What is the most recognized healthcare compliance certification a professional can secure? In short, it depends on your role and career goals.
As an overall certification, the Certified in Healthcare Compliance (CHC) and Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional (CCEP) certifications are some of the most sought after. Professionals who earn healthcare compliance certifications, such as those above, can substantially increase their annual earning, according to a Compliance Certification Board (CCB) study.
Before you can determine the most recognized healthcare compliance certification, you need to know your options, the type of professional who earns each, and the benefits.
Options for Healthcare Compliance Certifications
- Certified in Healthcare Compliance (CHC): The CHC certification, offered by Health Care Compliance Association (HCCA), demonstrates a high level of expertise in healthcare laws, regulations, and ethical standards. Holders of this certification are equipped to navigate complex compliance challenges in the healthcare industry.
- Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional (CCEP): The CCEP designation meant for professionals who oversee compliance and ethics programs across various industries, including healthcare. This certification, offered by the CCB, showcases a deep understanding of compliance, ethics, and risk management principles, making it highly relevant for healthcare compliance roles.
- Certified HIPAA Professional (CHP): Several entities, such as ECFC, offer versions of a CHP certification. This designation is ideal for healthcare professionals tasked with ensuring compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). It emphasizes understanding the privacy and security aspects of patient information in healthcare settings.
- Certified Professional Compliance Officer (CPCO): The CPCO certification is offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders and is tailored to professionals who manage and lead compliance programs. It covers various aspects of healthcare regulations and compliance, including fraud and abuse prevention and ethical coding practices.
- Certified Medical Compliance Officer (CMCO): The CMCO certification is offered by the Practice Management Institute. It focuses on compliance within medical practices and clinics. It equips professionals with the knowledge to address compliance challenges specific to healthcare delivery settings.
- Certified in Healthcare Privacy Compliance (CHPC): The CHPC certification, offered by the Compliance Certification Board (CCB), focuses on privacy compliance within the healthcare sector. It covers regulations such as HIPAA and empowers professionals to protect patient privacy and confidentiality.
- Certified in Healthcare Research Compliance (CHRC): The CHRC certification, offered by the HCCA, is designed for professionals who manage compliance in healthcare research settings. It addresses the unique challenges of maintaining ethical research practices and regulatory compliance.
Deciding if You Need the Most Recognized Healthcare Compliance Certification
Your decision depends on various factors, including your career goals, your current role or field of expertise, and your specific interests within healthcare compliance. You may decide that even though a certification is one of the most recognized, it isn’t right for you. Here are some steps to help you decide which healthcare compliance certification to pursue:
- Determine Your Career Goals: Consider your long-term career objectives in healthcare compliance. Do you want to specialize in a particular area (e.g., privacy and data security, fraud and abuse, corporate compliance) or have a broad understanding of compliance across various aspects of healthcare?
- Review Eligibility Requirements: Determine whether you meet the educational and experience prerequisites for the certification(s) you are interested in.
- Assess Exam Content and Format: Choose a certification that aligns with your strengths and preferred exam format. The demands of your current role may make some certifications hard to obtain.
- Seek Recommendations: Reach out to colleagues and mentors in the healthcare compliance field for recommendations and insights. They may have valuable advice on which certifications are most relevant and respected in your area of practice.
- Consider Cost and Accessibility: Evaluate the cost of certification exams, study materials, and any associated membership fees for certifying organizations. Additionally, consider the availability of study resources and training programs for the certification you are interested in.
Ultimately, the choice of which healthcare compliance certification to pursue should align with your career aspirations, expertise, and interests. Consider how the certification will benefit your current role and future career growth within the healthcare compliance field.
Going Beyond a Certification To Shine
A certification, especially a widely recognized healthcare compliance certification, offers plenty of benefits. In addition to obtaining a certification, top compliance officers also become proficient in using compliance software. Being familiar with healthcare-specific learning management systems, online policy management, and incident reporting also offers an edge that set you apart. More than 1,500 healthcare organizations use MedTrainer software to streamline the training process and organize documents and policies to make a difference.