Given the nature of our various roles as health information professionals, Privacy Awareness Week (May 10-14, 2021) is a great opportunity to examine our work surroundings, whether on site or at home. That includes the setup of our equipment — computers, applications, software updates, passwords — to uphold the best possible practices in the collection, use, and disclosure of health information. Health care technology is constantly evolving and so are the safeguards that are necessary to ensure that the data accessed remains confidential and secure. While consulting the internal policies and procedures relating to privacy within your organizations is key, I also recommend exploring Manitoba Ombudsman for further ideas of what could be incorporated into your daily workplace routines.
Jennifer McNish, CHIM
MBNU Chapter Chair
The Manitoba and Nunavut (MBNU) chapter committee is a passionate and dedicated team of health information management (HIM) professionals who bring a number of assets to the table: leadership, data integrity, education, coding and analytics, and more.
Our personal and professional expertise has been developed in a variety of settings, including tertiary and community hospitals, digital health, cancer care MB, and post-secondary education bodies, bringing a well-rounded perspective to growing both the chapter and the HIM profession.
The chapter is one of eight across the country. It’s led by a chapter committee consisting of volunteer members, including HIM professionals holding a professional designation from the Canadian College of Health Information Management.
Since 2018–19, the MBNU chapter committee has grown from a couple of volunteers to a full roster, including student members. We have hosted two in-person education days and released free CPE activities for members across Canada.
With a full committee, the future looks bright and exciting! We hope to create guidelines and chapter-specific procedures to help future committee members take the reins and keep the momentum going. We hope to create sub-committees that will focus on special projects and interests of the MBNU members.
Even though we are a full committee, interested volunteers are welcome to join us on sub-committees. Reach out to us if you have any ideas or suggestions for our chapter, as we hope to create a network across the province of Manitoba and the Nunavut territory.
Frequently asked questions
We meet once a month by teleconference using our online platform—all you need is a computer and internet connection. We try to meet once or twice per year in person as needed for planning education days. Our regular meetings take place on the third Thursday of each month from 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm (CST). We defer one monthly meeting in the summer.
The chair conducts the monthly meetings with the chapter committee and attends monthly meetings with the Chapter Advisory Council. The co-chair acts as the back-up for the chair if they are unable to attend these meetings.
The secretary and treasurer roles are combined; however, for MBNU, we have split the role. The secretary takes minutes and the treasurer reviews our quarterly financial statements.
The remaining members are members at large who have voting rights. The student members do not have voting rights but are able to attend meetings to learn how the chapter committee works, participate in activities, and learn the various roles of committees to take into their professional lives. Sub-committees are composed of volunteers who do not wish to take part in committee meetings but who have an interest in contributing to education, networking, or special projects.
The expectation is that all meetings are attended unless circumstances do not allow for it. Attending monthly helps to keep the volunteers motivated and engaged. If we do not meet quorum, it is difficult to make decisions and brainstorm effectively. The committees members are expected to review minutes circulated before the meetings, bring their ideas forward, and complete assigned tasks by deadlines.
Each term is three years, including the chair. The option to stay on for a second term is available to the chair if there are no nominations. A term begins at the beginning of the Association’s fiscal year, March 1, but you are welcome to join at any time.
The answers to the questions in the application form help us understand how you would be an asset to the committee. It also helps us understand why you want to volunteer your time. Sometimes it can be difficult to juggle volunteering with work and personal lives, and when we plan events it can be a busy time.
Volunteering is a rewarding experience as there is always something new to learn, always another connection to make—and giving back just feels good! Whether you want to learn how to conduct a meeting, how to prepare minutes, read financial statements, or just connect with other HIM professionals, volunteering can meet all those needs. Association staff and the volunteers are a humorous group that tends to keep things light and moving in a positive direction.
Leadership recruitment, education, mentoring, publications, and networking are some ideas. Any particular interest is something we can support and encourage.
Please reach out to contact or volunteer by using the buttons at the top of this page.
The health information field is broad and includes both unionized and non-unionized workers. CHIMA does not enter union negotiations, but welcomes the opportunity to help educate members and other stakeholders about the value of the CHIM designation and what our members bring to the table.
In Manitoba, unionized health information management (HIM) professionals continue their ongoing work to obtain their desired classification through the Maintenance of Wage Standardization Committee and arbitration. The MBNU chapter is pleased to provide members with an overview of the work to date.
The representatives from five unions (CUPE, MGEU, UFCW, PSAC, and OEM) and employers formed the Maintenance of Wage Standardization Committee (MWSC). A letter of understanding was agreed upon at the multi-union table, indicating that the classification of the Health Information Management Professional Group will be reviewed as per the current classification/evaluation provisions, including MWSC.
The HIM classification was brought forward to the Maintenance of Wage Standardization Committee in May 2016.
The Maintenance of Wage Standardization Committee voted on July 7, 2017. It was a stalemate and no recommendation was forthcoming from the committee.
Grievances were filed by all the affected unions at their sites and were subsequently referred to arbitration. Unions requested that the grievances be heard together, as they are linked. The employers denied both this request and the request to have the CUPE grievances heard together. It was determined that the CUPE Health Sciences Centre grievance would process first.
The employer, HSC, raised three preliminary objections.
- The grievance did not go through the final step of the grievance process.
- The classification did not go through the Joint Job Evaluation (JJE), laid out in the HSC agreement.
- The CUPE grievances cannot be heard together.
The first two objections refer to the fact that the steps of grievance hearing and the job evaluation were missing. On July 19, 2019, there was a mediation held and a step 3 grievance hearing was completed. Regarding the second objection, CUPE put forward the argument that the MWSC is part of the JJE. The above-noted letter of understanding directed unions to MWSC.
While the arbitration was set for November 19–21, 2019, it did not proceed due to the resignation of the employer’s lawyer and had to be re-booked.
CUPE decided to process the JJE; however, it was not completed because the co-chair of MWSC was on leave.
The arbitration has not yet been rebooked due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Written by Joyce Wei, MBNU chapter committee member