Is a Career in Health Information Management Right for You?

Health information management is an excellent career choice for many reasons. Many health information managers find the job highly rewarding with its primary focus on improving the quality of patient care in a diverse range of settings. Health information managers also tend to earn above-average salaries when compared to similar roles in the healthcare industry.  

Is a career in health information management right for you? Continue reading to learn more about this exciting role in the healthcare industry.  

What is Health Information Management (HIM)?

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) describes health information management as a mix of business, science and information technology.

A health information manager is responsible for planning, organizing, overseeing, and following up on all activities related to the management of health information. They maintain the integrity of both clinical and financial data and ensure that healthcare providers have access to timely, accurate and complete information. Health Information Managers are highly trained and skilled in the latest management and technology applications. They have a deep understanding of healthcare operations in various settings – ranging from private practices to large hospital systems.

5 Qualities of Successful Health Information Management Professionals

Qualities that successful HIM professionals possess include:

  • High Attention to Detail: accuracy is key for recording, managing, organizing and coding records.
  • Honesty and Integrity: sensitive patient and financial data must be handled with confidentiality and respect.
  • Excellent Communication Skills: discussions with physicians, executives and administrators is a big part of the job.
  • Analytical and Technical Skills: knowledge of the latest software and electronic health record systems is essential.  
  • Passion and Commitment: HIM professionals are passionate about patients and committed to quality care.

If you believe that you possess these qualities, then a career in Health Information Management may be the perfect career choice! 

Careers in Health Information Management

Health information management encompasses a wide range of job titles and settings.

Some of the most common options include:

Job Titles:

  • Department Director
  • Healthcare Data Analyst
  • Medical Research Analyst
  • Database Administration Manager
  • Data Quality Manager
  • Applications Systems Analyst

Job Settings:

  • Ambulatory Care
  • Hospitals
  • Long-Term Care Facilities
  • Mental Health Facilities
  • Nursing Homes and Managed Care
  • Private Physician Practices
  • Public Health Agencies
  • Educational Organizations
  • Government Agencies
  • Insurance Companies
  • Pharmaceutical Companies

While the exact job responsibilities will vary, some of the main duties of HIM professionals include:

  • Managing and protecting highly sensitive patient information such as lab results, diagnostic tests and clinical notes.
  • Coordinating between clinical, operational and administrative functions.
  • Maintaining accurate and organized electronic health records (EHR) to streamline processes and procedures. 
  • Embracing and implementing new standards, software, tools and technology to improve patient care and delivery. 
  • Classifying diseases and cataloging treatments to ensure clinical, financial and legal standardization.

Read read more about Health Information Management careers.

The Future of HIM: Career & Salary Outlook

Between 2018 and 2028, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects nearly 20% growth in employment for HIM professionals. This is nearly triple the anticipated growth for all other industries. This record growth can be attributed, in part, to the rapidly aging population, increasing demand for medical services and the transition to electronic health records (EHRs).  

There’s even more good news for those interested in a career in health information management in the U.S. According to CNBC, medical record/health information technicians are the 6th most in-demand healthcare job, and U.S. News & World Report lists medical and health service managers as:

  • #5 in Best Business Jobs
  • #13 in Best STEM Jobs
  • #25 in Best Paying Jobs
  • #29 in 100 Best Jobs

Health Information Management Degrees

Similar to many other fields, the more education and experience you have, the better your chances of landing a higher-level job (and a higher salary). For example, PayScale reports the following (average) salaries by education level:

The University of Cincinnati Online offers a Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management (HIM), which is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Health Information and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). 

Cahiim accreditation logo

Program Highlights:

  • The HIM program curriculum is ideal for Registered Health Information Technicians (RHITs) who are interested in becoming Registered Health Information Administrators (RHIAs). 
  • The online program offers flexible scheduling and can be completed in just 2 years!
  • RHIA exam pass rates for University of Cincinnati Online graduates averages over 90% (vs. national pass rate of 70%).
  • In the last semester, students are eligible to enroll in graduate-level courses (at undergraduate rates) for a seamless transition into our award-winning Master of Health Informatics Program

You can read more about our BS in Health Information Management program. Contact an enrollment advisor to help answer any questions.

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