Designed for working nurses, students can take two eight-week classes at a time. To apply for the program, prospective students must have a BSN degree, an active and unencumbered RN license, and at least two years of nursing experience.
Students in the program learn about health care policy and the rules and regulations regarding electronic medical records. The also learn how to implement and manage health information clinical and administrative systems, and to manage and mine data to improve patient care.
“Nurses have a decided advantage when it comes to health care informatics,” Richins said. “They are already the most frequent users of electronic health records and they have inside knowledge of the work flow of health care systems. They understand medical terminology and they interface with all providers including physicians and allied health professionals.
“More importantly, they have the necessary people skills. They know how to listen, critically interpret what they hear, and translate it into action.”
Nursing informatics is a good career path for someone who has been at the bedside for 10 to 15 years and looking to move into another area of nursing, she said.
“People interested in the field don’t have to be computer experts, but they need to be interested in information technology. The job calls for someone who is self-motivated, has good listening and critical-thinking skills, and likes to solve problems,” Richins said.
Graduates can find jobs with hospitals, public health organizations, doctors’ offices, research labs, medical software companies, insurance agencies, pharmaceutical companies and educational institutions, Richins said.
“Typically, salaries range from the $60,000s to the $80,000s,” she added.
To learn more, call 800-729-2427 or go to www.americansentinel.edu.