What you'll do: Design and oversee health information systems to ensure that they meet medical, legal and ethical standards. As a health information management professional, you’re the expert on patient data that doctors, nurses and other health care providers rely on to perform their jobs. You'll manage databases and design, generate and analyze reports. Your meticulous work is an important contribution to your team’s delivery of high quality care.
Where you'll work: Hospitals, physicians' offices, home health care agencies, nursing homes, public health offices and insurance companies.
Degree you'll need: Associate's or bachelor's degree
Median annual salary: $88,580*
Health information managers design and manage health information systems to ensure they meet medical, legal and ethical standards. Depending on their title or work setting, specific job responsibilities vary. Some typical responsibilities may include collecting and analyzing of patient data, ensuring accuracy of patient records, ensuring privacy of patient records, managing and maintaining databases, and generating and analyzing reports.
When beginning your career, make sure you’ve earned the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) credential, which requires passing an exam in addition to earning your associate’s.
If you’ve earned your bachelor’s, you’ll pursue the Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) certification from the American Health Information Management Association. While both bachelor's and master's programs will prepare you to sit for the RHIA certification exam, master's programs tend to incorporate more general management training.
Moving forward, job growth is expected to increase in health care agencies other than hospitals. Look around at your options to see what environment might be best for you and where you might be a good fit.
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014-15 Occupational Outlook Handbook; Medical and Health Services Managers.
*The salary information listed is based on a national average, unless noted. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors. National long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.