Hello NCHIMA Members! I hope that all of you had a safe and enjoyable holiday surrounded by those that you love. The 2018 year is finally here and I wish all of you a fantastic year with an abundance of blessings! We have a lot of exciting things going on in the upcoming year.
NCHIMA/NCACDIS Winter Education Symposium
The Winter Workshop will be held in Wilmington, NC at New Hanover Regional Medical Center on February 23rd. This is a joint effort with NC ACDIS to provide quality education to our members.
On Demand Education
We have a collection of great webinars for members who are interested in maintaining their continuing education hours. We have a lot of great options that cover many different domains.
Get your NCHIMA merchandise here - we have some exciting new options that will be sold at the Winter Education Symposium and the NCHIMA Annual meeting that you don’t see online yet. I love showing off my portfolio and umbrella!
NCHIMA Mentorship Program
The purpose of mentoring is to establish a formal relationship between two people, a mentor and a mentee, with learning and development at its core and the fulfillment of clear and mutually defined goals as its intention. Mentoring is essential to provide good moral and ethical stewardship of the resources we have and ensure their sustainability in to the future. Read more...
NCHIMA Legal Portal
This valuable online resource is updated regularly and provides information regarding state and federal legislation, regulations, and professional best practices for legal aspects of managing, maintaining, and the release of health information. You can find information about subscribing to the legal portal at the link below.
Click here for more information.
The season to start applying for scholarships is starting! Please read more information at the link below to learn about our scholarships, the requirements, and to fill out an application.
NCHIMA Scholarships application
Donations to the NCHIMA Merit Scholarship Fund
Please consider donating to the NCHIMA Merit Scholarship Fund to keep our education scholarships going strong. We want to invest in our students now so that they can be the future of our association later!
NCHIMA Job Board
Please consider viewing our Job Board for job listings in NC if you are looking for a job and for posting a job if you are looking for just the right HIM professional to help fill your role. We want to help match the perfect candidates to the perfect employer!
NCHIMA Executive Director Role
We are looking to fill the Executive Director role for the 2018-2019 year. Unfortunately, our current Executive Director is leaving but we are excited to find a NCHIMA member to fill this role.
NCHIMA Awards Season
If you know of an outstanding HIM professional in North Carolina who is also a member of NCHIMA then we are looking for you! We should never be too busy or burdened to lift each other up and praise the efforts of those truly amazing people that work with us every day. It is truly an honor to be nominated by your peers for these prestigious awards.
NCHIMA Region Consolidation Plan
We are moving forward with consolidating our seven geographical regions to four regions to simplify the tax and financial processes, to be able to offer more targeted help, and to help improve the functions for areas that may be struggling to find volunteers. We are working on refining this information and will be providing an update to the members on this process at the annual meeting. Stay tuned!
2018 NCHIMA 68TH Annual Meeting and Exhibit
I am so excited to meet as many of you and talk to you as I can at our annual meeting!! Our meeting this year will be at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel and Convention Center in Durham, NC from Tuesday, May 1, 2018 through Friday, May 4, 2018. The theme is “Having an Impact” and we have a lot of really interesting topics on the agenda! We will be posting that soon for members and are hoping that we have picked an array of fun and interesting topics for you. I know that our program committee is working diligently to ensure that all attendees have a fun, seamless, and informative week. We have a surprise about the 2019 meeting location that we plan to unveil that I hope will be an incredible experience for our members!
The most important thing that I want to say is that NCHIMA is a member-centric organization! We do all of this to serve your needs for learning, continuing education hours, and information/services. We volunteer because we want to help our fellow HIM professionals in NC and we want to give back to our state and communities. We ask for financial support so that we can keep offering high quality education, networking opportunities, and services to enhance your education and career. We advertise these things to you because we want you to know all of the wonderful options that you have available. We are excited because we have all worked very hard to offer as much as we can to our members and to do as much as we can to get them even better things for the next year. This is YOUR NCHIMA and we want your involvement, feedback, and participation so that NCHIMA looks the way our members want it to be and not how an individual thinks it should look. Please come talk to us, email us, or contact us through the website if you need help with something that NCHIMA can assist with or if you want to see something change. We are here for YOU! It is our pleasure to serve with NCHIMA, we thank you for your support, and we can’t wait to get started in 2018!
Pamela J. Lail, MHA, RHIA, CHDA, CPHI, PMP, FAHIMA
NCHIMA President 2017-2018
"A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way." —John Maxwell > Be a leader, step up and be heard in your organization! If you know the way then others will follow.
68th NCHIMA Annual Meeting & Exhibit
May 1 - 4, 2018
Having an Impact
Sheraton Imperial Hotel Raleigh-Durham Airport at Research Triangle Park
4700 Emperor Boulevard
Durham, NC 27703
Registration for the 68th NCHIMA Annual Meeting & Exhibit is now open. We hope you will join us at the beautiful Sheraton Imperial Hotel located in Durham. We are excited to have two keynote speakers this year.
Wednesday, May 2nd
Tracy Crow – Smart Leadership Strategies to Move Up and Forward
Congressman David Price (NC-04) – Washington Update
Looking to add a new credential?
Check out our CCS and CHDA Workshop add-ons, Friday, May 4th.
Please follow the link below to register, make hotel reservations and review our agenda and celebration events.
Please make hotel reservations as soon as possible as our room block is already beginning to fill.
Don’t delay registering or reserving your hotel room. Click here
for hotel information.
On behalf of North Carolina Association of Clinical Documentation Improvement (NCACDIS) and the North Carolina Health Information Management Association (NCHIMA), I’d like to personally invite each of you to attend our joint Winter Education Symposium 2018 to be held at New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington NC. We have a full agenda for Friday, February 23, 2018 so please take a few minutes to read through the information. It includes our itinerary, registration and other important information.
Winter Education Symposium
February 23, 2018
The Winter Education Symposium is an exciting combination of sessions on capturing HCC accurate documentation in codable clinical data within the healthcare record as well as quality improvement initiatives, compliant CPT billing for telemedicine and advanced therapies for Congestive Heart Failure (CHF). Our speakers include Lori Matherne, RHIA, CCS Solutions Sales Executive, 3M Health Information Systems; Thomas Wertheimer, MD, MBA, CHCQM, CCDS, CCA Physician Advisor & CDI/Coding Content Expert – New Hanover Regional Medical Center; Dan Bray, RN, CCDS, CDIP – Cape Fear Valley Health System and Bridgette Williams, FNP-BC – Cape Fear Heart Associates – NHRMC Physician Group. For a quick glance at the entire program, check the Winter Education Symposium.
Before I close, I would like to express my gratitude to NCACDIS President - Linda Rhodes – New Hanover Regional Medical Center, NCHIMA President - Pamela Lail, NCHIMA Coding Roundtable Chair - Shameka Hooks, NCHIMA Education Chair and Members - Sherry King; Dina Williams, Mildred Norris, and NCHIMA Executive Director - Ralph Morrison and vendors Elsevier and M-Modal who so generously helped us make this event come together smoothly, we couldn't have done it without you!
Yours in service,
2017-2018 NCHIMA/ACDIS Liaison
1. What initially drew you to this particular profession?
I have been in the medical field in some fashion since 1996. I originally started out in the transcription field as well as a medical secretary for a plastic surgeon’s office. At one point I had my own business doing transcription until I ended up at the hospital I work for now Vidant Health. I started in their transcription office and then transferred to the coding department and also did the cancer registry for one of the outlying hospitals. I found I enjoyed the coding and eventually earned my CCS.
2. What are your future plans?
My future plans would be to continue to grow in field and hopefully even be able to earn another certification, perhaps CDI or RHIT or RHIA.
3. How did you decide this field was a good fit for you?
I feel this has been a good fit for my personality. It takes a lot of reasoning and working it out sometimes to get to the correct answer, and I have sure had experience in that!!! I’m sort of an inquisitive type person and with coding you are ever searching for that correct code.
4. What advice would you present to those considering entering the HIM profession? I always see new graduates wondering how long it takes to land a position or how long does it take to go remote. Don’t rush. Make sure you have chosen the correct path as there are many areas to choose from be it IP, OP, audit, RAC recovery, surgery coding, ED coding, endless possibilities. Also remote coding takes a strong willed person to be able to fully concentrate and sit at their home computer and not be distracted by other things (phones, doorbells, family members, TVs, etc.) Healthcare is ever evolving and we as healthcare professionals have to be able and willing to evolve with it.
Student Name: Pam Fisher
School/Program: Pitt Community College HIT Program
Program Director: Ashleigh Walker
AHIMA Member: Yes
The truth is that I was in a miserable job without a lot of opportunities to find other employment in that field. I got into coding out of desperation, without really having any idea what it was! I remember seeing ads for medical coding programs that touted high salaries and the ability to work from home. I also remember hearing that coders were going to be in demand and that there was going to be a shortage, especially with ICD-10 looming in the future. I found a technical school that was offering a coding program, so I quit my job and went to school to learn coding. The rest is a very long story which I won’t go into, but I eventually earned AHIMA’s CCS certification and was hired as a coder, at what was then Durham Regional. I worked as a coder for several years and then was promoted to a Compliance Specialist for outpatient coding for Duke. In that role I decided that it would benefit me to attain a HIT degree and RHIT certification, so that is why I am currently enrolled at PCC.
1. What initially drew you to this particular profession?
2. What are your future plans?
I will be graduating this coming Spring and will sit for the RHIT exam. My future plans include retiring from Duke someday. I love my job. I feel that I make a difference every day. My job is exciting, and sometimes frustrating, but always rewarding. Our team, and the support from our leaders, are what keep me motivated to do the best that I can every day.
Ultimately my plan is to have a role in education. I do a lot of educating in my current role, and have found that I have a real passion for it. I love to share knowledge and information.
-Does it include further education or certifications in the Health Information Management (HIM) field?
If I was younger I might consider furthering my education, but as of this moment, my plans are only to get my Associate’s degree in HIT and attain the RHIT certification.
3. How did you decide this field was a good fit for you?
As I mentioned earlier, I really had no idea what coding was when I took at a student loan to go to school for it. I still remember the long message that my sister left on my answering machine when our mother told her I was going to school for coding. She works in the medical field and is aware of what coders do. She went on and on about how perfect I am for that job. She knows how detail oriented I am, and how I love digging and researching and figuring things out, and my passion for making sure that things are correct.
Once I started working as a coder I finally understood what she meant. Coding is definitely not an easy job. It is very challenging with the documentation that we see, or lack thereof. I love the digging and research. In my job I also get to work with the clinicians who are documenting and entering charges. I do a lot of education to show them how what they do affects what we can and can’t do. It is very exciting to be a part of helping to make improvements to make sure that we are doing the right thing for Duke and for our patients. So yes, this field is a perfect fit for me!
4. What advice would you present to those considering entering the HIM profession?
The best advice that I can give to anyone entering any profession is to find something that you love and have a passion for. I was fortunate to just get lucky that this would be my passion. I had no idea what I was getting into, but it all worked out for me. Looking back it would have been smart to do a little research, but I think I was so desperate to get out of that miserable job that I just leaped without looking!
So my advice is to do some research and make sure that this profession is a good fit for you. Fortunately there are many, many opportunities within HIT field, so you should be able to find something that you would enjoy. The clinicals that you have to do in the HIT program give you exposure to all of the various areas within Health Information Management, so are a great way to find what your passion will be. The medical field is a wonderful field to get into. It has served me well and I am very grateful. I highly recommend perusing a career in this field, and wish everyone luck that is currently in school, or considering entering school for HIT.
5. How does your student membership affect you and your career goals?
Since I was already an AHIMA member for several years I was not able to then become a student member. But being a member of AHIMA provides you with access to a wealth of information that will help you in school, will help you prepare for certification exams, and will help you in your career.
“HIPAA With Teeth”
General Information of HIPAA
Before the US federal government passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996, no national law or rules existed that protected the confidentiality of general health information. Specific regulations existed only for certain situations such as for those who provided Medicare services or who received federal funds so they could provide substance abuse treatment. Individual states had enacted patient privacy protection laws for the access, use, and disclosure of health information. These statutes varied greatly, which created a “patchwork of laws” throughout the entire country. Some states had enacted laws to protect very sensitive health information such as that of mental health patients or patients with HIV/AIDS; however, many states had not passed laws that protected general health information. With the passage of HIPAA, all states across the country now have standards for the protection of patient health information that affects all providers, healthcare clearinghouses, and health plan.
Newly Credentialed Professionals
As always we want to thank our corporate sponsors!
2018 AHIMA Nominations
Dear NCHIMA Member,
We are looking for qualified Active members to fill the roles of AHIMA President/Chair-elect, three Directors for the Board of Directors, three Commissioners on the Commission on Certification for Health Informatics and Information Management (CCHIIM), three CEE Council Members and one Speaker-elect for the House of Delegates Nominations for these positions are due March 31, 2018. The President/Chair-elect, Director, and CCHIIM Commissioner positions have three-year terms and the Speaker-elect has a two-year term beginning January 1, 2019.
Members must first login to Engage, select the Volunteer tab, then they are able to review descriptions, duties, and qualifications for each of these elected positions on the Volunteer Application Web page as well as submit their application. Select “Elected Positions” to submit an application before March 31, 2018.
Please encourage your qualified members to join the many AHIMA volunteers who invest their time and reap the rewards. Should you or any of your members have questions about this process, please do not hesitate to contact me via email or phone.
Ralph H. Morrison, RHIA, CPC
Member, 2018 AHIMA Nominating Committee