Rebecca Higginbotham, Program Coordinator/Instructor
The Health Information Technology (HIT) program consists of courses in health record systems and related technology courses as well as general education courses. Practical experience in the health information management departments of local health care facilities is an integral part of the program. The program also offers an online option.
The Health Information Technology (Associate Degree) Program at Meridian Community College is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM).
The Health Information Technology Program gives students the knowledge and skills to help ensure quality of health care through quality information without direct patient contact. The medical world depends on health information specialists to collect data, interpret it, protect it and determine how it can be used.
As a Health Information Technician, a graduate is prepared to assume duties in the field, including ICD-10-CM and CPT coding, reimbursement methodologies, quality assessment, utilization and risk management, medical staff credentialing, health record law, statistical applications, cancer program maintenance, and accreditation/licensure issues.
Mississippi Law now requires health care professionals or Career Technical Education students enrolled in programs whose primary purpose is to prepare professionals to render patient care services to submit to criminal background checks and fingerprinting prior to beginning any clinical rotation in a licensed health care entity. If such fingerprinting or criminal background checks of the student disclose a felony conviction, guilty plea or plea of nolo contendere to a felony of possession or sale of drugs, murder, manslaughter, armed robbery, rape, sexual battery, sex offense listed in Section 45-33-23 (g), child abuse, arson, grand larceny, burglary, gratification of lust, aggravated assault or felonious abuse and/or battery of a vulnerable adult which has not been reversed on appeal or for which a pardon has not been granted, the student shall not be eligible to be admitted to such health program of study, nor will he/she be eligible to participate in clinical training in a licensed entity.
If a student currently enrolled in the Health Information Technology Program is prohibited from participating in clinical experiences by any clinical affiliate of Meridian Community College (e.g., positive drug screen, gregarious behavior, violation of patient safety, non-compliance with the College’s “Student Behavior Code,” etc.), then the student will be dismissed from the program of study. The student is not eligible for program readmission unless the clinical restriction is removed.
In addition to the disqualifying events listed in Section 37-29-232 of the Mississippi Code of 1972 annotated, clinical affiliates may, at their discretion, refuse to provide clinical experiences to any student whom the clinical affiliates feel are not suitable for employment or for the clinical experience setting.
Any drug conviction; bodily harm, neglect or abuse, or felony DUI conviction within a year of the starting date of class is cause for denial of the clinical experience setting. Any convictions more than a year beyond the starting date of class will be examined by the “Review Standards Committee” with a decision rendered if the student is allowed to participate in the clinical experience setting. Any charges pending a resolution will require documentation of disposition from the student.
Graduates of this program are eligible to write the accreditation examination of the American Health Information Management Association for the designation of Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT).
Progression: To meet graduation requirements for this program, students must successfully complete the specified courses listed below with a “C” average (GPA of 2.00) or better. In order to progress in this program, students must earn at least a “C” in all HIT courses, Anatomy and Physiology I and II, and English Comp I. Competencies must be met at the level stated in the course outline.
**Minimum admission requirements (in addition to general admission requirements):
Attain an 18 composite score on the ACT;
Score a 251 or higher on the ACCUPLACER NG Reading Section and a 251 or above on the ACCUPLACER NG Arithmetic Section;
Complete 12 hours or more with a “C” average or above at an accredited college or university. Six of these hours must be earned in CTE 1113 - Occupational Math or a higher math equivalent and ENG 1113 - English Composition I with a “C” or better. Developmental coursework does not satisfy this requirement;
Have a cumulative grade point average (cGPA) of 2.0 (“C” average on all previous college coursework);
Complete Anatomy and Physiology I and Anatomy and Physiology I Lab with at least a “C”. Computer Applications must also have been completed within three years prior to admission into the Health Information Technology Program;
Attend an HIT Information Session. Students will receive notice from the Registrar’s Office about scheduling their Information Session.
The HIT Admissions Committee will select each year’s class from the pool of applicants who meet minimum admission requirements. Any application with incomplete records will not be considered for admission. The admission process is competitive, and completion of minimum requirements is not a guarantee of admission. Priority consideration for admission will be given as follows: 1) In-district students who complete program prerequisites and/or general education coursework at MCC; 2) Out-of-district students who complete program prerequisites and/or general education coursework at MCC; 3) Mississippi residents who complete program prerequisites and/or general education coursework elsewhere; 4) Out-of-state students. Check with the Health Education Advisor for selection details and deadlines.
After program admission and prior to classes beginning, students must provide proof of immunization for MMR or complete an MMR declination form. A drug screening test will be scheduled after classes begin. A Mantoux Two-Step TB Skin Test will be scheduled after classes begin.
All students admitted into the program will be required to pay for fingerprinting and background checks which will be performed after admission and prior to clinical laboratories. These fees will be attached as registration fees. There are certain convictions that will prevent an individual from being eligible to participate in clinical experiences. If a student is unable to participate in clinical experiences, he/she will be dismissed from the program. For additional information, contact the Health Education Advisor.
Students in the Health Information Technology Program must attend MCC full-time (12 or more semester credit hours).
**Admission requirements are minimum standards, and admission to the program is competitive. Admission is not guaranteed.
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