What is CPC Certification? Your Guide to Becoming a Certified Professional Coder 2024

By Maxwell Hartley

CPC (Certified Professional Coder) certification is a credential offered by the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC), indicating proficiency in medical coding.

In the healthcare industry, accurate medical coding is essential for proper reimbursement, compliance, and efficient healthcare operations. CPC certification demonstrates competency in this critical area.

Eligibility Criteria

Educational Requirements

While a high school diploma or equivalent is recommended, there are no specific educational requirements.

Experience Prerequisites

Typically, two years of professional coding experience is necessary. However, candidates lacking experience may obtain an apprentice designation.

Other Criteria

Candidates must adhere to AAPC’s code of ethics and pay the necessary fees.

Exam Format


The CPC exam comprises 150 multiple-choice questions covering various coding topics.

Question Types

Questions include anatomy, medical terminology, ICD-10-CM, CPT, HCPCS Level II, and coding scenarios.


The exam duration is 5 hours and 40 minutes.

Passing Score

Candidates must achieve a minimum score of 70% to pass.

Syllabus and Topics Covered


The exam covers anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, coding guidelines, and code sets (ICD-10-CM, CPT, HCPCS Level II).

Commonly Tested Areas

Understanding medical terminology, applying coding guidelines accurately, and proficiently utilizing code sets are crucial for success.

Preparation Tips

Preparation Tips

Study Resources

Utilize AAPC study guides, online courses, and practice exams, along with reference coding books.

Study Schedule

Develop a structured study plan, allocating time for each topic and regular practice.


Practice time management, eliminate obvious incorrect answers, and prioritize questions based on difficulty during the exam.

Importance of Practical Experience

Complementing Knowledge

Practical experience reinforces theoretical understanding by providing real-world application and context.


Seek internships or practical training opportunities to gain hands-on experience in medical coding.

Benefits of CPC Certification

Career Advancement

CPC certification opens doors to various career opportunities in healthcare facilities, insurance companies, consulting firms, etc.

Earning Potential

Certified coders generally command higher salaries than non-certified counterparts.


CPC certification enhances credibility and recognition within the healthcare industry.

Renewal and Continuing Education

Renewal and Continuing Education

Certification Validity

CPC certification is valid for one year.

Renewal Requirements

Renewal necessitates earning continuing education units (CEUs) through AAPC-approved educational activities.

Importance of Continuing Education

Continuing education ensures coders stay abreast of evolving coding practices and industry standards.


CPC certification is crucial for career growth and recognition in the healthcare industry.

Pursuing CPC certification is a worthwhile investment in one’s career and professional development, offering numerous benefits and opportunities.

For information on Salesforce Certification, please click here Salesforce Certification.

Leave a Comment