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What is Healthcare Informatics?

Healthcare Informatics, also abbreviated as HI, is an interdisciplinary field within the healthcare industry, using information technology to sort and analyze records. Also called Healthcare Information Systems, HI is relatively new and relies on a systematic organization to improve healthcare outcomes.

Healthcare informatics jobs address the devices, resources, and methods necessary to obtain, store, retrieve, and utilize medical and health data. They present electronic access to medical records for hospital administrators, nurses, doctors, and patients. Health information technicians and insurance companies also rely on healthcare informatics to accomplish different medical services.

Healthcare Informatics resulted from the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act creation in 2009. HITECH’s objective was to promote and increase the adoption of health information technology. It mainly focused on promoting electronic health records (EHRs) among healthcare providers. The Act provided financial incentives to providers that formed a market for healthcare informatics jobs, continuing to grow to date.

HI offers a perfect working opportunity if you seek a career combining technology and healthcare. Healthcare informatics jobs let you exercise and improve your technical skills while enhancing others’ lives.

What Do People in Healthcare Informatics Jobs Do?

Healthcare informatics jobs involve collecting and documenting electronic medical data by interviewing patients and healthcare providers. They also collect the information by observing service delivery and procedures within a certain institution. The HI professionals also analyze and interpret data to identify sections that require improvements and prepare reports.

They also develop health information systems to support healthcare data collection, sharing, standardization, and integration. People with healthcare informatics jobs collaborate with other professionals and fields to enhance procedures, policies, and care standards.

Another role among HI professionals is training medical staff on the deployment and management of health information systems. They also provide technical support, maintain databases, and optimize network security while ensuring compliance with medical information management regulations.

Where Do People in Healthcare Informatics Work?

People interested in healthcare informatics jobs can work in various sectors, including clinical and non-clinical settings. The options such as hospitals, healthcare systems, non-provider settings, and independent consultancies offer plenty and convenient selections to satisfy your desired career focus and workplace.

The HI professionals can work in an integrated healthcare system featuring multiple care facilities and hospitals. This setting presents one of the most challenging options since the job requires proper information management across all the settings. An HI employee works to ascertain secure and effective data sharing cost-effectively.

Another source for healthcare informatics jobs is large acute care hospitals since the bigger the hospital, the more data available to manage. These hospital types can feature over 500 beds, needing a comprehensive approach to health informatics involving efficient and secure management of administrative, patient, and pharmaceutical data.

Non-provider settings refer to non-clinical options that require healthcare informatics professionals. They include private and non-profit companies, and the government, where the institutions need analytical skills on healthcare.

Education is another sector with opportunities for healthcare informatics jobs. Some people desire to teach at the post-secondary level after achieving. Even though one can take this career path with a Master’s degree in HI, most universities and colleges prefer a Ph.D. Apart from offering higher education, HI professionals can also deliver training services. They can conduct training programs for government, corporate, and international institutions, sharing health informatics skills with other professionals.

Healthcare informatics jobs are also available in the consulting industry to aid organizations in addressing healthcare challenges via compliant and responsible technology solutions. Working as an HI consultant offers access to multiple industries, making it ideal for people seeking constantly changing and fast-paced environments.

What Degree Do People Need to Get Healthcare Informatics Jobs?

People pursuing a career in HI generally require attaining a bachelor’s degree in Health Informatics. One can also obtain entry-level healthcare informatics jobs using an associate degree. Nevertheless, a bachelor’s or master’s degree increases your chances of getting the best-paying and most competitive positions in the field.

The HI specialist jobs require a bachelor’s degree in computer sciences, healthcare administration, or related fields. It also favors a master’s degree in health informatics with advanced proficiency in EMR software and programming languages.

Healthcare informatics jobs are also available to job seekers with a degree in information management or computing. The degree offers opportunities to work as a systems analyst, database administrator, or systems manager. It is also advisable for these seekers to include additional courses such as community-based health information, medical informatics, and medical coding to make understanding the healthcare operations easier.

How Much Do People in Healthcare Informatics Earn?

The increase in demand for skilled workers in the healthcare industry makes healthcare informatics jobs interesting. They provide job security and competitive pay to attract new graduates and experienced healthcare providers alike. In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the rapidly expanding healthcare field will grow by around 9% by 2030.

The median annual salary for healthcare informatics jobs is $98,000 nationally. Nonetheless, the amount varies according to various factors, such as professional credentials, region, employer, and job role and title. For instance, the employer factor shows that healthcare informatics consultants earn $98,640, while HI professionals within integrated healthcare systems get $88,770.

Informatics in non-provider settings can earn $78,410, and those working within large acute care hospitals obtain $76,480. Healthcare informatics teaching jobs at the post-secondary level offer $68,030.

According to the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), on average, individuals in healthcare informatics jobs with a single professional credential boost their salary by 27%, whereas those with four or more credentials increase it by 78%.

Healthcare Informatics Job Requirements

Healthcare informatics jobs require different AHIMA-certified credentials to facilitate progress in the career. The HI credentials come in three categories: Health Information Management (HIM) certifications, Coding certifications, and Specialty certifications.

Certified professionals can merge their knowledge and experience to qualify for the national industry certification exams. These examinations include Certified Health Data Analyst (CHDA), Certified Professional in Health Informatics (CPHI), and Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems (CPHIMS)

Healthcare Informatics Career Path

After the entry-level position, people in healthcare informatics jobs can get promotions and gradually climb the ladder. They can begin by upgrading to a senior data manager or analyst with higher-level management responsibilities and tasks. The experience opens the door for further growth, enabling an HI professional to get higher working opportunities as a clinical data manager or managing director in health information.

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