The Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) accreditation demonstrates that a health information management and health informatics program meets the highest academic standards. The commission is a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing and maintaining quality standards for health informatics education. This type of accreditation goes above and beyond standard academic accreditation for an institution. Every academic institution with CAHIIM accreditation must undergo peer review to verify that CAHIIM's high standards are met. Quality requirements for these schools help to protect high standards for the profession by ensuring that students leave with the preparation they need to be successful.
Accredited programs provide students with the practical training and academic background necessary to be successful in the marketplace and make meaningful contributions at work. Graduates receive a recognizable credential that may help them find better employment opportunities and advance in the health informatics field. The commission helps create opportunities for graduating professionals by defining and upholding appropriate standards for health informatics schools.
CAHIIM Accreditation Process
A peer-review system is used to help an institution discover how it can improve and determine how successful the organization already is. Faculty and staff are enlisted to help during the process. Schools are given a framework to guide their educational program, provide information about best practices and help them effectively educate their students. These institutions are strongly encouraged to evaluate themselves against the national standards set by CAHIIM and practice a process of continuous improvement.
By learning from peers, CAHIIM-accredited schools can begin implementing new best practices and troubleshooting problem areas. Professionals in the health informatics field are able to share ideas and solutions. They can also challenge each other to raise their standards as an academic community. This practice directly improves academic programs, and students and the public both benefit from these changes. After graduating from an accredited institution, students find better employment opportunities, and the public benefits from the knowledge and experience of informatics professionals.
Students and Community
CAHIIM helps keep health informatics schools accountable to students and the public. Students can readily obtain information from CAHIIM through the CAHIIM Directory about available schools and programs. They can also review recent employment outcomes to make better decisions when considering these programs. Without this data, making smart decisions about employment options can be more difficult.
Graduates of CAHIIM-accredited programs may also have an easier time obtaining professional certification. Curricula at CAHIIM schools are designed to reflect the current needs of employers. For example, students learn how to use electronic healthcare records (EHR). With relevant skills and the ability to readily search for a great informatics program, students are in a stronger position to prepare for the workforce. If the public is able to trust the educational institution, then new professionals are better-positioned to find great jobs.
With this information readily available, the public is better equipped to encourage health informatics schools to strive for even higher standards. Communities are assured of high standards in healthcare informatics programs, so they can expect graduates to exhibit professionalism in their work. These graduates are prepared to help improve healthcare as a whole. CAHIIM brings transparency to the educational process and helps encourage educational institutions to keep improving so they can stay worthy of the public's trust.
Dedication to Quality
By achieving CAHIIM accreditation, health informatics schools can demonstrate their dedication to providing high-quality education and strong career preparation. This achievement requires participation in a lengthy peer-review process. CAHIIM-accredited schools can receive feedback from other institutions, work constructively to improve informatics education, and provide information to the public. These institutions must make data about student employment outcomes available. The public holds these schools accountable to provide strong career preparation, help maintain high standards for healthcare professionals and enable healthcare to improve through the contributions of its graduates. CAHIIM accreditation empowers health informatics programs to accomplish more and provide a strong education to future informatics professionals.
Learn more about the University of South Carolina's online MHIT program.
Sources:CAHIIM: Benefits of Accreditation
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