Course Study Required
The materials covered in certification exams for medical practice management are designed to test your knowledge in all areas of the job. Accordingly, the exam topics should be at least familiar to anyone working in the field. That said, just working in the field or having recently completed a management degree does not mean you do not need to study. Medical practice exams are designed to ensure that individuals granted certification are fully competent in every area and will test you on details that might not be readily apparent in your day-to-day functions.
Health care and business laws are tested on most medical practice exams. However, it is an area of operations frequently ignored by medical practice managers. This is not to say that many medical practice offices are not in compliance with the laws. When a new office opens, a great deal of time and attention goes into setting up the office so it meets all health care regulations. However, as time passes and operating procedures become routine many managers may forget the laws and lose touch with any updates or changes. Therefore it is imperative when studying for a medical practice exam that you review the most current forms of all health care and business law. This includes all HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) and OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirements.
Billing and collection procedures are also frequently tested subjects on medical practice examinations. Most medical offices have one or several employees devoted exclusively to billing and collection. While the medical practice managers oversee the billing and collection employees, they generally tend to trust the employees to do the job correctly and become unfamiliar with the details of the process. This is not a great scenario as it is the manager’s job to ensure that all office functions are in compliance with current health care laws and policies and create the most efficient work flow for the office.
If practice managers do not have a detailed understanding of how billing and collection procedures work, they will be ineffective at properly guiding their employees in the best methods of doing their jobs. This could negatively impact the operations of the entire office. Therefore, studying billing and collections for a medical practice examination is critical for success on the exam and in the office.
Other key areas tested on medical practice examinations focus on effective strategies for managing people. Such topics include effective leadership methods, principles of management, human resources management, and problem resolution methods. Medical practice managers are there to make the workplace an efficient and effective environment for both the patient and employee. Even the best managers can benefit from leadership courses, so do not overlook the importance of studying these topics.
Careful study prior to the exam will benefit you not just on exam day, but also at work every day. While you may be extremely competent at managing a medical practice, there are always new tips and ideas to learn. So do not look at studying as a chore, but rather an asset to your job performance.