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What Are the Courses in a Degree in Health Information Management?

Most businesses run on information, and the health care business is no exception. A bachelor's or master's degree program in health information management provides the graduate with core courses in managing people, managing data and managing the systems that put the two together. Continue reading to find out more about these courses.

Health Information Management Degree Information

A tremendous amount of information is used in the health care industry. Patient records and business operation information make up the data that is needed to operate a health facility in an effective and profitable manner. Degree programs specializing in health information management are offered at both the bachelor's and master's levels.

Important Facts About Degrees in Health Information Management

Prerequisites High school diploma or GED equivalent
Online Availability Yes, although some hands-on experience may be required
Concentrations Programming & data structures, information & communication technologies, health informatics
Possible Careers Clinical trials coordinator, system analyst, project manager
Median Salary (2019) $55,027*
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 13% (for all medical records and health information technicians)**

Sources: *PayScale.com, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Curriculum

The core courses of a health information management degree program provide proficiency in data security, business management and financial analysis. Bachelor's degree programs include general education courses in subjects such as mathematics, science and social studies. Some master's degree programs require a thesis or internship. Here are some common course topics usually included in these degree programs:

Information and Financial Management

One of the primary reasons for obtaining a degree in health information management is to be able to capture and analyze fiscal and patient data effectively. Core classes usually include analysis or research classes in these areas:

  • Health care and patient data
  • Cost classifications
  • Inventory & depreciation

Health Business Management

The business side of health information management is focused on running a health care facility efficiently and effectively. A health information manager may be in charge of a program or facility, but is more likely to manage the information technology (IT) portion of a health care program or institution. Core classes often include topics such as project management and business modeling. A study of the entire health care system helps to ground a student's understanding of current policy, regulations and trends.

Data Security and Information Technology

Health information management is needed to help maintain the security and privacy of patients and their records. Coursework such as principles of health information management is typical for the core program. The student may also learn about types of software used for health records. The study of risk assessment related to health information management is typically part of the coursework for a degree program.