Community College Training of HIT Professionals Questioned

Diana Manos | Healthcare IT News | January 10, 2012

The government plans to fork out a total of nearly $70 million in grants to five community colleges assigned with leading a federal healthcare IT training program. But is the Community College Consortia to Educate Health Information Technology Professionals delivering? Since its inception in March, some think it’s not – at least not yet. At a recent meeting of the Health IT Policy Committee, member and Florida state legislator Gayle Harrell, said she has concerns. Her constituents have been complaining that graduates of the program have not had enough hands-on training, she said.

Funded by the American Reinvestment & Recovery Act of 2009, the consortia of 82 community colleges was designed to offer six-month training courses for as many as 10,500 students each year. Patricia Dombrowski is director of the Life Science Informatics Center at Bellevue College in Bellevue, Washington. Her school heads Region A of the program, covering the 10 northwestern states.

Dombrowski has good things to report about the program’s success so far. Her region has surpassed all of its goals in 2011...