By Greg Peters, Communications coordinator
School of Health Professions
Clinical assistant professor Judy Bielby, MBA, RHIA, CPHQ, CCS, has been recognized as a fellow of the American Health Information Management Association.
The fellowship program recognizes AHIMA members who have made significant and sustained contributions to the profession. The lifetime honor is open to AHIMA members with at least 10 years of experience in health information management, have been a member of AHIMA for a minimum of 10 years, hold at least a master's degree and have shown professional growth, creativity and innovation."This recognition is not just about me," Bielby says. "It is also about all of the people who have mentored me along the way. I have been very fortunate to work with a number of terrific people, and I have learned a lot from them."
Program Director Norbert Belz explains that Bielby is a cornerstone for the KU Department of Health Information Management. Her depth of knowledge, work ethic and attention to detail are an invaluable resource for the department's faculty and students. He adds that everyone turns to Bielby as a resource for honest, insightful and sincere feedback.
"As a colleague, Judy is a phenomenal resource who is always willing to help," Belz says. "She is dedicated to the program and an inspiration to us all. She always goes above and beyond what is expected without complaint."
Bielby received her bachelor's degree in medical record administration from the University of Kansas in 1987 and her master of business administration from KU in 1995. She joined the health information management faculty at the University of Kansas Medical Center in July 2011 after more than 25 years of health care industry experience.
Prior to coming to KU, Bielby worked in health information management at Saint John Hospital in Leavenworth, Kan., Bethany Medical Center and Health Midwest Baptist Medical Center, both in Kansas City, and as a consultant for Durst & Associates. Her experience includes coding, compliance, risk management, quality management, survey preparation, documentation improvement and special projects.
A few years ago, Karl Koob, the program director who has since retired, was revising the health information management curriculum, and his vision was to not merely train students in medical coding but to teach them the concepts and foundations of coding from the standpoint of managing the process. Bielby says she was at a point in her life where she wanted to spend time teaching while remaining current in health information practices by doing consulting work, so the move to KU has been a perfect fit.
"I wholeheartedly shared his vision," Bielby says. "The students need to understand how the code sets used in health care are maintained and who maintains these codes. The goal is for students to be able to effectively manage the coding process in compliance with applicable rules and regulations."
Bielby has been involved in local, state, and national professional organizations, including the American Health Information Management Association, Kansas City Health Information Management Association and Missouri Health Information Management Association.
She has also written numerous articles in the professional publication the Journal of AHIMA and CodeWrite, a professional newsletter. Bielby has participated in AHIMA webinars that are distributed nationally. She also serves on the Missouri ICD-10 Task Force.
"Judy works tirelessly to bring up-to-date information, innovative lab experiences and detailed lectures to our students while striving to produce health information management professionals who will be successful and add value to our health care community," Belz says.
Health information management is one of more than 25 academic programs offered by the University of Kansas School of Health Professions on the KU Medical Center campus in Kansas City, Kan. The School is recognized for its highly ranked educational programs as well as the significant research and clinical service it provides in support of the local community and the State of Kansas.