“Change is scary. Disruption is scary. Being left behind is even scarier,” said incoming President/Chair-Elect Ginna Evans in her first address to AHIMA members on the final day of AHIMA19. Two of the keys to not being left behind and pushing the work of health information professionals, she said, are the ability to think creatively and inventively.
As the director of correctional health information for Cermak Health Services at the Cook County Jail, Linda Kampe’s responsibilities are not radically different from those of a typical HIM director, even though the care setting in which she’s carrying them out might make others in the industry nervous. On Monday, a group of nine AHIMA19 attendees had the rare opportunity to tour Kampe’s workplace.
Health information management professionals at Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS), Eastern Wisconsin Division, analyzed patient population data to inform practices in their four healthcare facilities, which resulted in improved patient care. They were honored as AHIMA’s 2019 Grace Award recipient during Tuesday’s Appreciation Celebration at Navy Pier. The HSHS eastern division includes four hospitals: St. Vincent Hospital and St. Mary’s Hospital Medical Center in Green Bay, St. Nicholas Hospital in Sheboygan, and St. Clare Memorial Hospital in Oconto Falls.
Eliminating the health disparities among LGBTQ individuals and working to enhance the efforts to improve overall LGBT health through the collection of accurate sexual orientation and gender identity (SO/GI) data was the focus of the Tuesday session “SO/GI Data: Up Close with The Fenway Institute.” The audience listened as Jami Woebkenberg of Banner Health interviewed Chris Grasso associate VP for informatics and data services at The Fenway Institute, a counterpart to Fenway Health that focuses on research, education, and policy.
First thing’s first: it’s Ginna, “as in Gin,” says Ginna Evans, MBA, RHIA, CPC, CRC, FAHIMA, the incoming president/chair of AHIMA. “It’s short for Virginia. People have been calling me Gina and Jenna my entire life so I’m used to it. It’s Ginna, but I’ll answer to any of them.” Evans, coding educator for the internal medicine specialties division of Emory Clinic, Emory Healthcare, in Atlanta, GA, has been an active volunteer with AHIMA and an advocate for HIM her entire career.
On Tuesday in the Arie Crown Theater portion of the General Session, AHIMA President Valerie Watzlaf and AHIMA CEO Wylecia Wiggs Harris hosted dsicussions with Dr. David Barbe and Dr. Patrice Harris about leadership and their work on addressing the opioid epidemic. Barbe is past president of the AMA, while Harris is the current AMA president and the first African-American woman to hold the position. Improvement and empowerment through innovation were the central themes speakers explored in the Innovation Theater portion of General Session by speakers Alexandra Mugge and Doug Lindsay.