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Kathy Trawick: Demonstrating the Power of Leadership in Words and Action

By Dr. Kathy Trawick, RHIA, FAHIMA 

Kathy Trawick, RHIA, FAHIMA is an HIM faculty member in the health information technology department at the University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College. She is a 1985 graduate of the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Health Information Management program. 

Kathy has expertise in higher education and in the allied health sciences. Her basic research interests include higher educational administration effectiveness, institutional effectiveness, and student satisfaction. She has been an HIM practitioner for 10 years in acute care facilities as well as an HIM educator and program chairman since 1999. Kathy has provided instruction in areas including healthcare statistics, legal issues, HIM systems and the EHR, health care management, quality improvement, and cancer registry principles. She has been a contributing author of texts in medical terminology, medical law and ethics, and computer systems for HIT.  

She has authored the statistics/research chapter of the Cengage Learning Professional Review Guide’s RHIA-RHIT Exam Review from 2006 through 2017, has published articles in the Journal of AHIMA, Advance, Perspectives in Health Information Management, the Mid-South Educational Research Association Proceedings, as well as numerous presentations. Kathy is a consultant to various types of healthcare facilities in Arkansas as well as the Polytechnic of Namibia in Wyndhoek, Namibia, Africa. 

In addition to holding offices at the state level in HIM and cancer registry associations, she currently serves on the national CAHIIM Panel of Reviewers for HIT/HIA program accreditation, a post she has held since 2004. Kathy is the recipient of the 2010 Excellence in Teaching Award from the UAMS College of Health Professions and the UAMS Chancellor’s Teaching Award in 2011. She was also chosen as a 2013 Fellow of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). 

Her personal interests include traveling, Mahjong on the computer, and she enjoys her two springer spaniels. 

Here is Kathy’s advice for fellow HI professionals on how to thrive in the dynamic world of HI: 

Challenges and Opportunities in HI in 2024 

One of the biggest challenges I see facing the HI profession is the advancement of technology and artificial intelligence, and how HI professionals will carve our role in being leaders of these advancements. One of the biggest opportunities will be how we advocate for the HI profession and bring meaningful change and development to healthcare. 

Steps HI Professionals Can Take in 2024 to Thrive in the Profession 

There are many things that HI professionals can do to thrive in our profession. Some of these include staying current with professional development opportunities, volunteering on the local, state, and national levels, being involved in HI related legislative discussions and advocating for our profession.  

Small Steps to Advance, Especially AHIMA Specific 

The number one investment HI professionals can make to advance their career is obtaining their AHIMA credentials. Whether this is the RHIA, RHIT, CCS, CCA, or any of the other microcredentials offered, these are the ticket to your own success and advancement. Additionally, HI professionals shouldn’t be afraid to take the lead on projects within their facilities. Make your own seat at the table. This type of leadership sets the tone and paves the way for advancement.  

Additional Note for Graduates 

Graduates, you have the skills. Remember you don’t need an invitation to the table. Create your own seat and let your work be your voice. 

Dr. Kathy Trawick, RHIA, FAHIMA

Dr. Kathy Trawick, RHIA, FAHIMA

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