I Got Certified for Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!

I Got Certified for Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!

Posted on 01. Aug, 2013 by in Careers, Education, Featured, Job Seekers

As I have chronicled in my previous blogs, it’s been an interesting journey these past 5-6 years I’ve been successfully and gainfully engaged as an Electronic Medical Records (EMR) professional.  The adoption of EMRs / EHRs is a top healthcare facility priority and on the national forefront thanks in large part to the National Healthcare Reform bill that was passed this year by our Government and also last year’s adoption of the ARRA.  So many more people are seeking information about this evolving healthcare industry. I feel so fortunate I learned about EMRs about 10 years ago.  At that time I was the lead Microsoft Instructor for a major university hospital – training all of the Clinical and professional staff in utilizing MS Office. My colleagues in this hospital training department were tasked with providing instruction on this interesting little ‘pilot’, a  clinical software application for this hospital’s outpatient/ambulatory clinics. My entire professional career…I’ve always been very inquisitive and seeking information about what is most current on the cutting edge of technology or what’s new…and then I want to learn about it and so again, I followed my professional instinct and learned everything I could about EMRs. And now 10 years later I have garnered three EMR Certifications from one of the top EMR vendors – Epic® Systems Corporation. Epic® has a large market share of the hospitals and clinics who have implemented EMRs by converting their paper medical charts to digitized systems, based on specific clinical workflows.

Some of the top questions people now ask me include:  How do you get EMR certified?  How do you get hired for EMR / EHR implementations? What types of healthcare IT jobs are available? How do you get qualified for hire? (or at least an interview). My first answer to these pressing questions is, earning a EMR Certification is just the beginning of your EMR / EHR journey. To be fully marketable in this field, getting certified is an exciting first step, but it also requires an opportunity to directly apply what you learned in the classroom to the “real life ” clinical community. Different EMR / EHR vendors have various training programs and/or certification requirements.

Following is my successful 10 year journey of how I got EMR Certified and just as important, EMR Experienced (summarized version):

2001 – 2003 Hired/worked as Lead Microsoft Office instructor in the Training department of a large University level Healthcare facility. Also began observing a new EMR system (EpicCare®), being piloted at several outpatient/ambulatory clinics associated with this healthcare facility.
2004 Transitioned from the Training department, to the ‘EMR’ implementation department at this same University level Healthcare facility.  I was then sent out to Epic® Systems training facility in Madison, Wisconsin. Received intensive 3-day training consisting of 3 training companions about their outpatient/ambulatory EMR system (EpicCare®). Post Epic Systems training received access to their online system and for about 6-months did the required self-study and project assignments completions (also completing various “real life” clinical EMR implementation work assignments).
2005 Received my first Epic EMR Certification – EpicCare Ambulatory, by successfully completing mandatory 2-hour exams for each of the 3 study companions. Received my official certification notification and document from Epic Systems.
2005 – 2006 Worked with other certified EpicCare Analysts, by completing all the tasks related to EMR implementation for Internal Medicine Practices.
2007 Was recruited to become a traveling EpicCare EMR Implementation Consultant. Continued with EMR implementation assignments for outpatient/ambulatory healthcare facilities on the West Coast, Mid-west, and the East Coast.
2008 Was recruited to be part of an Inpatient (or acute care) EMR implementation for a large pediatric hospital facility. I was sent out (twice) to Epic® Systems grand new and improved training facility now located in Verona Wisconsin. Each visit I received intensive 3-day training consisting of 3 training companions about their Inpatient EMR system to learn Clinical Documentation and Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE). Post Epic Systems training received access to their online system for self-study and project assignments completions.Received my second and third Epic® EMR Inpatient application Certifications; Clinical Document and CPOE. I successfully completed the mandatory 2-hour exams for each application. Received my official certification notification and document from Epic Systems.
2008 – 2010 Continued working with Full-time EMR professionals and other certified Epic EMR consultants, by completing tasks related to EMR implementation for Hospitals and Clinics nationally.

I hope this summarized version of my EMR Certification process (and my  ten year journey to get the experience required to be marketable and do good work) is helpful to your quest.

If you are also EMR certified, please reply to this blog with your particular experience…perhaps you have another EMR Vendor certification, please share your process and/or experience.

If you are seeking EMR certification, let me know if this blog has been helpful!

 

Update:  I am proud to announce that since this post was originally written in 2010, I have founded an online school – Healthcare Information Technology Workforce – School of New Jersey.    Visit us today and learn how we conduct our nationally recognized government-sponsored Health IT curriculum online, preparing students for the Health IT Workforce Competency Examination Program (HIT Pro™). Graduates of Healthcare IT School of New Jersey programs receive a Certificate of Achievement and are provided with their in-demand job placement assistance.

Shirley Corsey

Shirley Corsey is a certified Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Consultant/Road Warrior, and owner of her own online training center for the Healthcare Information Technology industry. She is a seasoned Healthcare IT professional with over 25 years experience, with a recent career focus for the past 9 years in the EMR job market.

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165 Responses to “I Got Certified for Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!”

  1. Jamar Suber

    13. Apr, 2012

    Great article, I am a recruiter in the industry and the options are limitless. If you are looking for Epic or Cerner careers I have consulting and permanent available. Get in touch, maybe I can help you!

  2. Harold Pelzer

    24. Apr, 2012

    Shirley,

    I was wondering can I start my own ehr consulting company, or do I have to obtain a certification of some sorts to go into business for myself

  3. sha

    27. Apr, 2012

    Thank you! Great advice.

  4. Chasity

    04. May, 2012

    I am going to be taking a EHR program.
    I don’t have any kind of degree. Will I be able to get a job with just being certified through taking this program? Or do I Need to have 2 year degree?? Please email me. Thanks.
    I am new to all of this & I need a good job.

    Chasity_e@yahoo.com

  5. Ify

    05. Jun, 2012

    I am really interested in the Epic EMR vendor certification and would like to know where I can get the training. I just finished my training on Medical Coding. My email is scholly5@yahoo.com. Thanks

  6. Juanita

    05. Jun, 2012

    Hello, I am looking to transition into this industry. I would like to ask more questions and look into your course. Please email me.

    Thank you,

  7. janet watt

    07. Jun, 2012

    I am also interested in Epic EMR vendor certification

  8. Joe r

    19. Jun, 2012

    How long is a full day during training?

  9. Nitin Nick Agarwal

    21. Jun, 2012

    I recently got Hired by NYU Medical center as a trainer for Epic. The only sticking point for me is that they will credential me and not get me certified. If I get credentialed is there anyway I can then take further steps to become certified? Any help or guidence would be much appreciated. Please email me at Na11373 at yahoo.com. Just put Epic as the subject line. Thank you.

  10. Betty

    24. Jun, 2012

    i’m totally new to this medical industry. i used to work as waitress at some restaurant. i used to worked 12-14 hours a day. i wolud like to have more information about this training, like : what’s the requirement, how much is cost, & how long it takes ? Please e-mail me back. i’ll forward to know more. Thank You.

  11. Matt Houser

    25. Jun, 2012

    I am interested in getting EMR Vendor Certification in Chicago. I have over 20 years experience in application support in the Financial trading industry and I am currently unemployed from the recent MF Global Bankruptcy Please help if you can. Thanks.

  12. Cindy Lichtenhan

    27. Jun, 2012

    Would you please e-mail me information on how to get EPIC certified? Thank you for your help. cynlauer@comcast.net

  13. Nike

    28. Jun, 2012

    Hi,
    A friend of mine was just telling me something about this and i didn’t look much into it because I’m currently in the IT fiend and wasn’t thinking of branching into another field. I didn’t know it’s also an IT field. I’m very interested. I currently work as a system Admin for a Non profit org company and i have much experience in servers, router, switches and networking topology but not much in database, which i’m sure it can be thought. I live in NY and if you can give me more insight on how to obtain this certification, i will be really grateful.
    My email is kadenekan@aol.com.

    Thanks much

  14. niharika

    09. Jul, 2012

    Please drop me an email on the certification process. How long does it take to complete the course or to go through the certification…

    email me niharika 3 4 0 at g m a i l dot c o om

  15. Mani

    10. Jul, 2012

    Hi Shirley!

    I am currently working for an IT company as a contractor. I am interested in getting trained and certified in Epic. Please send me the information. Also, a little bit of guidance on how you go about getting your first job will be helpful, since I have never worked for a hospital before. Thanks and looking forward to your e-mail.

  16. Candasse

    10. Jul, 2012

    Would love to have more information as well on how to pursue this! I went to college for the arts, but am really looking forward to going back to school soon and would like to be a part of the healthcare IT field. Is there any specific major or course I should begin with? Thanks in advance for your help!

  17. Teresa McNeill, BSN, RN-C

    14. Jul, 2012

    Are there any FREE online resources to get familiar with EPIC or other practice management software? I cannot travel. I live in NC. I have found free websites for Practice Fusion which is web based and a very good resource. I also found a free link to the VistA website for the VA Administration, which is a good spring board to get familiar with the interface. I read that all the other private EMR software is based on the VistA interface design. VistA was the precursor and model for everyone else. Please advise. I am taking the HitPro Clinician Consultant exam in August.

  18. Sandra

    15. Jul, 2012

    I would to get more information on the training for Epic Certification. I am currently a Business Systems Anaylst in IT. Are there positions using Epic for what I do? If do, is the certification the main thing I need to get started?

    Thanks!

  19. Shirley Corsey

    18. Jul, 2012

    Dear Sandra, Teresa, Nicole, Mani, niharika, and the many, many other folks seeking this information,

    As I have stated several times to the many, many people nationwide who are seeking Epic certification and training for this vendor’s specific EMR Clinical application – at this time only Epic Systems’ staff provides training for their system and this training leads to certification by means of completion of a series of “projects and exams”. Epic offers this curriculum and certification process only to the Staff (and a few of their authorized “partners” staff) of the healthcare facilities who purchase Epic’s EMR Clinical Applications. The best way to get this opportunity is to get hired by a healthcare facility who has purchased Epic’s EMR Clinical Application. This employer will in turn send you to Epic’s headquarters facility in Verona, Wisconsin to be enrolled in this EMR Vendor’s training and certification program.

    Regarding positions using Epic for what you do- for example Sandra’s background [Business Systems Analyst in IT’], the answer maybe Yes (I don’t know the specifics of all that you do)…but an example of a Epic position based on someone with a ‘Business Systems Analyst in IT’ background could involve Epic’s applications connected to its EMR Clinical applications such as its EMR Billing and Scheduling. Yes, you would need to get Epic’s certification to get started.
    I provide additional regarding how I received my first Epic EMR Certification in my webinar “I Got Certified in Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!” – In the “live” webinar I provide an opportunity for my participants to ask and received my responses to their specific EMR educational and professional questions and goals!
    Regards,
    Shirley Corsey
    http://www.HCITshool.com | http://www.SCConsultant.com
    (609) 704-7256

  20. cmg

    25. Jul, 2012

    Could you please me an email on the certification process. How long does it take to complete the course or to go through the certification… Right now I am a EMR trainer, but i really would like to be cerified, the company i work for now does not offer any incentives. Please email me cmg9579@yahoo.com

  21. Shirley Corsey

    27. Jul, 2012

    The Epic EMR training and certification process requires about 3 months – visits to this company’s headquarters for the training conducted by their staff. Then self-study, completion of curriculum based projects, then the final exam (monitored by an assigned “proctor” from your Healthcare employer).
    I provide additional regarding how I received my first Epic EMR Certification in my webinar “I Got Certified in Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!” – In the “live” webinar I provide an opportunity for my participants to ask and received my responses to their specific EMR educational and professional questions and goals!

    Regards,
    Shirley Corsey
    http://www.HCITshool.com | http://www.SCConsultant.com
    (609) 704-7256

  22. Margie

    29. Jul, 2012

    I am an RN would like to transition to Epic conversions. Have been with 2 hospital conversions, Renown in Reno and Fairview Hospital in Eden, MN

  23. Shirley Corsey

    30. Jul, 2012

    Margie,

    I provide additional information regarding how I received my first Epic EMR Certification in my webinar “I Got Certified in Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!” – In the “live” webinar I provide an opportunity for my participants to ask and received my responses to their specific EMR educational and professional questions and goals!

    Regards,
    Shirley Corsey
    http://www.HCITshool.com | http://www.SCConsultant.com
    (609) 704-7256

  24. ATB

    30. Jul, 2012

    Hello. I too would like to receive an email on the certification process. How much time does it take to complete, and to get certified? I currently work in the “corporate” sector within in the IT Audit field as a Lead IT Auditor. I am certified with a CISA, and have a Master of Science in Computer Science, but have put off exploring the EPIC Consultancy field for farr too long. Please send me any useful information that might effectively guide me through the process. Thanks!

  25. Rena

    06. Aug, 2012

    I’ve been working in the medical field for several years, I know some uses of Epic but I am really interested in the EPIC certification where and how I can start?
    Please email me larana1101@yahoo.com

  26. Helen

    07. Aug, 2012

    I have passed the AHIMA sanctioned HIT Trainer exam that is given after completing the ONC Community College Consortia program. I have also been on a team that implements and trains on the web-based EMR, Waiting Room Solutions. I am very interested in becoming trained and receiving certification on Epic®.

  27. Shirley Corsey

    07. Aug, 2012

    Dear ATB, Rena, and Helen,

    At this time the best way (and just about the only way) to get Epic EMR vendor training and subsequent opportunity to be certified in this vendors much sought after jobs opportunity – as I have stated many, many times in my replies and blogs – you must first be hired by a healthcare facility that is using Epic EMR Clinical applications. This employer is then able to send you to Epic’s facility in WI. for the first steps of this process. The Epic EMR training and certification process requires about 3 months – visits to this company’s headquarters for the training conducted by their staff. Then self-study, completion of curriculum based projects, then the final exam (monitored by an assigned “proctor” from your Healthcare employer).

    I provide additional regarding how I received my first Epic EMR Certification in my webinar “I Got Certified in Healthcare IT Jobs – You Can Too!” – In the “live” webinar I provide an opportunity for my participants to ask and received my responses to their specific EMR educational and professional questions and goals!

    Regards,
    Shirley Corsey
    http://www.HCITshool.com | http://www.SCConsultant.com
    (609) 704-7256

  28. Tonya

    15. Aug, 2012

    Have been trying to get certified in Epic any information you can give with I will be very grateful

  29. Mani

    05. Sep, 2012

    Hi Shirley!

    I am currently working for an IT company as a Software Development Manager/ Management analyst. I am interested in getting trained and certified in Epic. Please send me the information. Also, a little bit of guidance on how you go about getting your first job will be helpful, since I have never worked for a hospital before. Thanks and looking forward to your e-mail.

    Thanks,
    Mani

  30. Peggy

    16. Sep, 2012

    Thanks for sharing your history. I have 27+ years in the medical/nursing field and have been certifed as an EMR/HIT Trainer and looking to transition to the industry. You gave very good information!

  31. Eric

    18. Sep, 2012

    Hi Shirley,

    I have been trying to get any level of certification in EPIC, but as you have stated, the first step is to get hired by a Health care company. I have 15+ years in IT experience. This ranges from application Development, Diagnositics, Management and IT project management. I was able to get some training in ARRA and HIPPA working for BCBS insurance. But without some healthcare experience I am unable to get hired in a Health care organization so I can not get any EPIC training. I would do contract work just to get my foot in the door, but so far nothing has worked.
    Frustrated successful and experienced IT professional.
    Any help is appreciated.

  32. Shirley Corsey

    20. Sep, 2012

    Eric,
    One way you may consider getting your foot in the door by getting hired by a hospital and/or clinic – is your IT project management experience. Many Epic implementation projects are utilizing staff from Project Management Office (PMO), especially these professionals with PMP Certification.
    Once you get “in” with these credentials, you will get experience working with Epic implementation staff and be more aware of what this EMR application is about. At that point, you may be able to get the hospital employer to send you out for Epic Certification!

    Regards,
    Shirley
    http://www.HCITschool.com | http://www.SCconsultan.com
    (609) 704-7256

  33. Laura

    20. Sep, 2012

    I am a CPC and CPC-I Coder/Risk Adjustment Specialist. Would you recommend EHR certification for a coding specialist and what types of jobs might be on the horizon?

  34. Eric Payne

    21. Sep, 2012

    Shirley,
    Thanks for you advice. Now if I can just convince them based on my extensive IT Project management experience.
    How do you suggest I handle job descriptions that List “Epic experience” ? Should I submit to them anyway ?

    If I am ever successful, I will let you know.
    Until then, I will keep trying.
    Eric

  35. Eric

    21. Sep, 2012

    Shirley,
    You had a course on Medical (EMR)records. Are there any upcoming sessions or is it online ?
    Maybe my training in HIPPA and ARRA would help me with that.
    I am also looking for any other courses or seminars that would provide me some addtional information.
    I passed along your suggestion to my hr contacts. Maybe that will open up something.
    Thanks.
    Eric

  36. Eric

    21. Sep, 2012

    Shirley,
    I meant my Health care / Hospital IT HR contacts..
    Thanks.
    Eric

  37. veronica

    25. Sep, 2012

    I am really interested in the Epic EMR vendor certification and would like to know where I can get the training. I just finished my training on Medical Coding. My email is veronicaisobel@yahoo.com. Thanks

  38. shzh

    27. Sep, 2012

    I have a full time IT job which is not related to health IT. I would like to work on health IT field in the near future. Would you kindly let me know how I can get Epic certification to achieve my career goal? Thanks in advance!

  39. Cynthia

    05. Nov, 2012

    Thank you very much for this information. I am highly interested in the Epic EMR vendor certification and would like to know where I can get training. I can be reached at cclinc2005@yahoo.com.

  40. Michael

    07. Nov, 2012

    Thank you very much for this information. I am interested in the Epic EMR vendor certification. I would like to know where I can get training. You can send me an email. kunmiluminous@gmail.com. thanks

  41. Clive Burnett

    13. Nov, 2012

    I’m Interested in learning more about the Epic-EMR/EHR Training. Please contact me as soon as possible. Thanks

  42. Jay

    14. Nov, 2012

    I have recently been offered a position at a hospital that is willing to send me for the Epic certification. How many different certifications are available through Epic? Also, I have one concern about this. I am hearing rumors that some hospitals have eliminated their entire Epic staff and sent the jobs overseas to places like India. How prevalent is outsourcing with Epic?? I would hate to start a new job just to find out that it is being outsourced! Thank you!!

  43. Maruthi vara prasad

    17. Nov, 2012

    Can you please help me with the information on how to take up the training/certification on EHR/EMR product.
    rmaruthi05@gmail.com

  44. Jennifer P

    01. Dec, 2012

    I am interested in receiving my certification in EPIC. Please email me some information on where I can get training. Thanks!

  45. Lumi C

    16. Jan, 2013

    I have finish the HIT program. I got the certification for EHR System Consultant.I do not have any experience in the field.How I am supose to get experience ,no one give me a chant to learn on the job or train me on the job?

  46. Tanya

    14. Feb, 2013

    What if a hospital is willing to send a potential new hire for the Epic certification. How many different certifications are available through Epic? How long is the training programs? I have a IT masters degree and Telecom bachelor degree. Bit not sure why I am being comsidered when I have no experience in healthcare. I would love to make this transition but what are you opinions about this scenario ?

  47. jls

    10. Apr, 2013

    Very misleading information. I am an EMR analyst for a major hospital in the north east and I can promise you that you NEED emr experience before you can ever even hope to get certified. We get tons of applicants that have degrees ( BS and MS) in health IT, but if they have no experience working with an emr, they don’t even get a second look. Also, if you don’t have a strong clinical or IT background, you should not waste your time. Don’t believe me? Call a local agency and speak to a recruiter. Colleges are trying to convince people that once you get a degree, you can just apply and get a job. That is just not the case!!

  48. ebube

    19. May, 2013

    hello. i am currently pursing a Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration. i also came across this epic software and certification and have been doing a lot of research on it. i am very much interested in more info about this and how a novice in the epic knowlege can learn and gain some experience.. please reply… e.ebube@gmail.com. EPIC as subject. thankz

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