The Nancy Drew continues ….

nancy-drewYou grow up, run from high school as fast as you can, get married, start having children and one day you wake up and wonder if this is all there is …. It hits you that you want more than just a job; you want a career that makes going to work a whole lot more interesting and maybe even fun! I wrote before how I found coding to be much like my girlhood days of reading Nancy Drew; however, there is a bit more to the story. I worked for years as a nurses’ aide in a hospital and a homecare/hospice. I loved my work taking care of patients but in time I grew tired and knew that I wanted more. I also knew that nursing was not the career for me. One day I received a flyer in the mail talking about medical records. I did not know that I could stay in the healthcare field working with medical records! The more I researched, the more fascinated I became. The American Health Information Management Association started out years ago as the Association of Record Librarians of North America established by the American College of Surgeons. It has undergone several name changes since those early days but the early mission is still relevant today: “to elevate the standards of clinical records in hospitals and other medical institutions.” The most recent name change came in 1991 to the American Health Information Management Association as it “captures the expanded scope of clinical data beyond the single hospital medical record to health information compromising the entire continuum of care.” As the AHIMA website states …. “In the 21st century, HIM professionals today occupy a variety of roles, from HIM directors to privacy officers and beyond, in a variety of settings. The profession is working to address the issues that affect healthcare today, from implementing electronic health records to adopting and implementing ICD-10 clinical coding systems to contributing to emerging issues like the creation of a national health information network. AHIMA’s founders couldn’t foresee all the changes that the nation, the healthcare industry, and the profession would encounter, but they doubtlessly would agree that it remains poised to meet the challenges ahead. Today, AHIMA serves 53,000 members and 52 affiliated component state associations. It is recognized as the premier source of “HIM knowledge,” a respected authority for rigorous professional certification, and one of the industry’s most active and influential advocates in Congress. Historically, medical records have been a paper-based business. Now we’re working to advance the implementation of electronic health records by leading key industry initiatives and advocating high standards. We strive to keep our members one step ahead through accreditation of cutting-edge academic programs and professional development opportunities, including comprehensive continuing education.” Talk about exciting!! I have never regretted my decision to become an HIM professional. It has served me well over these years first as a medical record clerk for a small nursing home to the position of a Director of HIM and now as an educator. Take the leap! It is worth your time and your money.

14 Responses to “The Nancy Drew continues ….”

  1. Donna Atkins

    Margie exemplifies the qualities of fine character and perseverance that so inform the definition of high quality human beings and the standard for health care professionals. I know that Margie achieved her level of professional status by a complete refusal to allow obstacles or setbacks to limit her advance in her field of choice. More so, she managed to ensure the success and full education of her own children, unwilling to sacrifice them to her own success. Her professional credentials and acumen represent just the tip of the iceberg for those who know her background.

    • Misiri Parker

      Margie mentioned the importance of having a career and not just a job. I am a father and a husband; I do understand about working odds jobs that have not been that enlightening. What I read in Margie posts was to always pursue your passion, even if you have to go back to school. This is what I decided to do and I plan to get certified and continue to add on to my education in this career. Thanks for sharing Margie.

      • Anthony

        You go Misiri! A career is more rewarding because it is something you have chosen to do, rather than something you settle for doing out of necessity. The catch is, pursuing a career requires more effort to study and train and gain experience. Like anything you value in life, your career is worth fighting for. Kudos to you for taking the challenging steps you have taken to get closer to your dream life.

  2. Katie Von Mosch

    I agree completely with Margie. I am a young women that has only had unappealing job and now a career that is going no where. I had decided to go back to school and get into a field that I would enjoy. I had been reading about medical billing and coding for several months and decided to take a look and see what it was about. Now that I see what a HIM professional can accomplish I am excited to get into the HIM world. I know that it will help me in the long run and also help me to support my daughter.


    Margie’s dedication and committment in her goals to be an HIM professional as been very inspirational to me. I, myself decided to pursue a career as an HIM professional because I know its never to late get an education even if things in life don’t work well as you ‘ve planned it.

    • Margie

      Misiri, Katie, and Grace, you know one of the greatest side effects of going back to school is how it impacted my two sons, now grown. They never thought college was an option. They believed that is the logical next step after graduating from high school! I always have believed that the greatest job I have had is that of being a parent. In that I can measure my success knowing that my sons are now college-educated, too! Go for it! The benefits are huge.

    • Marilyn Trippe

      I would agree that it is never too late to return to class for a better education. I am an older woman who has raised eight children and am now faced with the choice of whether a regular job is really what I want. The answer is no. I find myself at The Allen School because of that answer and because I wanted to do something that gave me some satisfaction in doing a job that matters. The healthcare industry has always interested me, but like others, I am not cut out to be a nurse or doctor. Medical insurance billing and coding, I feel, will offer me a career in the healthcare industry that I can be proud of. It really is never too late.

      • Clariece J. Collins


        After researching career paths, I realized a career in medical billing and coding would be an excellent choice, and I continued my research to find a school that would offer a certified program of study. In comparison to other institutions, Allen School Online ranks very high.

        I am an older student, but with the support of my instructors and classmates, I am encouraged to be a part of the dynamic educational experience of Allen School Online.

  4. Marti Van Hoose

    I take great encouragment in knowing from others that no matter what your age or your work experience, you can always learn and always launch a new career. After all of the other industries I have been in, I finally am getting into something permanent and worthwhile that will also provide a good income for years to come. No matter what happens on the national scene regarding healthcare reform, there will always be the need for tracking a patient’s health information. I should have done this years ago!!

  5. Marti Van Hoose

    New Subject: I would like to see what others think about the impact of the HIM “foot soldier” on insurance reform. For instance, the CDC, AMA and FDC seem to be way behind the knowledge curve regarding certain diseases and treatments, especially the holistic and naturopath treatments. I feel strongly that we need to open up our way of treatments to include all these methods and get the insurance companies to support these efforts. Did you know that there are many drugs out there that have natural counterparts that have little or no side effects and are cheaper? Do you know that chelation can reduce cholesterol, remove toxins and boost the immune system? Why doesn’t medicine move more in this direction? Because the drug companies would lose money. If the AHIMA could demonstrate how such “unorthodoxed” methods were curing patients, perhaps the AMA and CDC would make changes. What do you all think?

  6. Clariece J. Collins


    After researching career paths, I realized a career in medical billing and coding would be an excellent choice, and I continued my research to find a school that would offer a certified program of study. In comparison to other institutions, Allen School Online ranks very high.

    I am an older student, but with the support of my instructors and classmates, I am encouraged to be a part of the dynamic educational experience of Allen School Online.

  7. lots of people choose their careers based in how much money they can make with it, and some others choose a not very profitable career but they love what they do. even when those in one of those sides may believe that those in the other side are fools their bejhaviour is basically the same, they are chasing their own desires. for the first ones it is money to buy whatever they want, for thew second ones it is more realted with intrapersonal satisfaction. the point is that it doesn’t matter which career it is if you really feel that it is what you were made for, if you don’t feel like that… you’d better look for something else, just like Margie says it happened to her.

  8. All my previous jobs were dead ends. After the birth of my son, I knew…I needed a career that would allow me to go places and would be around for awhile. I’d always been interested in the medical billing field, so I started looking online for a school that would allow to stay home and take care my son. Finally, Allen Online School got my attention, and now here we are in the last week of the course.
    When we first started this course, I had no idea what all was involved. I knew about the coding, but that was about it. With all the information we have learned, I’m very confident this career is the best choice for me. Thanks to all the instructors at Allen Online School for all the work you have put into the course. All of you will always be in my thoughts for helping me learn the MIBC career. I really appreciate it.

Leave a Reply