Health Information Technology Programs in Arizona


There are two health information management programs accredited by the CAHIIM(Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education)  in Arizona.

  • The average salary of a registered health information technician in Arizona is $34,940
  • The average hourly wage of a health information technician in Arizona is $16.80, according to the Bureau of labor statistics www.bls.gov

1. Central Arizona College

Health Careers Division
805 South Idaho Road, D 102
Apache Junction, AZ 85119
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program

2. Phoenix College

1202 W. Thomas Road
Phoenix, AZ 85013
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program


Arizona College  is not accredited by CAHIM but you will become eligible to earn coding certificates upon completion of the program.

4425 W Olive Ave # 300
Glendale, AZ 85302-3851

Degree Offered : Health Information Technology Associate Degree

Certificate eligibility upon completion of the program :

AHIMA

  • CCA-Certified Coding Associate
  • CCS-Certified Coding Specialist
  • CCS-P-Certified Coding Specialist-Physician Based

AAPC

  • CPC-Certified Professional Coder
  • CPC-H-Certified Professional Coder-Hospital
  • Various Specialty Coder Certifications
Posted in Health information Technology Programs.

Health Information Management Programs in Arkansas


There are three health information management programs accredited by the CAHIIM(Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education) in Arkansas.

  • The average salary of a registered health information technician in Arkansas is $31,640
  • Average hourly wage of a health information technician in Arkansas is $15.21, according to the Bureau of labor statistics www.bls.gov

1. Arkansas Tech University

Suite 201 Dean Hall
402 West O Street
Russellville, AR 72801
Degree Awarded: Accredited Baccalaureate HIM Program

2. National Park Community College

101 College Drive
Health Science Division
Hot Springs, AR 71913
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program

Certificate’s and Programs Offered:

  • Associate of Applied Science – Health Information Technology
  • Certificate of Proficiency – Electronic Health Record  Management
  • Certificate of Proficiency – Health Informatics

3. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

4301 West Markham Street, # 733
Dept. of Health Information Management
Little Rock, AR 72205
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program

“Graduates from this Associate degree have become HIM directors at facilities statewide in Arkansas, such as at the V.A. Medical Center in Little Rock, Sparks Health System in Fort Smith, Select Specialty Hospitals in Little Rock, Jefferson Regional Medical Center in Pine Bluff, The Bridgeway Hospital in Little Rock, North Arkansas Regional Medical Center in Harrison, Arkansas Hospice in Little Rock, Lawrence Memorial Hospital in Walnut Ridge, and St. Vincent General Hospital in Leadville, Colorado.”

Posted in Health information Technology Programs.

Health Information Technology Schools in Alabama


There are four Health information technology programs accredited by the CAHIIM(Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education) in Alabama.

The average hourly wage for a health information technician in Alabama is $14.53 with an average annual salary of $30,230 according to the Bureau of labor statistics www.bls.gov

The job outlook for trained technicians in Alamaba is excellent and is expected to have increased demand over the next several years in physicians office’s, nursing homes, and home health agencies.

1. Alabama State University 

915 South Jackson Street
Montgomery , AL 36104
Degree Awarded: Accredited Baccalaureate HIM Program

2. Bishop State Community College

1365 Dr. Martin Luther King Avenue
Mobile, AL 36603
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program

Degree’s and Certificate’s offered:

  • Health Information Technology (AAS Degree)
  • Medical Coding (MC) – Short Certificate
  • Medical Transcripts (MTR) – Short Certificate
  • Office Administration (AAS Degree)

3. University of Alabama at Birmingham

WEBB 550
1530 3rd AVE S
Birmingham, AL 35294-3361
Degree Awarded: Accredited Baccalaureate HIM Program

Degree’s and Certificate’s offered:

  • B.S. Health Information Management
  • M.S. Health Informatics
  • M.S. Health Administration

4. Wallace State Community College

P.O. Box 2000
801 Main Street NW
Hanceville, AL 35077
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate HIM Program

Degree’s and Certificate’s offered:

  • Associate Health Information Technology
  • Medical Coding Certificate (CCA)
Posted in Health information Technology Programs.

Health Information Technology Programs in Alaska


There is only one Health information technology program that is accredited by the CAHIIM (Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education) in Alaska.

  • In 2009, tuition at University of Alaska Southeast, was approximately $4,888 per year.
  • Health information technicians in Alaska earn an average hourly wage of $19.59, and have an average annually salary of $40,740 according to the Bureau of labor statistics www.bls.gov.
  1. University of Alaska Southeast

1332 Seward Ave
UAS Sitka Campus
Sitka, AK 99835
Degree Awarded: Accredited Associate Applied Science HIM Program

Degree’s / Programs Offered

  • Associate of Applied Science in Health Information Management (HIM)
  • Health Information Technology Occupational Endorsement – 15 credit hour’s for entry-level health information technology specialist or related occupation.
  • Coding Specialist Certificate – 30 credit hours
  • Healthcare privacy and security certificate – 30 credit hours
Posted in Health information Technology Programs.

Health Information Technology Salary


The salaries of different health information technology jobs depend on a variety of factors such as:

  • What type of education or certification’s? 
  • Where do they work? hospital, doctors office, government?
  • How long have they been working in health information technology?
  • In which state are they employed?
  • Rural area, or Big City?

 

health information technology salary

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Medical Records / Health Information technician Salary

According to Payscale.com,  the average salary of someone working as a health information technician is between $21,015 – $41,330 with a median salary of $28,313. In addition, 89 percent of people working in  medical records are female.

Read this article for more information about How to become a Registered Health Technician.

Health Information Management Salary

According to Payscale.com, the average health information management salary is $26,394. The majority of people working in this profession are female (96 percent) and 46 percent have been working in the field for 1-4 years.

Registered Health Information Administrator Salary

According to Payscale.com the average health information administration salary $42,962. Furthermore, 65 percent of those working is the field have 1-4 years of work experience.

More information about How to become a Registered Health Information Administrator

Health Information Management (HIM) Director Salary

According to the 234 people surveyed on Payscale.com the average salary of a Health information Management Director is between $37,090 – $101,707 with a median salary of $63,169. Most people working in this profession have a health information technology degree, health information technology certification, or have a certified coding specialist (CCS) certificate.  In addition, 50 percent of people working in this profession have 10 years or more experience.

The Main Tasks of a Health Information Management Director Include:

  • Keep track of, and ensure effective use of department resources.
  • Develop and observe computerized record administration system processes.
  • Create and implement organizational policies and procedures pertaining to patient data companies.
  • Oversee staff operations, business planning in addition to budget development.
  • Plan and direct the medical information management program areas, ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements.

Health Information Management Salary (Manager)

According to Payscale.com  the average salary health information manager salary is $48,902. California has the highest paid salary which goes well into the six figures depending on how many years of work experience you have.

The main tasks of a Health Information Manager Include:

  • Oversee and supervise staff on the medical records service department.
  • Manage the recruitment, training, and development of staff in the medical records department.
  • Supervise the release of information to insurance and government agencies in accordance with regulations.
  • Assist with financial operations, which includes budget planning, in addition to financial reporting.
  • Monitor all areas of medical records department ensuring services are in compliance with state and federal regulatory specifications.

Resources

For more information about different health information technician salaries in every state, click the Bureau of Labor Statistics link below.

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292071.htm

Posted in Health Information Technology Salary.

Financial Aid for your Health Information Management Degree

Every year there is millions of dollars in financial aid from the government that goes untouched by students who would qualify if they had just applied for it. Check with your Schools Financial aid department to see if you qualify for financial aid,  you might be able to earn your health information management degree for free 😉

Health information technology Financial Aid

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Eligibility

Your eligibility is determined by your financial need which is calculated using this formula:

Financial need = Cost of Attendance – Expected Family Contribution

If you live with your parents and they claim you as dependent, then your need is based on their income.

If you claim yourself as independent on your income taxes, then its more than likely that you are eligible for financial aid.

Visit the Federal Student Aid website, FAFSA ,and fill out an application to see if you qualify for Financial Aid.

Health Information Technology Scholarships

Federal Pell Grants

  • Does not have to be repaid
  • Maximum amount $5,500 per year
  • Based on financial standings, undergraduate, Full Time/Part Time student, expected family contribution

Federal supplemental educational opportunity grants

  • For students with exceptional need. You can receive from $100-$4000 depending on your circumstances
  • http://studentaid.ed.gov

Federal Work Study

  • Provides jobs, hands on experience, minimum wage pay.

Federal Perkins Loan

  • Low interest rate %5
  • Must be paid in a 10 year period
  • Your eligibility depends on your level of financial need.
  • You can borrow up to $5,500 for each year for undergrad and $8,000 for each year of grad school.
  • The total amount you can borrow for grad and undergrad combined is $60,000. After graduation if you are employed in certain public, military, or teaching service positions you may be eligible to have part or all of your loans canceled.

Parental Loans for Undergrad Students (PLUS)

  • Parents with good credit history can borrow money for a child who is dependent. Parents must complete forms and send them to the school.
  • A plus loan equals the cost of attendance minus any other financial aid you receive. For example if the cost of tuition is $10,000 and you receive $3,000 in financial aid, your parents can borrow up to $7,000.

Loan Repayment

After you graduate with your degree you have a grace period of 6-9 months where you don’t have to pay your loans. Afterwards, when you are working, your loan payments are paid monthly and the amount depends on your salary

Posted in Health Information Careers.

How to Highlight Health Information Technology Skills on your Resume




A resume is a one page summary that introduces you to the employers who will eventually hire you. Employers for health information technology jobs look at resumes to quickly filter out unqualified job candidates. A well written resume reflects your education, work experience, and skills, which can land you an interview, and possibly a job.

When writing your resume make sure you thoroughly assess all of your skills, accomplishments, and strengths. Brainstorm and gather information about yourself by writing down your previous jobs and past accomplishments.

Health Information technology Resume

“Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”

Ask yourself:

What do I bring to the table?

what are the company’s or employers needs?

What are they looking for?

If you take the time to compose a thoughtful resume, you will surely increase your chances of landing a job.

Elements of a Resume

Heading

This is the first thing a potential employer will see and should contain all of your updated contact information including your name, home address, phone number, email address. You may also include your website in this element.

Objective

This is where you put the direction of your career and where you see yourself working in the field. Keep it to one or two sentences, short and to the point. You can also insert a keyword here that targets the specific job you are looking for, but it’s not necessary.

Education

If you’re applying for an entry level job with no work experience, the education section is the most important element of your resume. Include any health information technology degree or health information technology certification you have received, your area of study, graduation date, and any honors you have earned.  List your most recent school first, and if you have completed college then do not list your high school. You can also list your GPA here if it’s above average.

Work Experience

This is the heart and soul of your resume. You want to carefully examine your former positions, present your transferable skills, and highlight your qualifications. Make sure you include all the necessary information about each of your jobs, including job title, dates of employment, name of employer, city, state, responsibilities, projects you worked one, and accomplishments. Start the list with your most recent job first, then work your way backwards in reverse chronological order.

Professional Memberships

This section is for listing your involvement in any professional organizations, associations, and memberships. For example, American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) , American Association of Professional Coders (AAPC)

Special Skills

Use this element to list any special skills or talents you may have that pertain to the job you are seeking in addition to specific skills and knowledge of computer applications. Special skills may include fluency in Spanish, Microsoft Excel, and specific health information technology training such as:

Specific Skills

  • Medical coding
  • Knowledge of Health Information management
  • Icd-9-dm coding
  • Medical records computer applications
  • Medical terminology
  • Inpatient coding

Activities

In you were active in different clubs and organizations as a student then list them in this section. An employer likes someone who has good social skills, leadership qualities, and the ability to work in a group setting. Activities can also include any volunteer positions or community service you may have been involved with.

References

References are generally not written on the resume itself, but employers want to know that you have references available. All you have to do is include a sentence such as “References Available Upon Request” Make sure to contact your reference’s ahead of time to let them know that employers might be contacting them.

Writing your Resume

When writing your resume its not about using proper grammar, instead use short, concise sentences that demonstrate your initiative. Start each bullet point with an action word or verb that displays one of your strengths.

Organized                       Administered              Implemented           Researched

Maintained                     Billed                             Managed                    Recorded

Built                                 Collected                       Assembled                Improved

Make a list of your transferable skills and combine them with action words to form a bullet point sentence. Although in the job interview it’s not enough just to list the skills, you have to demonstrate how you use them, and how they can be  transferred to your new role. List specific projects you worked on.

Transferable skills:

  • Informatics
  • Business environment skills
  • Communication and coordination
  • Problem solving
  • Basic Patient Care
  • Medical specialties
  • Project and process flow skills
  • Advanced patient care
  • Administrative support
  • Network administration

Sample Resume

Here is a Sample Resume of a Health Information Technology Professional.

Posted in Health Information Careers, Health Information Technology Jobs.

How to Land a Job in Health Information Technology




health information technology salary

Image courtesy of jannoon028 / Freedigitalphotos.net

Experience

Healthcare employers are looking to hire candidates who already have relevant work experience. A great way to gain experience in the health information technology field is to Volunteer at you local doctors office, hospital, or senior center. For more info check out my guest post on Wingofzock.org about How to Recruit, Hire, and Retain HIT Professionals.

During your volunteer period try to Job Shadow someone who works in Health Information Technology. You will see what a day in their life looks like, and can help you decide if it’s the right career path for you.

Network

Your network of friends and family is a great asset for job hunting. Put the word out  that you are looking for health information technology jobs. Get involved in groups relating to health IT, connect with other professionals, and and join professional organizations.

Professional Health IT Organizations

Social Networks

Get connected with people online and join health information related groups on Facebook & Linked In.

Job Search

Cast a wide net by using several job search methods. Take advantage of all the resources available to you.

  • If you are in college, visit the Career Services Center and attend your school’s Job Fairs.
  • Check the Help Wanted ads in your local newspaper in addition to Health IT Online Job Boards.
  • Find local Employment Agencies, Recruiters, & Temp Agencies.
  • Drop off a Resume at your local doctors office and hospital.

Education

Most Entry level health information technology jobs require that you have at least a high school diploma and some professional training or a health information technology certification.

Read this article for more information about Health Information Technology Certification

 Interview

You want to make a great first impression during your initial interview. First, you may have to go through a screening interview, typically done on the phone, to see if you are qualified. Its a good idea to have your resume on hand so you can highlight your relevant experience, education, and training.

Preparing for the interview

Research the company you are going to interview with. Read through their website, especially the “about us” page, so you know a bit about them, and shows your interest in getting the job.

Interview Questions

In general, the interviewer is asking you questions to determine if you are the right person for the job. You want to answer the questions honestly, while highlighting your strengths. Show examples of how you overcame challenges in your previous job, and talk about your passion for health information technology.

At the end of the interview the interviewer might ask if you have any questions. Its a good idea to have some questions prepared. For example:

  • What type of career opportunities are available for my level of training and skills?
  • What are the biggest challenges of this job?
  • How is an employee promoted? Is it company policy to promote from within?
  • Describe the typical first year assignments

Follow Up

Always send a follow up email  to the interviewer thanking them for their time and expressing interest in the job.

Sometimes people get busy and forget to get back to you, so keep following up to see what’s the status .

Posted in Health Information Careers, Health Information Technology Jobs.

8 Most Popular Health Information Technology Certificate’s and Degree’s




The type of health information technology degree or health information technology certification you pursue depends on your desired career path. For more information check out Health IT Degree’s VS Certificate’s .

These eight are the most popular health information technology degrees and certificates:

  1. Mastery Coding Credentials (CCS, CCS-P)
  2. 6 Month Certificate Programs
  3. Associate Degree in Health Information Technology (HIT)
  4. Bachelor’s Degree in Health Information Administration (HIA)
  5. Advanced Credentials (CHDA/CHPS)
  6. Masters Degree in Health Information Management (HIM)
  7. Masters Degree in Health Informatics

Coding Certificate Program (CCA) (CPC)

Earning a Certified Coding Associate certificate can land you an entry level position as a medical coder in one year or less. This is a great way to get into the field without having any previous experience working in health information technology jobs.

A Medical Coder assigns numeric codes to patient records which allows insurance companies to process their claims. In addition, medical coders usually work in the finance department of hospitals or a physicians office entering patients information into a computer database.

The average salary for a medical coder is $36,850 and the job is in high demand. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is a need for 50,000 more qualified medical coders by the year 2015.

The only education required to earn your medical coding certificate is a high school diploma. In addition, AHIMA recommends at least 6 months of experience in a healthcare organization applying ICD-9-CM and CPT coding conventions and guidelines before taking the exam.

For more information about coding certificates and requirements please visit:

Mastery Coding Credentials (CCS, CCS-P)

Certified Coding Specialist is highly skilled in classifying patients medical records and health information. To become eligible for the CCS exam requires at least 2 years of on the job experience in medical coding. The average salary for a Certified Coding Specialist is $56,772

Coding practitioners:Health information technology degree

  • Review patients medical records and assign numeric codes for every diagnosis and procedure
  • Demonstrate an expertise in the ICD-9-CM and CPT coding systems
  • Understand medical terminology, disease processes, and pharmacology

Health Information Technology Certification Programs


In 2009 the Obama administration enacted the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act) which allocated more than $25 billion to help promote the adoption of health information technology by the US healthcare system. The money from the HITECH Act goes to funding health information technology programs at community colleges, grants, and health information technology training which can provide students with a 6 month certificate.

The  programs provide job training for these six role based areas:

These health information technology certification programs are best suited for someone who is already working in healthcare and wants to learn additional job skills that relate to health information management and the implementation of electronic medical records in hospitals and doctors offices.

Associate’s Health Information Technology Degree (HIT)

This is two year degree which gives you basic health information technology training working with electronic medical records, health information data, and medical billing. You can also earn this health information technology online.

If you want to become a Registered Health information Technician (RHIT) then make sure the health information technology program you choose is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management (CAHIIM) because those are the regulations given by AHIMA.

There is a great job outlook for a trained health information technician with a predicted increase in demand of 21 percent by 2020. According to Payscale.com the average health information salary for a trained technician is $32,220.

Health information technology degree

Healthcare Information Administration Bachelor’s Degree

You can earn a four year B.S. Healthcare Administration Degree to begin your career in healthcare information managementAlternatively, you can pursue two year post bachelors healthcare administration certificate that will help advance your career if you’re already working in healthcare IT or want to transition into the field.

Image courtesy of "jscreationzs" / freedigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy of “jscreationzs” / freedigitalphotos.net

One of the most in demand health information technology jobs available with this degree is a health information administrator. This a versatile profession with high demand in hospitals, doctors offices, software development, government agencies, consulting services, education, and pharmaceutical companies.

People working in the profession report to having a high job satisfaction. The health information management salary varies significantly depending on your location, work environment, and experience with a range between $50,000 – $75,000.

Working as an intermediary between health care providers, insurances companies, and patients the HIA:

  • Collects, analyses, and manages patients medical records and health information data
  • Administers computer information systems, including accuracy of medical records and coding
  • Demonstrates expertise in using classification systems and medical terminology
  • Knowledgable of legal requirements and security standards relating to the release of patients information to persons and agencies
  • Performs administrative tasks such as preparing budgets, managing people and operational units, and recruiting and training staff
  • Communicates with all levels of the organization including financial, administrative, clinical, and information systems that use patient data in everyday operations.

Advanced Credentials ( CHDA/CHPS )

Certified Health Data Analyst (CHDA) credential is for individuals who want to receive recognition of their expertise in health information data analysis. It validates commitment to the health information field and mastery of the domain.To attain the credential typically requires 4-5 years of work experience in health information technology jobs and a bachelor’s degree, or a RHIA credential and 1 year of work experience. Once you meet these educational requirements you have to take a national exam.

A Certified in Healthcare Privacy and Security (CHPS) credential signifies:

  • Expertise in planning, executing, and administering privacy and security protection programs in healthcare organizations.
  • Specialized skill set in the privacy and security aspects of health information management
  • Demonstrates commitment to the privacy and security field and professional development

To receive the CHPS credential, candidates must have at least 4-5 years of work experience in healthcare privacy and security management and pass a national exam.

health information technology careers

Masters in Health Information Management

Health information management is a challenging and rewarding career for people interested in technology, medicine, and management. It usually takes 2 years to earn your Masters degree in Health Information Management (HIM) which can lead to more opportunities for career advancement and a higher salary. You can become a director of Health Information Management and earn an average salary of $80,000. Health information Directors manage a large team of people responsible for on-site client HIM and coding operations. 

 In addition, the job responsibilities of an HIM director include:

  • Review coding performance, implements policies to support revenue cycle, and accomplishes business objectives
  • Establish and maintain professional relationships with state and national organizations to understand future health information technology trends
  • Demonstrate leadership skills and take initiative to solve problems
  • Monitor the accuracy of coding inpatient and outpatient records according to regulations
  • Accountable for the performance and improvement of coding department services

Masters in Health Informatics

If you want to advance your career in health information technology and become a Director of Clinical Informatics, Chief Clinical Informatics Officer, or any other health informatics executive position, then you must first earn your Master’s Degree in Health Informatics.

Most master’s degree programs take 2 years to complete with the academic side focusing on a combination of information systems, informatics, and information technology. Individuals who earn a master’s degree in health informatics are in high demand, and will have more opportunities for career advancement available to them.

By earning your masters degree in health informatics and having 4-5 years of work experience in health information, its possible to earn a six figure salary in states such as California, Georgia, and Texas.

Posted in Health Information Careers, Health Information Technology Salary.

How to Pursue a Career as a Health Information Technician (HIT)




If you want to jump start your career in health information technology, working as a health information technician can give you valuable work experience and a better understanding of the health IT field. Then you can choose to move up the career ladder to higher positions.

Health Information Technician

Health information technician

Job Description

It may come as no surprise that health information technicians work mainly with health information data.

The most common work environments are hospitals, doctor’s office’s, and insurance agencies.

Most HIT’s work full-time, 40 hour work week’s, spending most of there day at a desk working on a computer.

They mainly organize and review medical records, while checking for accuracy and completeness. In addition, they regularly communicate with doctor’s, insurance providers, other healthcare professionals to gather more information about a patients medical records.

Job Duties:

  • Electronically record health information data
  • Review patient’s medical records checking for accuracy and completeness
  • Scan patient forms and medical documents
  • Classify and code patient information for insurance reimbursement
  • Maintain and organize health information database and registries

Education & Training

There are multiple ways to pursue a career as a health information technician.

  • Associate degree in Medical Technology or Health Information Management
  • Bachelor’s degree in Health information technology
  • Bachelors degree in Computer Science
  • Certificate program in Medical technology

If you’re still in high school its a good idea to prepare by taking course in health, math, and computer science to increase your chances of admission into a college health information technology program. Furthermore, If you plan on pursuing a career as a health information manager or another higher paying position in the future, then you will need at least a bachelors degree to qualify.

Certification

There are several ways to become certified as a medical coder once you complete your HIT program. For more information about health information technology certification please visit the links below:

If you want to pursue a career as a Registered Health information technician (RHIT) then make sure the health information technology schools and programs you are looking at are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Health Informatics and Information Management (CAHIIM.  Your program has to be approved in order for you to become eligible to obtain the RHIT certificate. It is also possible to earn your health information technology degree online as long as the school is approved. Furthermore, to obtain the RHIT certificate you must pass an exam given by AHIMA that will be testing your knowledge of health data management, health statistics, information technology and systems, biomedical research, quality management, and health services organization.

Job Outlook

Due to the aging population of the baby boomers there is going to be increased demand for all health care professionals. According to the US bureau of labor, employment of health information technicians is predicted to increase by 21 percent by 2020. In addition, as more healthcare providers continue to adopt health information technology, there will be more demand for health information technicians.

health information technician job

For More Information about Health information technicians Salary

Posted in Health Information Careers, Health Information Technology Jobs, Health Information Technology Salary.