Introducing new Board of Directors member, Kathy Braaten, CHIM

Introducing new Board of Directors member, Kathy Braaten, CHIM

Kathy Braaten

Kathy’s HIM career began 21 years ago with the Niagara Health Region. While studying the HIM diploma, Kathy had the opportunity to work in the Health Records department in a number of roles. This experience provided her with rich learnings in the health information domain.

Once Kathy obtained her HIM diploma and successfully challenged the NCE, she moved into a coding specialist role with the Greater Niagara General Hospital and her learning journey continued. This was an exciting role that allowed her to build on her coding skills and participate in abstract acute care visits. When Kathy’s husband needed to relocate to their home province of Saskatchewan, she quickly acquired a coding position at the Royal University Hospital (RUH). RUH is the largest tertiary facility in Saskatchewan and this experience was tremendously valuable for Kathy.

During her tenure as a coding specialist, Kathy stepped into the role of President-Elect, moving on to President and Past-President for the provincial organization SHIMA (Saskatchewan Health Information Management Association). This proud association originated in 1958 as the Saskatchewan Association of Medical Record Librarians, becoming the Saskatchewan Health Information Management Association (SHIMA) in the 2000s. This opportunity provided a vast network of connections, both provincially and nationally, and was a great management experience for Kathy.

In 2011, Kathy began her leadership journey from supervisor to manager and ultimately, in 2018, accepting the position of Director of Program Standards and Development for the Privacy and Health Information Portfolio with the Saskatchewan Health Authority. The newly created role was designed to support the entire portfolio with the standardization of Health Information Management processes and procedures through the development of a data quality framework to support coding quality and records management through the lifecycle. This has been an extremely rewarding position for Kathy, from meeting the challenges of a new role in an organization to supporting a non-traditional HIM role of COVID-19 data entry during the pandemic.

Kathy has had the opportunity to work with colleagues on a national level to support coding quality and with external partners provincially, including the Ministry of Health, on the organization’s data quality goals. This past year presented Kathy with another terrific opportunity as she temporarily stepped into the role of Executive Director to support the Privacy and Health Information Management portfolio.
Kathy is happily married with two grown children. She lives in Saskatoon, where she enjoys golfing, spending time with family and friends, making the most of the beautiful Saskatchewan summers and travelling during the winter months.

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