What Is EMR Certification?

Understanding EMR Certification: A Comprehensive Guide

Are you a healthcare organization interested in getting EMR certification for your staff? The need for trained EMR employees has grown as covered entities transition to digital records. 

Let’s discuss electronic medical record certification, including its benefits for your organization and some of the best certification programs.

Understanding EMR Certification: A Comprehensive Guide

What Is EMR Certification?

Electronic Medical Records (EMR) certification is a professional designation or recognition for anyone who passed the National HealthCareer Association’s (NHA) Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS) exam. According to the NHA, the certification is often combined with other NHA credentials to help your employees upgrade their skills.

EMR certification helps professionals learn the following:

  • Reviewing health records for regulatory compliance
  • Extracting clinical data to generate reports
  • Conducting basic coding for reimbursement claims
  • Handling Release of Information (ROI) requests related to medical records
  • Reviewing patient demographics and insurance data
  • Discussing patient data with physicians and insurance professionals

To be eligible for EMR certification, an individual should meet the following requirements:

  • High school diploma or GED/high school equivalency plus completed EHR specialist training or education program within the last five years
  • High school diploma or GED/high school equivalency plus at least one year of supervised work experience in the EHR specialist field within the last three years or two years of supervised work experience in the EHR specialist field within the last five years
Understanding EMR Certification: A Comprehensive Guide

How Can Employees Benefit From the EMR Certification Process?

Training staff in using EMR and getting them certified has become necessary, especially if you want to protect your data and help staff work efficiently. EMR specialists are professionals trained to manage and maintain electronic health records. They ensure that health information is accurate, secure, and compliant with regulations.

EMR certification is vital for employees working directly with electronic health records. Certification programs help fast-track learning, equipping your staff with the skills and knowledge to work effectively with EMR systems. With appropriate staff training, your organization can ensure a more efficient process when working with EMRs.

Thus, EMR certification for employees is critical to increase EMR adoption and comply with regulations like HIPAA. Trained specialists help colleagues use the technology effectively. It allows them to focus less on administrative tasks and tech troubleshooting, giving more time for quality patient care. More importantly, EMR certifications can provide your staff the confidence to handle protected health information (PHI).

5 Best EMR Certifications

1. Online Electronic Medical Records Certificate -U.S. Career Institute

This online training from the U.S. Career Institute helps employees gain a solid foundation in electronic record principles and practices. They will learn medical terminology, understand the processes of maintaining medical records, gain knowledge on coding and billing in healthcare, and apply statistics from reports.

The self-paced course should take 4-6 months and qualifies staff to take the Certified Electronic Health Record (CEHRS) exam. The course is divided into four instruction packs:

  • Welcome to the World of Healthcare
  • Electronic Records and Records Management
  • Healthcare Law and Reimbursement
  • Practice Management and Reporting


  • Full payment: $979
  • Installments: $1279 ($79/month)

2. Electronic Medical Records Training – Penn Foster

Penn Foster offers over 100 self-paced college, career, and high school courses. Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), the school has been helping students for over 125 years. 

The Arizona-based school’s two-month EMR training program is an online course to help employees learn how to use an EMR system or refresh their knowledge of EMRs. They will learn how to process patient admission and discharge documents, understand necessary medical terminology, and process data in an EMR.



3. Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist (CEHRS) – City College of New York

The City College of New York is a public research university. Known for high-quality education and the place where Albert Einstein first presented his general theory of relativity, it was founded in 1847. It prides itself on having alumni who “discovered the polio vaccine, helped build the internet, and designed the Panama Canal.” 

The CEHRS course is part of the school’s offerings for continuing and professional studies. This self-paced, 6-month course provides study materials and practice exams using EMRs. Afterward, they can take the CEHRS certification exam, which is already included in the tuition. 


$1,975 (installments available)

Understanding EMR Certification: A Comprehensive Guide

4. CEHRS Certification Online – University of Illinois Springfield

A fully online course, this program from the University of Illinois Springfield helps staff learn how to use an EMR. After completing it, employees can take the CEHRS certification exam. It is taught by the same instructors from the City College of New York’s CEHRS program.

Employees will gain a solid footing in EHR systems and will have actual hands-on experience in handling EHR software. Once they complete the course, they’re expected to know about HIPAA rules, explain medical records data, know how to write a chief complaint and patient history, establish the best EHR for a practice, track vital health data, and more.


$1,975 (installments available)

5. Certified Electronic Health Records Specialist + Medical Terminology – California State University San Marcos

This self-paced 6-month program from CSU-San Marcos provides 14 comprehensive lessons on EHRs. Employees will learn from healthcare professionals, medical administrators, certified electronic health records specialists, and other experts with hands-on experience in the field.

Once they complete the course, they will be eligible to take the CEHRS certification exam. The program gives them practical training in using actual EHR software. They’ll also learn medical terms, including common disorders and medical procedures. 


$2,325.00 (installments available)

Investing in EMR Certification for Better Data Security

EMR certification for staff is a worthwhile investment for any healthcare organization. It helps increase EMR adoption, enables staff to work efficiently, and helps covered entities comply with data privacy regulations. 

As EMR systems continuously evolve, staying abreast with the latest security measures and protocol changes becomes imperative. EMR certification equips your staff with the skills necessary to navigate these evolving systems.

Kent Cañas

Kent is a content strategist currently specializing in HIPAA-compliant online fax. Her expertise in this field allows her to provide valuable insights to clients seeking a secure and efficient online fax solution.

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