I signed up to take a medical coding course taught by Erin Hyden, CCS,CPC.
At orientation we were informed that the course was not college accredited.
(only because someone asked), but that it wouldn't matter to a potential employer as long as we passed the exam.
I paid $450 at orientation for books.
Classes ran 3 nights a week for 12 weeks and I paid $62.50 every week. (A total of $750.
I shelled out my final payment of $300 to take the medical coding certification exam.
there were about 20 people who attended the 12 weeks of classes and we were assured weekly that we were outstanding students and we had nothing to worry about because we all had the "knowledge" to pass the exam. She even told us that we would probably finish before everyone else since we had done so well in her class. She assured us before the exam, and I quote.....
"I guarantee you that if any of you don't pass the exam, which you will, I will personally work with you one-on-one to make sure you pass the re-take, so you have nothing to worry about."
About 10 of us paid the $300 and took the 5 1/2 hour exam. Not one of us passed. Not one of us even finished!
The exam was July 19th. From August through December I repeatedly have tried to get her to call me so I can make arrangements with her to study for a for a re-take. The more I push, the more defensive she gets. When I emailed her and said that I had gambled alot to pursue this and would appreciate 5 minutes of her time she emailed me back and accused me of "Blaming" her for "personal choices I made as an adult." She has even gotten so nasty as to suggest that I see a doctor before taking the re-take and telling him I have "Test Anxiety," so I can be prescribed medication to help me relax on the day of the re-take. (I kid you not!!!) She refuses to return my calls and has had excuse after excuse for not being able to call me.(The latest one being that she just had oral surgery and can't talk!)
When I reminded her of her "guarantee" to help us study for a retake if we didn't pass, her response was....
"I most certainly did say that I would help any of you study the concepts you missed on the test to be able to be better prepared in your areas of weakness identified by the AAPC on your first test but I cannot guarantee that you will pass the test - I have said that from the beginning."
Quite a change of tune from the supportive, enthusiastic instructor I remember in class!
She also wrote
"I did not give you any false information or mislead you or any other class members in any way. I taught you everything you needed to know to pass the certification and it was much more information than you would've gotten at any school you would've paid thousands for."
The facts speak for themselves. She obviously did not teach us what we needed to know to pass the exam. We were not prepared, and now that she has collected all of our money and she is paid in full, she doesn't want to be bothered by any of us now. It is my understanding from Erin Hyden herself, that most of the others gave up and aren't pursuing their re-take. Yes, the exam was that bad of an experience!
My warning to everyone from this experience is:
Don't pay for a course unless it is college accredited!
I have nothing to show for my loss of $1500 except a lame certificate made up by Erin Hyden herself that means nothing.
from what I have read in the classified ads, there are jobs available to people who aren't certified, but only if they have taken a college accredited medical coding course.