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Yours, Mine, and Ours

Author: Skurka, Margaret A.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2000


Newspaper columnists spend plenty of time writing about problems in our society, trying to understand who's responsible for social ills and how they can be fixed. How does this relate to AHIMA? I believe that we can ask the same type of questions about some of the problems our professi....

Year of Milestones

Author: Mangin, Wendy L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2008


We have much to celebrate as 2008 begins to wind down. AHIMA has achieved several milestones.

First and foremost, this year marks AHIMA’s 80th anniversary. The association’s mission is as relevant today as it was eight decades ago: advancing the vision of quality health i....

Writing AHIMA's Next Chapter

Author: Abdelhak, Mervat N.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2005


Earlier this year, AHIMA’s Board of Directors defined what success looks like for our profession, our preferred future, and the necessary actions we need to take. Here’s what we see in AHIMA’s future.

Framing the opportunities. The board foresees the e-HIMTM journey....

Write Your Own Story

Author: Chenoweth, Ann

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2017



I’ve always loved January! It is not only the freshly fallen snow and warm drinks by the fire that I cherish, it is the exhilaration that every new year brings with it the optimism that new beginnings are possible and the belief that our resolutions can create wonderful outcomes and suc....

Work Outside Your Comfort Zone

Author: Martin, Melissa

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2016



Have you ever taken on a special project outside of your comfort zone? My special project this year has been building an outpatient surgery center (OSC) from the ground up. Leadership, Strategic/Organizational Management, Change Management, and Project Management are all curriculum domain....

Why HIM Innovation Matters

Author: Sheridan, Patty Thierry

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2012


An HIM colleague recently asked me why everyone seems to be talking about innovation lately. Innovation might seem like a buzzword, but it’s also important to the future of healthcare and health information. Innovation isn’t just about generating new ideas-its primary goal is to develop a diff....

We are AHIMA; We are Family

Author: Odom-Wesley, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2002


I think we can all agree on the importance of family and its influence on the person each of us becomes. However, there are many types of families. Sometimes we have friends that are like family. Our recent national tragedy brought America closer together as an extended family. In the 73 years....

Visions of Future, Global Initiatives Focus for 2004

Author: Brodnik, Melanie S.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2004


Our 75th diamond anniversary, year-long celebration was quite a success. We celebrated our rich history and the important contributions AHIMA has made to the field of HIM. We also confirmed that the work we do has never been more important. We are thriving as an association, with some 46,000-p....

Using Our Influence to Lead for the Greater Good

Author: Kennedy, Angela

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2014



In a healthcare ecosystem where volume-based models are shifting to value-based ones, organizations will depend more and more on the use of informatics to drive decisions. Our success will depend on our ability to drill down to the level of detail required to support evidence-based medici....

Unforeseen Delay, A Determined Call to Action

Author: Kennedy, Angela

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2014



President Barack Obama signed H.R. 4302, the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, into law April 1, 2014. Though the bill’s main purpose was to create another temporary “patch” to the Medicare sustainable growth rate, language in a section of the bill effectively delayed the ICD-10-....

Two Golden Opportunities

Author: Fuller, Barbara P.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2001




What an exciting time for our profession! As the leaders in HIM, we are being recognized as valuable resources in analyzing and assessing the recently published standards for privacy of individually identifiable health information. When these regulations were announced by President Cl....

Turning Your HIM Expertise Into a Resource

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2017



In 1941, author Edna Huffman, writing about the management and storage of medical records, introduced readers to “the newest development in storage methods and the method that will conserve the greatest amount of space, known as microphotography.” She described how medical reco....

Transforming Healthcare

Author: Pickard, Bryon

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2007



We live in extraordinary times. New technologies are increasingly becoming an indispensable part of everyday life. The Internet, expanding cell phone capabilities, and new mobile devices enable people to not only stay connected, but also carry out almost any task imaginable. The possibilit....

Toward a Web-enabled HIM Profession

Author: Skurka, Margaret A.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2000


I begin this month's column with three questions: Do you have access to the Internet? Do you use it as a tool in your work? Are you regularly using the professional development information on AHIMA's Web site? If your answer to any of these questions is "no," I urge you to ....

Time for Information Governance is Now

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2014



For AHIMA, 2014 has been the year of information governance (IG).


From Information Governance Month in February to this month’s 86th Convention and Exhibit, AHIMA has been breaking new ground in exploring, understanding, and making recommendations for IG in healthcare o....

Thrill of the Unexpected

Author: Dixon-Lee, Claire

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 1999


It's hard to imagine that we are approaching the close of the twentieth century. As I examine my reaction to the start of this year, perhaps I speak for many of you in that I have mixed emotions. On one hand, I am filled with nostalgia for all of the events that affected my life growin....

Three Ways Analytics Optimizes Health Outcomes

Author: AHIMA

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2019


By Valerie Watzlaf, PhD, MPH, RHIA, FAHIMA


Over the summer I was fortunate to participate in several conferences. I was both honored to be involved and enthralled at the expertise of all of the individuals who participated and presented.


Data is powerful. Data litera....

The Year Ahead

Author: Dowling, Alan F.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2011


Welcome to 2011, a year in which opportunities abound!

This is a year in which we are likely to see increased collisions between preconceived notions and innovative concepts, between optimistic projections and implementation realities.

This year many individuals from a var....

The Power of Meaningful Practice

Author: Kennedy, Angela

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2013



Since AHIMA’s inception 85 years ago, access to complete and accurate health information has been a core tenet of health information management (HIM) practice.


As this practice continues to evolve, HIM professionals stand in a unique position with the ability to impact....

The Pathway Forward: Transforming Healthcare

Author: Sheridan, Patty Thierry

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2012


The recent US Supreme Court decision to uphold the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been controversial. Whether for, against, or somewhere in between, HIM practitioners and educators need to take part in the dialogue within their organizations. Regardless of what happens wi....

The Danger of Being Connected

Author: AHIMA

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2019

The Danger of Being Connected


By Ty Greenhalgh, HCISPP


In 2014, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act required and incented hospitals to demonstrate “meaningful use” of an electronic health record (EHR). Hospitals, desiring to maintain existing Medicaid a....

Team Talks: An Eye to the Future

Author: Fuller, Barbara P.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2001




This winter's Team Talks gave members a glimpse of an exciting new member benefit: Communities of Practice (CoP). When members saw a demonstration of CoP in action, there was a universally enthusiastic response about the opportunities this new feature will provide. Currently in beta....

Tapping HIM Expertise for Physician Practice EHRs

Author: Mangin, Wendy L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2008


Managing patient records has become more complex for medical practices. Electronic health records, quality reporting, and coding and documentation compliance all affect how a practice manages its patient information.


While improved information holds great promise for patient c....

Taking Up the Interoperability Mantle

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2016



In May the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) released a Data Brief describing the state of interoperability among non-federal acute care hospitals in 2015.1 The report looks specifically at four “domains” of interoperability: the ability for health systems....

Taking the Lead: Volunteer Opportunities Abound

Author: Siegel, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2003


One of my favorite stories is “The Sense of a Goose,” a popular tale by an unknown author that is widely used in public presentations and circulated over the Internet. The story’s basic truths speak of sharing common direction, staying the course, taking turns, and supporting an....

Taking a Lesson From Rosie

Author: Fuller, Barbara P.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2001




"We can do it!" declared the original Rosie the Riveter, an icon of World War II and a feature of AHIMA's current advertising campaign. Rosie symbolizes women's entry into the World War II work force as they filled the manpower gap created by men leaving for war. Rosie was a....

Take a "Deep Dive" into Information Stewardship

Author: Kennedy, Angela

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: November 2014



Health Informatics and information management professionals have traditionally been focused on areas such as risk management, quality assurance, licensure, accreditation, privacy, and security requirements for their organizations. But compliance—conformance or obedience to procedures, rul....

Supporting the Future of HIM

Author: Pickard, Bryon

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2007


Imagine it’s the year 2014. The world of HIM looks strikingly different from when I began my career retrieving medical record charts as a college student. Looking back over the past several years, the changes are monumental.

Back in the “old days,” HIM practitioners, foreve....

Strengthening Our Capability

Author: Pickard, Bryon

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: November 2007


Stepping back to reflect on our professional development helps us understand where we stand and the areas where we might focus for our future. Ask yourselves the questions below and objectively rate yourself on a scale of one to 10.
Do you consider yourself a high-potential employee, stud....

Strategic Planning: a Winning Play

Author: Brodnik, Melanie S.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2004

In April we look back at AHIMA’s own form of college basketball’s “March Madness”—Team Talks. The communication, collaboration, and networking of these meetings make all who attended national champs. The information shared at Team Talks is essential for achieving the A....

Staying Connected

Author: Dennis, Jill Callahan

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2006


AHIMA’s Convention Offers Great Networking, Educational Opportunities, But There Are Many More Ways to Stay Connected
This month thousands of members will gather in Denver, CO, for AHIMA’s 78th Convention and Exhibit. Attending the annual conference is a great way for members....

States—Laboratories for E-Health

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2008


States are often described as “laboratories of democracy.” Today they are also serving as laboratories for e-health. Virtually every US state is pursuing IT initiatives to improve the safety, quality, and affordability of healthcare. Leadership is coming from governors’ offic....

Standing Out in a Noisy World

Author: Chenoweth, Ann

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2017



Many influential thought leaders have come to realize there are three foundational elements to getting your ideas understood and appreciated: social proof, which gives people a reason to listen to you; content creation, which allows them to evaluate the quality of your ideas; and your netw....

Spotlight on Education and Training

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2007


It’s September, and students are back in school. Therefore the first Journal issue of the fall focuses on education. When we discuss education at AHIMA, we always think in two dimensions: the academic preparation of HIM experts and continuing education for those already in the field. The....

Spelling Out the Value of Our Credentials

Author: Siegel, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2003


Remember eating alphabet soup when you were young? What fun it was finding words or even making up new ones. We did not know then that a part of our future was spelled out before us.


Since 1928, our HIM credentials have demonstrated professionalism and expertise. Remember when....

Speaking up for HIM

Author: Pickard, Bryon

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2007


Ask 10 different policy makers the question “How can we improve patient safety and healthcare quality?” and you will likely hear 10 very different responses. Now consider the 535 representatives and senators who make up the 110th US Congress, the thousands of state and local legisl....

Skilled Knowledge Workers in Short Supply

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: July 2008


This is a demanding time for coders. MS-DRGs and present on admission requirements would have been challenging on their own; however, both came at virtually the same time, straining coders already stretched to meet their job requirements.

Recruitment and retention of coding staff is....

Setting Our Strategic Directions

Author: Abdelhak, Mervat N.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2005


From Team Talks to component state associations (CSAs), the input of AHIMA members has culminated in a set of interrelated strategic goals and priorities for 2005.

In late 2004 the Board of Directors approved these initiatives as well as a budget to support the implementation of pla....

Setting AHIMA’s Course

Author: Sheridan, Patty Thierry

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2012



Know the way, show the way, go the way-those are the three objectives of AHIMA's 2012–13 strategic initiatives, a set of seven strategic goals that serve AHIMA and its members now and into the future. They are referred to by the acronym AIM FREE:
Agility-be agile and responsive to....

Seizing the Moment

Author: Pickard, Bryon

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2007



Happy October! Fall is my favorite time of year. For many of us, the days are becoming cooler, trees are transforming into brilliant colors, and college and university campuses are bustling with activity. We have just passed the autumn equinox when the sun crosses the equator. Days are get....

Seat at the Table: Testimony to NCVHS

Author: Martin, Melissa

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2016



Back in June I had the opportunity to represent both AHIMA members and the HIM profession while testifying at a National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS) hearing on the need for a better definition of the minimum necessary standards. I would like to share with you some hig....

Season of Transformation

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2016



As I write this, the industry is finally beginning to shift its gaze from the first few weeks of the brave new world of ICD-10-CM/PCS. In October, with each passing day, we breathed a collective sigh of relief as implementation went smoothly. At the end the month, the Centers for Medicare....

Salute to PPE Site Managers

Author: Chenoweth, Ann

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2017



For college seniors, May is the time when the job search intensifies—putting the finishing touches on the resume, buying that new interview suit, and making connections with alumni.


The professional practice experience (PPE) is an important part of student education and is a....

RHIOs at a Crossroads

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2007


Regional health information organizations (RHIOs) represent what is best about public service organizations in our country. They are voluntary organizations formed by people who want to improve the safety and quality of healthcare by making reliable information available where it is neede....

Resource We Can't Afford Not to Cultivate

Author: Fuller, Barbara P.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: November 2001




How do we nurture our health information students and new professionals? I was prompted to ask myself this question after reading a recent letter from a new HIM graduate. This graduate was asking for a mentor and help in securing a job with a living wage.

Among other ways,....

Reporting Social Determinants of Health

Author: William, Fiala C

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2019


By William C. Fiala, BS, MA, CCS-P, CPC, RMA


Capturing socioeconomic data, also referred to as social determinants of health (SDOH), is rapidly becoming a necessary element of documentation. SDOH “are among the most influential factors that determine health outcomes of indiv....

Renewing the Vision of the Digital Medical Practice

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2008


I recently observed a series of focus groups in which high school students, “Generation Y” young adults, working parents with small children, and “pioneer” baby boomers discussed health IT. As you would expect, there were many differences in how these groups use technology.


Ho....

Renewing HIM's Commitment to Privacy and Security

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: November 2007


If the thousands of pages of analysis from the RTI reports on privacy and security practices could be boiled down to just one phrase it would be “we’ve only just begun.” As reported in articles throughout this issue, the RTI research confirms that privacy and security regulat....

Reinventing Ourselves

Author: Brodnik, Melanie S.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2004


As I think about all that the HIM profession aims to accomplish, I realize that we are faced with the challenge of reinventing ourselves. This seems daunting, but ours is not the only profession faced with this challenge.
Change Can Make Us Stronger

Consider the challenges fac....

Re-examining HIPAA Six Years Later

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2008


It was six years ago this month that the HIPAA privacy rule went into effect. For many in healthcare, compliance has become a routine part of doing business. But for too many, the current regulations remain poorly understood and poorly implemented. All the while, the environment has been chang....

Redefining the Boundaries of HIM

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: October 2003


Health information management is an extraordinarily versatile discipline. Our work force research confirms that the field currently spans nearly 40 different work settings and more than 100 unique job titles.1 In addition, AHIMA’s e-HIM task force identified new roles relating to manageme....

Recipe for Information-based Healthcare

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: July 2006


Creating an information-based health system is like following a recipe. First, include essential ingredients, such as accurate and complete clinical documentation organized in architectures that enable access and interoperability. Then add protocols, terminologies, and classification systems to....

'Recalculating' the Route to ICD-10

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2014



Have you ever driven a car using a global positioning system? If so, you’ve heard what happens when you take a turn that’s not on the system’s expected route: an annoyed-sounding voice will say “Recalculating!”


Since early April, the entire healt....

Preparing HIM for the Changes Ahead

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2016



As we focus on education and workforce issues, there’s good news and bad news.


The good news is: The employment outlook for HIM professionals is bright. According to AHIMA’s 2016 Environmental Scan report, “The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the H....

Preparing for a New Generation of HIM

Author: Siegel, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2003


Earlier generations—our grandparents and parents—tell stories of how technology changed their lives. Born at the turn of the 20th century, my grandparents witnessed the successes of Alexander Graham Bell and the Wright brothers. My parents were mesmerized by talking movies and televi....

Power of Networking

Author: Stewart, Margaret

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 1998


As I look at my year as president of AHIMA, and all that I want to accomplish, my feeling is that I do not want to waste one day as I fulfill my commitments. One of my driving passions and goals is to enhance the position, respect, and perceived value of the HIM professional in the mar....

Planning Ahead for 2017 and Beyond

Author: Martin, Melissa

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: July 2016



Since I am halfway through my term as AHIMA’s President, I wanted to take some time this month to reflect on the work AHIMA’s Board of Directors has done thus far.


We hit the ground running in January at our first board meeting of the year, where we discussed our 2016 quar....

PHRs—The Hook to Engage and Inform Consumers?

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2008


The Internet, cell phones, and other technologies have forever changed how we communicate and gain access to information. We manage and track our finances and medical and other benefits online. Some are even fortunate enough to be able to communicate with their physicians through secure e-mail....

Personal Health Information is 'Saving Grace'

Author: Kennedy, Angela

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2014



As a health informatics and information management professional and a parent of two adopted children, my desire for complete and accurate medical information rocks the top of my “Mom to-do list.” My children, Zach and Grace, are siblings, adopted at the ages of two and four. State laws va....

Paving the Final Steps to ICD-10

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2015



What a difference a year makes.


A year ago, the HIM industry was reeling from an unexpected delay to the implementation of ICD-10. The change was brought on at the last minute, slipped into legislation and passed within a couple of days. The result was a one-year delay of ICD....

Patient Side of Telemedicine

Author: Chenoweth, Ann

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2017



Two years ago, I travelled to central Honduras to volunteer my time and HIM expertise at a clinic that supports the primary care needs of 90,000 people. It was an experience I’ll never forget. Access to specialists is few and far between so the clinic had recently implemented telemedicine....

'Patient First' Should Be Our Mission

Author: Martin, Melissa

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2016



During my many years working in healthcare I have received several forms of training regarding mission statements and putting our patients first.


When I first joined the health information management (HIM) profession, I did not fully understand the trials and tribulations....

Passion for Learning

Author: Kloss, Linda L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: September 2006


Lifelong learning is a key responsibility of professionals in all fields. Professional development is the focus this month because it’s important for each of us to periodically reflect on how well we are doing. In this issue, experts discuss the importance of professional development planning,....

On the Road to ICD-10-CM/PCS

Author: Frawley, Kathleen A.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2013



October 1, 2014 is only 16 months away as the healthcare industry and HIM professionals prepare to transition to ICD-10-CM/PCS. While many providers, payers, and vendors were gearing up for the original October 2013 date, the one-year delay issued in 2012 gave the industry time to continue....

Now is the Time: Realizing our Vision

Author: Birnbaum, Cassi L

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: January 2015



As I enter my 35th year as an AHIMA leader, educator, practitioner, and volunteer, I am excited to celebrate AHIMA’s 86 years of accomplishments and to have a role in paving the way for a bright future for HIM professionals everywhere.


I look forward to the months ahead, b....

Nonstop Change Leads to New Opportunities

Author: Sheridan, Patty Thierry

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: August 2012


We live in a time of nonstop change. The pace is fast and constant. To thrive, HIM professionals need to do more than simply adjust-we need to completely shift into a new mindset, developing new work methods along the way.

This starts with accepting the realities of today's marketpl....

New World of Information Governance

Author: Gordon, Lynne Thomas

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2016



This month, AHIMA celebrates our fourth annual Information Governance (IG) Month. AHIMA created this event to increase awareness and understanding of IG and to help members understand IG’s importance to HIM practice. You’ll be seeing more details about IG Month in our publicati....

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