ARRA gives CPCC $1 million grant to launch fast-track Health IT Workforce Training Program

last modified Aug 26, 2010 09:04 AM

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) has given Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) a $1 million grant to launch a non-credit Health Information Technology (IT) Workforce Training Program that will equip North Carolina residents with the skills needed to apply for entry-level Health IT positions in as little as six months.

“Health IT professionals will be in high demand going forward as the nation’s healthcare system shifts its patient records from hard copy format to a universal, digital database that may be accessed and shared by doctors across the country,” said Kevan Weaver, an instructor in CPCC’s Health Information Technology program. “This transfer of information is the result of new legislation passed by the U.S. government that seeks to improve patient care by connecting healthcare practitioners – from hospitals to small doctor’s offices – with an individual’s most recent medical record.”

CPCC is one of three community colleges in North Carolina to participate in this statewide initiative which strives to produce qualified professionals who are prepared to ensure that the nation’s electronic health record project achieves high marks in efficiency, privacy and security.

Well-trained health IT professionals can achieve this goal. Their time is spent verifying that a patient’s medical charts are accurate and complete by regularly communicating with physicians’ offices to ensure accuracy, clarify diagnoses and obtain any supplementary information needed to complete a patient’s file.

CPCC, in partnership with Pitt Community College, will offer the program 100 percent online to accommodate student’s busy schedules. Residents located in a 23-county area across North Carolina qualify to apply and may choose from one of the following study tracks: 

  • Practice workflow and information management redesign specialist
  • Clinician/practitioner consultant
  •  Implementation manager
  •  Implementation support specialist

To be eligible to enroll, individuals must either have an associate’s degree in information technology or in any healthcare field, or have a proven knowledge of these industries. Upon successful completion of the program, students will receive full tuition reimbursement, receive a non-credit certificate, qualify to sit for a national competency exam developed by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) and receive job placement assistance from CPCC.

The Health IT Workforce Training Program at CPCC will admit its first cohort class of 75 students in September 2010. To be contacted about the application process, visit www.cpcc.edu/hitgrant and complete the information request form located under “learn more.”

Funding for this project was made available through the Office of the National Coordinator, Department of Health and Human Services, award number 90CC0078/01 under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 Public Law 111-5: Information Technology Professionals in Health Care: Community College Consortia to Educate Information Technology Professionals in Health Care.

Central Piedmont Community College is the largest community college in North Carolina, offering close to 300 degree and certification programs, customized corporate training, market-focused continuing education, and special interest classes. CPCC is academically, financially and geographically accessible to all citizens of Mecklenburg County. In 2002, the National Alliance of Business named CPCC the Community College of the Year for its response to the workforce and technology needs of local employers and job seekers through innovative educational and training strategies.

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This release prepared by Mallory Benz, 704.330.6613. An archive of CPCC news releases is at http://www.cpcc.edu/college-news.