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McWilliams School of Biomedical Informatics

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SBMI Workforce Grant

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

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The School of Biomedical Informatics (SBMI) was recently awarded a two-year grant from ONC to revise the existing health information technology (HIT) curriculum as well as create new curriculum around the topics of population health management; care coordination and interoperability; new payment and delivery models; and value-based/patient-centered care. There are many people who will work to make this grant successful. First, SBMI is only one of seven grantees. The others can be found on the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services website. Additionally, SBMI is partnering with the SBMI Gulf Coast Regional Extension Center, the North Texas Regional Extension Center, the CentrEast Regional Extension Center, the Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, the Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum and the New Mexico Health Information Collaborative to meet the curriculum development and training goals of the grant.

The original HIT curriculum was developed in 2010, focused on the skills and competencies needed for electronic health record (EHR) implementation. Further, it was designed to be developed by community colleges, in a largely online environment. It was quite successful, with tens of thousands trained to support the widespread adoption of EHRs in the U.S. Now all of the providers who implemented EHRs need to use the data and information that is both in and generated by the systems to report quality measures and effectively manage patient health. The seven grantees will develop the new curriculum during the first year of the grant. During the second year of the grant, each grantee organization will train a minimum of 1,000 incumbent health care workforce members using both the old and new curriculum.

This grant and the resulting training is really important to the future of the U.S. health care system. We are moving from a volume-based system – where what matters most is how many people move through the office in one day; to a value-based system – where the focus is on delivering the right intervention (or non-intervention) to help consumers stay healthy and meet their personal goals. This is the essence and crux of the changes and the training grant. We at SBMI are excited to be able to participate to this shift in a meaningful way!

written by Susan Fenton, PhD, RHIA, FAHIMA

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Dr. Fenton

Dr. Susan Fenton is the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Assistant Professor at UTHealth School of Biomedical Informatics. She is a member of the American Health Information Management Association’s Council on Excellence in Education, and her research interests include workforce development, data management, ICD-10 implementation and health care associated infections.