1. What is Health Information Management?
• Health Information Management (HIM) is the practice of maintenance of care of health records by traditional and electronic means in hospitals, physician’s office clinics, health departments, health insurance companies, and other facilities that provide health care or maintenance of health.

2. What are the job responsibilities of Health Information management professionals?
• The health information management professionals play a crucial role in collecting, analyzing, and maintaining health data that doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers rely on to deliver quality care, financial reimbursement, medical research, healthcare planning, and preservation of data in support of patient safety, privacy, confidentiality and security of patient information. Health Information professionals have the skill sets in traditional and electronic health records, personal health records, clinical medicine, coding and classification system, quality and human resource management, as well as ethical, legal, regulatory and accrediting agency requirements.

3. What is the Job Market?
• According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of HIM professionals is expected to grow over 13% through 2026. Salaries are competitive. Many graduates with bachelor's earn from $45,000 to $75,000. After five years of experience, HIM professionals earn between $75,000 to $120,000. AHIMA Salary Study

• The program is accredited by the Commission of Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management (CAHIIM). Graduates of the HIM program are eligible to sit for the national certification examination to be credentialed as Registered Health Information Administrators (RHIAs).

5. What are the job opportunities?
•  RHIAs work in various healthcare organizations, such as acute care correctional facilities, general hospitals pharmaceutical companies, managed care organizations behavioral healthcare, consulting firms, insurance companies, claims and reimbursement, physician/dental practices, home health care agencies, veterinary care, state/federal healthcare agencies, and health computing industries.

• RHIAs also work in various non-healthcare organizations, such as manufacturing/industry, higher education
  local/state/federal government.

6. What are the Admission Requirements?
 There are two options available to students interested in the HIM Program. Option I is for freshmen and transfers.
 Option II is for students who have completed an associate’s degree in Health Information Technology. In addition to   University admission criteria, the program admission and retention requirements include:

• Entering Freshmen
a. High school graduation with a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale or G.E.D. scores of 50 or above for the five subjects tested.
b. A minimum composite test score of 19 on the ACT. (This may change according to University entrance requirements.)
c. First-time freshmen are required to have successfully completed any remedial or developmental courses before consideration for unconditional admission into the HIM program.

• Transfer Students
a. Applications will be accepted from students transferring from other colleges, universities or other departments at Tennessee State University.
b. Transfers, change-of-major, and continuing students are required to have successfully completed any remedial or developmental courses before consideration for unconditional admission into the program.
c. Applicants must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale.
d. Students transferring from other departments within Tennessee State University are required to complete a Change-of-Major form.

7. I have a Bachelor’s degree in another field, but I’m interested in majoring in Health Information Management at TSU. What are the requirements?
• You will need to schedule an appointment with the program advisor to guide you in making the right decision. Whether you want to pursue another Bachelor’s degree or Master’s degree, your advisor will give you feedback to clarify any questions you might have. However, if the student decides to have another Bachelor of Science degree, the individual will need to complete the required prerequisite, general education/science courses, and all major courses.

8. What steps should I take if I already have a degree from a non-U.S. university?
• Assessment of non-U.S. transcripts must be conducted by International and Multi-cultural Affairs department at TSU. For further information, you may contact the director of International and Multi-cultural Affairs at 615-963-5640.

9. Are there scholarships available?
• THIMA sponsors a scholarship program. Two $1,000 scholarships are available annually through THIMA to Tennessee students who are planning a career in Health Information Management (HIM). The scholarships are the THIMA Scholarship ($1,000) and the Evelyn Freeman Scholarship ($1,000). The Evelyn Freeman Scholarship is funded by DocuVoice. In some years, there may be a Past President’s Scholarship of $200. This varies from year to year; the Scholarship Committee will be informed of the availability of the Past President’s Scholarship prior to review of scholarship applications. Applications must be submitted by June 15th. See website for more details: http://www.thima.org/careersandcolleges_scholarship.htm

• AHIMA offers an annual merit scholarship for undergraduate students, who are interested in health information management. The awarded amount funded is $ 1,500. Applications must be submitted by July 1st. See website for more details: http://www.ahimafoundation.org/Scholarships/meritscholarships.aspx

10. What type of salary ranges can RHIAs expect to receive?
• The salaries for entry-level RHIAs are competitive and range from $45,000 - $75,000 dependent on geographical location, and type and size of the organization. After five years many are earning $75,000 to $120,000.

11. What are the positions available for RHIAs?
• HIM Department Director
• HIM System Manager
• Compliance Auditor/Manager
• Information Services Director
• Health Data Analyst
• Quality Improvement Analyst
• HIM Educator/Program Director
• Claims and Reimbursement Coordinator
• Coding Specialist

12. Are there any student associations?
• Student Health Information Management Association (SHIMA): All students majoring in HIM are encouraged to join this association. Students meet regularly to discuss the HIM profession, community service events, professionalism, conferences and other related topics. The group also host special events on campus and off campus. HIM students can also join the American Health Information Management Association with a minimal student’s membership fees of $49.00.

13. How can I contact an advisor?
• An individual considering a career in Health Information Management should make effort to contact the advisor to schedule an appointment.
• The Health Information Management Department is currently located in the Jackson Building on the third floor.
• Contact Us:

Valerie Brock, Ed.S, MBA, RHIA, CDIP, CPC
Assistant Professor and Program Director
Health Information Management
College of Health Science
Health Sciences Building, Suite 316
Tennessee State University
3500 John A. Merritt Blvd.
Nashville, TN 37209
Phone: 615-963-7430
Fax: 615-963-7498

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