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Sunday, September 8, 2013

Medical Coding Report: Outtathebox Solutions for Employment in Israel


Tishrei 4, 5774

Question: How can Israel's pool of 
potential employees 
find satisfying work 

  1. Pays self-sufficiency wages
  2. Improves the bottom line of employers


  1. Enhances the national economy?

Answer: Rethink and retool the 
training and qualification system to
solve existing and potential problems. 

Treat your staff and trainees
with consistent support 
and total respect.

The Employment Problem

A former Health Information Management professional aka medical coder, I did not update my credentials with continuing education after my 2002 aliya (relocation to Israel). Nefesh B'Nefesh did not know how I could remain competitive in my professional field. Neither did the Israel-based hospital medical coders, MKs, or Misrad HaBriut officials whom I consulted. 

I sought enlightenment until Summer 2013/5773.

Cashflow or Cash-NO?
While I was trying to survive on negligible income, food prices kept rising in Israel. Ever-rising housing prices complicated life. Olim chadashim, vatikim and native Israelis hold on by their fingernails to stay fed and housed despite the Start-Up Nation status that seems to fill tax coffers more than private savings accounts. Job-hunting borders on a national obsession.

Solutionizing Is US
One week after a medical coding/Health Information management class situated in Israel launched, a friend alerted me to an online announcement regarding that out of the box solution: Instruction for Anglos, in English, in Israel, from a prestigious and user-friendly company. 

I made necessary phone calls and sent relevant E-mails to enroll in the class. It would be conducted by HRS Coding Academy, a privately owned medical coding/Health Information management company based in Maryland, USA. H

I joined the in-progress class about 10 days after it had begun.

The online education is augmented with Skype sessions that include a Professor of Education who is a medical coding/Health Information management professional, live and Skype appearances from coding instructors who include the educational program's creator and Wendy Coplan-Gould - the owner of HRS Coding Academy.

The user-friendly HRS-in-Israel environment allows students to proceed at their own pace, within the parameters of dates set for specific units of study. Due to my familiarity with the material, I caught up with the class, then bypassed several colleagues-in-training within a month.

The creators of our study program have been in business for decades. But we surprised them. 

The focus of the Orthodox students in this multi-faceted course of study is enhanced by our prowess at studying esoteric hashkafa (philosophy), halakha (Jewish law) and historic topics - in our native languages, Hebrew and Aramaic - with a bit of Greek or Latin tossed in. 

We tackle medical coding/Health Information Management's vocabulary (a language in its own right), legal and ethical issues, pharmacology, insurance rules and restrictions, anatomy & pathology, plus medical coding methodology by keeping loose ends sorted until we can tie them into cohesive conceptualizations that propel us forward.

We have so excelled in our studies that we're due to graduate 2.5 months ahead of schedule, a first for the system.  

The student successes are due in large part to the open-minded, non-judgmental approach of the HRS staff. Administrators and educators working with chavrei Knesset met our known and anticipated needs. 

Technicians are available for immediate response to PC glitches. Our classroom is kept in impeccable order and cleanliness. Secretaries processed enrollment papers and facts speedily. All that effort and insight facilitated unprecedented success by preventing problems. Twenty women who'd never met before, who come from various walks of life and the world, simply get along and achieve HRS' learning goals.

We'll sit for the qualifying US exam in due time. Our passing grades will qualify us to work for the innovative and US-located HRS Coding Academy company bringing jobs otherwise unavailable to Israelis.

An Israeli dream come true
Though the student body includes some women not yet conversant in Hebrew, the limitations on potential employment due to language barriers have been removed in two important ways. 

1) Instruction is in our native language.

2) The people training us are contracted 
to employ us once we pass the course and 
US certifying exam. 

Judging from our speedy academic 
accomplishments so far, 
we're headed for employment success 
in English, in Israel.

The Bonus
HRS plans to pay the students to code actual medical charts between the time we complete our studies and the time we pass the pending certification exam. It's an innovative approach to securing top-notch staff before they are snapped up by competitors or otherwise lost to the system (re-read the opening paragraphs to this blogpost for an FYI about that).

Follow the Leader
The Israeli business world has an impressive model for its future success in HRS Coding Academy. Treating staff members with respect, paying a decent wage, and preventing employment site problems is a stellar way to improve everyone's bottom line: Israel's, the loyal and appreciative trainees plus the private business owners investing in mutually beneficial futures.

The HRS model is a precedent to imitate for various Israel employment endeavors. Head hunters and business owners need to heed its lessons.

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Look for can-do out of the box solutions.

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