Webinar Series Introduces HIM to IG

“Introduction to Information Governance” is a six-part webinar series from AHIMA that introduces attendees to the principles and applications of information governance (IG) in healthcare. The first webinar in the series, “Driving Information Governance,” provides a base of understanding of the Information Governance Principles for Healthcare (IGPHC)TM and support systems used to implement IG programs, as well as a discussion of why IG is important for healthcare.

Presenter Kathy Downing, MA, RHIA, senior director of IG at AHIMA discusses these topics to help orient webinar attendees around the ideas at the heart of IG. “Like other critical organization assets, such as people and capital and inventory, information is a strategic asset that requires high level oversight in order to be effectively used,” according to Downing. Areas where IG can be applied include:

  • Organizational decision making
  • Performance improvement
  • Cost management
  • Risk mitigation

Downing discusses the importance of implementing an IG program for today’s healthcare organizations. As data grows in both volume and importance, organizations need the right information in the right place at the right time in order to effectively deliver safe, quality care. Complementary to tradition approaches used by health information management (HIM) professionals, IG ensure information is trustworthy and reliable, Downing says. IG “extends beyond the four walls of the organization to ensure the right information is available at the right time” to support quality healthcare. The goal of IG is to ensure the integrity of this information, thereby supporting providers in the delivery of safe care and other initiatives such as population health improvement.

Downing also gives a detailed discussion of different elements of the IGPHC. AHIMA credits ARMA International for sharing their Generally Accepted Recordkeeping Principles, which provides guidance in the governance of information, to help develop the IGPHC. She also discusses filling IG roles, with an overview of an example draft of an IG senior leader position description. This role would be filled by someone focuses on the business benefits of the organization’s information, who also has a solid understanding of data technology and information architecture, and would be involved in board-level discussions on strategy.

Other topics explored by the webinars in this series include building the business case for IG, establishing an IG program, the intersections of IG and data governance, and project management techniques to ensure IG program success.

Although this webinar has already aired, those interested can register to view it and others in replay on AHIMA’s webinar page at http://www.ahima.org/education/webinars.

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