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The value of the ACMPE program: Expanding your career path

Insight Article - January 10, 2020

Professional Development

Performance Management

Leadership Development

MGMA Staff Members
As the only board certification of its kind, the CMPE credential is recognized as the professional standard in medical practice management. In this ongoing series, we share the stories of healthcare professionals who found personal and organizational value in achieving ACMPE board certification

Janiene Pitt, CMPE, is associate director of population health services with Tandigm Health, a healthcare analytics and data support services provider for primary care physicians based in Conshohocken, Pa. Pitt said ACMPE board certification presented an opportunity to expand her knowledge in healthcare management, which mirrors her own career path.

“I started out working at a primary care practice with no experience,” she said. “I came in as an office manager. I had management experience, I had business development experience, and I had worked for financial services and in insurance with AIG and Blue Cross. I had healthcare knowledge but no direct experience.

"I took the job thinking, ‘How hard could that be? I’ll just learn their systems, and everything will be good.’ It was one of the hardest jobs I ever had," Pitt added. "Now, I work very closely with office managers and I can feel their pain, because you have to know a lot about a lot.”

Pitt said she was interested in expanding her own personal growth and finally found the right chance with ACMPE board certification.

“We work primarily with primary [care] physicians, helping to optimize their practice,” she said. ”We had a president at the time who was very familiar with MGMA and made it a requirement that our organization tried to pursue certification. I was thrilled, because I wanted to do it before and I really didn’t have the support to do it. I jumped on it. I think my practice management background really gave me the insight into the importance of the credential and what the value could be.”

Looking back, Pitt said the three- to six-month period she spent studying for the ACMPE exam was indeed challenging, but she encounters real-life scenarios drawn directly from her credentialing process every day. 

“The risk and compliance module is really critical to understand and get ahead of,” she said. “I was involved in committees, and I got to hear some stories from other practices about a surprise audit from OSHA. [It helps] just understanding what you need to know, because there is so much. Oftentimes, the physicians or the owners of the practice really have no clue, so that responsibility falls on the practice manager.”

Ultimately, Pitt said earning the CMPE credential has also encouraged her to go further in her career.  

“I liked the fact that it had a path, so you could go from getting the certification then onto Fellowship,” she said. “During that path, you really got exposure into the nuts and bolts of running anything from a small practice to a multi-level healthcare system. The most enticing part was being recognized as someone who took an interest in practice management, someone who displayed an ability to understand concepts that would be important to running an optimal practice. That was important, especially in the role I have now.”

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