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What Are EMR Certifications?

By Liz Thomas
Updated May 17, 2024
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Certifications in electronic medical records are known as EMR certifications. These show that individuals have the proper training to deal with all types of electronic record, healthcare system and medical coding. Several different organizations offer a range of credentials in EMR and electronic health records. There are also special certifications for those that work in cancer treatment.

EMR certifications refer to a designation for individuals that work with electronic medical records. In many instances this is also known as EHR certifications or electronic health records certification. Most health and medical institutions will only hire individuals that are certified or hold credentials for this type of work.

This type of certification is very popular in the United States, as a U.S. presidential mandate required all health records be converted from paper to electronic records as of 2014. There are also equivalent certifications in other countries as electronic medical records are used around the world. Canada has two different EMR certifications: a national class for systems used across the country and a jurisdiction class for systems that may be used only in territories or provinces.

The main tasks involved with electronic medical records include assembling all the health information for each patient. This includes medical history, exam results and any treatments. Other records may include healthcare provider services, diagnostic tests or symptoms. EMR technicians will manage and organize these records so that all healthcare professionals will be able to obtain the necessary information when requested.

Some EMR certifications require special coding. These individuals are known as coding specialists and medical coders. There are specific codes assigned to each type of diagnosis and procedure. Coding is required for reimbursement from insurance companies, Medicaid and Medicare.

Individuals that work in cancer facilities will require special certifications that deal with cancer registry. The electronic records involved include assigning codes, reviewing reports, recovery and survival statistics. Information is needed to determine which treatments are successful and to determine different areas that contain a lot of individuals with cancer.

Training and EMR certifications are required to display that technicians know how to use the proper coding techniques and medical software. The Registered Health Information Technician credential (RHIT), is available from the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). Students must take an accredited course, as well as pass a written exam from the AHIMA. Credentials are also offered from the Board of Medical Specialty Coding (BMSC), as well as the Professional Association of Health Care Coding Specialists (PAHCS), though there are others. For those working with cancer treatment, the Certified Tumor Registrar credential may also be required.

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