Hiring spree in health informaticists

Feb. 25, 2012 at 9:41 PM
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NEW YORK, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- A hiring spree is under way to employ health informaticists who have both clinical and technical skills, U.S. health information technology experts said.

Officials of the PwC US Health Information Technology practice said during the annual conference of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society said that health organizations plan to increase informatics -- medical records and health information technicians -- staffing levels over the next two years, with particular emphasis on people to help with the technical aspects of electronic health records implementation, and data integration.

Later this month, PwC's Health Research Institute is scheduled to publish a comprehensive report on the state of clinical informatics in the health industry. In developing the report, PwC's Health Research Institute conducted a survey of 600 health organization professionals from hospitals, health systems, health insurers and pharmaceutical and life sciences companies.

The survey found:

-- 70 percent of health insurers, 48 percent of hospitals and 39 percent of pharmaceutical/life sciences companies plan to increase hiring of technical informatics professionals over the next two years.

-- Four in 10 hospital and provider respondents surveyed said that lack of skilled informatics staff is a barrier to developing a comprehensive clinical informatics program.

-- Half of hospitals and physician respondents said that misalignment of clinical and technology teams is an organizational barrier, something they will need to address to incorporate sophisticated analytics into clinicians' everyday work.

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