Be an integral part of a patient’s journey through the health care system by deciphering clinical documentation, influencing decision making, and inputting impactful data.
The classification and coding process of health care data is an already-complex function that will only continue to increase in complexity. The classification and coding of health care data in a standardized format makes it easy to store, retrieve, and catalogue for statistical and individual uses on an aggregate or granular basis. The accuracy of the coded data affects health care decisions, planning, funding, research, and more. The data is transformed into meaningful information to accelerate improvements in healthcare, health care system performance, and population health across many jurisdictions. Government policymakers use coded data to make policy decisions about our health systems and the care within them.
The Certified Classification and Coding Specialist (CCCS) designation was developed with two Certified Health Information Management (CHIM) professionals in mind:
- Early career CHIMs to those with 5-years of coding experience in acute inpatient settings who are interested in deepening their knowledge in the field of classification and coding to advance their career path
- Experienced coding and classification professionals (5+ years of experience in acute inpatient settings) who want to challenge a specific exam and have a credential that is specifically aligned to the classification and coding segment of the CHIM profession.
This certification will give CHIMs who are interested in continuing their education a competitive edge in their job search, as well as greater job satisfaction. It creates a greater assurance for high quality and accurate coding that encourages continuous quality improvement. This credential, along with experience, can be a catalyst to progress your career into roles including, but not limited to, auditors, analysts, and leadership positions.
A candidate must be a graduate of an HIM program accredited by the Canadian College of Health Information Management, hold an active CHIM professional designation, and fall into one of the following categories:
- Experienced professional: Be currently working in the field of coding and classification (experience eligibility pathway); or
- Course graduate: Be a graduate from a CCHIM-approved preparatory Classification and Coding Specialist Program (https://www.echima.com/program-directory)
In 2019–2020, the College is offering an early adopter’s rate to celebrate the launch of this new certification.
The CCCS national certification examination (NCE) dates are as follows:
|Examination period||Application deadline (including required documentation)||Regular pricing||2019–2020 pricing|
|June 22–26, 2020||June 8, 2020||$349 + taxes||$199 + taxes|
|November 16–20, 2020||November 2, 2020||$349 + taxes||$199 + taxes|
Request to withdraw
The request to withdraw from an examination must be received in writing by the deadlines stated below. A refund of 100% of the examination fee will be provided. No refund will be provided past these deadlines.
|Exam dates||Deadline for withdrawal|
|June 22–26, 2020||June 8, 2020|
|November 16–20, 2020||November 2, 2020|
Coding specialist program
HealthCareCAN/CHA Learning has partnered with the College to offer a preparatory course for the classification and coding specialist certification. The online coding specialist program is estimated to take approximately 120 hours, can be completed flexibly over the course of up to 12 months, and offers participant support from expert coaches from the field.
The HealthCareCAN/CHA Learning program is recommended for people in the health information industry; it is not a requirement for writing this examination.
The coding specialist program provides current coders in the field with the tools and skills to improve their accuracy, consistency, and efficiency. If you have recent acute inpatient care coding experience but think you require further educational training, this program could assist you in improving your coding skills in preparation for the Classification and Coding Specialist national certification examination.
For more information on the coding specialist program, please visit the CHA Learning website.