Students from the Health Information Technology program at Central Oregon Community College achieved a 100 percent pass rate for graduates that took the national examination within one year to become certified HIT specialists. This pass rate is considerably higher than the country’s average.
“The national average pass rate on the HIT examinations is 70 percent,” said Bev Jackson, COCC’s HIT program director.
The HIT degree is a program where students utilize computers and learn coding, medical transcription, quality assurance and management skills as well as how to interpret medical jargon.
“The HIT program is for those who do not directly want to be ‘hands-on’ with patients,” said Jan Siegrist, COCC’s HIT program assistant. “The HIT program deals with electronic records, computers and databases.”
Students in the HIT program can earn an Associate of Applied Science at COCC. While students are in the program they can earn certificates including medical insurance, medical office specialist, medical transcription, medical coding and medical billing.
“HIT is an umbrella, ladder program so students can earn certificates while they are also earning their AAS,” said Jackson. “Students that are training are not studying one subject. Many of the students want to become managers.”
Only two colleges in Oregon are accredited through the Commission on Health Informatics and Health Information Management: COCC and Portland Community College, according to the American Health Information Management Association website.
The Health Informatics and Health Information Management are accreditation agencies that accredit and approve HIT programs.
During the 2003-2010 school years, “students who took the national examination have passed the registered Health Information Technician credential exam with 100 percent pass rate within one year,” said Jackson. “Since then, other schools have followed COCC’s strategy”
The implementation of a preparatory test-taking course to prepare students to take the national examination helps with success rates. COCC is one of the first schools in the country to implement an HIT preparatory test-taking course. Other schools nationwide have followed suit.
“Our students do well because they are typically very dedicated students and complete the work that needs to be done,” said Jackson. “It takes a high level of commitment for students to be successful in the program.”
Nathaniel Kelly can be reached at email@example.com