To fully develop the health records and information management profession, it is essential that students and professionals in this field remain updated on industry trends, best practices, and regulatory requirements.
This was established during a consultative meeting between the Health Records and Information Management Board of Kenya (HRIM) and the faculty of the College of Health Sciences, JKUAT, March 29, 2023.
According to the Chairman, HRIM, Mr. Onesmus Kamau, Continuous education opportunities must be sought to keep their skills and knowledge up-to-date, which will enable them to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare services provided to patients.
The board is on a mission to various higher education institutions in Kenya offering the Health Records and Information Management course in a bid to bolster the course quality and streamline the curriculum ahead of the inspection later in the year.
The discussion focused on the fundamental skills and experiences that must be covered for the degree to be successfully accredited by the profession and for graduates to be credible employees in the eyes of potential employers.
The HRIM Board indicated that the biggest challenge facing the profession is that most practitioners are not specialized, and training institutions have different curricula. Furthermore, some institutions have ascribed to societies whose accreditation is not recognized by the HRIM Board.
Lauding the quality of the programme at JKUAT, Mr. Kamau said “regulating the profession, beginning with the curriculum, will address unemployment currently facing the industry. All institutions must comply with the prescribed core units to facilitate licensing and prevent students from having to go back to upgrade,” explained Mr. Kamau.
According to Ms. Olive Muchene, Chairperson of the Health Records and Information Management Department, the high quality of the course at JKUAT can be attributed to the execution of the syllabus in collaboration with experts in the core units, such as Information Technology, an area in which the University has a strong reputation.
Director of Health Records and Information Management Services at the Ministry of Health, Mr. Gilbert Nzomo added that the license and registration certificate will ensure that only qualified graduates are employed, and is also in line with the Data Protection Act which only recognizes Data Processors and Controllers as those with requisite training.
The HRIM Board pledged to provide JKUAT with the required guidance to produce globally recognized graduates.
The meeting, which was attended by the Dean School of Public Health, Prof. Kenneth Ngure, and other faculty from the department, was timely and will serve as a reference for revising the curriculum to bolster the profession in Kenya.