PHIT4DC Curriculum

The Consortium has begun the ongoing development and implementation of a culturally responsive, interdisciplinary curriculum that builds upon the Office of the National Coordinator’s Health IT curriculum for Educators and equips students with critical health informatics job skills. The curriculum includes certification components from the HL7 First Health Interoperable Resource (FHIR) training for Executives and Implementers. FHIR is the next-generation interoperability and data exchange standard needed to expand the clinical, social, and administrative data elements required when patients present for services. UDC will build on its Workforce Diversity Program that provides continuing education and certification to District residents free of charge.

Curriculum development for the graduate MPH and health professional (pharmacy, medicine, and allied health) pathways has integrated coursework from the existing UDC Healthcare Direct Care and Administration program, combined with undergraduate level data science coursework. The curriculum also includes advanced knowledge-based competencies and skills specified in the DHCF core competencies for value-based purchasing, for example, MyHealthGPS, Integrated Care DC practitioner training, and emerging health IT technologies. Finally, coursework covers population health analytics and management, health IT technology application in pharmacy technology, Health Information Exchange system training quality measurement science and value-based strategies.

Data Science coursework will expand upon courses /workshops that will soon be delivered by HU’s newly established Center for Applied Data Science and Analytics’ (CADSA). These courses will be adapted to include a multidisciplinary perspective and strong emphasis on employability.

To ensure an agile and adaptive curriculum delivery, accelerated, HyFlex and technology-enabled teaching strategies have been adopted – all of which will be integrated across PHIT4DC’s training pathways.

The curriculum will be enriched through the expertise of several Consortium partners who bring unique, multidisciplinary perspectives. Their contributions enhance the skills that PHIT4DC’s trainees will acquire and position them to compete successfully in the PHIT job market. For example,

CRISP, the District of Columbia’s Designated Health Information Exchange (HIE) connects all of the District’s hospitals, FQHCs, independent healthcare provider organizations, and health agencies such as DHCF, DC-Health, DC Behavioral Health, Department of Energy and more. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, CRISP-DC has been developing electronic health IT tools to facilitate providers’ responses to the health and social support needs of District residents.  CRISP is expanding access to its HIE tools to ensure PHIT4DC students acquire hands on  trainings and understands the standards relevant to health data exchange as they pursue employment with healthcare organizations throughout the District.

The District of Columbia Primary Care Association (DCPCA) has developed an

HIT/HIE curriculum incorporates use cases that reflect ‘on the ground’ perspectives and the needs of the District’s healthcare community for IT support and engagement. The core curriculum delivered and anchored at UDC and HU in collaboration with program partners such as DCPCA, CRISP and ZaneNet,  provide courses relevant to specific PHIT workforce needs. Course content and certification program preparation is being provided from both the Health Language 7 FHIR certification program as well as the Health Information Management System Society’s (HIMSS) industry recognized CPHIMS certification program. UDC has already successfully demonstrated the utility of this approach with other certification programs. This strategic approach will enhance the employability of  graduates by affording them the opportunity to complete certification programs from several industry recognized organizations.  Student scholars will be  connected to the National Capital Area HIMSS; which  will introduce them to HIT privacy and public sector actors regionally, integrate them into a student and professional HIT network and place them in the pipeline for HIT careers once they complete the PHIT4DC program. PHIT4DC will cover the costs of students completing the HIMSS certification course.

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