The College of Southern Maryland (CSM) Health Information Management (HIM) Program has received initial accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). CAHIIM monitors the nation’s academic degree programs in health information management (HIM) and health informatics (HI) through arduous reviews of – and maintenance of – accreditation policies and processes.
“Accreditation is the gold standard of quality because our program was evaluated based on national criteria,” shared CSM School of Science and Health Dean Dr. Laura Polk. “By attending our accredited program, our HIM students can be assured they are receiving an exemplary academic experience that prepares them for a challenging career in Health Information Management.”
The CAHIIM accreditation also allows CSM HIM Associate of Applied Science degree graduates to sit for the American Health Information Management (AHIMA) Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT®) certification exam – which is a vital national certification in the HIM profession.
CSM made its application for accreditation in April 2020 and was accepted into an accreditation review candidacy with CAHIIM by end of that month. During a campus visit in June 2021, 26 Health Information Management program standards were reviewed including the college’s governance structure and the program structure. Deep dives were also performed into the college’s HIM curriculum, faculty and program coordinator qualifications, evaluations, course sequencing, program goals, assessments, and outcomes.
“The CAHIIM Board of Directors undertook a year’s worth of reviews, findings, and recommendations and voted to grant CSM’s Health Information Management Associate Degree Program initial accreditation for 7 years,” explained CSM Medical Coding Certificate/HIM Program Coordinator Professor Candi Hume. “It was an arduous review process of our programs but one that means so much to the students, the program, the college, and our health care providers in the region. This was the very best outcome and an excellent conclusion.”
The CSM HIM program brings together skills and concepts from the disciplines of health care, information technology, and business management to prepare students for careers in the effective and ethical handling of medical information.
Professionals in the field of health information organize, classify, and evaluate the incredible volume of medical data generated by the health care field. In addition to technical functions in information management like statistical and data analysis, students gain perspective of the broader significance of health data at all levels: personal privacy and patient rights; staff and facility planning; research; and financial implications.
CSM’s Health Information Management program offers students two options for their course of study: the Medical Coding Certificate and the Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management. Taken together, the certificate and associate degree tracks form a seamless, continuous path. Graduates who complete their Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management will earn their Medical Coding Certificate as part of their program, with no additional courses required. Graduates who earn the Medical Coding Certificate can earn their associate degree with just two additional semesters of study.
Learn more about CSM’s School of Science and Health online.