The AMIA HICC expects AHIC diplomates to maintain and improve knowledge and skills for competent practice (i.e., achieve continuing competency). The HICC deems active practice and continuous learning essential for maintaining competence in health informatics.
Active practice comprises sustained effort of at least 20% work time in one or more of the following roles:
- Performing, directing, or managing health informatics activities, tasks, or processes
- Teaching health informatics
- Conducting health informatics research
Continuous learning may be achieved through coursework and other continuing education activities that align with the Health Informatics Delineation of Practice or scholarly activities and professional service (beyond the scope of the diplomate’s primary work role) that advance or serve the health informatics field and provide opportunities to acquire new knowledge and skills for health informatics practice.
Given the frequent changes in healthcare and the average lifecycle of technology, the HICC determined that a four-year period is an appropriate amount of time for AHIC diplomates to document learning associated with competent health informatics practice. Thus, certification as an ACHIP is valid for four (4) years from the date the AHIC exam was successfully passed.
The HICC uses professional development units (PDUs) as a means of measuring and reporting continuous learning activities. Two categories of activities qualify for AHIC PDUs – coursework/continuing education and scholarship/professional service. Diplomates are encouraged to accrue credits in both categories. A complete list of activities that qualify for AHIC PDUs can be found on the AMIA website.
AHIC Professional Development Units (PDUs)
AHIC diplomates seeking recertification need to accrue 60 PDUs during the 4-year certification period. Alternatively, diplomates may retake and pass the AHIC exam within the last year (365 days) the certification is valid as a way of demonstrating they have maintained health informatics competence.
Recertification is required for continued use of the AMIA Certified Health Informatics Professional™ (ACHIP™) credential and its associated certification marks (logo, spelled-out title, and acronym). Diplomates who allow their certification to expire may not represent themselves as being certified as an ACHIP™. AMIA will not be held responsible for loss of certification, wages, employment, or other consequential damages in the event that a diplomate fails to recertify in a timely manner prior to the expiration of certification.
AMIA will send email notifications to remind diplomates the recertification deadline is approaching. However, it is the diplomate’s responsibility to keep track of certification cycle end dates. Failure to receive AMIA communications regarding recertification opportunities or certification expiration is not an acceptable basis for appealing the expiration of a certification. Therefore, diplomates should ensure that their email address is up to date in their AHIC profile.
Alternatives to Recertification
The HICC recognizes that in some instances, active practice in health informatics may not be possible due to personal, professional, or economic factors. Inactive status is available for a total of up to two (2) years (at any one time or across multiple instances during a single recertification period) for diplomates who do not currently meet the Active Practice recertification requirement but intend to return to work in the field and do not wish to lose their ACHIP™ certification status permanently.
To apply for inactive status, diplomates must complete an ACHIP Inactive Status Request and pay the USD $99 inactive-status fee. Inactive status applications must be received prior to the end of the recertification period for the request to be honored. Diplomates who stop working in health informatics and wish to keep their ACHIP designation should apply for inactive status immediately, to pause the Active Practice “clock’; once approved, Inactive Status is effective as of the date of application.
Diplomates may reactivate the status of their ACHIP credential (unpausing the Active Practice clock) at any time up to two (2) years after having applied for inactive status, by completing an ACHIP Reactivation Request; after 2 years, inactive status automatically ends, and the Active Practice clock resumes.
Health Informatics Professional Emeritus Certificate™ (HIPEC™)
Diplomates who are no longer actively working in health informatics and intend not to return to work in the field may exchange their ACHIP credential (a certification with recertification requirements) for a Health Informatics Professional Emeritus Certificate™ (HIPEC™, a certificate with no recertification requirements), by paying a one-time fee of USD $998 (equal to two cycles of recertification fees).
Former AHIC diplomates who have exchanged their ACHIP credential for the HIPEC certificate may not continue to use the ACHIP designation or certification mark(s). If an individual exchanges the ACHIP credential for a HIPEC certificate, then returns to work in the health informatics field and wishes to earn the ACHIP credential again, that individual would need to submit a new AHIC application and exam fee, meet the then-current eligibility requirements, and pass the then-current AHIC exam to re-earn the ACHIP designation.