What is CPC Exam? Your Guide to Tips to Pass the CPC Exam


Published in Health Articles

Although coding might not be the most prominent part of American healthcare, the medical coding industry was valued at over $16 billion in 2020.

Medical billing and coding is not only a legitimate profession but one that’s in high demand. Not everyone can just become a medical coder, as that requires CPC certification.

But how do you get certified? What’s a CPC exam? What is CPC exam etiquette?

If you’re looking for answers to those questions, you’re in luck. Read this guide to get valuable tips on how to pass your CPC exam.

What is the CPC Exam?

Let’s first cover the basics. The CPC exam is a test that gives you a Certified Professional Coder credential.

CPC is the gold standard for medical billing and coding and is widely accepted or recognized by employers, governments, and physicians. CPC exams test whether you’re proficient in CPC’s standards.

What is CPC Exam Content?

The test looks at different coding languages to report and bill medical services. The exam will look at things like:

  • Proficiency in different services like surgery, radiology, pathology, medicine, and evaluation
  • Understanding of anatomy, medical terms, and physiology to diagnose services
  • Knowledge of medical coding guidelines
  • Ability to integrate medical coding to reimbursement changes

CPC exams often contain over 100 multiple-choice questions. You need to get at least 70% of the questions right to pass.

It is an open-book test, but you can only use approved codebooks.

Tips on How to Pass CPC Exam

While 100+ questions might sound daunting, there’s plenty of ways you can ready yourself for a CPC exam. Let’s look at a few key strategies here:

Take a Medical Billing Course

Even if you’re a seasoned coder or have prior knowledge of medical billing and coding, a refresher never hurts. Taking a medical billing course can get you in the right mindset before the exam.

Take Timed Practice Exams

Because of the dense number of questions and the time limit to complete the exam, you should practice as often as possible. That way, you won’t feel as rushed when you’re actually taking the CPC exam.

Knock Out the Questions You Know

When you’re taking the exam, don’t get too stuck on every single question. Chances are, you’ll know how to answer most of them. Check off the questions you know then go back to the harder ones later.

Try to Answer 30 Questions an Hour

Time is of the essence when you’re taking a CPC exam. Shoot for 30 questions each hour to keep yourself at the right pace.

Reuse Terms and Codes

What is CPC exam taking without a few unknown terms, right?

If you don’t know what a certain term means, you can look it up in the back of the CPT code description. Because the test is so long, there’ll probably be repeated terms and codes that you can turn back to in later questions.

Leverage CPC Exam Tips Today

Getting CPC credentials from AAPC will lead you to a wealth of opportunities in the healthcare industry. Use this guide to help you understand what CPC exams are and how to prepare for them.

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