What is HIM?
Health Information Management (HIM) is the process of obtaining, analyzing and protecting digital and traditional medical information essential to delivering quality patient care. Health information technicians typically review patient’s records for accuracy, organize and maintain data, assign codes for insurance reimbursement and data analysis using classification software. The adaptation of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) and clinical coding continues to change the job responsibilities of health information management technicians. They are required to know EHRs software and follow EHRs security and privacy practices.
HIM Technician Skills
Health information management professionals are expected to have the following qualities:
- Analytical Skills – in order to use the correct codes for filling and billing purposes, HIM technicians must be able to understand medical records and diagnoses.
- Technical Skills – HIM technicians are required to perform medical coding and data analysis using classification software and EHR systems.
- Detail Oriented – reviewing patient’s records for accuracy, organizing and maintaining data, assigning codes for billing and analyzing data using classification software can be a very complex process, therefore when processing medical information accuracy and attention to detail is of high importance.
- Communication Skills – HIM technicians have to be able to discuss medical/patient information, discrepancies and information requirements with other professionals (physicians, insurance providers, etc.).
- Integrity – HIM technicians must exercise discretion and strong sense of ethics when working with medical information in order to protect patient confidentiality.
Education and Career Opportunity
The application of EHRs and medical coding is providing various career advancement and employment opportunities in the healthcare sector. To enter the field of HIM a high school diploma or equivalent and prior experience in a medical environment are sufficient to qualify for some positions, but a majority of jobs for health information management require postsecondary education. A nationally recognized certification or an associate’s degree is often a prerequisite.
The HIM profession offers many opportunities for growth and advancement. There is no need to be stuck with exactly the same job position for the next 20 years. Some of the present career opportunities are in: medical and health services, medical transcription, medical billing and coding, health information management, cancer registrars, data collection.
Advantages of Certification Training
Although a high school diploma or equivalent and prior experience in medical environment are sufficient to qualify for some positions in health information management, a majority of jobs in this field require postsecondary education. An industry recognized certification is a prerequisite for many jobs available today. It is also a way to stand out among other candidates and it is the fastest way to prove qualifications and certain standard of competence. There is less on-the-job training required, which saves employers time and resources.
A certification proves to employers that the candidate is serious about their career path.
You can start your dream career, get promoted, and boost your earning potential in just a few months. Don’t settle, stand out, and advance your career by getting certified.
Pay And Job Outlook.
According to the Bureau Of Labor Statistics:
"Employment of health information technicians is projected to grow 15 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. An aging population will require more medical services, and health information technicians will be needed to organize and manage the older generations’ health information data. Moreover, the number of individuals who have access to health insurance is expected to continue to increase because of federal health insurance reform. This will mean more claims for reimbursement from insurance companies. Additional records, coupled with widespread use of electronic health records (EHRs) by all types of healthcare providers, will lead to an increased need for technicians to organize and manage the associated information in all areas of the healthcare industry. Cancer registrars are expected to continue to be in high demand. As the population ages, there will likely be more types of special purpose registries because many illnesses are detected and treated later in life. As EHR systems continue to become more common, health information technicians with computer skills will be needed to use them."
Average salary for HIM professionals as reported by www.indeed.com on January 2016.
Health Information Management Technician
Data Collection Technician
Medical Records Technician
Medical Biller Coder