Massachusetts Health Informatics
Health Informatics is the career pathway that combines computer science, healthcare, information technology, and business. The Health Information Technology field in Massachusetts has a strong growth rate, with a projected increase of 20% from 2008-2018 in the number of jobs available. Jobs in this field can be found in a wide variety of settings, from hospitals and ambulatory facilities to legal counsel, research, education, HMOs, and information technology vendors. A medical coding certificate can be earned in less than a year, while an Associate’s Degree in Health Information Technology takes two years of study. Most of the coursework in these programs is offered either during evenings or online, making it an ideal choice for adults seeking a second career.
Massachusetts Health Informatics Links – MA
Health Informatics Certification in MA
The Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics & Information Management, or CAHIIM , gives its certification to the best academic programs. They also provide certification via examination for Registered Health Information Technicians (RHIT) and Registered Health Information Managers or administrators (RHIA). In the Health Informatics field, these certifications are more valued by employers than academic degrees. Massachusetts is home to three CAHIIM-approved associate degree programs, located at Bristol Community College (Fall River), Caritas Laboure College (Dorchester), and Fisher College (North Attleboro). Bristol College’s Health Information program prepares students for the RHIT exam, while programs in Medical Coding and Medical Transcription offer additional career choices. Caritas Laboure College, a small, private, Jesuit institution, offers degrees in nursing and healthcare, in addition to certificate programs in Coding and Electroneurodiagnostic Technology. The College is affiliated with the Caritas Christi Health System, and students complete internships in the System’s hospitals. Fisher College offers a medical assistant program in addition to their Health Information Technology program. In addition, there are a number of other reputable, non CAHIIM approved health informatics and billing and coding programs available in the state of Massachusetts as well.
Massachusetts Health Informatics Salary & Employment Information
Graduates of CAHIIM-approved programs are eligible for membership in the Massachusetts chapter of AHIMA, the American Health Information Management Association. AHIMA allows the top professionals in the field to share information on the latest updates in technology and law, as well as job information. For more information on Massachusetts AHIMA, visit their website at www.mahima.org. Massachusetts Health Informatics workers find jobs with the government, as well as in legal counsel, hospitals, ambulatory facilities, prisons, research, education, and HMOs. Some sample job titles include Emergency Room Coder, Compliance Auditor, Data Abstractor, HIM Specialist, and Clinical Documentation Improvement Specialist. RHIT in Massachusetts earn an average $18.90 an hour, or $39,000 a year. The earning potential goes up to $29.40 per hour, or $61,000 annually.
*Salary Data: Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Earnings Statistics
At the Bachelor’s Degree level, Massachusetts does not currently have any CAHIIM-approved programs. Students wishing to pursue study at the graduate level may attend Coppin State University in Maryland, or one of the schools in New York, such as Long Island University or SUNY Institute of Technology—Utica. For this reason, in Massachusetts, professionals with Bachelor’s Degrees and RHIA certification earn an unusually high wage, an average $51.453 an hour, or $107,000 per year.