Erica Matteson, RHIA, Program Coordinator
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Health information technology (HIT) professionals play a key role in the planning, implementation, and management of the electronic health record (EHR), and with today’s growing reliance on computer-based records, this profession has become one of the fastest-growing in the nation. HIT professionals are educated in the leadership and management of health information, and are considered the custodians of health information. In this career, your primary function will be to make sure all the medical information collected about an individual is complete, accurate, and protected, while, at the same time, readily available for health care providers when it is needed. Alfred State offers an online Associate in Applied Science degree in health information technology, which combines a profession in health care with information technology. As an HIT professional, you will be responsible for maintaining components of health information systems consistent with medical, legal, accreditation, and regulatory requirements of the health care delivery system. You will also maintain, collect, and analyze data crucial to the delivery of quality patient care.
Students complete non-paid professional practice experiences (PPEs) in the Health Information Department of a health care facility (160 hours) in their study. PPE arrangements are made in consultation with each student to identify locations considered to be within a reasonable distance. Students are not a substitute for paid staff during PPEs, which means they are expected to receive appropriate supervision and mentoring during completion of all tasks. The professional practical experience (PPE) includes the completion of on-site hours in the Health Information Management (HIM) Department of a hospital (or other health care facility) with adequate facilities to provide varied work opportunities in HIM.
The Joint Commission Hospital Accreditation Standards Manual requires hospitals to implement “a process to ensure that a person’s qualifications are consistent with their job responsibilities.” This standard “applies to staff, students, and volunteers,” and it further states the hospital is responsible for verifying “the following according to law, regulation, or hospital policy: information on criminal background.” As such, Alfred State students who complete PPEs in the HIT program may be required to undergo a criminal background check prior to placement at the facility.
The PPE facility may require students to undergo a physical examination (on-site at the facility or by the student’s primary care provider) prior to beginning the professional practice experience. The physical examination includes drug screening, a TB test, and/or DTB, hepatitis B, and/or MMRV immunization or status. Students may be required to incur costs associated with the criminal background check and/or physical examination. Be advised that a prior felony conviction may impede a student's ability to participate in a required professional practice experience. Students may be required to attend an on-site orientation at the professional practice facility, which could be several days in length beyond the 160 PPE hours. NOTE: Students must make appropriate arrangements with their current employer to complete the 160 hours at the PPE host site.
One-plus-one transfer agreements exist among Alfred State and Jamestown and American Samoa Community Colleges. Students complete their first year of study at the local community college and transfer to Alfred State for their second year. Transfer is guaranteed if a student successfully completes the prescribed first-year schedule of courses with a 2.0 cumulative index.
Although not limited to these schools, common transfer institutions for HIT bachelor's degree programs include SUNY Polytechnic, Stephens College, St. Scholastica, Regis University, University of Cincinnati, and Saint Joseph's College of Maine.
Alfred State health information technology AAS graduates may enter directly into the healthcare management BTech, the interdisciplinary studies BTech, or the technology management BBA degree program.
NOTE: This program is not accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) and will not yield RHIA eligibility.
Graduates are eligible to take the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT), Certified Coding Specialist (CCA, CCS, CCS-P), and Certified Professional Coder (CPC, CPC-A, CPC-H-A, CPC-H, CPC-P) exams.
Employment and continuing education rate of 100 percent – 83 percent are employed; 17 percent continued their education.
Employment and Continuing Education Report
|Responding to Survey||22 (79%)||12 (60%)||15 (68%)||5 (38%)||6 (40%)|
|Employed||16 (73%)||9 (75%)||15 (100%)||5 (100%)||5 (83%)|
|Employed in Field||16 (100%)||9 (100%)||4 (93%)||5 (100%)||5 (83%)|
|Transferred||4 (18%)||1 (8%)||-||-||1 (17%)|
|Unemployed & Seeking Employment||2 (9%)||2 (17%)||-||-||-|
|Unemployed & Not Seeking Employment||-||-||-||-||-|
Source: Website (Career Development Office) Employment and Continuing Education Report 2021
The Health Information Management accreditor of Alfred State College is the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). The College’s accreditation for associate degree in Health Information Technology has been reaffirmed through 2026. All inquiries about the program’s accreditation status should be directed by mail to CAHIIM, 200 East Randolph Street, Suite 5100, Chicago, IL, 60601; by phone at (312) 235-3255; or by email at email@example.com.
To become credentialed, students in the Health Information Technology program must successfully complete the academic requirements for an associate of science in health information technology. The RHIT exam is administered by the national professional association, AHIMA. Successful completion of this exam allows the individual to use the designation of RHIT.
For more information regarding the RHIT certification exam please visit the AHIMA Certification website.
Alfred State is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education [3624 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19104, 215-662-5606].
The RHIT examination pass rate for the 2019-2020 reporting period is 86 percent. Six of seven first-time RHIT examination test-takers passed on their first attempt.
Required: Biology, Algebra
Recommended: Keyboarding and knowldege of Microsoft Office Professional
Must be able to attend Professional Practice Experience (PPE) courses including 160 hours at a health care facility within reasonable driving/travel distance to their home.
Students who believe they need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this program may contact Melanie Ryan in the Office of Accessibility Services. This office may be contacted by email at DisabilityServices@alfredstate.edu or by phone at 607-587-4506. Please keep in mind that some accommodations may take time to implement, so students seeking accommodations are encouraged to contact OAS as early as possible.
A tier 1 laptop computer is required for students entering this degree program. Laptop specifications are available at www.alfredstate.edu/required-laptops. (A desktop of similar specifications can be used instead of a laptop for specified courses).
TYPICAL FOUR-SEMESTER PROGRAM - Full-time (12 credit hours or more)
This program is offered as an internet-based program only
|BIOL||1114||Human Anat & Physiology I||4|
|MEDR||1132||Essentials of Pharmacology||2|
|MEDR||1114||Intro to Health Info Managemnt||4|
|BIOL||2214||Human Anat & Physiology II||4|
|MEDR||3114||Electronic Health Record Mgmt||4|
|MEDR||1234||ICD-10-CM & ICD-10-PCS Coding||4|
|GLST||2113||Global Perspectives:Spcl Topic||3|
|MEDR||1223||Hlth Data Mgmt & Hlthcare Stat||3|
|MEDR||1244||CPT & HCPCS Level II Coding||4|
|MEDR||3414||Quality & Legal Aspects of HIM||4|
|MEDR||4514||Alternate Care Hlth Info Mgmt||4|
|MEDR||4213||Leadership in Health Info Tech||3|
|MEDR||4312||HIM Operations PPE||2|
|MEDR||4111||Health Informatn Tech Seminar||1|
HIT students are required to earn a grade of at least a "C" or better in each BIOL and MEDR prefix course prior to placement in the PPEs. Students must also earn a grade of at least a "C" in all BIOL, MEDR, and COMP 1503 courses to graduate from the HIT program. Students receiving a grade of D/F in MEDR or BIOL courses may attempt the course a second time. If the second attempt results in the grade of D/F, the student will be dismissed from the program.