Expert/Professional/Standard. What Should You Choose?


Many students as well as experienced coders are inquiring about the difference between Standard, Professional and Expert versions of coding books. Many have a question what book to choose and how they will benefit from each of these versions.

First of all, it needs to be said there’s no determined set of features that has to appear in each copy to get a particular title. Every publisher decides for himself what he wants to include in the book and how to name it. Based on their experience and the audience they try to reach, they might find some features more valuable than others. Of course, all coding books have to have the current code set, but when it comes to additional information, appendixes, format, conventions, etc.—here the publisher has freedom to choose what to fill his book with.

In choosing between the Standard, Professional and Expert version you should remember that the Standard version is taking the lowest position on the stairs. It will have minimum of useful information, besides the code set. Most likely the Standard version of the book is soft bound and smaller than the Professional or Expert book. The Professional version is more advanced version. It has more valuable information that you can use to code more efficiently. The Expert version is the top-quality version that loaded with the maximum additional information. Publishers make this version more attractive to coders, enhancing it with unique features like additional tables and crosswalks, tab dividers, along with the most current information, that a coder might be required to purchase in a separate manual to provide comprehensive coding. The Expert version is also equipped with spiral binding, which makes it more comfortable to work with this book.

It makes huge sense for students to obtain the top version of each coding book to have access to all the information available for the subject to learn to code accurately and eliminate coding errors.

Please note that there is no Expert version of the AMA CPT® book.  The AMA only publishes Standard and Professional versions of this book, making the Professional version the top available version of Current Procedural Terminology book.

Getting the top versions of the ICD-9-CM, HCPCS, CPT ® and Procedural Coding Expert books increases a coder’s success in daily work performance and helps avoid costly errors.

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