The healthcare industry is evolving quickly in response to heightened expectations for improved accessibility and greater security. At the same time, the demand for health informatics specialists has grown, too, as meticulous minds are needed to gather, analyze, catalogue and qualify patient and provider data. For graduates of our online health informatics programs, the field of opportunity is vast, and considerable job growth is projected across the next decade.
Although Kent State University is proud to staff a Career Services office, job placement is not a specific service available through the online Master of Science in Health Informatics (HI) and online Postbaccalaureate Certificate in Health Informatics programs. However, while you are a student, we make every effort to expose you to possible employers, and many of the classes include interviews with practicing informaticians as part of the coursework. When requested, faculty will make introductions for you and, if you choose an internship or a project during the final project phase, the many on-site preceptors in our internship sites also help with introductions.
If you live in Northeast Ohio, you may be able to take advantage of the internship programs we maintain with area hospitals. In addition to hospital partnerships, we also have very strong connections with the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) through the Innovation Center in Cleveland. In fact, one of our graduates completed her internship at the HIMSS Innovation Center and is now the HIMSS manager of interoperability initiatives.
In addition to Cleveland's HIMSS Innovation Center, we also maintain strong ties with the Northern Ohio Chapter of HIMSS (NOHIMSS), where Dr. Hudak is on the Board of Directors. With this partnership, we have multiple student volunteer opportunities at the HIMSS conferences and offer limited free registrations to students who want to attend (students who volunteer can also attend the conference with their registration paid). NOHIMSS also provides a reduced rate for students at all the conferences. Additional opportunities to volunteer and connect with professionals are available through the HIMSS Annual Conference, the IHE Connectathon and activities at the Innovation Center.
If you live outside of Ohio, your internship or project will be with a hospital or other healthcare venue in that area. Chances are very good that program faculty have ties to healthcare venues in your location.
Students who complete the online Master's in HI or the Postbaccalaureate Certificate, provided they also have appropriate experience, may sit for either of the following exams:
For more information about these exams, please visit the HIMSS website to read about available Health IT certifications.
Because the online MS in HI and Postbaccalaureate Certificate programs are not the same as a Health Information Management program, neither will prepare students to sit for the Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) licensure exam. There are critical differences between the professional disciplines and competency areas associated with health informatics compared to health information management, and Kent's HI programs are not designed to qualify students for RHIA licensure. Please reference this document for further explanation of the differences between HI and health information management.
No credentials exist for the Postbaccalaureate Certificate. Students who graduate from the master's program may use MSHI after their names.
You will simply list your Postbaccalaureate Certificate on your resume or Curriculum Vitae under "Education" as Certificate in Health Informatics. There is no certificate number. It is not a license or a degree.
No. CAHIMS or CPHIMS certification is independent of accreditation.
No, if you decide that you need time off due to personal reasons, you may request a leave of absence. To be eligible for a leave of absence, a student must be seeking a graduate degree, have completed at least one full term of enrollment prior to the date a leave is to begin, be in good academic standing and be making reasonable progress toward the degree. Leaves will not be granted to students who fit one of the following criteria:
1. Completed less than one full term of enrollment
2. Not in good academic standing
3. Received an extension of the time limit on the degree
Leaves of absence are granted for a maximum of three consecutive terms (e.g., fall, spring, summer). Students may request an extension for a maximum of one additional term. Although a leave may be taken for as many as 12 months, students are encouraged to return to graduate study as soon as is reasonably possible to minimize the impact of the leave on degree progress. The time taken on an approved leave of absence is not included in the time limitations for degree completion.