Accelerated Coding Education (ACE) Course
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What is ACE?
Accelerated Coding Education (ACE) is a Joint Venture between Auckland and Waikato District Health Boards (DHBs). The primary objective of ACE is to provide trained clinical coders to the NZ workforce.
Why Study Clinical Coding?
A clinical coder is responsible for reviewing the patient records of discharged patients, identifying the key clinical diagnoses and procedures (according to a set of international coding standards), and translating this clinical information into a set of codes.
These clinical codes are then used by a range of stakeholders (such as DHB management & clinical staff, and the Ministry of Health) for various purposes, such as clinical research, health service funding and planning.
DHBs are focussed on optimising funding, and clinical coding is a crucial part of that process.
Coded data is also reported to the World Health Organization for epidemiological research.
Individuals with the following skills and attributes are particularly suited to a career in clinical coding:
- clinical staff looking for a career change
- administrative staff with a clinical background
- transcriptionists with excellent medical terminology skills
- other staff with an aptitude for study and a genuine interest in a long-term career in clinical coding
Structure of course
Training courses will be nine weeks full-time duration, with a mixture of face-to-face contact, on-line and self-directed learning.
At the conclusion of the course, students will have spent over 300 hours studying and practicing clinical coding using the Sixth Edition of ICD-10-AM/ACHI/ACS, and will have the skills required to enter the Clinical Coder workforce at competency Level one.
Students will participate in a wide range of learning opportunities, including:
- Five days of face-to-face, classroom based learning
- On-line discussion forums and case studies
- Written assignments
- Two days of face-to-face revision tutorials (Week nine) (optional)
- A final examination (three hours)
Past students of the ACE course now working as
Clinical Coders at Waikato DHB.
Manager Clinical Coding Waikato DHB, Patsy MacAulay front row third from left.
Team Leader Clinical Coding WDHB and ACE co-tutor, Nicky Williams back row at end on right.
Applicants for the course will require:
- A recognised qualification in medical terminology (such as the AUT or the HIMAA courses), or a medical, nursing or allied health background
- English language (written and oral) proficiency
- An aptitude for study at a fast pace
- Ability to commit to full-time study for the nine weeks of the course
- Self-discipline to successfully complete study via distance learning
- Access to course material via the internet
- Access to a PC and the ICD-10-AM (6th Edition) e-Book; or a set of ICD-10-AM (6th edition) manuals
Governance & Staff
The Oversight Committee comprises the following members: Auckland DHB GM Information Management, Waikato DHB Director of Board of Governance, ADHB Manager Information Management Operations and WDHB Clinical Coding Manager.
ACE Course Tutors are experienced clinical coders with many years’ experience in coding and training clinical coders.
All Course Tutors hold Certification from the Health Information Management Association of Australia (HIMAA) in the edition of ICD-10-AM currently used in New Zealand.
Enrolment and fees
Who can apply?
The ACE course is aimed at students who have no prior coding experience but is also suitable for coders who require some help.
The course is open to students from within and outside District Health Boards. It is also open to international students.
An enrolment form must be submitted to ACE six weeks prior to the commencement of the course.
When is the next course?
Due to increased demand ACE will be running two intakes commencing in 2013.
The first intake will commence on 20 May 2013 in Auckland and the second intake will commence in September in Hamilton dates to be confirmed
If your DHB has enrolled you, an invoice for your course fees will be sent to your DHB.
If you have enrolled privately (i.e. you are not sponsored by a DHB) you will be invoiced for the course fees prior to the commencement of the course.
Payment in full will be required within 7 days of the invoice date.
$2,150 (inclusive of GST).
To request more information or to register interest please email: ACE@adhb.govt.nz
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