The AHIMA recently announced the official opening of a Global Services Office in Brussels, Belgium, establishing itself as the first multinational membership association serving HIM professionals on a global scale. The AHIMA selected Brussels, in part, because of the city’s worldwide status as the European Union’s hub for top decision-making institutions. However, the decision to extend its outreach globally was rooted in the association’s longstanding commitment to accurate health information internationally as the surest means of securing high quality healthcare. In addition, the AHIMA sees its multinational outreach as the proper response to globalization trends and implications in healthcare including digitization, e-health, cross-border care, medical travel, and telemedicine.
“We believe that viable HIM is necessary for the safe delivery of effective, quality healthcare, and that it should be recognized and practiced around the world,” says AHIMA President Vera Rulon. “For awhile now, AHIMA has been actively looking into new development opportunities that promise to serve healthcare consumers as well as the greater healthcare community.” Rulon says that just as important is the ability of the AHIMA’s transnational outreach to advance HIM’s industry standards, grow its certified workforce, and accredit the educational systems required to advance the HIM practice around the globe.
AHIMA chief of operations, Sandy Fuller, says the AHIMA is also committed to the worldwide promotion and advocacy of high quality research, best practices, and effective standards in health information and to actively contributing to the development and advancement of health information professionals worldwide.
Through the newly established office, the AHIMA looks to further develop new business opportunities and build collaborative relationships as well as monitor the global health information environment. Based in Brussels, the office offers firsthand access to information and decision-making processes across Europe and is at the same time a central point of development for future activities worldwide.