National HIMAA Mentoring Scheme

Introduction

The idea of a national HIMAA mentoring scheme has been suggested in a number of forums in recent years: in response to the HIMAA Membership survey in April/May 2013, in HIMAA focus groups during September 2013, in individual discussions with Education Committee members, and more recently in the monthly meeting the Branch Presidents and convenors have with HIMAA’s National President. Potential HIMAA membership groups that have been suggested for whom mentoring support might be beneficial are:

  • HIM students in the tertiary sector
  • Clinical coding students in the VET sector
  • New members
  • Members seeking career development into a specialised area
  • Rural and regional members

The HIMAA National Mentoring Scheme has thus been designed by the HIMAA Branch Presidents and Convenors with the national HIMAA office to provide an organised way in which experienced HIMAA members can support other members reflect upon and develop their professional practice and career potential.

Apart from providing a networking function for new or isolated members, the National HIMAA Mentoring Scheme can also provide an important industry exposure opportunity for students and recent graduates. Some mentors may even be able to offer workplace experience.

Primarily, however, what a HIMAA mentor offers to a HIMAA mentee is a confidential and trusting relationship in which the mentor supports the mentee in reflecting on their career goals and aspirations, in structuring ways of working towards achievement of these goals and aspirations, discussing professional development activity and resources that may be useful to the mentee in meeting their needs, and where possible engaging in networking support.

What are the benefits?

Mentees

  • Access to an experienced health information management professional who volunteers to offer you support in developing your professional practice and career
  • Guidance in professional development opportunities
  • Industry insight and, perhaps, exposure
  • Support in planning action when addressing professional challenges and issues you encounter in your journey of professional growth
  • A colleague who will listen when you need them to

Mentors

  • An opportunity to contribute to a profession to which you are committed
  • The chance to support the development of a health information management professional in your specialty or areas of expertise
  • Reducing the fears, uncertainties and stresses that can often impair the growth in an individual’s professional practice and career development
  • Reciprocal learning – mentors often find they learn as much from the shared experiences, ideas and knowledge of a mentor~mentee relationship as the mentee
  • Development of leadership skills

How does it work?

HIMAA maintains in the Members Only section of the HIMAA website a register of HIMAA members who are prepared to act as a mentor for other HIMAA members who seek the benefits of such a relationship.
In this register, mentors can specify:

  • Their current primary occupation and professional context
  • The breadth, depth and length of their experience in the profession
  • Areas of particular expertise or experience they feel confident in sharing with a mentee
  • Levels of industry exposure available
  • Their availability
  • Mentee membership group preferences
  • Preferred duration of mentoring relationship (short term, medium term, long term)
  • Preferred location of mentee (same state/territory, interstate, overseas etc.)
  • Preferred modes of communication
  • Fluency in languages other than English

HIMAA members seeking to participate in the HIMAA National Mentoring Scheme as mentees can select a mentor from the Register, contact HIMAA’s Membership Officer to enrol in the scheme and be placed in contact with the desired mentor. The mentor has the right to decline the assignment, in which case the Membership Officer will renegotiate with the mentee applicant.
Mentees typically come forward from the following groupings of HIMAA Membership:

  • HIM students in the tertiary sector
  • Clinical coding students in the VET sector
  • New members
  • Members seeking career development into a specialised area
  • Rural and regional members

These categories are not, however, exclusive.

The mentee does not necessarily need to be in face-to-face proximity with their mentor. Any mode of communication can enable the relationship. Specialty interests may well occur across state and territory boundaries.
Once contact has been accepted and established, it is the HIMAA mentor’s responsibility to structure contact between mentor and mentee. A mentoring relationship need last only as long as it is useful to the mentee. The mentor will regularly refresh the mentoring agenda with the mentee and offer them an opportunity to re-negotiate the timeframe for the relationship, and the program structure for contact. When the mentee wishes to bring the relationship to a close, the mentor will support them in closure.

If for some reason there is a mismatch between mentor and mentee, either party can contact the Membership Officer, who will negotiate with the mentee contact with another mentor of the mentee’s choice, or make a recommendation. In such circumstances, there will be no ill feeling on the part of the mentor. Mentors are health information management professionals who participate in this mentoring scheme voluntarily in the interests of the profession. They approach their role as HIMAA mentor as professionally as they approach the rest of their professional practice.

How Can a Mentee Apply?

Email HIMAA’s Membership Officer with a brief paragraph detailing the mentor you are interested in being matched with, your interest in entering into a mentoring relationship, and in a second paragraph a professional and personal curriculum vitae.
The Membership Officer will submit this to the chosen mentor for their agreement, and send you both an email introducing you to each other.

The Membership Officer will touch base with you from time to time to find out how you are going with the relationship.
Contact HIMAA Membership Services at membership@himaa.org.au, or call 02 9887 5002.

What Support does HIMAA Provide for HIMAA Mentors

  1. Registration on a National HIMAA Mentors Register.
  2. Participation in a one hour webinar on the practice of mentoring.
  3. Periodic networking teleconferences with other HIMAA Mentors to discuss mentoring successes and challenges, and leadership learnings, organised by the national office.
  4. Periodic networking meetings of HIMAA Mentors organised by the local HIMAA Branch.
  5. An opportunity for a mentors and mentees reception at the national HIMAA conference for networking purposes.

How Can Members Become HIMAA Mentors?

  • Apply at any time to membership@himaa.org.au ">membership@himaa.org.au
  • HIMAA’s Membership Officer will give you access to the National HIMAA Mentorship Register for you to enter your details.
  • Your entry will remain de-activated until you have participated in HIMAA’s one hour mentorship webinar
  • This will occur when a sufficient cohort of mentors have enrolled to merit the webinar
  • Once your entry on the register is activated, the HIMAA Membership Officer will refer to you any application from a HIMAA mentee seeking your services as their mentor
  • You will have the right to refuse this application
  • If you accept the application, your responsibilities as a HIMAA Mentor commence with a requirement to make the first contact with the mentee, and to structure ongoing contact at that first contact.
  • Contact Details

    To participate in the HIMAA National Mentoring Scheme as a HIMAA Mentor, or apply for participation as a HIMAA Mentee, or for further information, contact HIMAA’s Membership Officer:

    Ph. 02 9887 5002
    E. membership@himaa.org.au

    For more information click HERE