Allied Health Professions/
Health Information Manager
Every time health care personnel treat a patient, they record what they observed and how the patient was treated medically. This record includes information the patient provides concerning his or her symptoms and medical history, as well as the results of examinations, reports of X-rays and laboratory tests, diagnoses and treatment plans. Increasingly, this information is maintained electronically in healthcare information systems.
Health information technicians organize, analyze and manage this health information. They ensure its quality, accuracy, accessibility and security and ensure appropriate disclosure of information in both paper and electronic systems. Technicians use various vocabularies and classification systems to analyze, code and categorize patient information for quality reporting and support clinical and business decision making at both the individual and population levels as well as for insurance reimbursement purposes, databases and registries. In addition, the health information technician is also involved in information technology and data management activities that include, but are not limited to, maintaining patients’ medical record and treatment information.
Medical and health services managers, also called healthcare executives or healthcare administrators, plan, direct and coordinate medical and health services. They might manage an entire facility; specialize in managing a specific clinical, ancillary or administrative area or department; or manage a medical practice for a group of physicians. Medical and health services managers must be able to adapt to changes in healthcare service delivery models, payment, laws, regulations and technology.
Health information managers typically earn a salary of $32,000 to $84,000 per year with increases commensurate with higher education and experience.
The U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a 21 percent growth in the number of health information management workers between 2010 and 2020, making it one of the nation’s fastest-growing health occupations. Nearly 75 percent of respondents to a 2002 study reported that there are not enough qualified applicants to fill open positions in their organizations.
To learn more, watch the video profile, "Medical Records and Health Information Technicians" (which is located in the Health Science category).
Health information management professionals usually work a 40-hour week, although some overtime may be required. Options for home-based work or evening and night-shift schedules may be available in hospitals. Other work environments include pharmaceutical firms, insurance companies, long-term care facilities, public health settings, physician group practices, consulting firms, computer systems design firms and many more settings.
Save money and earn your bachelor's in health sciences or healthcare management more quickly with maximum credit transfer at Excelsior. Our low tuition makes it affordable for you to earn your degree from accredited college while you earn a living. Receive up to 32 credits for your health-related occupational license. Learn more about Excelsior College ...
Part 4: How to Attend College Without Going into Too Much Debt
Part 2: How to Attend College Without Going into Too Much Debt
Part 1: How to Attend College Without Going into Too Much Debt
Criminal Background Check? But, I’m Not A Criminal!
Part 1: Accreditation Matters
Applying for Financial Aid (Part II)
Why Diversity Matters in the Health Professions
Start preparing for your health career in high school
Reconciliation Act of 2010 Includes Significant Student Aid Provisions
Jobs of tomorrow will target highly-skilled, educated healthcare workers
Healthcare Reform 101
Career Ladders Help Health Workers Move Up Faster
Health information management (HIM) graduates entering the field graduate from associate degree programs accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) in community or junior colleges or CAHIIM-accredited baccalaureate degree programs in a college or university. Some go on to earn a master’s degree in health information management or health informatics. The HIM Career Map depicts numerous HIM-related roles and provides detailed information on educational requirements, salary statistics and other supporting information.
In addition to a general education, coursework includes biomedical sciences, legal aspects of health information, coding and management of clinical data, statistics, data analysis, database management, quality improvement methods and computer technology applied to health information systems.
Applicants can improve their chances of admission into a program by taking courses in biology, medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, college math, statistics and computer science. Students interested in professional certifications from the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) should check the CAHIIM accreditation status of the program for eligibility. Search for schools that provide training and formal education for this career.
After graduating, many health information management professionals choose to earn the entry-level Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) and Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) credentials by successfully completing a national certification exam. Additional certifications are available and may be based on a combination of education and experience.
Search for funding opportunities related to this career
Search for enrichment programs related to this career
Search for academic degree and certificate programs related to this career
Allied Health Professions
Last updated: February 27, 2015
©2012 American Dental Education Association