- Posted by Admin GIT
- On June 17, 2019
- 0 Comments
Congratulations to ALL the volunteers through the 50 years to make it possible for IFHIMA to turn 50!! Budgets have been lean, volunteer time is precious with the demands of full time positions, families and other life commitments. The IFHIMA Presidents before and those long after me have and will have a profound dedication to the HIM profession. Much time is volunteered, and sacrifices made, all to advance the state of the HIM profession globally. I am honored to be in the group of Past Presidents.
I had the good fortune of studying HIM under Rita Finnegan at the University of Illinois in Chicago in the 1970’s. She instilled in every one of us that it was right and an obligation to give back to the profession. She was very clear on this. Get involved. One student in my class pushed her a bit until Miss Finnegan finally said—”there will be no more discussion” And there wasn’t. I was listening! To those whom much is given, much is expected. Give back.
I was lucky to attend my first IFHIMA meeting early on in my work life, in Toronto in 1976. It was a combined meeting. I remember being in awe of all the knowledge of those involved in international activities for the profession. I was then also able to attend an international meeting in Dallas some years later in 1988. I was elected to the board of IFHIMA, representing North America, in Washington DC in 2004 and served 3 years on the board, was elected President Elect, and then served the next 9 years in the roles of PE, P, and PP. There were so many highlights of meetings and hard work in places like Bali, Seoul, Montreal, Milan, and more. The profession has gone from Medical Record Administration to Health Information Management—and that is what we do—we manage the information in all types of health care arenas. The data is analyzed and coded. Statistical analysis is done, and research, and in some countries coded data impacts revenue for hospitals, physician practices, surgery centers and the like. The data must be accurate—and that is one of the key principles of our work. We are significant contributors to accurate health care data throughout the world.
It has been a privilege to represent IFHIMA, with the financial support of the American Health Information Management Association, at the table at WHO-FIC meetings since 2005. IFHIMA has a voice and a vote at that table through the years on the Education and Implementation Committee and now the Morbidity Reference Group, and we have been recognized in this regard. I’m proud to represent us and thank you for the opportunity. We have had great presidents along the way. May we all continue to have the dedication and passion for the profession like Ulli Hoffman, Carol Lewis and Phyllis Watson.
Here’s to the next 50 years!! May our organization continue to grow and hold its place firmly in the world as the only international organization dedicated specifically to the Health Information Management profession.
Best to all,
Margaret A. Skurka, MS, RHIA, CCS, FAHIMA
IFHIMA President 2010-2013