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Kent State hosts virtual open house to introduce new Health Informatics program

Posted Mar. 4, 2011
What:               Health Informatics online open house
When:              Wednesday, March 23, 2011, at noon
Where:             Register at www.kent.edu/healthIT
Who:                Michael Bice, Kent State professor, Health Informatics, and Dave Fiser, vice president and chief information officer,
Akron General Health System

Beginning fall 2011, Kent State University will help to address the rising demand for health information professionals with a new field of study known as “health informatics.”

Health informatics (HI) is a new concentration in the Information Architecture and Knowledge Management program, housed within Kent State’s School of Library and Information Science. All courses will be online, except for a one-week summer workshop to be held at Kent State. Students can choose either a master’s degree or a certificate option, depending on their experience and career aspirations.

Michael O. Bice, Kent State professor and former health care executive, leads the HI program. He said the degree will appeal mainly to physicians, nurses and other professionals already working in health care.

“One look at the headlines will tell you that health informatics professionals are in great demand across the country, and will continue to be needed as federal mandates for electronic health information networks are implemented,” Bice said.

Bice will host an online open house on Wednesday, March 23, at noon, for anyone interested in learning about career opportunities in this field or about Kent State’s new program. His co-presenter will be Dave Fiser, vice president and chief information officer for Akron General Health System. Visit www.kent.edu/healthIT to register.

Health informatics is the science that defines how health information is captured, analyzed, transmitted and managed, especially with regard to the delivery of health care. Corporate health care IT professionals will teach many of the classes, including, for example, clinical decision support, legal issues in health informatics, health information systems, leadership and organizational change, to cite just a few.

Bonnie Bartos, a graduate of Kent State’s nursing program who is now senior engagement leader, Lighthouse, Cerner Corp., said, “One of the major challenges in health care and health information technology today is the lack of health care clinicians and professionals who are specifically focused on IT and health care. The IT whiz-kid who just graduated from college doesn’t understand the clinical side, how we are using technology to improve patient care,” she said.

“Instead, we need to educate clinicians to understand the IT side of health care health information management and how the two disciplines can work together to improve care delivery, patient outcomes and the financial bottom line. That’s where I believe Kent State’s health informatics program can fill a big gap in the workforce.”

For more information about the program or the open house, visit www.kent.edu/healthIT.


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Media Contact:
Flo Cunningham, 330-672-0003, fcunning@kent.edu