The University of Cincinnati is a regionally accredited institution with a rich history of providing academic excellence to students both on campus and online. Our online Master of Health Informatics program provides students the best education available, giving the technical, analytic and critical thinking skills for a successful career in health informatics. Here’s how we stand out from the competition:
A Combination of Two Excellent Colleges
Our online Master of Health Informatics degree was born out of two excellent UC institutions: the College of Allied Health Sciences and the Carl H. Lindner College of Business. The curriculum combines classes from each school – for instance, IS 7033 Introduction to Statistics, and Healthcare Data Analytics and Business Intelligence is taught by the Lindner College, while the College of Allied Health Sciences teaches HI 7030 Health Information Legislation, Privacy and Security. This allows our faculty to provide an even balance of science, healthcare and business, resulting in a comprehensive overview on how the three intersect. In addition, this combination means we avoid leaning too heavily on one element of health informatics.
This gives our students a greater understanding of how concepts related to business and science, such as big data, are innovating the healthcare field. The potential to reform the industry is at hand, and professionals are already hard at work combining healthcare and tech – the Journal of Biomedical and Health Informatics has many great examples. In one, researchers used data from insurance claims to predict the length of a particular patient’s hospital stay. They used three years worth of admissions and insurance data – 242,075 claims in total – in their analysis.
The potential benefits of such research could revolutionize the way hospitals acquire and delegate resources. Better predictions on patient stays means they can more accurately determine how much staff, machines and basic tools they need on an average day. Hospitals could even better gauge the number of coffee cups they need in cafes and break rooms.
Another study used genomic profiles to understand drug sensitivities so doctors could better prescribe cancer drugs. Yet another used Twitter to track changes in human emotions in real time – a critical detail that traditional surveys can’t capture. With an online Master of Health Informatics degree from the University of Cincinnati, you can be on the cutting edge of these and other developments.
Our program is taught by some of the best faculty in the world of healthcare, business and technology. Dr. Victoria Wangia-Anderson, the director of the program, earned her PhD in Health Informatics in 2007. Pairing her education with national research, Wangia-Anderson has key insights into what students need to enter the health informatics profession. She knows employers want more than a solid background in healthcare, statistics, analytics and information technology. They also look for strong leadership and management skills, which are incorporated into our core courses.
The rest of our faculty are just as knowledgeable about the nuances of business, technology and healthcare. Dr. Denise White, our Data Analytics instructor, has obtained certification as a Project Management professional, a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Computer science, a master’s degree in Business Administration and a PhD in Operations Management with a focus on Health Care Operations. Her research focuses on hospital scheduling, flow and capacity management.
Dr. Andala Khan in an online adjunct professor at the University of Cincinnati and works at the CDC as part of the Division of Community Health and the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. Dr. Dong-Gil Ko has an MBA in International Business/Finance and a doctorate in Management of Information Systems paired with 30 years of supervising technology products. The rest of our faculty are just as experienced and committed to the success of their students.
A Focus on Diversity
Recently, more and more studies have shown discrepancies in the quality of healthcare that people of various minority groups receive. Research conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality found that while standards are improving overall, the disparities that remain aren’t shrinking at an acceptable rate. The survey measured variances across a variety of different criteria and found people in low-income households receive worse care than their more affluent peers across 60 percent of them. In addition, racial minorities, particularly African Americans, Hispanics, American Indians and Alaska Natives, receive worse care across 40 percent of quality measures compared to Caucasians. Asians received worse care across 20 percent of such standards. The measures tracked included care coordination, person-centered care, patient safety and effective treatment.
These issues don’t just apply to racial minorities and the poor. Separate research from the AHRQ pointed out these discrepancies are also seen among the disabled and LGBTQI individuals.
One way to reduce these discrepancies and ensure all communities have equal access to quality healthcare is for professionals to improve their cultural competence. This term describes the ability to base medical care on factors that are unique to certain populations without assuming that what applies to one applies to all.
While health informatics can’t force cultural competence within individuals, it can provide the data necessary for medical practitioners to challenge certain biases or assumptions and ensure marginalized populations get the correct care. The University of Cincinnati’s dedication to inclusion prepares you to face these challenges head-on. The experiences you obtain with faculty, students and staff of different cultures gives you the background necessary to provide better technical healthcare solutions for marginalized communities.
A Path to a More Fulfilling Career
People currently in nursing, pharmacy, business, IT and other such careers can go beyond their current role with a degree in health informatics. Our MHI program can be completed in at least two years, and you can choose to take classes completely online. That way, you can continue to work in your field while pursuing your education.
What’s more, the healthcare industry is primed and ready for a fresh wave of new graduates. The Affordable Care Act has placed new demands on healthcare facilities, requiring such organizations to use technology to provide higher quality care. As such, the industry is filled with open positions for people with the right blend of business and technology skills as well as knowledge of the intricacies of healthcare law, terminology and procedures. Research from the job market analytics company Burning Glass found the country has a shortage of qualified informatics applicants, leaving these jobs unfulfilled for longer periods of time than the national average.
The University of Cincinnati online Masters of Health Informatics program is designed to meet the needs of busy professionals, not just students directly out of undergrad. Our flexible program is taught by the best in the industry, and our close ties with Cincinnati hospitals keep our students at the forefront of the medical field. Upon graduation, you’ll have the skills and credentials to thrive in a rapidly expanding industry.