In 1946, HFMA was founded as the American Association of Hospital Accountants (AAHA) by William G. Follmer, Robert H. Reeves, and Frederick T. Muncie. This pioneering organization of volunteers was instrumental in promoting the development of financial expertise in not-for-profit hospitals. During a national meeting of AAHA, the Association’s Executive Director asked local representatives from Houston to form an AAHA chapter. Our Chapter’s original Petition for Charter was signed by the founding leadership on January 25, 1966. Stated goals back then included:
- Promote uniformity and efficiency in hospital accounting
Cooperate with others to support matters related to accounting and statistics
- Encourage members to become knowledgeable of hospital accounting to enable the provision of accurate and statistical data to hospital administration
- Provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and dissemination of materials
- Conduct and participate in meetings and conferences on hospital accounting, statistics and business office procedures…
Today, our Chapter’s membership represents virtually all health care provider organizations in the Gulf Coast area. The definition of “member” has expanded over the decades to include strategic partnering with physicians, attorneys, managed care organizations, external accounting and business process consulting firms, information system vendors, and many others who provide support and guidance to health care finance professionals.
The introduction of Medicare, in July 1966, stimulated nearly all of the earliest Chapter meetings; members were focused on how to implement the regulation. Today, Medicare regulation continues to provide operational challenges for providers. However, the diverse agenda of HFMA’s continuing education in today’s marketplace demonstrates the explosion of new and emerging issues that health care professionals must deal with every day. Staying at the forefront of financial management strategies continues to be a lifelong career process.
Since 1966, our Chapter Presidents have built on the successes of prior Chapter leadership teams. The continuous vision statement is about bringing the best and the brightest into the field of health care financial management. The Texas Gulf Coast Chapter has distinguished itself by gaining national recognition for excellence and has ensured the Chapter’s monetary stability, provided reliable and relevant educational opportunities, and most importantly, encouraged individual growth and development through volunteer opportunities on the Chapter’s multiple committees and governance board.
The Texas Gulf Coast Chapter will celebrate its 50th Anniversary in 2016. Now, more than ever before, HFMA membership can be a valuable demonstration of the commitment one has to achieving success. Whether by attaining certification or developing and maintaining lifelong professional networks and friendships in the Houston and surrounding health care communities, the benefits of membership continue to grow.
The goals of our past leaders are still appropriate in today’s complex environment. We encourage you to celebrate and participate in the Chapter’s future success through a spirit of cooperation and leadership.