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The Road To Epic Certification: Why Should You Do It?

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Epic is the name of the largest and most used EHRs (electronic health records) in the United States. It is used by most large hospitals, and continues to get contracts for new hospitals. IT professionals that work in healthcare usually get Epic certification. If you are interested in getting Epic Certified, looking for more information on the process, or wondering if it’s worth it, we’ve got all the info you need here.

 

 

What Is Epic Certification?

Epic certification is for IT professionals in the health industry that work with Epic software. To become Epic certified, candidates must go through a training program and then take and pass a certification exam.

 

In many cases, to be admitted into an Epic training program, you must have sponsorship from an employer. There are several modules as options that you can take for Epic certification.

 

 

Epic certified man working on computer in healthcare
Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash

 

 

Epic Modules

There are specific portions of the Epic software that have specialized functions for certain areas of the hospital or healthcare facility. There are many different Epic modules, and where you work may determine which modules you are certified in.

 

Some of the common modules include:

  • ASAP: Epic’s emergency room module
  • Beacon: Epic’s oncology module
  • Beaker: Epic’s lab tests module
  • Cadence: Epic’s scheduling module
  • Cupid: Epic’s cardiology module
  • Kaleidoscope: Epic’s ophthalmology module
  • Prelude/ADT: Epic’s patient registration module
  • Radiant: Epic’s radiology module
  • Stork: Epic’s obstetrics module
  • Willow: Epic’s pharmacy module

 

Ways To Earn Epic Certification

First of all, you must be sponsored by an employer to be eligible for the Epic certification program. Epic is particular, and will not let just anyone become certified in using their software. It is often easier to get certification if you work for, or are sponsored by, a healthcare system that has already implemented or is in the process of implementing the Epic software system.

 

You can also be certified if you work for the Epic company itself. Therefore, there are only two ways to get certified — working for Epic itself, or working for an organization that uses the software.

 

Anyone working with the Epic system must be certified, so members of the staff are often sponsored and sent for certification. The certification program takes place at the Epic headquarters in Wisconsin, and consists of hands-on and in-depth training on the system. After the training has concluded, candidates must pass the certification test.

Epic Proficiency Vs. Epic Certification

Epic proficiency is exactly as it sounds — it means that you are proficient in using the system. It is a self-created title, and does not mean you are certified. After enough self-study, one can become ‘proficient’ in using the software, but certification cannot be claimed without going through the in-person training and passing the test.

 

 

Healthcare professionals studying for Epic certification exam
Photo by Alissa De Leva on Unsplash

 

 

Is The Epic Certification Exam Hard?

The short answer is, yes. The Epic certification test is very challenging. However, the training materials and instructors are very helpful. Remember, they want you to know the system back and forth, but they also want you to have all the information you need to be successful.

 

Some exam tips include:

  • Don’t skip any parts of the exam, and read all parts of the exercises carefully
  • Finish your project before the exam
  • Practice makes perfect — instead of book study, focus on spending plenty of time practicing using the system

 

Epic Certification Cost

Epic Certification costs anywhere from $500 – $10,000, with the average amount spent on the program at $5,000. But remember, individuals do not pay for the certification costs. They are sponsored by their companies.

 

 

Epic certified employees at desk on computer
Photo by Johny Georgiadis on Unsplash

 

 

How Much Money Can I Make Being Epic Certified?

Salaries run high for those who have been trained and certified by Epic. Here are a few common salaries for Epic-trained professions:

 

 

1. Epic Application Coordinator: $112,000

 

Epic application coordinators build, test, and provide ongoing support for the various applications of the Epic system. This position requires technical skills and a deep knowledge of the Epic software.

 

 

2. Epic Project Manager: $102,000

 

Project managers for Epic oversee projects pertaining to Epic software, including monitoring and maintaining timelines, budget, and deliverables. Epic PMs usually manage a team of project coordinators.

 

 

3. Epic Analyst: $97,000

 

Epic analysts apply their deep technical knowledge of the Epic system to the healthcare facility they work for. Epic analysts have a range of knowledge and experience, so there are often junior and senior analysts.

 

 

4. Epic Report Writer: $87,000

 

Epic report writers write reports from the Epic applications. But they do much more than just that — they also plan, design, test, and analyze these reports, and use their Epic knowledge for data modeling and keeping track of report databases.

 

 

5. Epic Trainer: $85,000

 

Epic trainers help others learn about the Epic system through programs, one-on-one sessions, and in classroom settings. For this position, pay may be dependent on your knowledge depth in Epic.

 

All of the above salaries are much higher than what their non-Epic-trained counterparts would be making. For example, healthcare project managers make $66,000 per year and healthcare analysts make $65,000 per year.

 

 

Epic certified women on laptops in healthcare
Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

 

 

Overall: Is Epic Certification Worth It?

Getting Epic certified opens your opportunities for higher positions and higher salaries.

 

For many hospitals and healthcare facilities that already use Epic, valid and updated Epic certification may in fact be required. In these hospitals, Epic-certified employees are in high demand, and if you have the certification, you will be highly desirable to other healthcare systems should you decide to change jobs.

 

You will be in even higher demand with multiple Epic certifications, which shows your continued interest and commitment to the system. You will need to continue to update and renew these certificates, however, and that means multiple trips to the training facility, and time out of your normal life. But, overall, the Epic certification will mean higher salaries and more job opportunities.

 

So, if you have the opportunity to get Epic certification, and you are being sponsored by your company, it is certainly worthwhile. If you have found an alternate way of entering the program, and are starting a new career using the Epic system, the certification will likely also prove useful for your future. If getting a Health Science degree is also something you’d like to pursue, University of the People is the place for you!