In the healthcare industry, patients often require a significant level of support as they undergo treatment.
This crucial support is provided by skilled professionals known as patient access representatives.
These dedicated individuals serve as a vital link between patients and their healthcare providers.
In this article, you will learn more about this job so you can determine if a career in this field in Iowa is the right choice for you.
Article Table of Contents
- 1 Steps to Becoming a Patient Access Representative in Iowa
- 2 Training Schools for Patient Access Representatives in Iowa
- 3 Salaries for Patient Access Representatives in Iowa
- 4 Frequently Asked Questions
Steps to Becoming a Patient Access Representative in Iowa
Everyone knows there are a few steps to take before applying for the job they want.
Let’s see the steps you must follow for a patient access representative position!
1. Complete Your Education
To begin your journey as a patient access representative, the minimum educational requirement is a high school diploma or GED.
However, if you aspire to enhance your income potential, it is advisable to consider pursuing an Associate’s Degree.
While Iowa does not mandate a college degree for this position, obtaining one will significantly elevate your resume and set you apart from other candidates.
Although there are no specialized degrees tailored specifically for patient access representatives, your best options include pursuing a healthcare administration degree or an assistance degree.
It’s worth noting that some candidates may even possess a Bachelor’s Degree.
The choice of degree program depends on factors such as the duration of study (ranging from 2 to 4 years), educational expenses, career advancement aspirations, and the specific direction you wish to pursue in your professional journey.
2. Get a Certification
While Iowa does not have certification or licensing requirements for patient access representatives, acquiring national certifications can greatly enhance your prospects in this field.
There are several recognized certifications available for those aspiring to become patient access representatives.
Notable certifications include:
- Certified Healthcare Access Associate (CHAA)
- Certified Medical Office Manager (CMOM)
- Certified Healthcare Access Manager (CHAM)
- Certified Professional Biller (CPB)
- Certified Billing & Coding Specialist (CBCS)
- Certified Professional Coder (CPC)
- Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA)
- Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA)
- Certified Electronic Health Record Specialist (CEHRS)
Of these certifications, the CHAA certification offered by the National Association of Healthcare Access Management (NAHAM) is particularly well-suited for patient access representatives.
The CHAA certification exam covers crucial topics such as customer service, patient access services, and regulatory standards.
Additionally, the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) offers two other certifications, namely CMAA and CEHRS.
It’s important to note that these certifications can be obtained through specialized training programs, ensuring that you possess the necessary knowledge and skills to excel in your role.
3. Job Experience
Job experience holds immense value when it comes to securing a position in the medical field, including that of a patient access representative.
Examples of relevant work experience may include:
- Record keeping
- Data entry
- Medical software proficiency
Training Schools for Patient Access Representatives in Iowa
Some of the schools offering patient access representatives in Iowa are:
Des Moines Area Community College
The Patient Access Specialist Program at Des Moines Area Community College offers a year-long program covering:
- Medical Terminology
- Insurance and Billing
- Front Office
- Customer Service
At the end of this program, students will receive a certificate.
The program can be attended in person or online.
There are 16 total credits included in this program, each costing about $170.
Hawkeye Community College
The Hawkeye Community College patient access program prepares you to work in any facility of your choice.
Some of these include clinics, hospitals, and doctors’ offices.
During the course, you will learn about:
- Healthcare Safety
- Basic Computer Skills
- Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers
- Medical Coding
Iowa Central Community College
Their year-long program teaches you how to become a patient access representative in any medical environment.
The classes provided by this school are:
- Medical Terminology
- Patient Care
- Laboratory Procedures
- EKG Interpretation
- Medical Billing and Coding
Northeast Iowa Community College
Northeast Iowa Community College provides a medical program preparing students to work as Patient Access Representatives.
Their program lasts for a year and the courses provided include:
- Medication Administration
- CPR and First Aid
- Simulation Labs
- Customized Coursework
Southeastern Community College
Southeastern Community College in Iowa provides many medical-related programs which allow you to get a diploma or a certificate.
That way, you can easily find your first job as a patient access representative in Iowa.
This college offers courses such as the following:
- Professional Health Care
- Community Health Worker
- Basic Life Support for HCP
- Medication Management
|Des Moines Area Community College||1144 7th St, Des Moines, IA 50314|
|Hawkeye Community College||1501 E Orange Rd, Waterloo, IA 50701|
|Iowa Central Community College||One Triton Cir, Fort Dodge, IA 50501|
|Northeast Iowa Community College||1220 3rd Ave NW #102, Waukon, IA 52172|
|Southeastern Community College||1500 W Agency Rd, West Burlington, IA 52655,|
Salaries for Patient Access Representatives in Iowa
In Iowa, the salaries for patient access representatives fluctuate based on the area.
The outlook for Patient Access Representatives in Iowa’s job market is highly promising.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this field is projected to experience steady growth over the next decade.
As a result, aspiring professionals in this field can look forward to a wealth of opportunities in Iowa’s thriving healthcare industry.
Usually, you can expect to earn around $48,505 per year with a job in this field.
The table below will give you more info on how much you will make in 10 cities in Iowa.Annual Salary Range: Annual Salary by Location:
|Location||Avg. Annual Salary|
Frequently Asked Questions
What skills do I need to work as a patient access representative in Iowa?
These are some of the best skills to have for a PAR job:
- Customer service
- General office
- Being calm
Are there benefits for becoming a PAR in Iowa?
The most important one is that you get to help others and thus feel needed if this is something important to you.
Another benefit is that this entry-level job pays much more than many others.
Does my certification need renewal?
Nationally-recognized certifications usually need renewal.
How often this must be done depends on the institution issuing the certification.