Fueled primarily by the rapid advancements in technology, data collection, and information management that are reshaping the health care industry, one of the nation’s fastest-growing job sectors is the field of health care informatics — an increasingly essential field that resides at the intersection of computer science, information management and health care.
For health care organizations, the rapid expansion of health informatics has created a skills gap, as the growing number of open health informatics jobs has outpaced the availability of qualified applicants.
In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts health informatics job growth of 32% in the coming years, much faster than the average for other occupations. That projection focuses on medical and health services manager roles and includes health IT managers responsible for the maintenance and security of large amounts of patient records and complex data. Searching for “health informatics” job openings on platforms such as LinkedIn reveals thousands of listings at a wide variety of companies across the nation.
Job opportunities in this growing field span the full spectrum of the health care experience — from public health, veterinary and dental care to nursing, biotech, telemedicine and the insurance industry. All of this is excellent news for professionals who have health care experience or are willing to develop the necessary skills and knowledge through education.
While the range of positions in health informatics can have widely differing job descriptions, the majority share common areas of responsibility such as integrating and managing health data, improving quality of care and identifying and analyzing health and disease trends.
To see actual health informatics job listings, check out:
- Careers page at AHIMA (American Health Information Management Association)
- JobMine listings at HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society)
Where Are the Health Informatics Jobs?
For more detailed data about health care informatics opportunities across the nation, Zippia offers a robust resource for tracking health informatics jobs by state, by salary, by job title, by job description and more. It also provides helpful overview pages for such key health informatics jobs as the following:
Health Informatics Salaries
Overall pay in the informatics field is high since the demand has outpaced the availability of qualified health informatics professionals to fill these critical roles. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health informatics and other health services and medical managers earn a median average salary of $104,280. Salaries vary widely depending on geography and specific job responsibilities, but the high demand for qualified professionals means you’ll likely command a decent salary right from the outset, especially if your resume reflects the right combination of experience and education, with a master’s degree being required or strongly preferred for many positions.
Here are some median annual salary estimates provided by ZipRecruiter for several key health informatics jobs:
- Clinical informatics specialist – $109,578 (ZipRecruiter)
- Informatics nurse – $102,230 (ZipRecruiter)
- Clinical analyst – $90,124 (ZipRecruiter)
- Health informatics specialist – $88,625 (ZipRecruiter)
Searching job postings in your specific geographic area will give you the most realistic picture of what potential salary you can expect for your desired role.
Health Informatics Careers
Even if you currently work in a health information management (HIM) role, to position yourself for career growth in health informatics you will need solid training to round out your medical and IT knowledge as well as to develop critical health administration and leadership skills. This is exactly why many HIM professionals are enrolling in specialized master’s degree programs that can build on their work experience and develop the additional knowledge they’ll need to compete for new job opportunities in informatics.
|Job Title||Salary||Job Description|
Health Informatics Director
|Annual salary: $150,000+ (Source: Salary.com)||A senior-level position, health informatics director requires both an understanding of technology and people skills to organize and integrate the flow of data across various divisions. He or she is responsible for overseeing the analysis, management and performance of health information data to aid patient care. This includes keeping internal processes up to date and efficient by monitoring the latest software and technological tools. The job generally requires a master’s degree (or higher) and eight years of related experience.|
|Annual salary: $115,000 (Source: HIMSS 2020 Nursing Informatics Workforce Survey)||The nurse informaticist functions as a knowledgeable practitioner, consultant, educator and evaluator who helps to maintain and improve system services and to mentor clinician users to become better technology consumers. The nurse informaticist consistently searches for and implements systems and improvements that enable clinicians to provide high-quality care in the most efficient manner possible. For example, the role could involve evaluating a health care facility to determine what clinical IT applications will help increase efficiency, then training staff on any new systems and technology. Informatics nurses also facilitate communication between IT, vendors and the staff.|
|Annual salary $90,000+ (Source: ZipRecruiter)||Clinical systems analysts are involved in the development, installation and maintenance of hospital information systems. Clinical analysts must have advanced knowledge of medical industry software and the ability to supervise staff and maintain hospital|
information confidentiality. Clinical analysts participate in developing policies and creating training tools for hospital information systems uses. Since health IT can require handling sensitive data, this role can require striking a balance between efficiency and federal regulatory standards. To become a clinical analyst, you will need a bachelor’s degree in life science, social science or a related discipline and a solid background in technology. Advancing to higher-level positions may require a master’s degree. You don’t need a nursing degree, but experience working in the health care industry will help your chances of employment. (Source: HIMSS)
Director of Clinical Informatics
|Annual salary: up to $140,000, with a national average of $108,000 (Source:|
actual job postings)
|Deeply involved in the application of informatics and information technology to deliver health care services, clinical informatics directors ensure that the electronic medical records delivery systems used in the medical field are as up to date and streamlined as possible. Responsibilities and salary ranges vary, but this leadership role is also involved in the ongoing monitoring of EHR utilization trends. Most job listings state that a bachelor’s degree is required, a master’s degree preferred.|
Health Care IT Project Manager
|Annual salary: $102,000||A project manager for IT services within a health care organization communicates with other members in a project to ensure that goals and objectives are completed on time. Professionals in this field are expected to create and execute project plans while making revisions as necessary to meet changing requirements and needs.|
Health Informatics Consultant
|Average salary: $86,000+ (Source: ZipRecruiter)||Health informatics consultants are hired by a health organization to meet short-term needs or to analyze specific areas including business processes, technology implementation, change management, etc. Health informatics consultants also assist in a wide variety of projects, including selecting and installing new software, updating and securing networks, monitoring and troubleshooting systems and training teams. Salary data can vary based on the individual’s area of specialty and where the job is located.|
Additional positions include:
Pathways for Career Specialization in Health Informatics
Health care informatics is a broad career field, with a great many opportunities to use your skills to help others and to follow your interests. Niches within health informatics can include:
- Health data analysis
- Software, health information, and clinical decision support systems
- Data privacy, governance and security
- Leadership, strategy and transformation
- Applied clinical informatics
- Nursing informatics
- Biomedical informatics
- Public health informatics
- Medical informatics
Potential places of employment can include:
- General medical and surgical hospitals
- Physicians’ offices
- Outpatient care centers
- Nursing care facilities
- Companies providing consulting and support services to healthcare organizations
- Biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies
- Software companies
- Insurance providers
- Public health offices
- Medical research facilities
A master’s degree is typically preferred for most of the higher-level, higher-paying roles, so if you decide to pursue a master’s degree you’ll want to give some thought to what types of positions you see yourself applying for, to make sure the program you are considering has coursework aligned with your career goals. For example, the health informatics master’s degree offered by the University of San Diego offers three distinct program specializations — or tracks — that enable you to build core competencies aligned with your career interests and aspirations:
- Health Care Informatics
- Health Care Analytics
- Health Care Leadership
Combining cutting-edge health informatics technology with coursework in health system administration and leadership, USD’s Master of Science in Health Care Informatics is a practical, hands-on degree program designed to put you on the path to new opportunities and greater earning potential. With online and in-person formats available, the program offers the flexibility needed for busy professionals to continue working full-time while earning their degree.