Health Information Management (HIM)

Health information has gone high tech! Using skills from science-based courses like anatomy, physiology, disease process and computer applications, the health information technologist (HIT) assists in the documentation of patient care, and provides clinical information for research as a basis for planning and continuity of care. Health information professionals work in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, group practice clinics, mental health facilities and health insurance agencies.

CAHIIM ACCREDITED PROGRAM

The SCC Health Information Management program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (www.cahiim.org). Upon graduation with a degree, the student is eligible to apply to write the national qualifying examination of the American Health Information Management Association (www.ahima.org) for certification as a Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT). Learn more about the Health Information profession at www.hicareers.com.


Average Length of Program:

   6 quarters

Completion Award:

   A.A.S. degree

Graduate Job Placement:

  • 2013 graduates: 100%
  • 2014 Graduates: 100%
  • 2015 Graduates: 83%

RHIT Exam Pass Rate:

  • 2013 Graduates: 94% - National pass rate: 77%
  • 2014 Graduates: 100% - National pass rate: 74%
  • 2015 Graduates: 92% - National pass rate 72%

Program Mission

The mission of the Health Information Management (HIM) program at Spokane Community College is to prepare students to be self-motivated, critically thinking, and problem solving learners and future HIM professionals. HIM students will be offered the education and skills necessary to prepare them to work in all areas of the HIM profession. HIM students will understand the importance of contributing to and being ethical members of the profession, while meeting the needs of an ever changing profession. Students will be encouraged to become lifelong learners to prepare themselves for the continued growth and evolution of the HIM profession.

Program Learning Outcomes

The successful graduate of this program will be able to:

  • Abstract and process data from patient records using a variety of computer programs.
  • Collect, tabulate, compute and prepare statistical reports for use by the medial staff, administration, governing board, and authorized agencies.
  • Code clinical data for research and other reporting purposes.
  • Perform review of health information for patient care evaluation, quality improvement, and utilization management.
  • Apply legal principles, policies, regulations and standards for the control, release and use for health information.
  • Utilize computers to compile data, process information for prospective payment systems and perform various other data analysis projects.

Enrollment Options

Online: Fall or Summer Quarter
On-ground: Fall Quarter

Contact the HIM Program by e-mail or by phone at (509) 533-7413 regarding the program waitlist.

Admission Requirements

  • High School Diploma or GED certificate
  • Appropriate scores in one of the following: ASSET or COMPASS
  • Keyboard 30 WPM or BT 101

Receiving credits for Prior or Experiential Learning

Program Requirements

Once accepted into the program, students are required to complete three non-paid professional practice experience (PPE) clinical rotations. In order to participate in a PPE rotation, HIM program students must

  • Complete and pass a criminal background check each year of enrollment. Students with a criminal record may be prevented from continuing the program.
  • Provide a health record with proof of required immunizations of MMR (measles, mumps, rubella), Varicela (chicken pox), and TDap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis).
Depending on the PPE site, student may be required to pass a drug test and show proof of additional testing such as TB (tuberculosis).

Persons with Disabilities

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, accommodations for students with disabilities will be considered at the student's request. The student will be required to register with the Disability Support Services office and provide documentation of disability. Once the student is qualified by the DSS Manager as having a disability, requested accommodations will be considered. Accommodations for the classroom, laboratory, or clinical setting will be considered according to reasonableness. Accommodations that compromise patient care, or that fundamentally alter the nature of the program or activity, are not considered to be reasonable. A student denied accommodation may request an individualized determination to assure that the denial is not a result of disability discrimination by contacting the Manager of Disability Support Services and Testing at 533-7498. Contact the SCC Disability Support Services office to obtain a copy of the procedures for appeal of an accommodation denial.

For additional information, please contact Disability Support Services

Browse additional programs in the CCS Online Catalog.

Career Preparation

"Most employers prefer to hire Registered Health Information Technicians (RHIT), who must pass a written examination offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). To take the examination, a person must graduate from a 2-year associate degree program accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). Technicians trained in non-CAHIIM-accredited programs or trained on the job are not eligible to take the examination. In 2007, there were about 245 CAHIIM accredited programs in Health Informatics and Information Management Education." - Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2008)

Employment opportunities for graduates of approved health information technology programs are excellent. Changing standards and governmental regulations cause the volume and complexity of the health record system to be dynamic and challenging. Types of facilities utilizing health information technology professionals include those providing inpatient care, ambulatory care, long-term care, psychiatric care, cancer registry and medical insurance providers.

Potential Positions

Release of information technician, health information technician, coder, assistant manager of health information services of large hospitals, manager of health information services of small hospitals or skilled nursing facilities, utilization manager, quality improvement coordinator, compliance officer, privacy officer, health information analyst, clinical documentation specialist, auditor

Other Employment Opportunities Available

Mental health facilities, skilled nursing facilities, health maintenance organizations, health insurance agencies, ambulatory care facilities, large physician group practice facilities, consulting