Today we're excited to kick off a new series that brings to surface the people and stories behind the NHA brand. Every month, we'll showcase some of the incredible talent we're fortunate to have on our team, and introduce you to individuals who are living our mission of empowering people to access a better future.

Without further ado, meet our first featured employee: Michelle Heller.

Michelle is an allied health content strategist at NHA. She views her position as an in-house subject matter expert and uses her expertise from the field, the classroom and publishing to help conduct research and review products in various iterations.

In addition to working with product managers on certifications and certificate products, she is also a leader in growing our continuing education (CE) offerings. Michelle is passionate about education; improving the quality of our CE programs and expanding options for how they are delivered to certification holders is something she truly enjoys.

Learn more about Michelle: what she's passionate about, where she sees the industry headed and how she brings NHA's mission to life.

Q. Why do you feel certification is important?

A. Certification is important because it helps validate the certificate holder's knowledge to perform the skills entrusted to them. This equates to safer and better care for patients, and mitigation of risk for employers.

I have had the first-hand pleasure of witnessing the transformation that takes place during a student’s journey toward certification. It's rewarding to see their sense of pride when they walk across the stage to receive their diplomas, but the biggest excitement and game-changer occurs upon passing their certification exams. Their confidence gets an instant boost, and their professional characteristics heighten when they receive that passing score.

Q. What are the most pressing issues for in our industry and how is NHA helping?

A. I feel one of the most pressing issues in our industry right now is the lack of soft or essential skills in today’s workforce.

Essential skills are important in many industries, but particularly in healthcare. Healthcare professionals have access to very private information and witness patients in their most vulnerable states. The ability to communicate with both patients and colleagues in a positive manner is essential to succeed and advance in the field. NHA will be launching PersonAbility™ in early 2020, which will be a great solution to improve these skills.

Another pressing issue in today’s culture is the rise in chronic disease and the financial resources it takes to care for these patients. Healthcare has been vastly reactionary over the years in addressing the needs of patients; however, with an aging population and increases in chronic disease, we can’t afford to take that approach anymore.

In order to improve patient outcomes, the healthcare system has to change the way we deliver patient care. Delivery methods that focus on prevention and early detection are what population health and team-based care are all about.

Team-based care allows an entire team of health professionals to help patients stay on track with their healthcare goals. It identifies healthcare problems upstream, before complications and secondary conditions kick in. As a result, the patient stays healthier longer and costs are more manageable. NHA has helped to address this issue with the development of two certificate products: TEAM Based Care™ and Principles of Health Coaching™.

Q. What does empowering people to access a better future mean to you?

A. It means providing learners and certificate holders with solutions to help them achieve their career goals. It’s helping them to not only achieve professional certification, but also provide them with solutions that will empower them to ascend the career ladder. Giving them the ability to improve their financial earnings can ultimately improve their quality of life.

When we empower our certificate holders to access a better future, we are also providing a better experience and outcomes for everyone who crosses their paths, including the employers who hire them and the patients who benefit from their services.

What are the trends in healthcare that you are most excited about?

Trends that I am most excited about are those that empower patients to improve their health. For centuries, healthcare providers have been in the driver's seat, but with patient-centered care, patients are now in control of managing their own health with a team of professionals to help them along the way. When the patient plays an active role in their health, outcomes are much better, and patients prosper as a result.

Share a unique aspect of NHA’s product development process and why it's important for ensuring our products exceed our customers’ expectations.

I think the institution of internal and external steering committees early in the development process is one of the most important ways we ensure our products are strong. Members of the sales force, marketing team, and a variety of subject matter experts review products at different phases of development, which helps build perspective across the continuum.






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