PROGRAM ACCREDITATION

The Canadian College of Health Information Management (CCHIM) is the national accrediting body for Health Information Management (HIM) education in Canada. Accreditation provides public notification that an HIM program meets the standards of quality education set forth by CCHIM. As a process accreditation with CCHIM confirms that the educational facility is committed to self-assessment and external peer review in meeting or exceeding the standards and to continuously find new ways to enhance the quality of education and training provided. The ultimate goal is to meet the evolving needs of the HIM professional - that of supporting quality healthcare decisions through quality health information management practices.

CCHIM’s program accreditation process is the means by which CCHIM evaluates formal educational programs for their suitability to prepare students to meet national standards and become eligible to enter HIM practice as certified professionals. Graduates of CCHIM-accredited programs are eligible to challenge the CCHIM national certification examination (NCE).

In relation to program accreditation, the CCHIM Council on Education and Professional Practice (Council) has the mandate to:

  • implement continuous quality improvement in educational activities
  • develop and maintain dynamic learning content for program implementation and professional education which support the advancement of professional standards
  • monitor and evaluate programs to ensure continuous quality and effectiveness of formal programs

The program accreditation committee reviews all applications and reports its findings to the Council. The Council makes the final determination of whether a program is granted accreditation and the recommendation for approval is then forwarded to the CHIMA Board of Directors.

 

APPLYING FOR INITIAL CCHIM ACCREDITATION - CANDIDACY DESCRIPTION

 

The purpose of this process is to establish a consultative relationship with programs developing education in HIM, the sponsoring institution, and CCHIM staff in working towards CCHIM Program Accreditation. Such programs may be in the planning or early stages of program implementation.

An Application for Candidacy should be made if a program and its sponsoring institution believes it is in compliance with the current Criteria for Candidacy.

Achieving applicant Candidacy status does not guarantee eventual accreditation of the program.

 

Criteria for Candidacy

A program may apply for Candidacy if:

  1. The sponsoring institution is recognized by the provincial ministry of post-secondary education to offer a diploma or degree program. Universities must be accredited by the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) or the equivalent if an international university. Proof of this eligibility must be provided upon request.
  2. There is a qualified full time Program Coordinator (PC) per the CCHIM Standards at all times during the Candidacy Stage (Accreditation Standard 7). At the time of application for Candidacy, it must be evident that a certified HIM professional has either been hired or is being recruited. A change in the PC during the review process may remove the program applicant from Candidacy Status if the new PC does not meet CCHIM Accreditation Standards.
  3. There is a qualified full time faculty member for each campus at all times during the Candidacy Stage. This requirement only applies during candidacy if there are students already enrolled in the program. (Accreditation Standard 8 – degree programs only).
  4. All course syllabi have been prepared within the stated timeframe (page 4) and include LOHIM learning content requirements (Accreditation Standard 9 and Learning Outcomes in Health Information Management).

Candidacy applications will be rejected if the above criteria for Candidacy are not met during application.

The accreditation process is not complete until the program is reviewed and awarded a program accreditation designation by CCHIM. Candidacy does not provide eligibility for enrolled students to apply for the CCHIM entry-level certification examination until formal Accreditation is awarded.

It is the responsibility of the program to inform all students and graduates of the accreditation status of the program.

APPLYING FOR CHIMA ACCREDITATION – MAINTENANCE OF ACCREDITATION

The purpose of this process is to continue the consultative relationship with programs delivering education in HIM, the sponsoring institution, and CCHIM staff in working towards maintenance of CCHIM Program Accreditation. Such programs have already been awarded a previous program accreditation award.

An Application for Maintenance of Accreditation must be submitted at least six months prior to the deadline for the current accreditation expiration date.

Criteria for Maintenance of Accreditation

A program may apply for Maintenance of Accreditation if it is within one year of expiration of their current accreditation status or if any major changes have been made to the program that require an updated review of the CCHIM program accreditation standards.

The accreditation process is not complete until the program is reviewed and awarded a program accreditation maintenance designation by CCHIM.

It is the responsibility of the program to inform all students and graduates of the accreditation status of the program.
Questions regarding program Candidacy, Accreditation or Accreditation Maintenance may be directed to Kelly Abrams at kelly.abrams@echima.ca

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