and use this as the subject matter expert. To be able to do that, we’ve got to look at this is going to resonate with this person but it’s not going to resonate with that person, so let’s add both of them in there for content.

Laureen: Definitely. Like Alicia was saying, the library, our goal is we really want people to join the CCO Club to show their support of CCO, be a part of our tribe. That’s how we’re going to be able to continue to hire subject matter experts and provide content that you want that’s relative to your job, that’s relative to your course of study and really support you.

Alicia: Not boring.

Laureen: Right.

Alicia: I was telling somebody the other day. They said, “I need a CEU in XYZ.” I said we’ve got that. She said, “But it’s such a boring subject.” “No! Not when we do it. Go check it out. Go look at this clip.” She goes “You’re right.”

Laureen: This library of courses that you will maybe take over time. Maybe you took the PBC course initially, which includes the CPC Blitz and the ICD-10 Blitz. You get to keep that as a club member. Even when your year runs out, your coaching might end but your access to the library of the courses and the updated lectures and you can come back and take the end of chapter test. We’re working on getting them all approved for CEUs so that every year you can come back because the index number will be new every year. You might decide, “Now I’m going to take that risk adjustment course.” Now you add that to your library. Unlike other programs where after four months or so, you have to start paying 20, 30 bucks a month to keep your seat open. When it’s over, it’s over and you lose all that content unless you figured out a way to download it and all that kind of stuff. With this, it will always be there. We’re really proud of that benefit. At any rate, that was how long does it take to get through the CRC.

Alicia: Average of two months. You can kind of think about it as two months.

Laureen: That’s my goal for 2017 is I want to get my CRC and my CPMA. That’s my goal this year. You guys can hold me to it. I’m going through our own course material and learning. I actually used a lot of the CRC course lectures to help me prepare for the CDEO because there’s a lot of clinical stuff for the CDEO. They did a really, really good job.

This segment “How Long Does It Take to Complete the CRC Course?” originally aired on Live with Laureen #014 on January 12th, 2017.

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