Based upon job analysis standards and state-of-the-art test construction, the CCA designation has been a nationally accepted standard of achievement in the health information management (HIM) field since 2002. More than 8,000 people have attained the certification since inception.
The CCA credential distinguishes coders by exhibiting commitment and demonstrating coding competencies across all settings, including both hospitals and physician practices. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a shortage of more than 50,000 qualified HIM and HIT workers by 2015. Becoming a CCA positions you as a leader in an exciting and growing market. CCAs:
The CCA exhibits coding competency in any setting, including both hospitals and physician practices. The CCS and CCS-P® exams demonstrate mastery level skills in an area of specialty: hospital-based for CCS's and physician practice-based for CCS-Ps.
Training and Recommendations
Before submitting an application, carefully review the information contained in this guide. It is the candidate's responsibility to ensure eligibility before submitting the application. Applicants who are determined to be ineligible and submit an ineligible application or request withdrawal of their application, will receive a refund of the application fee minus a $75 processing fee.
Applicants may register online or by submitting a paper application.
International applicants, please make sure you submit the Global Exam application.
The CCS and CCA certifications are now included as one of the national certifications that may be submitted on the Demographic Information Form (DIF) as part of the data requirements for making application for Magnet Recognition Program® designation. You can view this information on the ANCC/Magnet Recognition Program page here (scroll down to "Selected Examples of National Certifications for Submission on the DIF" and click on the excel link).
Premier Member Price: $189.05
Member Price: $199
Non-member price: $299
A candidate’s eligibility period is defined in the Authorization to Test letter (ATT) as a four-month window in which candidates are required to schedule their exam appointment. Candidates who fail to schedule an examination appointment within their eligibility period indicated in their ATT will forfeit their application fee. A complete application and examination fee are required to reapply for the examination.
Candidates arriving at the test center 15 minutes after the scheduled appointment will not be allowed to test and will forfeit the testing fee. A complete application and examination fee are required to reapply for the examination.
A certification examination is based on an explicit set of competencies. These competencies have been determined through a job analysis study conducted of practitioners. The competencies are divided into domains and tasks as shown in the PDF below. Examinations test only content pertaining to the following competencies.
The CCA exam is only offered outside the U.S. at specific times during the year. Applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. The exam dates for 2019 are:
Event Testing Dates for 2019:
Find a Test Center
After you submit your exam application and your application fee is processed, you will receive an Authorization to Test letter with instruction on how to select your exam appointment.
Retest Policy (For testing outside the US only):
Candidates who have taken and failed the examination must wait a minimum of 165 days before your application will be processed. To retake the examination, candidates must resubmit a new application with appropriate exam application fee.
Individuals who took the beta version of the CCA exam this year should be advised that beta testers are expected to receive their test results no later than October 10, 2019.
Waiting for a test score is never easy, and we are sorry for the extended wait that results from beta exams.
While the certification portion of our website did contain a notice about the extended beta period at the time of exam registration, we understand that people feel that they were inadequately informed by AHIMA. We are re-evaluating the way we present information about the beta tests on our web site going forward to avoid future confusion. We are also re-evaluating the communication we provide to Program Directors to avoid confusion with new graduates and potential/current employers.
It's important to point out that the beta exam testers serve an important professional function. They help to evaluate the specific credential's testing process so that AHIMA can create the best possible exam, and for that we thank them.
Individuals who take (non-beta period) exams do receive their results the same day. Beta exam testers have never received their results on the same day.
We are not able to provide immediate scoring for beta testers because the version of the exam they took was a "beta exam" that requires a certain number of test takers to calibrate the scores. The beta exam contains new questions that have not yet been analyzed by a psychometrician.
On a beta exam, we use the statistical results of how candidates answer the questions to evaluate and select the best questions for the next exam publication. This process requires more time to score the beta test than it does a "normal" exam and test takers who take the beta exam can expect to get their results within 12-24 weeks of taking the test.
The reason why AHIMA uses the beta process is that we want to ensure that the exam is developed in a valid way and ensure that exam security practices are stringently enforced. We believe this method of test development is the best way of accomplishing this goal, and our view is supported by credentialing industry sources such as the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) and the Institute for Credentialing Excellence.
Thank you for your patience.