Those who work in health information technology are responsible for putting together complete medical files for patients that include their symptoms, tests, results, treatments, and medical history. They have to make sure that all this information is correct and available when a doctor needs it. They're also responsible for shifting all old medical records that were kept on handwritten notes to electronic health records. While most people in health information technology work in physician offices and hospitals, there are others who work in nursing homes and government-run facilities.
Health Information Technology Job Education Requirements
Those looking to enter the field of health information technology need to have at least an associate degree in information technology or computer sciences. However, more colleges and universities are beginning to offer both bachelors and master's degrees in health informatics. As a result, more employers are interested in hiring workers with this degree.
Additionally, the American Health Information Management Association offers the Registered Health Information Administrator certificate and the Registered Health Information Technician certificate for those interested in entering this field. With the switch to electronic health records, workers in health information technology must be familiar with the software used to create and update these records and the privacy practices in place to keep this information secure.
With a focus on math, problem solving, and an in-depth knowledge of the latest computer hardware and software, many people in the information technology field find it easy to cross over to this growing profession.
Health Information Technology Job Market
Like the medical technology field, the job outlook for health information technology jobs is strong. This field is expected to grow by at least 21 percent over the next 10 years. Currently, there are about 450,000 people employed in health information technology jobs. However, the US Department of Health and Human Services has mandated that all doctors and hospitals switch to electronic health records. With this command, it's predicted another 78,000 jobs will become available to keep up with that extra work.
Health Information Technology Job Salary Information
The average starting salary in health information technology is around $44,000 a year and the overall average salary is about $69,000. While the type of employer, location of job, and qualifications of the worker all play a role in how much one can make in this field, it is possible to earn a peak salary of around $110,000 a year.