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SDHIMA August Newsletter


Inside this Issue:

President’s Message

Julie Huwe RHIA, CCS

Hi fellow SDHIMA members ~ It’s hard to believe that summer is already over and Fall is fast approaching!  I think we can all agree that we aren’t quite ready for the summer to be over.  Along with the change of the season, there are BIG changes coming to AHIMA.  In a rebranding effort, AHIMA is launching a new website in August, replacing the current Communities of Practice with the Engage system, improving the Body of Knowledge, and creating new logos for all states.   Read the rest of the newsletter to see more details!

In addition to the national changes, SDHIMA is definitely in a transition year. The past 2 years, the SDHIMA board has worked extensively on updating our website, working with sponsors, and getting more on-line capabilities.  With the increase of technological advances, many of our processes have changed; thus the needs for updating the SDHIMA Bylaws, policies and procedures and streamlining our current committees.  While President Elect Sheila Hargens and I attended the 2013 Summer Leadership Symposium, we learned we are right in line with how associations should be operating; streamlining processes and finding ways to incorporate the upcoming technological advancements.  Now that we’ve worked on some “housekeeping” items last year, this year, we want to focus on increasing our membership and incorporating more student activities.  Visit our website at to see our new educational opportunities, the current job opportunities available through our job board, and become familiar with our Sponsors – Avera, DT-Trak Consulting, Inc, and Woods, Fuller, Schultz & Smith P.C.

This is an exciting year for change and growth for SDHIMA, and it couldn’t happen without all of you!   I’ve enjoyed working with each and every one of you; and I’m looking forward to a great year!

SDHIMA to Pilot Volunteer Executive Director Role

By Renae Spohn

In an effort to utilize Past Presidents’ experience, to provide stability to SDHIMA operations and to create a more attractive President’s role for SDHIMA members, it is my honor to work with the SDHIMA board to pilot the Volunteer Executive Director role for one year.  This is a non-paid position.  It does offer the benefit of waived registration for the SDHIMA meetings.   Requirements for the position include fulfilling a term of Past President with SDHIMA.  The role itself is designed to report directly to the President and to be a three year term.   Every third year, the President will be responsible to appoint a new volunteer Executive Director.  The limitations are that no individual would serve more than three terms.  Specific duties are being tested during this pilot year from an initial draft job description.  You will receive updates on the success of this pilot during SDHIMA business meetings.  Any input you have regarding this pilot position is welcomed.  Pleased contact me at

SDHIMA Bylaws Re-Write In Progress

By Renae Spohn

Julie Huwe, Sheila Hargens and I have been busy reviewing the AHIMA bylaws after their significant changes were approved and implemented.  We are re-writing a large amount of the SDHIMA bylaws to bring them up to date, reflecting automated processes, more streamlined committees and functions.  The proposed changes will be presented to you, the members, to vote on them.  The rationale will be presented for each of the changes that are being proposed.  A draft of them will be presented to you for your review and input prior to voting on them.  If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact me at


SDHIMA Website

By Rachel Brown

Greetings to everyone from the Director of Public Relations! Currently, we have been working to improve our SDHIMA website. Have you checked it out lately? If not, I encourage you to do so. The website has a calendar listing the AHIMA webinars that are available. We also have education and resources available on the website.  One area we are working on is putting more pictures from events. Is there something you would like to see on the website? I would love to hear from members if there is! Please take a minute and check out the website at

DSU Professor Receives 2013 AHIMA Foundation “Making Dreams Come True Award

By Renae Spohn

Dorine Bennett, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA, EdD

The Council for Excellence in Education (CEE) created the Making Dreams Come True Award to recognize an educator who makes a difference in students’ lives.   SDHIMA, in partnership with DSU faculty and alumni submitted Dr. Dorine Bennett’s name for consideration of this national award.  Dorine was selected for the award and received it during the 2013 Assembly on Education (AOE) Symposium/Faculty Development Institute (FDI) recently held in Baltimore, Maryland.

Dorine is a Fellow with the American Health Information Management Association with a long list of achievements.  She has been a dedicated employee of Dakota State University for 25 years and she has served the HIM profession and students well in her leadership as the HIM Program Director.  Under Dorine’s leadership the HIM program was expanded from a face to face program to a blended learning program with opportunities for anyone to participate from a distance through online learning.  Through Dorine’s collaboration and leadership skills, HIM program opportunities at DSU now expand from a coding certificate program, associates and bachelor’s degrees in Health Information Management,  a master’s of science degree in Health Informatics and a specialization in healthcare information systems in the doctorate of science program at DSU.   Dorine demonstrates her commitment to lifelong learning on an ongoing basis and has achieved her doctorate degree.  Dorine’s thought leadership and contributions to the development of the Center for Advancement of Health Information Technology (CAHIT) have strengthened the resources and support available to implement electronic health record implementations in our rural state of South Dakota.

She has provided hundreds of volunteer hours on behalf of SDHIMA and AHIMA serving in many leadership capacities throughout her career.  She is a well-known friend and colleague to the members of SDHIMA and AHIMA.    On behalf of SDHIMA, it’s definitely our pleasure to say “Congratulations” to Dorine for her outstanding achievement!  We’re proud of you!

Thank you!

By Dorine Bennett

I’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who contributed to my “Making Dreams Come True Award”! Whether you were involved in the nomination process, or if you were a part of my life in the academic world, I truly appreciate everything you’ve done to make this a great 25 years at DSU! I enjoyed the trip to Baltimore to receive the award, and the beautiful Tiffany crystal apple paperweight will be a treasured symbol of my very special recognition. Thank you!


2013 SDHIMA State Achievement Award Winners

Congratulations to the 2013 SDHIMA State Achievement Award Winners, Natalie Bertsch and Katherine Anderson.  They will be presented their awards during the SDAHO Annual Joint Awards Luncheon on September 19th.

2013 Board Member of the Year
Natalie Bertsch, RHIT


2013 Distinguished Member of the Year
Katherine Anderson, RHIT, CCS, CCAT, CPAT

Big Changes Coming to AHIMA

By Julie Huwe RHIA, CCS

Coming Soon - There are big changes coming to the look of AHIMA.  In a rebranding effort, AHIMA is enhancing their on-line presence to provide a richer, more diverse experience!

  • AHIMA Website – This month, AHIMA will unveil a new look that includes more intuitive navigation and optimized search results
  • AHIMA Engage – AHIMA Engage will replace the current Community of Practice.  The new system will be more agile, collaboration, and user friendly.  It will offer:  Communities arranged under several defined HIM domains, an easier way to connect with peers, public forums open to members and non-members for wider networking, and an integration with LinkedIn that enables members to import information to his/her Engage user profile.  The new Engage system will be unveiled in September.
  • Body of Knowledge – A new AHIMA Body of Knowledge will be launched in October.  This will include a more seamless integration with AHIMA’s online sites, be more robust, and have easy to understand search results. 
  • Rebranding for CSA’s – In an effort for all states to be recognized as an affiliation of the AHIMA brand, AHIMA has provided all states a new logo, new branding colors, and fonts.  SDHIMA’s new logo is below.  In the coming months, the SDHIMA website and correspondence will include the new logo, which is shown below.



Kathleen Frawley Memorial Scholarship

By Julie Huwe RHIA, CCS

AHIMA Board President and Chair Kathleen A. Frawley, passed away unexpectedly on June 28. Frawley was a professor and chair of the Health Information Technology Program at DeVry University’s North Brunswick, NJ campus.  As AHIMA president, Frawley encouraged HIM professionals to embrace the future of HIM with her slogan of “Dream Big… and Believe.”  To honor Kathleen’s contributions to AHIMA and the advancement of the HIM profession, AHIMA has established the Kathleen A. Frawley Memorial Endowed Scholarship fund to support the Student Merit Scholarship program.  AHIMA’s goal is to raise $85,000 in gifts by the 85th AHIMA Convention in Atlanta, Georgia in October 2013.  SDHIMA contributed $50.00 to the scholarship fund in memory of Kathleen.
AHIMA President/Chair-elect Angela Kennedy, EdD, MEd, MBA, RHIA, CPHQ, will assume the duties of AHIMA Board President and Chair effective immediately.

July 2013 Leadership Symposium

By Sheila Hargens MSHI, RHIA, CMT

Julie Huwe and I attended the 2013 Leadership Symposium held in Chicago, Illinois.    This event allows CSA leaders and delegates across the United States to meet and discuss AHIMA’s strategic direction and focus.   We were able to listen to a wide range of speakers and topics that all pertained to leadership and strategic planning.   The top two 3-5 year AHIMA pillars are “Informatics” and “Leadership”.   The focus in healthcare is shifting from our ability to collect data to the ability to govern and use that data effectively.   All of the data that is being collected then needs to be able to be translated to provide instantaneous access to information/ healthcare intelligence that can then drive clinical and administrative decision making real-time.   Healthcare organizations are relying on health information management professionals to provide this leadership across all healthcare sectors.  We need to be armed with our expertise and willing to utilizing predictive modeling of clinical information and utilize trend analysis to assist with this new age.  

Leadership is the second pillar.   In order to move our industry forward, HIM directors and healthcare facilities must recruit a goal-driven, hard-working and forward-thinking workforce to provide innovative solutions for capturing data, processing the data into information and then creating intelligence-based health data.   We have all heard over the last several years as we change from a paper to computer world that we must be open to change and lead the way.    Change is happening all around us and way too often some feel that we are not “at the table”.   One of the key quotes that really h>it home for me at the Leadership Conference was the following,

“A seat at the table should not be expected, but rather must be earned”.

We need to bring ourselves to the table instead of waiting to be asked.  Too many people in our organizations underestimate the knowledge, training and expertise that health information management professionals possess.   Many people are unaware that we are trained in medical terminology, pharmacology, anatomy & physiology, pathophysiology, etc.  

We can play the “blame game” and blame it on our higher management, supervisors or other healthcare professionals for not recognizing our worth, but that will solve nothing.   I suggest we start looking at ourselves.   What have we done to prove ourselves or to make our peers aware of what knowledge and skills we possess?    We cannot expect them to read our minds – we need to reveal our minds and step out of our quiet comfort zone.  We need to become leaders by “doing”.  I challenge all of you to “go the extra mile” and challenge yourself to learn the unknown.   Volunteer to be an integral part of organizational projects in regards to data analysis, data integrity and research.   Put yourself out there and truly earn that spot at the table. 


SDHIMA Weight Loss Support Group

Weight maintenance, weight loss and physical fitness are issues many of us struggle with on a daily basis.   I used to take part in Weight Watchers, which I found to be a great program, but have not made the time or continued that endeavor – and the scale proves it!!

I would like to explore the SDHIMA member interest in having an SDHIMA Weight Support group.  Maybe we can see who can be the “Biggest Loser” in our association?   My initial thought is a weekly or biweekly meeting held via phone where members can meet and support each others’ successes and provide support and feedback when we fall short of our weekly goals.   I have utilized some apps as well that assisted with calorie-counting and healthy recipe ideas as well.   I feel this would be a great way for healthcare professionals to network to share healthy recipes, workout routines and IT apps. 

In writing this for our newsletter, I feel rather guilty as I just finished a Kit Kat about 1 hour ago – not exactly on my diet plan.   Please help me improve my willpower

If you are interested, please  email me at by the end of August and I will set up a meeting time for everyone to join via phone if we have enough interest. 



2013 CSA Core Service Achievement

For Member Communications – 3rd Place

While attending the leadership conference, I was given the honor of accepting a Component State Association Core Service Achievement Aware on your behalf.   SDHIMA received 3rd place in the category of Member communications!!   SDHIMA’s strategic project that led to this award was to revise the SDHIMA website.
Purpose: The purpose of the CSA Core Service Achievement program is to recognize excellence in Component State Association (CSA) efforts and to provide all CSAs with information and ideas that can be applied to their own state efforts. The reviewers consider the summary of the project, goals, innovations and outcomes, CSA volunteer involvement, budget and communicating on the impact of the program.

During the course of this project, the Website Task Force was able to probe deeper and developed several projects within the master project.    After an extensive vendor search, the board chose to utilize KnowledgeConnex, which is a vendor that supports over 60% of the component state associations.   Our members are able to participate in continuing education webinars made available through other state associations in addition to those webinars hosted within our state association.  We are utilizing the website to keep the master calendar updated to make these easily accessible to all SDHIMA members.   The Task Force assisted in revamping the website in an effort to make SDHIMA more useful to its members and we continue to work towards this end.  

In addition, sponsors and other healthcare entities are able to post job openings on the SDHIMA job board, which provides a great avenue for SDHIMA members towards career advancement as well as assists healthcare entities by giving them a highly qualified, professional candidate pool from which to choose.   
SDHIMA is currently working on developing SDHIMA social media.  We currently are on Facebook so make sure to check that out. 

SDAHO - It's That Time, Again!

By Natalie Bertsch, Past President

The SDAHO Meeting is right around the corner! So everyone…mark your calendars for the 87th SDAHO Annual Convention in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, September 18 – 20, 2013 at the Sioux Falls Convention Center.

We have an exciting agenda for our SDHIMA member for a number of opportunities to learn, grown and network with others. Below is the finalized agenda, hope to see you there!

Tuesday, September 17
1:00 – 6:00 p.m.  Golf Outing at Willow Run.
Wednesday, September 18
10:00 a.m.  REGISTRATION DESK OPENS.  Sioux Falls Convention Center--Main Concourse.  (Registration desk will be closed during the keynote luncheon from Noon – 1:30 p.m.)
Noon - 1:30 p.m.  KEYNOTE LUNCHEON.  The Challenge of Change.  Joe Theismann.  See Page 2 for program description.  Sponsored by MMIC
1:45 – 2:45 p.m.  HIPAA Hype: The Changing Environment of Privacy and Information Security.  Jenny Bernhard, Privacy Officer, Regional Health  Jenny will provide attendees with basic background/history of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the recent regulatory changes to HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules ( the “Omnibus Rule”) and the Office for Civil Rights recent enforcement activity.
3:00 – 4:00 p.m.  One Day At a Time: Dissecting the Regulations and Practical Applications.  Jenny Bernhard, Privacy Officer, Regional Health  Jenny will provide attendees with dialogue on the real-world implications of the changing regulations as it relates to compliance obligations, day-to-day operations, the electronic medical record environment, etc.
4:00 – 6:30 p.m.  Exhibit Show and Social
Thursday, September 19
8:00 – 10:30 a.m.  Closing the Knowing-Doing Gap.  Craig Deao, Senior Leader, Studer Group.  Craig will describe and share evidence-based practices for closing the “Knowing-Doing Gap” in health care.  Six frogs are sitting on a lily pad, and one decides to jump.  How many frogs are left on the lily pad?  You may assume the answer is five.  Actually, it’s six.  Why?  Because deciding to jump and jumping are two completely different things!  Most health care organizations really, really want to leap off that lily pad—especially with value-based purchasing making it even more critical that we drastically improve clinical quality (and keep improving it).  So why don’t we follow through?  Why are so many of us frogs with good intentions?  The gap between knowing what we need to do and actually doing it is almost always a foundational issue, but the quality chasm can be bridged.  The first step is figuring out what’s keeping you from making that leap—the leap that allows you to quickly provide better quality care for the patients who are counting on you.
10:45 - 11:45 a.m.  General Program: Charting the Course: Innovative Leadership in the Face of Healthcare Reform.  John Nance, JD, Consultant, Author.  See Page 3 for program description.  This program is made possible by a grant from the SDAHO/HRET Hospital Engagement Network.
1:45 - 2:45 p.m.  Engaging Physicians to Executive System Performance.  Craig Deao, Senior Leader, Studer Group.  The engagement and alignment of physicians will accelerate achievement of quality, safety, service and operational goals.  This is easy to say, but it is more challenging to execute.  Discover what leaders must do to create true physician collaboration through a three–step process.
3:00 - 4:00 p.m.  SDHIMA Membership Meeting.
4:00 – 6:30 p.m. Distinguished Service Awards Reception Sponsored by Howalt+McDowell.
7:30 p.m. – Midnight  Networking Bus Tour.
Friday, September 20
8:30 - 9:30 a.m.  State Issues Forum.  Dave Hewett, President/CEO, South Dakota Association of Healthcare Organizations.  Dave will provide the latest information affecting health care both from around the state and nationally. 
9:45 - 10:45 a.m.  ICD-10-Preparing for Denials and Delays.  Katherine Andersen, RHIT, CCS, CCAT, CPAT,  Director of Education SDHIMA and Denial Management/Medical Necessity Analyst. In this presentation, Katherine will provide attendees with the latest Appeals Process for Service Specific Target Reviews in our region. Timelines for both Pre-Payment and Post-Payment reviews.
11:00 a.m. - Noon.  CLOSING SESSION.  A Dose of Healthcare Humor.  David Glickman.  See Page 4 for program description.
Noon.   Adjournment.


Education Update from Dakota State University

By Dorine Bennett

As I write this message, it is amazing to me that the Summer has gone by so quickly. Our Fall semester starts on August 26th, and we are excited to have many new and returning students. It is also exciting to meet the challenges and opportunities found in our ever-changing profession!

Along with building on a strong foundation of health information management theory and functions, the HIM faculty members plan to continue incorporating practical applications for electronic health records, document management systems, encoders and groupers, and more through the AHIMA Virtual Lab, and we will be adding an educational electronic health record called Neehr Perfect (which is built on VistA). Linda Parks, who is our coding instructor and a certified AHIMA ICD-10 trainer, has been including ICD-10 in her courses for a while and will continue to expand coverage of the topic. (Don’t forget to check out her anatomy and physiology review modules offered through DSU’s Center for the Advancement of Health IT (CAHIT) at

I was helping the Director of CAHIT earlier this month with a presentation he was planning on making in Washington, DC and he asked me about the starting dates for the various academic health information programs we offer through DSU. I thought it might be interesting to recall these dates for you:  The associate degree started in Fall 1975, the baccalaureate degree started in Fall of 1979, and the coding certificate started in 2002. We added the MSHI graduate degree in Fall 2009, although the healthcare specialization was available in the MSIS graduate degree beginning in 2005 and as part of the DScIS graduate degree when it started in 2006. We’ll be planning to celebrate some anniversaries in the near future, so be sure that the DSU Office of Alumni Relations ( has your current contact information so that we can keep you informed. We’re looking at hosting some anniversary events with professional development activities perhaps related to project management and research as well as lots of fun socialization and networking.

Please check out the information at our website at and watch for our HIM Program Newsletter coming out later this Fall. As always, we welcome your suggestions, comments, and questions at any time – we love to hear from you!

SDHIMA Educational Opportunities

Access the SDHIMA website at to access our new on-line educational opportunities for ICD-10 and Denial Management.  Also access our calendar for available educational opportunities from other AHIMA state associations.  Please utilize the “Contact Us” feature on our website to let us know of more topics you’d like to see.

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SDAHO Annual Convention
September 18 – 20, 2013
Sioux Falls, South Dakota

AHIMA Convention
October 26-30, 2013

Upcoming Audio Conferences

Click here for more live sessions

ICD-10 and Pharmacology Series

ICD-10-CM/PCS Webinar Programs New!

Job Opportunities

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Coding Technician
Huron Regional Medical Center

Inpatient Coding Specialist

Director of Health Information and Quality Management
South Dakota Human Services Center

Huron Regional Medical Center

Medical Administrative Assistant Faculty
Alexandria Technical & Community College


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Woods, Fuller, Shultz & Smith P.C.

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