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Entry-Level MHIIM

The UT program awards a Master of Health Informatics and Information Management. This program has been in existence since 1954 when it started as a post- baccalaureate program at the Baptist Hospital in Memphis. It transitioned to baccalaureate in 1972 when the program transitioned to the then College of Allied Health. The program consistently has excellent outcomes and results on the national certification examination are above the national average. The Entry-Level Masters program at UT is accredited under the HIIM Baccalaureate Degree Curriculum requirements by the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).

Students utilize the course management system via the Internet to attend classes, complete assignments, and interact with classmates and faculty members. Students may continue to work full time and choose to complete the program in either a full-time or part-time option.

The program has outstanding faculty members who have served or are currently serving in numerous leadership positions in national, regional, state and local levels of the professional organization. Adjunct faculty and guest speakers for classes include hospital administrators, attorneys, physicians, and other health care professionals who provide valuable, real-world insights.

The Entry-Level Master's program and the Post-graduate Health Information Management programs are both accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) under the HIM Baccalaureate Degree and HIM Master's Degree Standards. For more information about CAHIIM, go to www.cahiim.org to verify the accreditation status of the programs.

 cahiim logo

CAHIIM program outcomes:
For the time period of August 1, 2017-July 31, 2018

  • 100% pass rate on the RHIA exam
  • 0% attrition
  • 100% Employer satisfaction

Graduate placement rates are high and both graduates and employers are satisfied with the skills and education of the program graduates.

"The entry level MHIIM program has helped my career in many ways. The University of Tennessee is a widely respected and recognized institution. According to the American Health Information Management Association, roughly 10% of HIM professions have graduate degrees in HIM. This program has helped me to stand out among my peers."
Rachel Berry, MHIIM, RHIA, CHPS
2014 graduate and Director of HIM at Community Hospital of McCook Nebraska

"The MHIIM Program at UTHSC has paid dividends for me already in the beginning of my career in ways that I would not have imagined. After beginning my position as HIM Director at National HealthCare Corporation, The critical thinking skills and leadership principles added to the clinical knowledge that I received from the program have enabled me to lead my HIM department in this company through the challenges that I have faced along the way. Not that there haven't been any stumbling blocks, there always will be, I just feel comfortable facing these challenges largely in part to the quality education I received at UTHSC."
J. Marcus Rickman, MHIIM, RHIA
2014 graduate and Regional Health Information Director, National Healthcare Corporation

Admission Requirements for Entry-level MHIIM

Prerequisite Course Work Credit Hours
Human Anatomy and Physiology 8
Principles of Management 3
Personnel Administration 3
English Composition and Literature 12
Social Science 6
Statistics 3
Medical Terminology 3
Management Information Systems 3
Systems Analysis and Design 3
Database Management 3
Electives 45
(12 Upper Division)
  1. Successful completion of prerequisite courses with a grade of “C” or better
  2. Minimum grade point average of 2.0
  3. Three pre-professional evaluations forms and letters of recommendation from previous college instructors or immediate supervisors
  4. Foreign applicants whose native language is not English must submit results of TOEFL, with minimal score of 550, 213 on the computerized version
  5. Official transcripts
  6. Personal interview with the admissions committee
  7. Ability to meet published technical standards of the College of Health Professions and the Department of Health Informatics and Information Management (applicants should contact SASSI for questions and assistance)
  8. A completed application form including an essay describing the applicant’s career goals
  9. A non-refundable application fee must accompany the application.

    Applications are accepted online at http://www.uthsc.edu/admissions/chp.php.

The early deadline for applications to the entry-level MHIIM program each year is March 1 and the late deadline is July 1 for the fall semester start date. A personal interview is granted to an applicant by invitation only. For more general information, please visit the Admissions Office or apply online and follow the directions for admission.

Registration and Fee payment for each semester are done by mail. Each semester, students must pay fees to the Bursar's Office by the deadline to avoid late fee penalties. Students must pay fees to be considered "enrolled" in a course. Information about financial aid and fees are available from the Financial Aid office or from the Costs/Financial Aid page.

The curriculum for the Entry Level MHIIM degree is shown in the table below.

Course # Course Name Credit hours
511

HIM Health Information Science I
Introduction to the field of health information management, including history of patient records, and functions of a health information/medical record department. In-depth study of components, development and use of the record and flow of patient information through the facility; design of forms and computer views; Survey of related systems for other health facilities included.

 
3
513

Organization & Administration I
Application of principles of organization, administration, supervision, and human relations to the health information/medical record department. Includes utilization of financial and physical resources, financial management of health care facilities, development of systems, procedures, services, and equipment; controlling quality of departmental functions, and professional ethics.

 
3
515 Directed Experience I
Directed practical experience in information management procedures, management of personnel, and interdepartmental relationships in health care facilities. Prerequisite or co-requisite courses: HIM 511, Health Information Science and Laboratory I, and HIM 513, Organization and Administration.
 
2
521 Health Information Science & Laboratory II
Principles of coding and classification with in-depth coverage of the International Classification of Diseases, Clinical Modification, 10th Edition (ICD-10-CM/PCS) and Current Procedural Terminology/Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System (CPT/HCPCS). Coverage is also included on encoders, ethical coding, and managing the coding function. Prerequisites: 511 HIM, Health Information Science and Laboratory I, and 550 HIM, Clinical Foundations.
 
3
523 Organization & Administration II
Includes an in-depth study of quality and performance improvement methodologies both in clinical and administrative settings. Includes use of clinical information in quality, utilization management, risk management, and peer review activities. Prerequisites: HIM 511, Health Information Science I.
 
3
525 Directed Experience II
This course provides the students with an opportunity to complete management projects in local health facilities, and to gain knowledge of alternative health care facilities through rotations and assignments.
 
2
537 Management Affiliation
The management affiliation is the capstone course in the preparation of a competent entry-level health information administrator. The purpose of the management affiliation is to provide a structured field work experience in health informatics and information management. Students complete an on-site management assignment as an intern in a healthcare facility. Student will gain experience in activities and responsibilities of department directors and other HIIM roles. This experience allows the student to synthesize all that has been learned in the professional curriculum and serves to integrate the knowledge, behaviors, and professional attributes acquired throughout the curriculum and to refine the skills needed for successful HIIM practice. Prerequisites: All of the required HIM 500 level courses.
 
3
541 HIM Health Information Technology and Systems
A review of information systems, the evolution and implementation of the electronic health record, including the necessary supporting information and technology infrastructure; and the application of new techniques to the handling of information in patient care situations.
 
3
550 Clinical Foundations of Health Information Management
Study of pathophysiology and pharmacology as utilized in health information management practice. Covers disease processes of all body systems.
 
3
551 Reimbursement Methodologies in Healthcare
This course provides coverage of major reimbursement systems in use in healthcare including those for hospitals, long-term care facilities, ambulatory care facilities and home health. Includes compliance, chargemaster, revenue cycle management, case mix management and the processes necessary to provide quality data for use in healthcare reimbursement. Prerequisites: 511 HIM, Health Information Science I, and 521 HIM, Health Information Science II.
 
3
600 Information Technology and Systems
Broad coverage of technology concepts underlying modern computing and information management as well as survey of the field of health informatics to provide students with the foundation for the program of studies. Topics include overview of concepts in health informatics, information technology infrastructure, information systems management in healthcare, management IT challenges, interoperability and certification of computer systems, Internet, basic computer security including identity and access management, and meaningful use standards.
 
3
601 Quality Management in Health Services
Diverse perspectives in quality management and regulation including relevant research and management methodologies of quality, cost and access to healthcare with a focus on the role of health information management. Overview of performance improvement, methods and applications in the area of outcomes research including practice variation, risk adjustment, quality measures and quality management (or quality improvement), practice guidelines, evidence-based medicine, clinical decision support, health-related quality of life, utility assessment, economic evaluations (including cost-effectiveness studies).
 
2
602 Legal Issues in Health Information Technology and Systems
Examination of legal issues related to electronic-based health information; the growth of computer and communication technologies, including privacy, security, electronic data interchange and compliance related issues; policy, regulatory and related concerns; interpretation and implementation of enterprise information policy. Principles of law applied to the health field with emphasis on federal, state, and local laws affecting health information management practice, confidentiality, and security of information.
 
3
603 Leadership for Health Information Technology and Systems
Strategic management and planning, change management, leadership in e-health environment, project management including planning, scheduling, monitoring and reporting, process modeling. This course builds on the foundations of health information management or other professional preparation. Discussion of implementation of electronic health record systems, systems analysis from the enterprise level will be the focus of the class. Students are expected to develop a systems-thinking approach to leading health IT projects. Prerequisites: MHIM 600, 601, 602, 604, 605.
 
3
604 Financial Management for Health Professionals
This course will provide an overview of financial accounting and financial management principles that focuses not only on health informatics and information management but the health care industry as a whole. It is a blend of theory and practice, incorporating readings from the text books and problems to develop the student’s financial management and decision-making skills as future health care leaders. Without effective financial management, health care organizations/providers cannot fulfill their mission of provided needed services to their customers. Healthcare is a complex business and as such, the organizations success depends on the leadership of managers who understand and can apply key financial principles to help the organization meets it core business goals.
3
605 Healthcare Information Systems
A survey of fundamental concepts of information technology applied to health care from the perspectives of providers, payers, consumers. Major topics include the electronic health record, health information systems, repositories and data bases, enterprise-wide systems, laboratory, radiology (PACs) systems, voice recognition, physician order entry, telemedicine, decision support systems. Overview of historical, current, and emerging health information systems; concepts and knowledge involved in making strategic use of information technology (IT) in health care organizations and linkages to business, planning, and governance; Overview of multiple systems, vendors, processes and organizations; methodology for evaluation of health information systems. Includes system design methodologies including systems analysis and design; systems selection and evaluation; workflow analysis and project management.
 
3
606 Healthcare Vocabularies and Clinical Terminologies
Standard clinical terminologies including SNOMED, UMLS, ICD-9-CM, ICD-10-CM, and ICD-10-PCS, CPT/HCPCS, National Drug Codes, RxNorm, National Drug File Reference Terminology6, LOINC, CCC and other nursing vocabularies, mapping, medical vocabulary standards, natural language processing and the role of healthcare vocabularies and clinical terminologies in the electronic health record.
 
2
607 Statistics and Decision Making
Advanced statistical techniques building on existing knowledge of descriptive statistics and fundamental inferential statistics as applied in the field of health information; biostatistics, methods of health data collection, analysis, and interpretation, including descriptive statistics, probability, and hypothesis-testing and confidence interval estimation for normally distributed data; tools in using data to make informed management decisions; use of data from clinical information systems in performing clinical effectiveness research, including the strengths and limitations of these data.
 
3
608

Knowledge Management
This course includes an overview of the application of decision analysis and knowledge-based systems and decision analysis techniques; Topics include data mining, data marts, data warehouses, clinical data repositories, OLAP and data modeling and obtaining information from clinical and administrative systems. Additional topics include the relationship and applicability of topics covered in other MHIIM courses in health information statistics, analysis, biomedical research and quality management, biostatistics, advanced research methods and biomedical research support to decision analysis and decision support, advanced information/data analysis and presentation techniques, evaluation methodologies. Prerequisites: MHIM 601, Quality Management in Health Services, and MHIM 607 Statistics and Decision Making.

 
3
609 Concepts of Research Methodology
Discussion of the elements of research, evaluation methodologies including the research process, study design, methods of data collection with emphasis on preparation and evaluation of data collection instruments, statistical analysis of data including use of statistical packages, literature searches, and scientific writing. Prerequisite: 607 MHIM, Statistics and Decision Making.
 
3
610 Issues in Health Information Technology Seminar
An exploration of current issues related to health informatics including healthcare policy analysis and development, ethical issues, structure of healthcare delivery systems, assessment of population health, models of health care delivery, access and quality of care issues. Prerequisites: 600 MHIM, Information Technology and Systems, and 605 MHIM, Health Information Systems.
 
2
613 Applied Research Project
Rigorous project focused on a real-world informatics setting and application of problem-solving methods for development of solutions. May include original research in the area of health information management, information systems and/or health informatics. Oral and written reports required, including oral presentation and defense of project. Prerequisite: permission of course director.
 
3
Total Hours
61
 
  • Is the program available online?

The entry-level MHIIM program is offered on-line. One week per semester students are required to be either on campus or to attend classes virtually using video technology. For the rest of the semester, students utilize the course management system via the Internet to attend classes, complete assignment and interact with classmates and faculty members at a time convenient to their schedules.

  • Do I have to attend full time?

Students may attend either full-time or part-time. Part-time students must take a minimum of six credit hours per semester.

  • Will I be able to work while in school?

The part-time option is for students who need to continue to work full-time. The program is demanding and takes time and energy to complete assignments and participate in classes. Many students work part-time during the program.

  • What kinds of jobs do graduates get after completing the program?

There are many opportunities available to new graduates. The majority of graduates work in hospitals. There are many health information management professionals at the larger hospitals in Tennessee with a variety of responsibilities.

  • Is it difficult to get into the UT HIM program?

Students with a minimum 2.0 on a 4.0 scale are eligible for consideration although the average GPA for entering students is well above this minimum. We also consider the following in determining admissions to the program: academic record, pre-professional evaluations or letters of recommendation, past work experience, knowledge and understanding of the HIM profession, and the information gained from the personal interview with members of the admissions committee.

  • What sort of electives should I take?

It is important to have a well-rounded background. We strongly recommend that you take electives that will enable you to complete a degree in another area if you are not accepted. Management courses, computer courses, database management, decision support courses are helpful. Liberal arts courses in English, history, social sciences, other disciplines are also helpful. Courses which require writing assignments help prepare students for the important written communication aspects of the profession.

  • What courses do students take at UT?

Professional course content includes health information science, quality management, pathology, health information systems, coding and classification systems, legal aspects, research methods, data analysis, health statistics, organization of health care facilities, and personnel administration. Students complete clinical assignments in the health information departments of health care facilities and complete a final management affiliation.

  • Is the HIM program difficult?

It is challenging and fast-paced. Mature, independent students do well. All students gain organizational and time management skills. Students report that moving from a general university academic program into a professional program is a big transition and requires adjustments in their personal lives.

  • Do you accept out of state residents?

While priority must be given to Tennessee residents who meet the admission requirements, out-of-state residents are encouraged to apply. We have accepted out-of-state students in all of the recently admitted classes. The Financial Aid Office will have more information about tuition.

  • How much does the program cost?

The cost of the program is calculated by the credit hours you take each term.  For more information, refer to the Cost of Attendance estimate for Health Professions. Or you may contact the Office of Financial Aid Counselor for College of Health Professions, Gloria Dobbs.
Skype: glor.dob90

  • How long does it take to complete the program?

The program may be completed full-time in two years. However, most students take 2 courses per term and it takes 5 or 6 terms to complete the program. The majority of students graduate in 3 years or less.

  • Where do I send my transcripts and letters of recommendation?

UTHSC Transcript Verification Department
P.O. Box 9141
Watertown, MA 02471

Last Published: Dec 10, 2018