Best guide on becoming a health information technician: You need an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in health information technology to work as a health information technician. You can enroll in courses in computer science, medical coding, medical billing, how healthcare is paid for, and healthcare statistics in these programs.
The RHIT (Registered Health Information Technician), RHIA (Registered Health Information Administrator), and CCA (Certified Clinical Auditor) qualifications are among the many that health information technicians pursue (Certified Coding Associate). You must possess strong technical, analytical, and attention-to-detail abilities to succeed as a health information technologist.
There is a vast universe of healthcare information hidden behind the bustling emergency rooms, doctor’s offices, and all other healthcare facilities where patients go that is crucial to providing quality care. You might do well as a health information technician if gathering and keeping track of data that aids medical professionals, nurses, and other professionals in making decisions excite you.
This career guide will teach you everything you need to know about becoming a health information technologist. This covers the educational prerequisites, licenses, regular duties, and average time to start a new profession as a health information technician.
Recommended: Society for Family Health Job Vacancies 2023/2024
Health Information Technician Job Description
What does a Health Information Technician do?
To clarify diagnoses or obtain further information as needed, health information technologists collaborate with registered nurses, doctors, and other healthcare professionals rather than with patients. The collection and analysis of data by health information technicians and administrative staff help healthcare facilities streamline operations and make operational improvements. They collaborate with administrative employees to classify patient data and check and classify it.
Duties of a Health Information Technician
Some daily tasks performed by health information technicians include:
- Keeping records of each patient’s medical history and follow-up data
- Up-to-date information must be maintained in healthcare software and registries.
- grouping crucial information to make it simple to find and study
- Using data analysis to support management or administrative teams
- preserving the privacy of patient medical information
- supplying information in response to demands for records, permissions, or other legal proposals
Health information technician qualifications
You must be adept at assessing situations and paying close attention to details to become a successful health information technologist. As a health information technician, you will evaluate medical data that must be thoroughly examined and organized into categories for the benefit of particular patients and the accomplishment of your healthcare facility. Additionally, you’ll need to be able to communicate with everyone regarding patient information or data inconsistencies, including doctors, nurses, and members of the finance or administrative teams. Additionally, as you’ll be working with patient information covered by tight privacy rules, you must have a strong ethical sense.
In what locations do They do their work?
Most health information technologists are employed by hospitals or by private medical practices. However, several positions are available in the federal government, health insurance firms, and administration of the healthcare industry. Health information technicians often put in about 40 hours each week. Even though most places have set business hours, hospitals that offer 24-hour care may require staff to work evening or overnight shifts.
What type of education is required?
One of the best ways to start a career as a health information technician is to complete an Allied Health program at a recognized institution or university. You can begin your career as a health information technician once you have earned your associate’s degree in Allied Health. Additionally, you’ll possess a set of abilities that apply to several other positions in the healthcare industry. If you already have an Allied Health diploma, you can finish your Associate of Applied Science in Allied Health in as little as 30 weeks, as opposed to the years many associate degrees require!
Just like any other long-term goal, working toward a new profession as a health information technician becomes much more manageable when broken down into smaller phases. Here is a step-by-step explanation of the training, credentials, and experience required to become a health information technician:
1. Enroll in an allied health degree program
You will be a strong candidate for positions as a health information technician if you earn an associate’s degree in allied health. Once you get your foot in the door, you’ll have a lot of opportunities to advance in your career because of the knowledge you gain about the healthcare sector as a whole.
If you already have an allied health certificate, earning an Associate of Applied Science degree is a terrific way to stand out in a crowded job market. Additionally, it is simple to comprehend. For instance, at Brookline College, if you already have your Allied Health diploma, all you need to enroll in the Associate of Applied Science in Allied Health program is a high school diploma or GED, a passing score on the Scholastic Level Exam, and a computer literacy exam.
Recommended: Public Health Degree Jobs in 2023
2. Earn your Allied Health Associate’s Degree.
Most of your associate’s degree program will help you develop into a more well-rounded professional with a greater understanding of the healthcare business because you’ll be transferring credit hours from your Allied Health certificate. Due to this, you’ll succeed as a healthcare information technology and find it simpler to advance to management roles.
Your Allied Health degree program will contain general education classes in math, English, and social and behavioral sciences, just like any other associate’s degree program. These will assist you in acquiring the communication and critical thinking abilities you’ll need to succeed in your new position in the medical industry.
Your Allied Health degree concentration courses will teach you about finance, marketing, accounting, and management from the perspective of the healthcare sector. This will provide you with various skills that will help you advance in your career and guarantee that you are prepared for your role as a health information technologist.
No matter where you choose to earn your associate’s degree in allied health, you may wish to research colleges or universities that assist graduates in finding work. It can be helpful to have someone on your side who is aware of what employers look for as you transition from graduating from college to landing your first position as a health information technician.
3. Get credentials to distinguish yourself.
Many organizations will be highly interested in hiring health information technicians that have earned their Registered Health Information Technician certification (RHIT). It’s a fantastic tool to teach you the fundamentals of managing medical data. The RHIT exam is a timed, computer-based test that typically takes 3.5 hours to complete and has 130–160 questions. Exam topics will range from compliance guidelines and best data handling practices to privacy regulations. You may learn more about RHIT certification and the specifics of the exam from the American Health Information Management Association.