Navigating into the IT Health Care field
There has been a lot of attention and push toward integrating technology into healthcare and the requirement for staffing positions that can’t be filled from those already working in the field. If you are looking to make a move from another sector, this could be the perfect opportunity.
The biggest challenge is breaking into the industry – getting your foot in the door, without any medical job experience or advanced education in a medical related area. Many companies often want to recruit people who already have healthcare experience, especially for more senior roles. There has also not been a lot out there on skills requirements and a path to acquiring the skills needed. However, in doing research on this we did come across a report by the University of California San Diego Extension. The report “2011 Hot Careers for College Graduates” aimed to reveal the top jobs for both recent grads and those in mid-career.
Researchers compiled the data based on college enrollment figures, national employment statistics, and interviews with executives in San Diego. The federal mandate to implement EHRs (electronic health records) creates a need for health care integration engineers, health care systems analysts, clinical IT consultants and technology support specialists, the report states.
“Jobs and needs in the health care information technology field are a critical component of plans for positive change in the health care industry,” wrote Mary Walshok, associate vice chancellor of public programs and dean of UC SD Extension, in the report.
“Although much of the anticipated reform for the U.S. health care system revolves around financial incentives and risk, achieving the cost efficiencies necessary to support that reform depends on more aggressive application of information technology to daily health care operations,” she added.
In 2008, EHR and health information technicians held 172,500 jobs, according to the report. In the following decade (2008-2018), jobs in this area will grow by 20 percent.
How to navigate into this field from another is the challenge that we are seeing now. Our next blog will focus on just that.