How to Prepare for the Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC) Exam?

Acing any exam requires proper strategy and approach. CIC or Certified Inpatient Coder exam is quite a competitive and daunting exam to overcome with flying colours. But, if the right steps and approach is followed, you are certainly going to get the results you have in your mind. This is why we are here to help you with the right steps to make it big. 

The Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC) exam is a professional certification offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC). This certification is designed for individuals who have a strong understanding of inpatient coding and want to demonstrate their expertise in this field. Becoming a CIC can open up new career opportunities and enhance your professional credibility. 

However, preparing for the CIC exam requires dedication and a systematic approach. In this post, we are going to discuss some tips and strategies that can help you effectively prepare for the Certified Inpatient Coder exam. Let’s get started. 

Also, check out: Why Medical Coding a Smart Career Choice?

Steps to Prepare for the Certified Inpatient Coder Exam

Below are the primary steps that you must consider taking to ace your Certified Inpatient Coder Exam;

  • Understand the Exam Content
  • Create a Study Plan
  • Utilize Study Materials
  • Practice Coding Exercises 
  • Take Mock Exams
  • Stay Updated with Coding Guidelines
  • Time Management during the Exam
  • Maintain Confidence and Stay Calm

1. Understand the Exam Content

Before you begin your preparation, it is essential to understand the content and structure of the CIC exam. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions that assess your knowledge and skills in inpatient coding. The topics covered in the exam include medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, ICD-10-CM, CPT, and HCPCS Level II coding guidelines. Familiarize yourself with these topics and create a study plan accordingly.

2. Create a Study Plan

To ensure effective preparation, it is crucial to create a study plan that outlines your goals and the time you will dedicate to studying each day. Break down the topics into manageable sections and allocate sufficient time to cover each area thoroughly. Additionally, set aside time for regular practice tests to assess your progress and identify areas that require further attention.

3. Utilize Study Materials

There are various study materials available to help you prepare for the CIC exam. Consider investing in textbooks, coding manuals, and online courses specifically designed for inpatient coding. These resources will provide you with comprehensive information and practice exercises to enhance your understanding of the subject matter. Additionally, join study groups or online forums where you can interact with other aspiring CICs and exchange knowledge and study tips.

4. Practice Coding Exercises 

One of the most effective ways to prepare for the CIC exam is through regular practice of coding exercises. Utilize real-world case studies and coding scenarios to enhance your medical coding skills. Practice assigning appropriate ICD-10-CM, CPT, and HCPCS Level II codes to different medical conditions and procedures. This will help you develop accuracy and speed in coding, which is essential for the exam.

5. Take Mock Exams

Mock exams are an excellent way to assess your readiness for the CIC exam. Several online platforms offer mock exams that closely simulate the actual exam environment. Taking these mock exams will familiarize you with the format and style of questions, as well as identify areas where you need to improve. Analyze your performance in these mock exams and revise your study plan accordingly.

6. Stay Updated with Coding Guidelines

Inpatient coding guidelines are constantly evolving, and it is vital to stay updated with the latest changes. Subscribe to coding newsletters, attend webinars, and participate in coding conferences to stay abreast of any updates or revisions to coding guidelines. Familiarize yourself with the official coding guidelines provided by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and other relevant organizations.

7. Time Management during the Exam

During the actual exam, time management is crucial. Allocate a specific amount of time to each question and avoid spending too much time on a single question. If you are unsure about an answer, make an educated guess and move on. Remember to review your answers before submitting the exam to ensure accuracy.

8. Maintain Confidence and Stay Calm

Lastly, maintaining confidence and staying calm during the exam is essential. Trust in your preparation and believe in your abilities. Avoid last-minute cramming and focus on staying relaxed and composed. Remember that you have put in the effort and time to prepare for this exam, and you are well-prepared to succeed. 

Also read: How to Prepare for AAPC CPC Exam

Final Thoughts

Preparing for the Certified Inpatient Coder (CIC) exam requires dedication, systematic planning, and a comprehensive understanding of inpatient coding guidelines. By creating a study plan, utilizing study materials, practicing coding exercises, and taking mock exams, you can enhance your knowledge and skills in inpatient coding. Additionally, staying updated with coding guidelines and maintaining confidence during the exam will contribute to your success. With thorough preparation and proper guidance, you can confidently approach the CIC exam and embark on a rewarding career as a Certified Inpatient Coder. 

You may also like: Top Medical Coding Certifications

Locations Where Edoxi Offers Medical Coding Course

Here is the list of other major locations where Edoxi offers Medical Coding Course

Medical Coding Course in Qatar |  Medical Coding Course in Muscat | Medical Coding Course in Dubai Medical Coding Training in Al Ain | Medical Coding Course in Bahrain | Medical Coding Course in Kuwait | Medical Coding Course in London | Medical Coding Course in Riyadh | Medical Coding Course in Jeddah | Medical Coding Course in Dammam |