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What Jobs are Available in the Field of Health Informatics?

From associate degree-level jobs to those that require a master’s, the field of health informatics has much to offer.

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Home » Health Informatics » Duties

Health informatics is an umbrella term that covers several job titles and roles that use data and technology to improve the delivery and outcome of patient care in a medical facility.

Unlike other healthcare roles, health informatics doesn’t involve direct patient care. You won’t spend time at bedsides or giving exams. Your work will instead be focused on the data created by patient interactions. You’ll be responsible for collecting and analyzing this data and using it to make improvements to your healthcare facility.

Unlike other healthcare roles, health informatics doesn’t involve direct patient care.

“Health Informatics professionals care for patients by caring for their medical data and are responsible for the quality, integrity, security, and protection of patients’ health information,” says John Richey, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA, director of academic education services for the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

Since health informatics is a broad field, your exact job duties will depend on your specific job title. You might take on responsibilities such as:

  • Managing patient data
  • Creating new programs for tracking that data
  • Implementing systems to make sure patient communication is effective
  • Training clinical staff on technology and programs
  • Ensuring the privacy of patient data during communication

No matter what, you’ll play a major role in keeping healthcare facilities running smoothly and efficiently.

The education you’ll need for these roles ranges from associate degrees to master’s degrees. In some situations, you can add certifications that can increase your knowledge and potentially your salary.

The field is growing, and new roles are being created as technology and healthcare expand. Here are a few health informatics jobs that are popular right now.

Health Information Technician or Specialist


What You’ll Do: Health information technicians work with patient data and health records. You’ll need to be a strong communicator and pay close attention to detail to succeed in this role. Daily tasks can vary but often include:

  • Reviewing medical records for accuracy
  • Organizing the data contained in records
  • Overseeing communication with insurance companies, patients, and other medical offices when needed
  • Tracking the use of patient data
  • Using medical coding to enter doctors’ notes and other medical information into electronic records
  • Ensuring data is kept private and secure
  • Creating backup files for medical data
  • Submitting insurance claims

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, medical offices, rehabilitation facilities, skilled nursing facilities, insurance companies, healthcare software companies

Required Education: You’ll need at least an associate degree

Median Salary: $44,090 

You Should Also Know: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the top 10% of earners in the agency’s Medical Records and Health Information Technicians category can earn $73,370 per year. Roles for health information techs are expected to see an 8% growth by 2029.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Medical Records and Health Information Technicians

Clinical Informatics Analyst


What You’ll Do: Clinical informatics analysts analyze how clinical data in a healthcare facility is being recorded and managed. They make sure programs and systems are working as designed and look for ways to improve processes. They design and implement new systems and updates to current programs. On a daily basis, this might include:

  • Testing computers and programs throughout the healthcare facility
  • Monitoring computers and programs
  • Responding to errors or technical issues
  • Correcting any problems that occur
  • Looking at data reports to see where improvements can be made
  • Reporting data analysis to facility administration
  • Developing new programs and databases
  • Updating current programs and databases
  • Acting as a liaison between clinical and technical staff
  • Training clinical staff to use computers and programs

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, healthcare systems, medical practices, insurance companies

Required Education: You’ll need a bachelor’s degree or higher

Median Salary: $44,090

You Should Also Know: The BLS doesn’t track job growth for clinical informatics analysts separately, but roles in the Medical Records and Health Information Technicians category are projected to grow 8% through 2029. Clinical informatics analysts are likely to see similar growth. The top 10% of workers in this field earn more than $73,000 annually.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Medical Records and Health Information Technicians

Nursing Informatics Specialist


What You’ll Do: Nursing informatics is a blend of nursing skills and technology. Nursing informaticists:

  • Work to ensure that all technology, electronic record keeping, and other data management are used to provide high-quality patient care
  • Ensure that this technology makes it easier for nurses to do their jobs
  • Train nurses and other clinical staff, such as nursing assistants, on how to use programs
  • Implement new programs and systems that prioritize patient safety
  • Act as a communication bridge between the nursing department and facility administration

Nursing informatics is unique in the field of health informatics because it’s a nursing role. You’ll need to be a registered nurse (RN) to work in nursing informatics. This brings a nursing perspective to healthcare technology.

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, mental health facilities, skilled nursing facilities, healthcare systems

Required Education: You’ll need an active RN license and at least a bachelor’s degree. Certification can also be helpful.

Median Salary: $51,840

You Should Also Know: The BLS doesn’t track job outlook data for nursing informatics specialists separately, but rather groups them under the category of “Health Information Technologists, Medical Registrars, Surgical Assistants, and Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Workers.” The top 10% of earners in this category make $105,690 per year, which is more in line with industry standards for this role. 

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Health Information Technologists, Medical Registrars, Surgical Assistants, and Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Workers

Electronic Health Records (EHR) Implementation Manager


What You’ll Do: EHR implementation managers act as technical support providers for electronic health records and other health data management software and hardware. They oversee the implementation of new programs and troubleshoot software and hardware problems. They ensure programs are working correctly and delivering the intended results. On a daily basis this might include:

  • Training clinical staff on software and hardware
  • Acting as technical support for clinical staff
  • Testing new software programs before implementation
  • Configuring software for the requirements of the healthcare facility
  • Communicating with software and hardware vendors
  • Reporting on newly available products and updates to administration
  • Overseeing any needed maintenance
  • Ensuring software and hardware supports system infrastructure

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, rehabilitation centers, mental health facilities, healthcare systems

Required Education: You’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree

Median Salary: $93,730

You Should Also Know: The BLS doesn’t track job outlook data for EHR implementation managers separately, but they do fall under the category of Computer Systems Analysts. The projected growth for this job is 7% through 2029. The top 10% of workers in this category earned more than $152,060, according to the BLS.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Computer Systems Analysts

Health Information Manager


What You’ll Do: Health information managers:

  • Ensure that patient data is collected, stored, analyzed, and communicated effectively
  • Ensure that electronic data is being handled in a way that complies with healthcare privacy laws and regulations

“Health information management professionals are highly trained in the latest information management technology applications,” Richey says. “They understand the workflow process in healthcare provider organizations, from large hospital systems to private physician practices, and are vital to the daily operations management of health information and electronic health records. They ensure a patient’s health information is complete, accurate, and protected.”

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, healthcare systems, rehabilitation facilities, insurance companies

Required Education: You’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree.

Median Salary: $104,280

You Should Also Know: Health information manager roles are expected to see 32% growth by 2029. The top 10% of workers in this field earned more than $195,630, according to the BLS.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Medical and Health Services Managers

Healthcare IT Project Manager


What You’ll Do: Healthcare IT project managers take on a leadership role and are responsible for technology projects within their healthcare facility from start to finish. They look at problems or issues and suggest ways to solve them. They create detailed plans to make a project happen. Once the project is complete, they assess the results and use them to make further improvements to their healthcare facility.

A healthcare IT project manager’s responsibilities include:

  • Managing all the details of making a project run
  • Ensuring that their facility has the budget, staff, and infrastructure to support IT projects
  • Ensuring that their work will comply with healthcare standards, laws, regulations, and ethics
  • Communicating with department leaders and facility administration to get feedback on how a project is working
  • Using feedback on project performance  to make changes
  • Analyzing what went wrong if a project doesn’t meet goals and coming up with improvements

Where You’ll Work: Hospitals, healthcare systems, medical practices, insurance companies

Required Education: This role often requires a master’s degree

Median Salary: $151,150

You Should Also Know: Healthcare IT project managers roles are projected to grow 10% by 2029. According to the BLS, the highest 10 percent earned more than $208,000.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020—Computer and Information Systems Managers

stephanie behring

Written and reported by:
Stephanie Behring
Contributing writer

john richey

With professional insight from:
John Richey, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA
Director of Academic Education Services, American Health Information Management Association