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First Step Toward Compliance: OCR Outreach

Author: Jeffries, Jane

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


Though the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has played an active role in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) since the early 1980s, it has only recently moved to the forefront of HIM professionals’ minds. Charged with enforcing the HIPAA privacy rule, OCR has become the leading....

Creatively Communicating: the Security Challenge

Author: Zender, Anne

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


Like many HIM professionals specializing in information security, Kimberly Lawrence, MS, RHIT, spends most of her time designing and reviewing policies. But she relishes the part of her job that calls on her to be creative, too.


“We’re always trying to come up with be....

Best Practices for Medical Necessity Validation

Author: Scichilone, Rita A

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


To protect the Medicare Trust Fund from being drained, government health plans must provide coverage restrictions for unnecessary health services in vulnerable patient populations. One restriction mechanism is the provision of edits that look for valid reason-for-visit codes for selected servi....

Dilemma of Psychotherapy Notes and HIPAA

Author: Nicholson, Ruby E.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


For HIM professionals in behavioral health settings, the HIPAA privacy regulations pose a downright dilemma. Here’s why.


The privacy rule defines psychotherapy notes as:


Notes recorded in any medium by a mental health professional documenting or analyzing....

2002: Positioning HIM for Future Challenges

Author: Odom-Wesley, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


Each Association year builds on past achievements. In 2001, the AHIMA and FORE Boards of Directors, in consultation with many volunteer groups, adopted new mission, vision, and values statements. The mission and value statements serve as a touchstone keeping us focused on what we are charged w....

HIPAA Compliance Extension Postpones Simplification Benefits

Author: Rode, Dan

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002



Under the terms of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, February 2002 would mark the second anniversary of administrative simplification for all but the smallest of health plans, and one year of rules related to claims attachments. Instead, Congress just approve....

Medical Necessity under OPPS: a Look at the Challenges

Author: Carter, Darren

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


The outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) has dramatically changed claims processing by introducing an automated system. Medical necessity validation has also been automated as a result, leaving hospitals with increased rejections. This article explores how OPPS impacts the medical nece....

Addressing HIPAA Across the Continuum

Author:

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


HIPAA is an issue in hospitals across the nation, but what about other kinds of facilities—such as long-term care, behavioral health, or home care organizations? They, too, need to address HIPAA. We asked three HIM professionals who work in these settings to briefly address how HIPAA is ch....

Handling a Security Breach: Lessons Learned

Author: Dougherty, Michelle

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


Consider this: your facility just received a call from a reporter asking for a comment. He’s writing an article on a hacker who accessed your network, downloaded patient medical information, and distributed copies to the press.


If your facility experienced a security inci....

Countdown to Compliance: Privacy

Author: Ingram-Muhammad, Sybil

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: February 2002


How far along the road to compliance with the HIPAA privacy regulation is your organization? This article tells you the steps you should be taking to get in compliance by the April 2003 deadline.

It is February 2002—14 months before your organization has to be compliant with th....

On the Line: Professional Practice Solutions

Author: Hughes, Gwen

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Q: Does the individual to whom a patient has granted durable power of attorney for financial matters have the right to access and authorize use or disclosure of the patient's protected health information (PHI) under HIPAA?


Q: We have a transcriptionist who picks up tapes, trans....

Target: Patient Safety

Author: Spath, Patrice L.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


The Joint Commission has raised and revised its patient safety standards. Is your facility ready to meet them?
Safety in healthcare is not a new concept. Even before the American College of Surgeons formed the Hospital Standardization Program in 1917, healthcare facilities had safety pro....

Hot Spots in the 2002 OIG Work Plan

Author: Prophet, Sue

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Organizational compliance programs are never static. Rather, they must continually be refined and updated to respond to changes in healthcare delivery and system vulnerabilities. The 2002 Work Plan of the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) pr....

March Madness: AHIMA Gears Up for Team Talks

Author: Odom-Wesley, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Each year in March the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) sponsors an elaborate tournament designed to identify the national basketball champions. Sixty-four teams begin the competition and after the first weekend of play, the “sweet sixteen” winners emerge. Then there i....

Implementing HIPAA One Step at a Time

Author: Bettendorf, Jim

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Many in the healthcare industry are facing the difficulty of incorporating HIPAA into their organizations. As a newly appointed privacy officer for a healthcare clearinghouse, I, too, was presented with the challenge of assimilating HIPAA into our organization.

Always Ask Questions<....

Putting Together the Privacy Puzzle

Author: Jeffries, Jane

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002

“With volunteering, I always get more back than I feel like I give. I’ve gotten to meet wonderful people and I’ve got a network that I can call on if I get stuck.”
—Rita Bowen, MA, RHIA, chief privacy officer, Erlanger Health System

How many of us are pursuin....

Transactions Delay Prompts Concern Among Covered Entities

Author: Rode, Dan

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


AHIMA recently attended a meeting of healthcare providers, payers, and staff representatives of the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Organized by the Association for Electronic Health Care Transactions, the meet....

Quality at the Core

Author: Zender, Anne

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Is your hospital getting ready for the Joint Commission’s core measures project? Some hospitals are already transmitting the necessary data as part of the pilot project. Here’s how they are handling the challenges and deriving benefits.
If you’re an HIM director, you prob....

Web-based System Improves Access

Author: Burrington-Brown, Jill

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Does the idea of the paper medical record dying a natural death due to irrelevancy sound intriguing? This is the future of the paper medical record, according to Bruce Elkington, chief information officer of Overlake Hospital Medical Center in Bellevue, WA. The strategy at Overlake has been to....

Look Back at Congressional Action 2001

Author: Asmonga, Donald D.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


Despite an eventful year, the AHIMA Policy and Government Relations team dedicated itself to advocating for AHIMA members and monitoring those issues that may impact the HIM profession. This article will provide you with a snapshot of AHIMA’s activities in 2001, Congressional activity and....

Mergers and Acquisitions: They Could Happen to You

Author: Pinder, Ray

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: March 2002


If you have never been involved in a merger or acquisition, be aware that it could happen to you. There is important information you need to know, including what steps to take to process medical records according to your state regulations, accreditation standards, payer requirements, condition....

Leaping Ahead with Patient Safety

Author: Burrington-Brown, Jill

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


These days Leapfrog is more than just a child’s game. Since 1998, the Leapfrog Group, made up of more than 90 Fortune 500 companies and other large private and public healthcare purchasers, has worked toward improving the safety of healthcare for US consumers.


A 1999 repor....

Megatrends Promise Transcription Changes

Author: Zernich, Gordon; DeVitt, Bill

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


HIM directors who are staying ahead of the curve can understand the effect that several megatrends will have on the transcription industry. These trends include increased volumes, use of third-party transcription services, new technology and increased expectations, standardized billing, and sh....

Coding on the Home Front

Author: Zeisset, Ann M.

Source: Journal of AHIMA - Coding Notes

Publication Date: April 2002


Recently, a group of coders participated in a survey about their day-to-day experiences as remote, or at-home coders. The survey asked a series of questions related to the positives and negatives of coding at home versus coding in the more traditional office setting. Below is a summary of the....

On the Line: Professional Practice Solutions

Author: Hughes, Gwen

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


Q: The physician practice I work for often receives photocopies of health information sent in anticipation of a new patient consultation or appointment. If the individual never presents to the practice, how long must our practice retain this health information?
Q: My facility is bringing....

Becoming a New Voice in HIM

Author: Squazzo, Jessica

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002

“I became a strong advocate for HIM when I was a junior [in college],” she says. “I really wanted to give HIM a voice and create awareness for it.”
—Erin Blume, RHIA, director of quality management at The Ambassador Health System
Not too many recent college gradua....

Leadership Lessons Take Flight

Author: Odom-Wesley, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


After deciding to write about leadership this month, I searched the works of several noted authors and reviewed the many principles of leadership. I decided to borrow an idea from “Lessons from Geese,” a leadership development article of unknown origin that has circulated on the Inte....

Advocating HIM Issues in an Election Year

Author: Rode, Dan

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002



This column has often addressed the advocacy role of the HIM professional. This year, that role becomes even more important—it’s an election year. Elections call for citizen involvement, and HIM professionals are no exception.


This election year, 435 members of th....

50 Ways to Enhance Your Career

Author:

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


Whether you're new to the HIM profession or a seasoned expert, you may be looking for a new challenge, increased recognition, or a change of career. With that in mind, the Journal of AHIMA has compiled a list of tips for success that you can use on the job or as part of your personal career pla....

Changing Face of Public Health Reporting

Author: Dougherty, Michelle

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: April 2002


In recent months, anthrax outbreaks and concern over bioterrorism threats have created a greater need for the US to have a system to monitor and report public health information in a timely manner. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are developing standards for a new approach....

From Freshman to Leader Through Lifelong Learning

Author: Odom-Wesley, Barbara

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


Remember being a “freshman?” Though the word may have a somewhat negative connotation, when put in the context of continuing education it becomes much more positive. As education spans the life cycle in the form of lifelong learning, we become freshmen again and again. As an HIM prof....

Get Serious About Paper Record Destruction

Author: Mead, Kevin

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


How serious are you about your document destruction processes? There are steps that you can take that ensure protection from liability and embarrassment after the records are tagged for disposal. Merely saying “we shred our old records” and “we have a certificate of destruction&....

Making a Commitment to Privacy Protection

Author: Hicks, Jewelle E

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


Debra Minzola, RHIA, knows quite a bit about privacy protection. As the director of information security and HIPAA compliance for MedQuist, she is responsible for designing, implementing, and monitoring all aspects of the organization’s privacy and security program. That alone may seem li....

H&P Requirements Become More Uniform

Author: Hughes, Gwen

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


Until recently, the Medicare Conditions of Participation required that histories and physicals (H&Ps) be performed no more than seven days prior to hospital admission. This particular requirement was much stricter than the Joint Commission’s, which allows H&Ps to be performed as m....

Is the FCA Effectively Fighting Healthcare Fraud?

Author: Prophet, Sue

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


How effective has the False Claims Act (FCA) been in reducing healthcare fraud? A recent six-month study conducted by New Directions for Policy for Taxpayers Against Fraud sought to determine just that.1 What the study found is that the FCA is very effective in fighting fraud and should not be....

Take Another Look: Proposed Changes to Privacy Rule

Author: Rode, Dan

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


In late March, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released proposed changes related to the HIPAA privacy standards. By the time you read this column, the 30-day comment period for these regulations will have already passed, although debate on these changes will still be in full....

On the Line: Professional Practice Solutions

Author: Hjort, Beth M.

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: May 2002


Q: Is there a standard or recommended source for abbreviations used in medical records?
Q: In light of HIPAA restrictions on protected health information, I’m concerned about our HIM department’s practice of accepting HIM students for professional practice experience. What shoul....

Keeping HIM Current Through Re-engineering

Author: Myjer, D'Arcy

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002


How should HIM departments organize to meet the challenges of the electronic medical record (EMR), compliance, HIPAA, and high-volume transcription?


The HIM department at Stanford Hospital and Clinics (SHC) in Stanford, CA, has evolved to meet the need for change. Here’s....

On the Line: Professional Practice Solutions

Author: Dougherty, Michelle

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002


Q: Is it true that the method for calculating the delinquent chart rate has changed and it is no longer necessary to carry a delinquent chart from month to month?
Q: Recently, a discharged patient fell two days after discharge from the inpatient rehab facility where I work. He went to the....

Communities of Practice: Harnessing the Power of Knowledge

Author: Lane, Laura

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002


AHIMA's Communities of Practice was designed with members's needs in mind: up-to-date industry news, links to helpful resources, and, most importantly, solutions and ideas from peers. Already, the CoP is an indispensable tool. Read how AHIMA members are making it work for them.
Imagine a....

Your Job in the E-health Era

Author: AHIMA E-Health Task Force

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002



Are you ready to work in the e-health era? This excerpt from “Report on the Roles and Functions of E-health Information Management,” a recent white paper by AHIMA’s E-health Task Force, describes the many skills HIM professionals already have that can easily translate to....

Spreading HIM Excellence Abroad

Author: Shaffer, Audrey

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002


At the opening ceremony of Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital in 1994, thousands of balloons were released over the Chinese countryside as a symbol of the advanced medical care the hospital hoped to spread throughout China.


Hong Kong philanthropist Sir Run Run Shaw, along with the Zheji....

Closing the Knowledge Gap with E-learning

Author: Vukovljak, Lana

Source: Journal of AHIMA

Publication Date: June 2002


Are high costs and potential downtime preventing your staff from receiving much-needed training? E-learning offers more than a solution to these concerns: it’s a better way to learn.
In this article, find out how e-learning works and how to implement an e-learning program in your or....

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