Change…it’s inevitable, unwavering, and powerful; it shapes not only our profession, but our livelihood within our profession. If we look back over the course of the past five, ten, or even fifteen years it’s hard to fathom how far we have come as a profession. Instead of filing paper charts, we now analyze large data sets, instead of a rolodex or card system we use advanced computer systems to manage our eMPI, instead of medical coding books we use innovative coding systems to annotate our charts and suggest codes; the list goes on and on. The information technology “big bang” has happened – so where do where do we go from here? How do we manage this overload of data to ensure that we keep it meaningful for the patients we treat, while also keeping it safe and secure?
That’s where we come in – but we must be cautious because the challenge of facing this task will not be an easy one. As a young professional, my journey in HIM has been short lived, but I can see the opportunities – and they are plentiful. These opportunities are not for the faint of heart, they require thinking outside the box, taking risks, and stepping up in ways we never thought we would have to. This, in itself is a challenge – the depths of change are deep and require re-evaluation of ourselves and our purpose. As we manage this plight, we must re-educate ourselves, take on new roles, stand our ground, and rise to not only meet – but exceed expectations.
Exceeding expectations is what I hope to do in my tenure as president. We need to be a more engaged profession and membership; one good place to start is with students. As president, I plan to ensure we engage our students so that they are not only involved in our events, but are mentored and supported by professionals at our events and beyond. Sustainability starts with our students. Another item we need to work on is overall member engagement. We have over 1,000 members and only 10% come of our statewide conference annually; we need to think outside the box and consider new methods to engage our members. Finally, a focus on not only membership sustainability, but financial sustainability needs to occur. KHIMA is a business and we must act as such. There are opportunities abound for us to partner with other professional organizations and with vendors. We must not only seek out opportunities, but create them, which will in turn add value to our membership and our profession.
Evan Harmon, MHI, RHIA