Anyone seeking a degree in health care informatics should be aware that the field is fairly nuanced. It focuses on applying information technology to enterprise-based data systems and analysis, all with the end goal of improving patient care. It is also important to note that this is different from health information technology, which focuses on patient records stored in electronic form as well as compliance, billing and coding for these records.
This probably sounds more complicated than it is. To put it more simply, "health care informatics" is about using technology to provide better health care, while "health information technology" is about using technology to organize health care information.
Fortunately, a variety of online degree programs for health care informatics are available to help explain the field in more depth. An online education's flexibility can be beneficial to many different kinds of students, whether they are brand-new to college or coming back to higher education after many years. And earning an online degree in this field may help students to earn positions in hospitals, health insurance organizations, policy institutes, research facilities or anywhere else that health care informatics can be put to good use.
Finding an online school that is the right fit for you takes time and research, even in the health care informatics field. That's why we created this list of featured online colleges in the discipline, chosen using data that came from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).
Visit our methodologies page to learn more about how we use official data to evaluate schools.
Health care informatics degree programs are an important part of teaching students how to apply technological solutions to the challenges they may work to overcome in the health care industry. This section takes a look at coursework students may complete during health care informatics degree programs, as well as the skills they may develop during this coursework.
Professionals who pursue the health care informatics field must develop a strong understanding of how computer systems are used in the medical field. In order to teach students this understanding, online colleges for health care informatics may include the following courses in their curriculum.
In order to be successful in a health care informatics career, candidates should be accomplished at a number of industry-relevant skills. The following are some of the abilities they may want to focus on developing as they work on their degree programs.
As technology rapidly evolves and becomes more entrenched in the health care field, the education students receive at online colleges for health care informatics becomes increasingly important to performing the job. This section explores various positions that health care informatics students may pursue after completing their studies, with job descriptions and education requirements for each career.
Although some clinical data managers may be able to find employment after completing a bachelor's degree, these professionals are generally required to earn a master's degree in computer science or engineering, or a graduate certificate in health informatics or clinical data management.
Analysts are usually able to find work after earning a bachelor's degree in a computer-related discipline, but positions and requirements can vary wildly depending on the employer. Some employers prefer candidates to have earned a master's degree; others may prioritize candidates who have taken business classes as well as computer classes; still others may accept candidates with non-computer-related degrees so long as they have established technical experience.
In order to earn a position as a medical records director, candidates are expected to have at least an associate's degree, though many employers prefer candidates with a bachelor's degree.