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Health Information Management (HIM)
2012 Standards and Interpretations

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

1.  How does CAHIIM define ‘full time’?

The definition of full time is the purview of the sponsoring educational institution as defined by faculty guidelines, labor union contract, or other organizational definition.  Essentially the program director and at least one faculty member must be employed full time by the sponsoring educational institution.

2. If a sponsoring educational institution offers both associate and baccalaureate degree HIM programs as a 2+2 progression program, must they have a full-time program director plus two full-time faculty (one for each program)?

Yes.  As each program level has specific curriculum content expertise, different types of students, enrollment numbers, and varied workloads, all of which would equate to different qualifications for faculty.

3.  Must the second full-time faculty member be AHIMA credentialed and an HIM professional?

No.  The second full-time faculty member is not required to hold an HIM credential, but they must be qualified to teach the content for which they are assigned, be dedicated to the HIM program, and meet the faculty employment requirements of the sponsoring educational institution.  The program can draw from coding, healthcare administration, public health, computer science, or other professional disciplines if they have expertise that will support achievement of the knowledge and competencies expected of HIM graduates today and in the future.

4.  Can the program director be responsible for other programs in addition to the HIM program?

Yes.  As long as the program director is full time with the sponsoring educational institution and given sufficient release time, resources, support services and faculty to effectively manage more than one program.  This is further viewed by CAHIIM as demonstrating leadership abilities, engagement with other disciplines and creates a significant presence at the institutional level for the HIM program director.

5.  What does CAHIIM mean by a ‘plan for compliance’?

Every program should begin discussions with administration, faculty and the advisory board, regarding a process to assess the curriculum against the revised AHIMA Entry-Level Curriculum Competences as displayed in the new associate and baccalaureate level curriculum maps.  If the program does not currently have a full time faculty member, then the program director must work with the administration and the advisory board to determine how and when to budget for this position, and make future plans for the program.  In addition, the qualifications and expertise desired for this position, how recruitment will occur and when the program can expect to be in compliance must be included in the plan.