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What Is a Health Information Management Consultant and How to Become One

What Is a Health Information Management Consultant?

Health information management (HIM) is the practice of gathering, analyzing, and safeguarding health information for hospitals and healthcare and insurance companies. This information includes things like X-rays, patient records, lab results, and other clinical information that make up a person’s medical history. The duties and responsibilities of a health information management consultant are to assist an organization in making its information and documentation operations more efficient, easier to use, and safer. As a health information management consultant, you are contracted by a company or organization to audit its current system and develop a new one in consultation with workers and managers.

How Do I Become a Health Information Management Consultant?

To become a health information management consultant, you need educational qualifications and experience in the HIM field. Specifically, you need a bachelor’s degree in health informatics or a closely related subject. Health informatics is an applied field of information science that deals with information processing and engineering. In addition to your education, it is helpful to have health information management experience and certification as a Registered Health Information Administrator. With these credentials, you can then join a consulting firm that specializes in HIM, or you can find work as a freelancer.

What Is the Job Outlook for Health Information Management Consultants?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical and health services manager positions are projected to grow by 20 percent in the next decade, which is much quicker than the average for all jobs. This area includes health information management positions, and the BLS notes that the demand for workers with informatics and database training skills are in especially high demand. This is due in large part to more healthcare companies, hospitals, and other medical facilities transitioning to using electronic health records, which creates the need for health information management consultants to provide solutions for and developing new HIM systems, better database security, and routine maintenance.