Musings of an eclectic itinerant polymath is a blog by Ryan Cheley. His posts explore his passion for learning new things by trying them out and seeing how spectacularly he can fail at them. 

Getting CPHIMS(R) Certified - Part I

One of my professional goals for 2017 was to get my CPHIMS (Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems). The CPHIMS certification is offered through HIMSS which “Demonstrates you meet an international standard of professional knowledge and competence in healthcare information and management systems”.

There was no requirement for my job to get this certification, I just thought that it would be helpful for me if I better understood the Information and Management Systems part of Healthcare.

With not much more than an idea, I started on my journey to getting certification. I did some research to see what resources were available to me and found a Practice Exam, a Book and a multitude of other helpful study aids. I decided to start with the Practice Exam and see what I’d need after that.

In early March I signed up for the Practice Exam. I found all sorts of reasons to put off taking the exam, but then I noticed that my Practice Exam had an expiration date in May. One Sunday, figure “what the hell, let’s just get this over with” I sat down at my iMac and started the exam.

I really had no idea what to expect other than 100 questions. After about 20 minutes I very nearly stopped. Not because the exam was super difficult, but because I had picked a bad time to take a practice exam. My head wasn’t really in the game, and my heart just wanted to go watch baseball.

But I powered on through. The practice exam was nice in that it would give you immediate feedback if you got the question right or wrong. It wouldn’t be like that on test day, but it was good to know where I stood as I went through this practice version.

After 50 minutes I completed the exam and saw that I had a score of 70. I figured that wouldn’t be a passing score, but then saw that the cutoff point was 68. So I passed the practice test.

OK, now it was time to get serious. Without any studying or preparation (other than the 8+ years in HIT) I was able to pass what is arguably a difficult exam.

The next thing to do was to sign up for the real thing ..

Getting CPHIMS(R) Certified - Part II

Updating my LinkedIn Profile