Which degree plan should I follow for Healthcare Informatics?

  1. 2
    I'm an RN who has basic computer knowledge who is interested in entering the IT field. I live in Houston, and I'm looking at various degree plans. I don't have a bachelor's degree yet. I'm considering getting my BSN just to have it and so anything past that can be considered postbacclaureate, taking only major-specific classes to go for another degree.

    1) BS in Information Systems Technology at UH. This has no healthcare-related classes, but it is a bachelor's degree and I've taken many of the pre-req classes required. This would also come in handy for working non-healthcare related fields.

    2) Associate's Degree in Health Information Technology. Health Informatics aren't so hot in the job market right now, and I really want a bachelor's, so I'd maybe do this after getting a bachelor's in nursing or IT.

    3) There are certificate programs in HIS for people with bachelor's degrees available, as well as graduate degrees.

    Right now, I'm really not familiar with HIS. All I know is that I'm not computer-illiterate (I have a MacBook Pro dual formatted). Should I go for a BSN or a BS in IST?
    angelita1017 and rninformatics like this.
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  3. 7 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Quote from PeachPie
    Should I go for a BSN or a BS in IST?
    Before investing your time and money, learn more about the specialty so you can decide what it is you want to do in IT/Informatics. Also ask yourself if you plan to continue to practice in nursing and IT or just IT?
    Good Luck
  5. 0
    Quote from rninformatics
    Before investing your time and money, learn more about the specialty so you can decide what it is you want to do in IT/Informatics. Also ask yourself if you plan to continue to practice in nursing and IT or just IT?
    Good Luck
    I'm trying to get out of nursing because it's so dangerous, although I'll always keep my license up to date. However, I do have healthcare knowledge and it would be a pity to waste it.
  6. 1
    I hear ya. I am a RN BSN in the same boat but I am familiar in MS office and pretty computer literate. I do work at 2 hospitals now that use CPOE and cerner millenium and have seen a few types of these clinical apps but still dont know where to start re: the post bac certs so thanks for that link! and good luck as well!
    rninformatics likes this.
  7. 2
    Hi PeachPie. I have actually decided to pursue a degree in health information management which includes some health care informatics courses in my program. Like you, I don't want to have to always rely on my RN license. I may pursue a MSN in informatics in the future (I'm a school freak). Today, every medical and health related discipline seems to incorporate or plans to incorporate informatics into their curriculum.
    angelita1017 and rninformatics like this.
  8. 0
    If one already has a BSN, like myself, and a solid clinical foundation, which Masters would be best to obtain? Is there one sole option? ANd/or what is the benefits of the post-bacc certifications I have heard you can get related to HIM/Nurse Informatics? thanks Carly
  9. 1
    Hi angelita1017. My take on your question is that you could pursue informatics from several vantage points that I'm aware of whether that be nursing, health, or public health. Because I also have a BSN, I'm actually in a post-baccalaureate (P-B) HIM program. I was very happy to find I only needed half the required coursework to complete the P-B HIM program due to previous coursework years ago in an HIM program. I may or may not pursue a graduate degree once I complete this challenging program I'm in now. It depends on what type of jobs or careers are out there after I graduate. As rninformatics indicated, you want to know what your goals are before you invest in another educational program. Best wishes.
    angelita1017 likes this.
  10. 1
    The benefits of any advanced degree or certification all depend on what your career goals are.
    Maybe you already have a BSN and don't want (or feel you need) a Masters but you want additional education or credentialing in informatics and want to go the route of getting the certification via a college program.
    No there is not one single option, as far as Informatics related Masters degrees.
    Additonally there is the national certification offered by the ANA.

    I've covered the certification question extensively in multiple strings and posts:
    http://allnurses.com/nursing-informa...ed-363425.html
    http://allnurses.com/nursing-informa...ml#post3361466
    http://allnurses.com/nursing-informa...ml#post3237260
    http://allnurses.com/nursing-informa...ed-363425.html


    To learn more about the CPHIMS exam go to:
    http://www.himss.org/ASP/certification_cphims.asp

    To learn more about the Nursing Informatics Certification go to:
    http://nursingworld.org/MainMenuCate...ification.aspx

    Quote from angelita1017
    If one already has a BSN, like myself, and a solid clinical foundation, which Masters would be best to obtain? Is there one sole option? ANd/or what is the benefits of the post-bacc certifications I have heard you can get related to HIM/Nurse Informatics? thanks Carly
    Last edit by rninformatics on Aug 26, '09 : Reason: another link
    Skysail likes this.


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