By Ginna Evans, MBA, RHIA, CPC, CRC, FAHIMA
Summertime is here, but it seems like just yesterday we were fully entrenched in the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. I have no doubt that the past few months have been busy and likely stressful at times for many of you. We are a strong and resilient group, but even during the overwhelming days I hope you have been stopping to take a little time for yourself—whether that’s to catch a quick dose of sunshine, go for a walk, or just slow down and catch your breath.
COVID-19 brought about many changes for the AHIMA enterprise. I loved the agility the staff exhibited to quickly pivot and develop the COVID-19 resource page. For each of us the changes since March have been many—and I’m sure there are more to come. Within two weeks of many cities going into lockdown, the AHIMA Board had a two-day virtual meeting in place of the in-person meeting we would have held during our Advocacy Symposium in Washington, DC. The staff worked so hard to prepare for a successful meeting and I’m so thankful that the Board came prepared and were so engaged. I think we were all a little hesitant but concluded the meeting feeling very good about what was accomplished. As you reading this column in the July issue, it would be about time for representatives from each CSA to travel to Chicago, IL for our annual Leadership Symposium. With input from CSA leaders and in the best interest of all involved, it was decided to make this a virtual event. I understand moving to a virtual meeting takes away the personal interaction between us, but this was the right decision as everyone’s health and wellness should be the priority.
Health information professionals are creatures of habit, but I also know we are good at adapting to change. Our future may be different than we envisioned at the start of the year; however, we are a talented group of professionals accustomed to making difficult decisions and, when necessary, reinventing ourselves.
I care deeply for AHIMA and each of you, our members. The work of AHIMA and health information professionals has never been more important. Working together and supporting each other as a strong house of health information will help us move forward stronger and better through the financial and organizational challenges that follow COVID-19. I recently read this quote on the AHIMA website: “This is a time when health information professionals can make a difference.” Whether we are working together as AHIMA, working with our coworkers, or working individually, we can and will make a difference.
I encourage each of you as members to take the time to review the 2020 ballot candidates and their profiles, available at https://journal.ahima.org/ahima-election-2020/. Voting will open on July 13 and continue through July 27. Your vote matters. Let’s support the candidates with a great voter turnout.
In closing I leave you with this thought. This quote is often attributed to Charles Darwin, but it was Leon Megginson who wrote: “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most adaptable to change.” Let’s work together to embrace the changes as we move forward.
Ginna Evans ([email protected]) is coding educator, internal medicine specialties division, Emory Clinic, Emory Healthcare.
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