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Dental Hygenistry Essay, Research Paper

Interview with Three Dental Hygenists from MeridianDental CenterBy Shannon Harmon and Rachael Rasmusen On January 17 we interviewed three different dental hygenists at Meridian Dental Center.The hygenists we interviewed were Sharon Skiers, Nona Groesbeck, and Marian. What training or education did you have before beginning this job? Sharon: 4 years of college at U of W. 2 years predental hygene and 2 years of dentalhygene. Nona: 4 years of college – B.S. in dental hygene from Eastern Washington University. Marian: 2 years of jr. college, including prequisite science, biology, organic chemistry,non-organic chemistry, microbiology, and 2 1/2 years of the dental hygene program. What skills are necessary and where is the best place to get the training needed? Sharon: Any of the five dental hygene programs in Washington and you need a bachelorsdegree. Nona: Need chemistry, biology, and strong math backround in high school. Some collegecourses include nutrition, anatomy, physiology, first aid, health, and general collegerequirments. You have to buy your own instruments and supplies for the program youtake. Marian: 4 year college, I have six years full time college work and still only have anassociate degree. What do you see as the projected outlook for this type of job in the next five years? Sharon: So far very good. Keeping the gums and teeth healthy is very important and it willalways need to be done. Nona: Very good. There has been a good market for dental hygenist for the last 10 yearsand it will probably continue. Marian: Exellent. It will be one job that s never replaced by computers. It could howeverbe replaced by less skilled personnel if the AOA has it s way. How has your job changed since you first started working here? Sharon: We have more expanded duties: giving injections, filling teeth. OSHA(occupational safety & health assoc.) has required us to wear gloves, masks, and gownsand use a lot stronger disinfectents for disease control. This has been partly because ofaids. Nona: I have worked in a specialty office (periodentist s) where I worked with patientswith gum disease. I have taught dental hygene skills in the clinic of EWU. I have workedin a general practice where I see young and old, healthy and diseased mouths. I haveplaced fillings and given a lot of anesthetic. Each job has been different. Marian: I graduated in 1981. Since then the basic job is unchanged but techniques have.Also, as new scientific research develops, attitudes and information changes. What is the earning potential in this field? Sharon: very good. Nona: Above average pay for women with a four year degree. Marian: $30 an hour in this area. I made $38/hour in San Francisco area in 1992. What do you like about your job? Sharon: The one on one with people. I like the feeling that I am helping someone. Nona: Meeting people, helping them improve their mental health, good hours andweekends off. Marian: The direct point contact and being able to improve people’s daily oral care. What is the most difficult aspect of your job? Sharon: Staying on schedule. Working on someone who is in a lot of pain or who is afraid. Nona: When procedures are uncomfortable for the patient. Marian: Low patient dental I.Q. RESEARCH PROJECT RESEARCH QUESTION: Do I want to become a health information manager? AUDIENCE: Any one interested in health information management. SAMANTHA SCOTT MARCH 19, 1997 INTRODUCTION I always thought I wanted to become a dental hygienist. This is aprofession where I would work with people, be in the medical field, and make good money. I am apeople person, and places such as hospitals or doctor offices makes me think of a “caring for thepeople” type of atmosphere. One day after I talked to the English teacher at GermannaCommunity College by the name of Julie Adams, she made me have a second thought of mycareer choice. She asked me, “Do you want to look in people’s mouths all day?” I knewwhat the dental hygienist’s responsibilities were, but I never thought about it in the way Mrs.Adams put it. I knew I would like to work in the medical field, work with people, and Ilove working with computers. After talking to Robin Barnes, a health information manager, Ilearned that all of these tasks are performed by health information managers. To help meanswer the question, do I want to become a health information manager, I carried out aresearch project. I used the following factors in my research: job responsibilities, salary, educationrequirement, working conditions, advancement opportunities, and pros and cons METHOD To answer my question, do I want to become a health informationmanager, I began my research by going onto the Internet. Using the words “health” and “healthcare”, I found a Health Information Management page. This contained information on thesalaries, work places, future career opportunities, job responsibilities, and education requirementsfor health information managers. After printing the information from this web site, Icontinued my search on the Internet. I then found another page titled “Health InformationManagement General Information”. This contained the education requirements, jobopportunities, and the work places of health information managers (HIMs). After getting the information off of the Internet, I continued my research inthe Germanna Community College library. The library has reference books thatcontained different career fields. The Encyclopedia of Careers and Vocational Guidance had information for HIMs. It had information on the education requirements, salaries, advancement opportunities, and work conditions. I also conducted a personal interview with a lady by the name of RobinBarnes. Miss Barnes is a health information manager. She works at Johnston Willis Hospital inRichmond, Virginia. During the interview, we talked about the different pros and cons of thiscareer. FINDINGS Education Required For one to enter the field of health information management, there are

education requirements that have to be met. A student can begin by attending a two yearaccredited junior college. At the accredited junior college the student will need to completeseveral liberal arts and science courses, then transfer to receive two years of education inhealth information management at a four year college. The student will then receive abachelor of science degree in health information management (”Health InformationManagement (HIM) Careers: Questions and Answers”). Job Responsibilities According to the results of my research, Health Information Managers(HIMs) have a lot of responsibilities. HIMs are “experts who secure, analyze, integrate, andmanage information that steers the healthcare industry” (”Health Information Management(HIM) Careers: Question and Answers”). HIMs have to keep medical records on eachclient and this involves organization. Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionalsdepend on HIMs for patient medical data. HIMs frequently “interact with other members ofmedical, financial and administrative staffs to ensure that information systems are protectedand driven by accurate, up-to-date information” (”Health Information Management(HIM) Careers: Questions and Answers”). I think I can handle all of these responsibilities. I’m feel I am capable for doing this type of job because I am a very organized person. Working Conditions The health information manager usually works under pleasant conditionsalthough surrounded by the instruments of the work: file cabinets, computer terminals, andgeneral office equipment (Hopke 405). HIMs also work in different places such ashospitals, computer software companies, health clinics, federal governments, accountingfirms, colleges, legal firms, and more. As for the working hours, HIMs usually work from earlymorning to late afternoon, hours such as 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. or 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. I would like to workin a pleasant office type of atmosphere and have daytime hours. . Pay Range The salary of an HIM depends on the area, work experience, education,and the employer. The “Health Information Management (HIM) Careers: Question andAnswers” article said the entry-level salaries are $22,000 – $25,000 per year. HIMs with threeyears experience can make $28,000 – 30,000 per year and any HIMs with high levelmanagement positions start at $50,000 and up per year. The more experience one has, the moremoney one makes. I think the starting salary is very good and it gets better as theexperience gets better. Pros and Cons I conducted a personal interview with Robin Barnes on April 11, 1997. During the interview we discussed the pros and cons of becoming an HIM. She said that thepros included having a good salary and being involved in health care but no “hands on.” She also said that because she was an HIM, she had learned a lot about the medical field. The cons included being called “file clerks” and bad hours, depending on the size of thehospital. She also said that it can be challenging to deal with the rules of the different insurancecompanies. The pros and cons that we discussed in the interview are things to be expected inthis career. The pros are encouraging, and I think I can deal with the cons. . Availability of Jobs and Advancement Opportunities According to The Encyclopedia of Careers and Vocational Guidance,health information management professionals have good hopes of advancing in theprofession. There is a shortage of HIM personnel. There are many available jobs for healthinformation management in large hospitals and law firms. An HIM with the properqualifications is more likely to advance from assistant to associate to chief HIM in a large hospital or lawfirm (404). It is nice to know there will be a job waiting for me with advancementopportunities when I graduate from college. CONCLUSION From the results of my research, I came to the conclusion that I want tobecome a health information manager. I came to this conclusion by reviewing a number offactors: job responsibilities, education requirements, working condition, pros and cons, salary,and advancement opportunities. Health information managers have a lot of jobresponsibilities. HIMs have to keep medical records on each client and this involves organization. Ilike working in an office atmosphere and I am a very organized person. As a result, Ifeel I’m capable of doing this type of job. Salary depends upon work experience for all jobs. The starting salary is between $22,000-$25,000 per year, which is great. As workexperience progress so does the salary. The education requirements include liberal arts andsciences courses. I have completed most of my requirements to receive my 2-year degree at Germanna Community College. After I complete this degree, I will be on my wayto receive a bachelor’s degree at a four-year college of my choice. The work conditions of anHIM are usually pleasant. HIMs work in places such as hospitals, state government, andhealth clinics. There is a shortage in the HIM field, so the advancements opportunities aregood. With the proper qualifications, HIMs can advance from assistant to associate tochief HIM in a large hospital or law firm. The last factor that was reviewed was the pros andcons. I have no problem with the cons and the pros support my interest in the field. . After reviewing all of these factors in my research project, I feel that thejob of health information manager fit my needs. In conclusion, I have decided that I would liketo become a health information manager.

Barnes, Robin. Personal interview. 11 Apr. 1997. . “Health Information Management (HIM) Careers: Questions and Answers.” http://www.mcg.edu/SAH/HIM/healthinfo.html (6 Mar. 1997). . Hopke, E. William. The Encyclopedia of Careers and Vocational Guidance. Chicago: J. G. Ferguson Publishing Company, 1990. .

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