Be On the Forefront of Health Technology and Help Patients Anywhere With a Degree in Health Information Technology
The world of telemedicine has evolved rapidly in the past years and shows no signs of slowing. Patients can meet with healthcare providers and refill medications online. Everyone can monitor their health with smart devices. They can use apps to track food consumption, measure their physical activity and track their blood pressure. People have more control over their health than ever, and healthcare providers need to make sure they can provide efficient and accessible services.
Rather than hire just any IT professionals, however, these providers need IT experts with healthcare experience who understand the legal and policy nuances of the field. Whether you’re just entering the healthcare field or have years of experience and are looking for a specialization to make yourself stand out to employers, a degree in health information technology is a great way to enter this exciting and quickly growing world of technology and wellness. If you’re like many others, though, you’re probably asking questions like, “What can you do with a health information technology degree?” and “What is the average health information technician salary?” If you’re interested in executive roles, you may be wondering what the average health information manager salary is. This article will answer those questions, as well as other FAQs like, “What does a health information technician do?” Let’s start by answering that common question.
What does a health information technician do?
Health information technology connects all the moving parts of healthcare and ensures that they work together for a high quality, more secure and cost-effective healthcare system. Technicians are responsible for a lot of the data input at the core of these systems. Their main duties include finding, processing and documenting important healthcare information. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), technicians organize data for clinical databases, track patient outcomes, assign clinical codes for insurance reimbursement and record key data where it can be easily indexed and cross-referenced. The average national health information technician salary is $75,775 for managers and directors, according to Ziprecruiter.com. As in any career field, your salary would depend a great deal on you level of education, location and the type of position you choose.
What’s the first step to earning a good health information technician salary? A master’s degree.
A master’s degree in health information technology will teach you how to incorporate information technology into healthcare systems. Your course work may include organizational strategy, cybersecurity and healthcare law and policy. A Master of Health Administration (M.H.A.) degree in health information technology provides you with a specialized skill set that will allow you to work in many health information technologist jobs and benefit from the above average health information technician salary and career outlook.
How to get a health information technology degree
Choosing to further your education and get a master’s degree is a major decision, but getting a master’s in health information technology is one of the best investments you can make in your future career. Of course, these degree programs can differ considerably by the universities that offer them. You’ll want to begin by researching programs and finding the one that seems right for you, whether that means a dedicated degree in health information technology or an endorsement added on to an M.H.A. degree.
So, what can you do with a health information technology degree?
If you’ve been wondering about what kinds of health information technician jobs you can look forward to after graduating, you’re not alone. It’s a popular degree thanks to the increasing attention being paid to healthcare technology. The BLS projects a 32% growth rate in health information manager jobs and 11% growth rate for health information technologist jobs between 2020 and 2030. Both growth rates are significantly higher than the average of 8% for all other occupations. You might be asking, “What can you do with a health information technology degree?” and wondering how a master’s degree in health information technology could open the door to many high-paying career positions. Consider these roles:
Chief medical information officer: $148,000
One of the most popular and exciting health information manager jobs available is chief medical information officer. In this role, you might oversee the integration of technology within medical and clinical settings. You may also educate others about how to use electronic health records for patient care and to improve clinical resource management. Good news for graduate students hoping to earn a health information manager salary: The average salary for a chief medical information officer is $148,237 a year, according to Glassdoor.com.
Director of risk management: $157,000
Generally, a director of risk management strives to reduce financial, safety and security risks for a company or organization. Specifically, the director of risk management in a hospital or clinical setting might develop clinical practice guidelines, clinical protocols and procedures for current and past case reviews. The data-driven problem-solving skills you accrue in your health information technology degree program will prepare you for a successful career as a director of risk management. Many students ask, “What can you do with a health information degree outside of a hospital setting?” There’s always the opportunity to become a director of risk management at an insurance company or in a government agency. This position is the highest paying of the health information technologist jobs included in this list. The average health information manager salary of a director of risk management is $157,115 a year, according to Glassdoor.com.
Director of clinical informatics: $108,000
For anyone interested in health information manager jobs that let you work in multiple settings, becoming a director of clinical informatics might be a good option. Directors of clinical informatics can work in a variety of settings, including clinical research centers, hospitals, private practices and other medical organizations. These directors deal with the organization and management of sensitive health information, such as a patient’s medical history, including symptoms, diagnoses and procedures. They may also educate and train staff, support site-specific patient care and create policies and procedures for electronic health records. If becoming a director of clinical informatics sounds interesting to you, you could be making, on average, a salary of $108,799 a year, as Glassdoor.com reports.
Information security analyst: $103,000
As an information security analyst, you would be on the frontlines of defense for various types of organizations. While you don’t need an M.H.A. to enter the cybersecurity world, having experience in healthcare will make you stand out when applying for health information technologist jobs in hospitals, clinics and other healthcare organizations. As an information security analyst, you would handle sensitive patient information that is at risk of being stolen through cyberattacks. Your duties may include planning and implementing security measures to protect your organization’s computer networks and systems. As more and more individuals choose to work remotely, this position is becoming even more important, because you’ll need to make sure that employees working outside of the organization’s physical space have the tools necessary to protect patient information. Becoming an information security analyst might be a good fit for you if you’ve ever wondered, “What does a health information technician do that involves cybersecurity?” According the BLS, the average salary for information security analysts is $103,590 a year, and employment opportunities are projected to grow 33% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations.
How to make sure you earn a good health information technician salary: Choose the right program.
So, now you have a better idea of what the average health information technician salary is. We’ve answered questions like “What does a health information technician do?” and “What can you do with a health information technology degree?” Now, let’s talk about the first step to finding good health information technologist and health information manager jobs.
A health information technology master’s degree will make you a competitive applicant for the health information technologist jobs or health information manager jobs that interest you. It can help you advance your career and earn a higher salary if you already work in the healthcare industry and are looking for a specialty. Keep in mind that the program you choose also matters to your future employers. How accessible is the program and can it be taken online or hybrid? Does the program offer hands-on experience with patients?
At Concordia University, Nebraska, we pride ourselves on offering a well-rounded M.H.A. program and health information technology endorsement. Led by recognized experts in the field, our program offers a distinctive balance of theory, research and hands-on experience. Our health information technology endorsement will prepare you to succeed in the fast-growing world of technology and healthcare security. We offer a 70-hour practicum that will give you the opportunity to gain experience in a healthcare organization and to practice the knowledge and skills you’ve accrued in your classes. Because we offer an entirely online master’s program, you have the freedom to design the schedule that works for your life. Earn your M.H.A. degree with a health information technology endorsement from Concordia Nebraska to start protecting patients’ valuable information and earning more.