Brenda Jennings works as a medical coder at Medical Group of the Carolinas – Orthopaedic Surgery Pelham in Greer, SC. She has been with the group for two and a half years. She has her CPC certification and is currently studying for her COSC (Certified Orthopaedics Surgery Coder) certification.
We talked with Brenda a little about her professional and personal life.
Medical Coder Spotlight: Brenda Jennings
Do you use paper manuals or online encoders? Which do you prefer? I use both. It’s difficult to say whether I prefer one over the other. It really depends on what I am working on at the time.
What are your thoughts about specialty credentialing? Do you feel the AAPC is doing enough in the specialty fields by adding the auditing, compliance and practice management credentials? I think the AAPC provides a wide range of certifications from which to choose. And, the more choices you have, the better off you are. Knowledge is power.
What do you like least/most about medical coding? Sorting through all the different rules that each insurance carrier has can be a little grueling. That would probably be my least favorite part of the job. It’s challenging because not all of them follow the same regulations such as worker’s compensation insurers. However, that said, I do love the thrill of the chase.
What advice can you offer to people who are just getting started in their medical coding careers? There are many steps that you need to take on the path to getting a good medical coding position. You need education and some experience. I’ve seen many people go to school, but then potential employers still want experience. Starting in an entry-level position or even participating in an internship may be a good way to get your foot in the door.
What are your future career goals? First, I want to get my COSC. Then, I am going to explore teaching or tutoring medical coders who are new to the field.
What are your hobbies outside of work? I have several. I enjoy horseback riding, sewing, crafts and gardening.
How does your personality help you in your job? I am persistent. In my job, this trait helps me to get claims paid. I also view these claims as if they were my own – chasing down my own money. This really drives me to get my physicians paid. No claim is good unless it’s clean.
Tell me a fun fact about yourself. I have a pet pig named “Bacon.” He weighs in at about 350 pounds. And, yes, he’s a house pet.