entering nursing informatics

  1. OK, I'm a 24 year old female who is in the process of finishing a bachelor of science in computer information systems degree. The problem is that since the IT industry is really slow right now, I want to possible link my career to something that is healthcare related. I have heard that it is possible to get a BSN after 12 to 14 months if one already has a 4year degree. I currently work with health information management/medical records at a hospital and have 6 years experience. How do I go about entering the field of informatics?.....is an RN degree the best way to go?

    I would appreciate any comments or advice on this subject from anyone. Ihave considered a masters in informatics, but I notice there is a prefference for health proffessionals in the industry.
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   NRSKarenRN
    An RN degree is NOT necessary to enter but would be a plus.

    Your 6 years experience in health information management/medical records would be a definate plus in informatics along with BS in computer information systems. I don't think adding an RN degree is necessary.

    Found this article @ Nuring Spectrum 7/18/03:

    Is Nursing Informatics in Your Skills Mix?
    Barbara Carty, RN, EdD, FAAN

    http://nsweb.nursingspectrum.com/cff...nformatics.cfm

    Explore the links to give you more info about this field. Several have listserve that you can join.

    Also see:
    A New Definition for Nursing Informatics
    http://www.advancefornurses.com/comm...l.aspx?CC=7428

    Here is link to list of Informatic websites to browse:
    http://www.ania.org/linksAndResources.asp

    Send an email to: RNinformatics@msn.com if more info desired.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Jul 19, '03
  4. by   rninformatics
    Originally posted by adahope
    OK, I'm a 24 year old female who is in the process of finishing a bachelor of science in computer information systems degree. The problem is that since the IT industry is really slow right now, I want to possible link my career to something that is healthcare related. I have heard that it is possible to get a BSN after 12 to 14 months if one already has a 4year degree. I currently work with health information management/medical records at a hospital and have 6 years experience. How do I go about entering the field of informatics?.....is an RN degree the best way to go?

    I would appreciate any comments or advice on this subject from anyone. Ihave considered a masters in informatics, but I notice there is a prefference for health proffessionals in the industry.
    Hello adahope,

    The first thing you need to ask yourself is: what exactly do I want to do in healthcare informatics or health care IT/IS?

    Does your interest lie in systems installation/implementation (if so what type of systems: financial, billing, HIS (hospital information system), or department specific systems such as LIS (laboratory informaton system) or applications that support ADT, PACS, etc. Are you interested in project management, system design or training?

    Your biggest hurdle in getting started will be a lack of previous healthcare specific IT/IS experience. Your medical records background, familiarity with coding and knowledge of confidentiality of medical records should serve you well.

    If your desire is to work with clinical systems, although a hands on clinical background would be invaluable it is not mandatory. Nursing is extremely challenging and rewarding. If your desire is to become a nurse - go for it.

    Decide what direction you would like your career to go and take it from there.
    Last edit by rninformatics on Jul 19, '03
  5. by   Mariah
    I'm a nurse and a software engineer and I know very much the difficulties in the tech job market. If you are interested in getting a nursing degree because you really want to become a nurse, that is a wonderful aspiration. But if you are thinking about becoming a nurse just to go into health care informatics, I don't think that is necessary. There are many software engineers in the health care informatics area who are not clinicians. If you are interesting in software development, support, or other areas of information systems, then an RN degree would not be advantage. You background in medical records is already a great advantage for health care software engineering. Try position with vendors who develop or sell information systems. Remember also, that if you are hired in a position that requires RN degree rather than a position that requires a CS degree, you will probably be offered a significantly lesser salary or have a much lower top salary limit. An RN degree can be much more difficult to earn from an emotional and physical aspect than a CS degree. There are also master's degrees in medical informatics which accept non-clinician people. Check out this web page: http://www.amia.org/resource/acad&training/f1.html for more information

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