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AHIMA Competencies

At SNHU, we designed our BS in Health Information Management (HIM) to align with the 2014 baccalaureate degree entry-level competencies developed by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), an organization of HIM professionals around the world. These competencies were created to ensure that today’s education pathways meet tomorrow’s workforce needs.

AHIMA defines the educational competencies required of a HIM professional and administers the Registered Health Information Management Administrator (RHIA) examination. One of the eligibility requirements to sit for the RHIA exam is that students must have graduated from a program accredited through the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management (CAHIIM).

The B.S. in Health Information Management program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).

Domain I. Data Content, Structure & Standards (Information Governance)

Subdomain I.A. Classification Systems

  1. Evaluate, implement and manage electronic applications/systems for clinical classification and coding
  2. Identify the functions and relationships between healthcare classification systems
  3. Map terminologies, vocabularies and classification systems
  4. Evaluate the accuracy of diagnostic and procedural coding

Subdomain I.B. Health Record Content and Documentation

  1. Verify that documentation in the health record supports the diagnosis and reflects the patient's progress, clinical findings, and discharge status
  2. Compile organization-wide health record documentation guidelines
  3. Interpret health information standards

Subdomain I.C. Data Governance

  1. Format data to satisfy integration needs
  2. Construct and maintain the standardization of data dictionaries to meet the needs of the enterprise
  3. Demonstrate compliance with internal and external data dictionary requirements
  4. Advocate information operability and information exchange

Subdomain I.D. Data Management

  1. Analyze information needs of customers across the healthcare continuum
  2. Evaluate health information systems and data storage design
  3. Manage clinical indices/databases/registries
  4. Apply knowledge of database architecture and design to meet organizational needs
  5. Evaluate data from varying sources to create meaningful presentations

Subdomain I.E. Secondary Data Sources

  1. Validate data from secondary sources to include in the patient's record, including personal health records

Domain II. Information Protection: Access, Disclosure, Archival, Privacy & Security

Subdomain II.A. Health Law

  1. Identify laws and regulations applicable to health care
  2. Analyze legal concepts and principles to the practice of HIM

Subdomain II.B. Data Privacy, Confidentiality & Security

  1. Analyze privacy, security and confidentiality policies and procedures for internal and external use and exchange of health information
  2. Recommend elements included in the design of audit trails and data quality monitoring programs
  3. Collaborate in the design and implementation of risk assessment, contingency planning, and data recovery procedures
  4. Analyze the security and privacy implications of mobile health technologies
  5. Develop educational programs for employees in privacy, security, and confidentiality

Subdomain II.C. Release of Information

  1. Create policies and procedures to manage access and disclosure of personal health information
  2. Protect electronic health information through confidentiality and security measures, policies and procedures

Domain III. Informatics, Analytics and Data Use

Subdomain III.A. Health Information Technologies

  1. Utilize technology for data collection, storage, analysis, and reporting of information
  2. Assess systems capabilities to meet regulatory requirements
  3. Analyze device selection based on workflow, ergonomic and human factors
  4. Take part in the development of networks, including intranet and Internet applications
  5. Evaluate database design and data warehousing
  6. Create the electronic structure of health data to meet a variety of end user needs

Subdomain III.B. Information Management Strategic Planning

  1. Take part in the development of information management plans that support the organization's current and future strategy and goals
  2. Take part in the planning, design, selection, implementation, integration, testing, evaluation, and support of health information technologies

Subdomain III.C. Analytics and Decision Support

  1. Apply analytical results to facilitate decision-making
  2. Apply data extraction methodologies
  3. Analyze organizational action based on knowledge obtained from data exploration and mining
  4. Analyze clinical data to identify trends that demonstrate quality, safety, and effectiveness of healthcare
  5. Apply knowledge of database querying and data exploration and mining techniques to facilitate information retrieval
  6. Evaluate administrative reports using appropriate software

Subdomain III.D. Health Care Statistics

  1. Interpret inferential statistics
  2. Analyze statistical data for decision making

Subdomain III.E. Research Methods

  1. Apply principles of research and clinical literature evaluation to improve outcomes
  2. Plan adherence to Institutional Review Board (IRB) processes and policies

Subdomain III.F. Consumer Informatics

  1. Educate consumers on patient-centered health information technologies

Subdomain III.G. Health Information Exchange

  1. Collaborate in the development of operational policies and procedures for health information exchange
  2. Apply system testing to ensure data integrity and quality of health information exchange
  3. Identify various models for health information exchange

Subdomain III.H. Information Integrity and Data Quality

  1. Discover threats to data integrity and validity
  2. Implement policies and procedures to ensure data integrity internal and external
  3. Apply quality management tools
  4. Perform quality assessment including quality management, data quality, and identification of best practices for health information systems
  5. Model policy initiatives that influence data integrity

Domain IV. Revenue Management

Subdomain IV. A. Revenue Cycle and Reimbursement

  1. Manage the use of clinical data required by various payment and reimbursement systems
  2. Take part in selection and development of applications and processes for chargemaster and claims management
  3. Apply principles of healthcare finance for revenue management
  4. Implement processes for revenue cycle management and reporting

Domain V. Compliance

Subdomain V.A. Regulatory

  1. Analyze current laws and standards related to health information initiatives.
  2. Determine processes for compliance with current laws and standards related to health information initiatives and revenue cycle

Subdomain V.B. Coding

  1. Evaluate processes, policies, and procedures to ensure the accuracy of coded data based on established guidelines
  2. Manage coding audits
  3. Identify severity of illness and its impact on healthcare payment systems

Subdomain V.C. Fraud Surveillance

  1. Determine policies and procedures to monitor abuse or fraudulent trends

Subdomain V.D. Clinical Documentation Improvement

  1. Implement provider querying techniques to resolve coding discrepancies
  2. Evaluate components of clinical documentation for compliance with regulations and guidelines for revenue management and reporting.

Domain VI. Leadership

Subdomain VI.A. Leadership Roles

  1. Take part in effective negotiating and use influencing skills
  2. Discover personal leadership style using contemporary leadership theory and principles
  3. Take part in effective communication through project reports, business reports and professional communications
  4. Apply personnel management skills
  5. Take part in enterprise-wide committees
  6. Build effective teams

Subdomain VI.B. Change Management

  1. Interpret concepts of change management theories, techniques and leadership

Subdomain VI.C. Work Design and Process Improvement

  1. Analyze workflow processes and responsibilities to meet organizational needs
  2. Analyze performance management measures
  3. Demonstrate workflow concepts

Subdomain VI.D. Human Resources Management

  1. Manage human resources to facilitate staff recruitment, retention, and supervision
  2. Demonstrate compliance with employment laws
  3. Create and implement staff orientation and training programs
  4. Benchmark staff performance data incorporating labor analytics
  5. Evaluate staffing levels and productivity, and provide feedback to staff regarding performance

Subdomain VI.E. Training and Development

  1. Evaluate initial and on-going training programs

Subdomain VI.F. Strategic and Organizational Management

  1. Identify departmental and organizational survey readiness for accreditation, licensing, and/or certification processes
  2. Implement a departmental strategic plan
  3. Apply general principles of management in the administration of health information services
  4. Analyze how healthcare policy-making both directly and indirectly impacts the regional and national healthcare delivery systems
  5. Identify the different types of organizations, services, and personnel and their interrelationships across the health care delivery system
  6. Collaborate in the development and implementation of information governance initiatives
  7. Facilitate the use of enterprise-wide information assets to support organizational strategies and objectives

Subdomain VI.G. Financial Management

  1. Evaluate capital, operating and/or project budgets using basic accounting principles
  2. Perform cost-benefit analysis for resource planning and allocation
  3. Analyze the stages of the procurement process

Subdomain VI.H. Ethics

  1. Comply with ethical standards of practice
  2. Analyze the culture of a department
  3. Promote cultural competency and sensitivity in healthcare
  4. Analyze programs and policies that support a culture of diversity

Subdomain VI.I. Project Management

  1. Take part in system selection processes
  2. Recommend clinical, administrative, and specialty service applications
  3. Apply project management techniques to ensure efficient workflow and appropriate outcomes
  4. Facilitate project management by integrating work efforts

Subdomain VI.J. Vendor/Contract Management

  1. Analyze vendor contracts
  2. Take part in effective negotiating, utilizing influencing skills in the process of system selection

Subdomain VI.K. Enterprise Information Management

  1. Manage information as a key strategic resource and mission tool

Supporting Body of Knowledge (Pre-requisite or Evidence of Knowledge)

  1. Pathophysiology and Pharmacology
  2. Anatomy and Physiology
  3. Medical Terminology
  4. Computer Concepts and Applications
  5. Statistics