Professional Practice Experience Capstone


HIM 495:  Professional Practice Experience Capstone

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Assignment:       Management Project

Date Assigned:

Date Due:


Description:        Practical experience in applying theory and techniques learned in lecture and laboratory; researching a written documentation for the assigned topic.


A major written proposal for a new Health Information Management Department in an acute care setting is the principal focus of this project. This project requires knowledge and application of health information practices and management principles, research and interview abilities, problem-solving skills and technical writing ability to investigate, select and present departmental mission statements, departmental functions, personnel needs and equipment justification.


Objectives:          At the conclusion of this laboratory assignment, the student should be able to:

  1. Develop a written business proposal for a new Health Information Management Department including mission statements and departmental goals staffing, work schedule, and organizational chart.
  2. Evaluate performance standards in industry for coders and create performance standards at your facility for your coders.
  3. Analyze labor trends and market for coding profession.
  4. Conduct a cost/benefit analysis for outsourcing versus in-house coding.
  5. Create a professional development plan for department employees.
  6. Utilize classroom knowledge to apply management techniques
  7. Demonstrate the ability to read, listen, and interpret, and communicate through appropriate spoken or written        forms of standard English.
  8. Demonstrate ability to recognize and critically examine                             attitudes and values expressed by others in oral and                                   written form.
  9. Demonstrate ability to apply principles of mathematics and logic to understanding and interpreting quantitative         information and problems.
  10. Demonstrate ability to acquire, understand, process and draw           conclusions from information using observation,    analysis, interpretation, speculation, and evaluation.
  11. Demonstrate ability to identify problems and engage in problem-solving.
  12. Demonstrate the ability to learn new skills, new technologies, and develop new ideas.
  13. Demonstrate the ability to use basic research methods and apply current technologies to retrieve, evaluate,   and use information.
  14. Exhibit the ability to function effectively under conditions of ambiguity, uncertainty, and conflict.


Student Learning


At the conclusion of this course, the student should be able to                               meet the following 2014 AHIMA Curriculum Map for the Health                                        Information Management Baccalaureate Degree.

Baccalaureate Degree

  • Entry-Level Competencies


  • Develop productivity standards for health information functions.  (V.A.4)
  • Monitor staffing levels and productivity, and provide feedback to staff regarding performance. (V.A.5)
  • Benchmark staff performance data incorporating labor analytics. (V.A.6)
  • Develop, motivate, and support work teams. (V.A.7)
  • Apply general principles of management in the administration of health information services. (V.B.1)
  • Demonstrate leadership skills. (V.B.3)
  • Apply project management techniques to ensure efficient workflow and appropriate outcomes. (V.B.4)
  • Facilitate project management by integrating work efforts, as well as planning and executing project tasks and activities. (V.B.5)


  • Knowledge Clusters


  • Performance Standards (Evaluating, 5)
  • Labor trends, market analysis (Analyzing, 4)
  • Cost benefit analysis of resource needs (Applying, 3)
  • Organizational assessment and benchmarking (Analyzing, 4)
  • Critical Thinking skills, emotional intelligence, employee engagement (Analyzing, 4)
  • Project Management (Evaluating, 5)
  • Process reengineering and work redesign (Analyzing, 4)
  • Principles of Management (Evaluating, 5)
  • Professional development for self and staff (Creating, 6)
  • Problem solving and decision making processes (Evaluating, 5)


Competency Level

Expected:                      70%





  1. Health Information Management Competencies


  1. Apply health information management principles and experience to the development and organization of a health information management   department in an acute care setting.
    • Assess the needs of a health information management department and select the methods to meet them by:
      1. Analyzing hypothetical information in a case study
      2. Utilizing information learned in HIM courses
      3. Research appropriate on-line resources
    • Write a business proposal for appropriate presentation to an employer to include:
      1. Mission statements
      2. Functions
      3. Organization chart
      4. Job positions, including market analysis, benchmarking, and performance measures for coders
      5. Work schedules
      6. Office equipment recommendation, including a cost-benefit analysis
      7. Process flowchart
      8. Professional Development Plan



  1. Specific Project Objectives


  1. Write two mission statements/organizational goals for the health information management department which are consistent with an           overall hospital mission statement.
  2. Determine the functions to be accomplished in the department as a whole and if performed in-house or outsourced.  If outsourced, include     a written justification for that decision.
  3. Determine specific job positions by title and list functions of each position. For the coder positions, conduct a market analysis and look     at labor trends.  Determine and assess benchmarks and develop      performance standards.
  4. Based on expected volume, determine the number of FTEs for each position and total FTEs for the department
  5. Determine the work schedule for each position and for the department as a whole
  6. Construct an organizational chart.
  7. Research and prepare a proposal for a scanner and conduct a cost- benefit analysis
  8. Develop a process flowchart for scanning medical records of discharged patients
  9. Develop a professional development plan for employees of the HIM Department.


  • Organization InformationBluegrass Community Hospital


  1. Hospital Mission: The mission of this hospital shall be to provide for the healthcare needs of the citizens of this community in a reasonable and cost-effective manner.
  2. Services: Bluegrass Community Hospital is a 220-bed, 30 bassinet facility offering medical, surgical, obstetrical, and pediatric care. The adult and child occupancy rate for the previous year was 75.5%. There were 13,522 admissions during the previous year with an average length of stay of 3.5 days. Approximately 80% of the admissions were returns.
  3. Administration: The hospital in a non-profit, facility. The CEO reports to a seven member Board of Directors. The Director of Health        Information Management reports directly to one of two Executive Vice-      Presidents.
  4. Medical Staff: 60 Physicians: 20 family practice, 20 internists of various subspecialties, 5 pediatricians, 7 surgeons (5 general, 2         orthopedic), and 8 obstetrician-gynecologists.
  5. Department Hours: The department must provide coverage from 6:00 AM-11:30 PM Monday through Friday and from 8:00 AM-4:30 PM          Saturday and Sunday.
  6. Affiliated Hospitals: All the physicians are on active staff at the local teaching hospital, Getwell Medical Center.
  7. Source of Payment: Most patients have group insurance coverage. Medicare population is approximately 35%, Medicaid patients      represent about 10%.


  1. Assignment


General Information: The Bluegrass Community Hospital is moving to a new facility in five months. The new facility will include opening an outpatient/same day surgery department. The OP/SDS department will operate from 6:30 AM through 5:30 PM Monday through Friday. It is estimated that the annual number of inpatient admissions will decrease by approximately 8%. It is expected that there will be an average of 36 OPD/SDS patients seen on a daily basis. Approximately 50% of these patients will have been in the hospital previously.  Administration has asked that you create a staffing plan to determine how many employees your department will require; you do not have to determine how many additional employees you must hire in addition to your current workforce.


The current 24,798 (4 years active) charts are currently filed in folders in terminal digit order on open shelving units.  It will be necessary to initially house all current records in the department and new filing units will be purchased. Records older than 4 years are microfilmed (microfiche) by an outside company and stored in the HIM department.


Concurrent with the move, existing records will be scanned into an electronic document management system (EDMS) as patients are readmitted.  After 4 years, the remaining medical records will be microfilmed per current policy.  Medical records of readmitted and new patients will be stored in hard copy until completed and then scanned into the EDMS.  Current bylaws required that records be completed within 30 days of discharge.


You need to determine the volume of anticipated daily scanning and recommend purchase of a scanner.  Your proposal should compare the features for at least 2 scanners and include your recommendation.  Administration has not specified a budget for this purchase, but asked that you be cost-conscious whenever possible.


  1. Specific Instructions:


  1. Prepare a title page.
  2. Write two mission statements/organizational goals (not operational goals) for the Health Information Management Department that will be        in keeping with the hospital’s mission.
  3. Determine the tasks to be accomplished in this department as a whole.
    1. Department functions as a whole. Use brief phrases such as “Filing and retrieval of charts”, etc. Exclude here management type tasks such as recruitment, retention, disciplinary actions of employees, ordering supplies, etc. For each of the functions determine if performed in-house or outsourced; if outsourced, include as short written justification for this decision
    2. Job position titles
    3. List of duties for each position
    4. #FTEs for each job position
    5. Indicate if site- and/or remote-based

iii. Include volume and production standards on which calculations are based (for example, ____ number of inpatient records must be coded and each coder can code ____ per hour; a total of ________ FTE coders is required).

  1. Develop performance standards for the coders based on labor trends/market analysis and benchmarks. Include the labor trends and market analysis and benchmark findings in your report as an attachment.
  2. Complete a cost-benefit analysis of utilizing an outsourcing company for coding versus coding in-house.
  3. Scheduled work hours for each FTE for a 2-week time period. The department must provide coverage from 6:00 AM-11:30 PM Monday through Friday and from 8:00 AM-4:30 PM Saturday and Sunday.  Employees may be full-time or part-time.  A full-time employee works 7.5 hours per day with an additional 30-minute meal break and two 15-minute work breaks.
  4. Draw an organization chart by title for the department.
  5. Purchasing proposal for scanner; compare at least 2 scanners and include justification for recommendation.  Also provide calculation of expected scanning.
  6. Prepare a flow process chart for the scanning function of readmitted patients
  7. Prepare a professional development plan for HIM employees (including HIM Manager). The plan must include expectation of needs for professional development for the next three years including:

1)  type of professional development needs and justification

2)  employees who need professional development

3)  why professional development is needed and ramifications if professional development needs are not met

3)  expectations of how those needs will be met Break down by webinars vs. in person meetings vs. other methods

4)  expected costs for professional development. List both those that would be free and those that would have associated costs (Breakdown costs by cost of registration, travel, per diem, and other expenses)

5)  list of professional development needs and costs by priority

  1. Also prepare an additional justification and rebuttal due to 25% budget reduction of the plan by administration.  Including how this plan compares to similar HIM departments (requires contacting comparable hospitals and discussing with HIM manager)
  2. Microsoft Word and Excel software must be used for the entire document.
  3. All projects materials must be submitted as one file through the Blackboard course site.  A hard copy may be kept for inclusion in the       employment portfolio.
  4. Grading will be based on content as well as neatness/professionalism. It must be in a format that could be given to a hospital CEO. Please   refer to the attached grading sheet for more specific information.



Rev. 8/2016


Management Practicum Evaluation Student:
Maximum Points Points Earned Comments:
Title Page 1    
Mission Statement/Goals 2    
Department Functions

(inhouse or outsourced)

Job Position Titles and Personnel Duties 10    
Number of FTEs

(remote vs. home-based)

Labor Trends/Market Analysis, Benchmarking,  Performance Standards for coder and a Cost-Benefit Analysis for outsourcing coding or completing in-house 15    
Work Schedule 10    
Organization Chart 10    
Purchasing Proposal and cost benefit analysis 7    
Flow Process Chart 15    
Professional Development Plan 10    
Total Points Earned/Grade 100    


































Adapted from Shoreline Comm. College

1/12                                                                                                                     Rev. 8/2016

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