Nebraska Health Informatics
As Nebraska’s health care system marches into the digital age, demand is rising for talented individuals capable of navigating the rivers of data it produces. Each and every patient generates a wealth of information which must be recorded and cataloged in order to provide the most efficient and effective care. This need has given rise to a brand new employment field – Health Care Informatics. With graduates operating in environments ranging from hospitals to college campuses to correctional facilities, this vocation has become one of the fastest growing sectors in the employment world. Projected to grow by twenty percent by 2018, Health Informatics rewards its practitioners with high wages and excellent job security.
Nebraska is one of the prime markets in the Health Informatics field. Students can choose from two certification tiers – the Associate’s level Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) or the Bachelor’s level Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA). Both are popular programs, offering students the chance to learn outstanding skills in data management while keeping in mind the latest delivery methods as well as the legal and ethical ramifications of properly distributing medical information.
Nebraska Health Informatics Degree Requirements for RHIT’s and RHIA’s
At whichever level a student decides to pursue their career, they will eventually come into contact with the governing organization of the Health Informatics industry. Known concisely as CAHIIM , the Commission on the Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management is solely responsible for the certification of RHITs and RHIAs not just in Nebraska, but across the United States. Not all college programs in Health Informatics meet CAHIIM’s rigorous standards, so students will need to be mindful of their academic selection.
Currently, there are three CAHIIM certified programs operating in the state of Nebraska. Central Community College (located in Hastings) and Western Nebraska Community College (hailing from Scottsbluff) each offer Associate’s degrees in the field. Omaha’s Clarkson College, however, takes things one step further. Besides boasting a top notch RHIT program, Clarkson also incorporates a four-year RHIA degree into their offerings.
The Health Informatics education process in Nebraska is largely similar to that found in other states. Classes can be taken largely online, allowing prospective students to work their education into the busy schedules that life so often produces. As a popular career among nontraditional students, this flexibility comes as a welcome option.
Health Informatics Salary – Nebraska
Entry level RHITs earned an average of $22,440 during 2009 , with the midrange earnings sitting at $32,586. Professionals with a greater deal of experience garnered considerably heavier paychecks, with annual wages topping out at $37,658. In total, these figures were computed from a labor pool of just over 1,800 Health Informatics technicians in Nebraska. Salaries for those with a Master’s degree have potential to be quite a bit higher.
*Salary Data: Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Earnings Statistics
All members of the Health Informatics industry are encouraged to join the American Health Information Management Association, more commonly known as AHIMA . This professional organization is among the most respected groups in the medical field, boasting excellent support and benefits to its members. Besides getting access to the latest advances in the industry, members will also have access to regularly updated job boards and other helpful employment tools.