This is another year at ACE, AHDI’s Annual convention, and another chance to hear something big that will wow us. I look forward to this conference each year as it is one of the few times so many friends and colleagues are in the same location. We leave with new business contacts, ideas for the future, often with partnerships as well. A lot gets done in 5 days on very little sleep.
While these are great times to networking, arrange business plans, and otherwise make plans for the upcoming year, we have yet to see an ACE that left us feeling that everything is about to change and in a good way. This is something that I heard each year and last night I heard many saying the same. With hard declines in revenue, shrinking staff, and membership concerns, we need some wow announcements to shake up membership and drive former members back. We have a great opportunity to flourish and I expect to be amazed this week.
Here are some things I hope to hear because then we will know we are relevant:
- We will re-define a healthcare documentation specialist as someone who not only knows medical transcription but also know medical coding. The future is not one or the other. The future documentation specialist will do both roles. Positioning our members for this now will give them a huge advantage. There is a reason MTs flock to Med-Line to learn ICD-9 and ICD-10 medical coding.
- We are exploring a merger with AHIMA. The time really has come. We need to set aside our own agenda and position our members for long-term success. The membership and revenue of AHDI has steadily decreases as fewer and fewer are MT only. Many have left the association for AHIMA as they are the true gatekeepers of Healthcare Documentation. Such a merger would be of great value to all members.
- All approved MT training programs will be required to be at least 12 months. There is too much to learn to force training into programs that are under 12 months. We need to be setting up graduates for long-term acute care success.