The Role Of Information Governance In Health Care

2018 is set to bring regulatory changes and some challenges for health care providers. Big data analytics will play a significant role in the coming year. Health care Information Governance (IG) is a key factor in big data analytics, as managing the volume of big data needs a coordinated plan.

Data and information support nearly every activity within a health care organization. Poor information governance can quickly create severe problems. Only reliable, accurate, timely, and accessible data can help achieve higher value, lower costs, and better patient experience.

Experts predict that data quality will continue to cause major cybersecurity challenges for providers in 2018, indicating the need for IG programs to address them.


The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) defines information governance as “an organization-wide framework for managing information throughout its lifecycle, and for supporting the organization’s strategy, operations, regulatory, legal, risk, and environmental requirements.”

Improving data practices is the foundation of information governance. Information governance is not just a single project – it is an ongoing process with repeated practice, improvements, and reassessments. Ensuring staff members are properly educated on IG is a key issue for providers.

According to AHIMA, organizations should conduct an information governance gap analysis to identify weaknesses in the data creation, storage, analysis, and reporting process with special focus on critical areas that may directly have an impact on patient safety, privacy, and compliance issues.

Kathy Downing, MA, RHIA, CHPS, PMP, AHIMA’s vice president of informatics, information governance (IG), and standards says that “organizations with legacy health IT systems continue to have cybersecurity issues. Also, most organizations still struggle with data quality.” According to Downing, starting an IG program can help overcome these issues. A recent AHIMA survey found that organizations do understand the need for solid IG programs, but are slow in moving forward.


Additionally, improved documentation will provide benefits to both the financial and quality aspects of health care. It ensures that providers are able to develop strategies to overcome their unique challenges, capturing all the data necessary to accurately report their own performance and clinical quality.

AHIMA is continuously supporting ongoing data integrity and governance improvements. IG is essential to patient care because bad data doesn’t just lead to bad decisions. It can hurt patients.

PCG supports AHIMA IGHealthRate™, the healthcare industry standard assessment for determining IG maturity aligned with AHIMA’s Information Governance Adoption Model (IGAM)™. It is available FREE to qualified organizations and PCG would welcome the opportunity to help organizations assess their IG maturity.

Learn more about the IGHealthRate™ and see if you qualify today:


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