Meridian Community College’s Health Information Technology Program recently achieved continued accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).
Health information is the data related to a person’s medical history, including symptoms, diagnoses, procedures and outcomes. Health information records include patient histories, lab results, X-rays, clinical information and notes.
Seeking accreditation by CAHIIM is voluntary and signifies that a program has undergone a rigorous review process and has been determined to meet or exceed the standards set by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).
“Not only was receiving the continued accreditation a huge achievement, but it also continues to benefit prospective students as they search for a HIT program which meets quality standards,” said Rebecca Higginbotham, MCC Health Information Technology Program coordinator and instructor. “Students learn relevant curriculum in the classroom so they can be valuable employees once they begin their careers.”
MCC Associate Vice President for Workforce Education Dr. Richie McAlister said it is extremely important for MCC's Health Information Technology program to be nationally accredited by CAHIIM.
“Program accreditation affords the opportunity for MCC's students to write the national registry. In addition, program accreditation sends a strong signal to local and regional clinical affiliates that the program meets national accreditation standards, an indicator of program quality," he said.
MCC’s HIT Program consists of courses in health record systems, related technology and general education courses. Practical experience in the health information management departments of local health care facilities is an integral part of the program. It gives students the knowledge and skills to help ensure the quality of health care through quality information without direct patient contact. The medical world depends on health information specialists to collect data, interpret it, protect it and use it for reimbursement purposes, such as medical coding for all aspects of healthcare.
The employment outlook for health information technology is positive — the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts an employment increase of 20 percent for all health information professionals between 2016 and 2026.