Frequently Asked Questions

Q
What are the requirements for becoming an Oxford HIM employee?
A
Oxford HIM professionals must have current RHIA, RHIT, CCS, or RCC credentials; three or more years of acute hospital coding experience; a proven record of above-average productivity standards; high-mark quality reviews; multi-case mix experience; multi-system and encoder experience (SMS, 3M, HSS, Meditech); and experience coding and abstracting inpatient/outpatient records. Additional requirements vary per assignment. Ask your recruiter for specific requirements. Professionals must also be able to provide proof of United States citizenship.
Q
How do I become an employee with Oxford HIM?
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The process begins when you complete an application. A recruiter will then contact you to discuss your specific skills, career goals, and time frames.
Q
Are there any obligations or commitments upon submitting an application?
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Until you formally accept an assignment there is no obligation. You are free to explore all the possibilities. Upon accepting an assignment, your commitment is only for the mutually agreed upon length of that particular assignment.
Q
Are there ever any fees for Oxford HIM's services?
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We never charge candidates fees for our services.
Q
How long will it take to find an assignment once I have applied?
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After completing the prescreening process, your first assignment could begin in as little as a few days or, more typically, one to two weeks.
Q
What types of assignments are available?
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We have local, regional, and travel assignments available on a contract, contract-to-hire, and direct hire basis. Whatever your preference, your Oxford HIM recruiter will work to secure the right placement for you.
Q
How do I choose assignments?
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After you apply with Oxford HIM, you are assigned to a recruiter. This professional is dedicated to securing assignments closely aligned with your skills and preferences. Your recruiter will provide you with the necessary information for you to make the best choice.
Q
Will you have the assignment I want?
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Oxford HIM maintains a vast network of relationships and contacts throughout the nation, enabling us to match our candidates with the jobs they prefer. If the assignment is not immediately available in our database, our recruiters and account executives instantly go to work securing the assignment you want.
Q
What happens after I select an assignment?
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Your professional profile will be immediately sent to the client and a telephone interview will be arranged with the person in charge of hiring. We will make certain you have all the information you need about the position and the employer to assure a successful interview and satisfactory placement.
Q
How will Oxford HIM help me prepare for my assignment?
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Your recruiter is with you every step of the way – from confirming all the details you need to start work and all throughout your assignment. For additional support, our Service Center is open Monday through Friday, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST to assist you with your needs.
Q
What happens when an assignment ends?
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Your recruiter takes an active part in managing the relationship. We maintain a job history on every employee, updating your skill assessments and competencies to ensure appropriate job matches, and proactively help you find and transition to subsequent assignments after your current assignment is completed.
Q
What are the benefits and bonuses available with Oxford HIM?
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Oxford HIM has competitive wages, and offers comprehensive and flexible benefit programs. Many assignments offer incentive programs, including significant bonuses paid upon successful completion of the assignment.
Q
How am I paid while working?
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Oxford HIM employees are paid weekly! Direct deposit is the easiest way to receive weekly wages, but checks can be mailed or sent overnight delivery upon your request.
Q
How am I paid for referring other candidates to Oxford HIM?
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The majority of Oxford HIM employees join after hearing about us from our current staff. We reward them well for their loyalty by paying one of the highest referral bonuses available in the industry. Referral bonuses are paid in the form of a check.
Q
What distinguishes Oxford HIM from other HIM search and placement firms?
A
Oxford HIM staff members are highly experienced to ensure that we locate, identify, and evaluate the industry's most talented healthcare personnel, as well as the best facilities to work for. Oxford HIM focuses on the candidates short- and long-term personal and career goals. Many of our candidates are happy with their current position, but would be open to opportunities to further their career, enhance their personal goals, increase compensation, or relocate to the area of the country they choose to live. We offer those opportunities to them and give relevant information so they can develop their one-, three-, and five-year career plans.
Q
What type of positions does Oxford HIM typically place?
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We help connect job seekers to facilities and organizations that meet the seekers' job criteria. We conduct in-depth interviews with all of our candidates and take the time to get to know them and what they would like to accomplish as a next career step. Typical job placements include: Directors / Managers of Health Information Management, Coding Managers / Supervisors, Coders, Auditors, CFOs, Controllers, and Reimbursement Professionals.
Q
Why should a hospital retain Oxford HIM for staffing solutions, rather than an internal approach?
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Through our unique sourcing abilities, we are able to locate the 10 percent of the candidate pool as opposed to the lower 25 percent that routinely respond to newspaper or Internet career portal ads. We develop long-term relationships with clients and candidates alike. Oxford HIM understands that all clients can and will be presented as candidates at some point in their career, as candidates can become clients with a unique and special relationship to Oxford HIM. Oxford HIM develops these relationships for life.
Q
Why does Oxford HIM focus on placing HIM employees?
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HIM is the point were diagnosis meets revenue in the global healthcare system. Increased demand for skilled health information management professionals has created an unparalleled worker crunch. This crisis is worsened by a declining number of trained professionals in the pipeline and the rapidly growing number of workers retiring. That's where we enter the picture - helping medical providers solve a growing labor challenge and helping employees best take advantage of the professional opportunities presented by the worker crunch. The current and upcoming changes in HIM have also put a demand on skilled professionals who are up-to-date with the latest technology and software within the HIM field. Finding these type of people will lighten the load for managers who do not have the proper amount of personnel to complete the necessary tasks of the department.
Q
How does Oxford HIM protect privacy and confidentially?
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Confidentiality is an absolute key to success in the search and recruitment industry. We maintain a strict confidentiality agreement with both clients and candidates.

Because Oxford HIM utilizes the most advanced technology in our profession, we can overcome the technical challenges that often burden our competitors. We are always reviewing new and evolving HIPAA requirements. Our privacy and confidentiality protocols satisfy all requirements necessary for the protection of privacy and confidentiality as mandated by the HIPAA.

Q
What is HIPAA?
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Congress passed The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 to reform the insurance market and simplify health care administrative processes. HIPAA is aimed at reducing administrative costs and burdens in the healthcare industry by adopting and requiring the use of standardized, electronic transmission of administrative and financial data. As a result, the Department of Health and Human Services adopted national uniform standards for the electronic transmission of certain health information. All primary participants must be compliant with HIPAA-established standards.
Q
What is the formal definition of Health Information Management (or 'HIM')?
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Health information management improves the quality of healthcare by insuring that the best information is available to make any healthcare decision. Health information management professionals manage healthcare data and information resources. The profession encompasses services in planning, collecting, aggregating, analyzing, and disseminating individual patient and aggregate clinical data. It serves the healthcare industry, including patient care organizations, payers, research and policy agencies, and other healthcare-related industries.
Q
What exactly does a medical coder do?
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Coders are accomplished nonclinical professionals who review and analyze medical record documentation in order to classify all conditions, reasons for treatment, diagnoses, medical services, and procedures performed. They convert verbal descriptions into standardized numerical codes. Medical coders evaluate the quality and quantity of clinical data in order to correctly classify and record all billable medical procedures, diagnoses, supplies, services, and treatments during a patient visit or procedure. The codes assigned for each patient encounter are disseminated onto a formal claim form and submitted to insurance entities for medical facility reimbursement for services rendered.
Q
Why are coders needed? Why don’t doctors and nurses just assign codes while treating patients?
A
Coders play a critical role in assuring an accurate transfer of billing data submitted to insurance companies for reimbursement and/or payment for medical services rendered. This information is also accumulated and utilized in quantitative national health care research in order to profile physicians, identify trends, and create future strategies to achieve healthcare cost containment and adequate staffing patterns. If such information was either missing or incorrect, national data the medical profession and government depend upon to make important decisions about insurance coverage, patient outcomes, and government spending would be flawed. As one of the fastest-growing careers in one of the fastest-growing industries, a coding or HIM career places individuals right where the expanding arena of healthcare meets the cutting edge of technology.
Q
What type of training does someone need in order to work as a coder?
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Coders generally require a strong knowledge of medical terminology, anatomy and physiology, disease processes, and pharmacology. Our candidates are certified through formal degree programs (RHIA or RHIT) and most have passed standardized tests such as the CCS or CPC. All training must be hands-on as well. The individuals who classify as candidates for many of our clients must have hospital or clinical experience to be considered for our clients.
Q
Where exactly do medical coders work?
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Medical coders work for hospitals, clinics, home healthcare agencies, insurance companies, and coding companies. Also medical coders and billers can work from their own home as either home-based employees or as independent contractors.
Q
What type of person is successful in a medical record coding career?
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Anyone who is detail-oriented, loves to read, and has a genuine interest in the human body and how it works are strong candidates. Individuals who have a desire to work in the health care industry but do not want to participate in hands-on patient care should research this career. If you have an interest in healthcare and information technology, health information management (HIM) may be the right career choice for you. Being a coder is a lot like being a detective. Coders must be able to read a patient story, ask questions, look for any inconsistencies in the story and pick out the "clues" they need to put the pieces of the episode of care "puzzle" together. Being able to analyze data, maneuver around in the computer, and communicate effectively with clinical staff are important skills necessary to succeed in HIM.
Q
Where can I go to learn more about the coding profession?
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There are two things prospective employees should do to learn more about this expanding profession. First, search the AHIMA and AAPC websites for coding trends, job outlook, resources, etc. Second, contact a person practicing as a coder and interview them. He/she can provide you with real-life success stories and advice for entering the field.
Q
How can I find more answers to my questions?
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We are always ready to answer any questions, and encourage you to contact us at 800-364-4260.