Australia’s Health Information Management Journal (HIMJ) is the peer-reviewed international journal of the Health Information Management Association of Australia (HIMAA).
In January 2020, HIMJ released its very first ever Special Issue. Given clinical coders make up such a large part of the health information workforce, it was most appropriate that the focus of this first Special Issue should be Clinical Coding, and the quality and integrity of health data. The Special Issue is published as Issue no. 1 of Volume 49 (January 2020), and showcases 10 national and international papers discussing many of the issues that affect data quality both currently and in the future. These include computer assisted coding, the role of clinical documentation specialists, barriers to coding quality and the resulting impacts of these barriers in such areas as DRG assignment.
The papers are introduced in an Editorial by Jennie Shepheard, who has decades of experience as a HIM and Principal Health Information and Classification Advisor for the Department of Health and Human Services, Victoria (Australia). This collection of papers raises awareness of how important the clinical coding function is to the quality and integrity of our health data, and as Jennie says. “challenges us all to find solutions that will improve the quality of coded data, protect its integrity and support the clinical coding workforce.”
The Editorial and papers are available through the hyperlinks below.
Joan Henderson, BAppSc (HIM) (Hons 1), PhD (Med)
Senior Research Fellow (Hon), University of Sydney
Editor, Health Information Management Journal (HIMJ)