Over my ten years of being involved with IFHIMA I’ve made many international friends who speak English as a second language.  One of these friends, Yukiko Yokobori from Japan, is a shining example of IFHIMA involvement even though English is her second language.  Yukiko and her Japan Association team organized the very successful 18th Congress in Tokyo, which was held in conjunction with the WHO Annual Meeting for the Family of International Classifications.

“Health Information Management is most important for human beings to live a healthy life.   

The development of Health Information Management is rapid, which should contribute to the goals of a healthy life and better health outcomes for everyone. In pursuit of these goals we must learn from the past, look to the future, and adapt to change. I have learned valuable information, knowledge and wisdom at IFHIMA Congresses and all my Board interactions and I was able to make many precious friends.

My country, Japan, is not an English-speaking country, yet I was fortunate to participate in IFHIMA activities through the kindness of members. The first time I attended IFHIMA conference was in 2007. From that time until now, I feel my English is not good enough. I am a qualified Health Information Manager in Japan, but I have no experience working in a hospital.

Nevertheless, I served as a board member of IFHIMA, hosted and organized an international convention, and was awarded an IFHIMA Honorary Membership. 

There are so many opportunities to participate in and contribute to in this field, even if English is not your first language.  You too can benefit from the experience and do something to improve health for everyone. Health Information Management will not develop unless each individual contributes.

See you in Brisbane!  The knowledge you gain will be of value to your country, your hospital or employer, your school and your own development!

I’ve delivered many presentations around the globe where my English presentation was translated to the host country’s language, which has given me even greater appreciation for Yukiko and the brave individuals who “charge forward” and participate.  All Congress attendees learn so much from our strong, brave international colleagues.