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Associate in Health Information Technology: Degree Overview

Read details about associate degree programs in health information technology. Get information about prerequisites, common courses, continuing education options, professional certification, career choices and employment statistics.

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Essential Information

Health information technology (IT) is used in the health care industry to reduce costs, increase efficiency and improve the quality of health care. An associate's degree in health IT can open doors to employment opportunities in hospitals, medical practices, home health care agencies, nursing homes and clinics. A high school diploma or equivalent is required for admission. Proficiency in keyboarding is also recommended.

Associate degree programs in health information technology combine courses in business, health care and information technology to train students to collect and organize information. Students learn to manage and code medical information found in medical records for storage and reimbursement purposes. Additionally, learners may complete clinical practicum experiences to gain hands-on experience in this field. Health information technicians can advance their careers by obtaining certifications or pursuing further education.

Course Topics

Students examine anatomy and physiology, legalities of health information, database management and data coding. Course topics may include:

  • Medical terminology
  • Health information systems
  • Insurance and reimbursement processing
  • Health care ethics
  • Electronic health records
  • Management in health organizations

Popular Career Options

Graduates are qualified for opportunities in the health care industry working with medical records and health information. Some popular career choices include:

  • Medical records technician
  • Health information technician
  • Coding specialist
  • Medical coder

Job Prospects and Salary and Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that jobs for medical records and health information technicians, including coding specialists and medical coders, are expected to increase 22% from 2012-2022 (www.bls.gov). The median salary for this occupation was $34,160 in 2012, per the BLS.

Continuing Education Information

Individuals completing a bachelor's or master's degree programs qualify for careers within health information management. Although health information and medical records technicians are not required to be certified, many employers prefer certification.

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) offers the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) certification to graduates of 2-year accredited health IT programs. To earn the RHIT credential, candidates must pass a written examination. Coding specialists and medical coders can obtain certification through the Professional Association of Healthcare Coding Specialists (PAHCS), the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC) and the Board of Medical Specialty Coding and Compliance (BMSC). Certification specialty coding is offered through the BMSC and PAHCS.

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  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    • Eligibility and relevancy of sample programs below will vary by article and program
    School locations:
    • Online Learning
    • Arizona (3 campuses)
    • California (16)
    • Colorado (3)
    • Florida (6)
    • Georgia (5)
    • Illinois (7)
    • Indiana (2)
    • Maryland (1)
    • Michigan (1)
    • Minnesota (1)
    • Missouri (2)
    • North Carolina (2)
    • New Jersey (3)
    • Nevada (1)
    • New York (2)
    • Ohio (4)
    • Oklahoma (1)
    • Oregon (1)
    • Pennsylvania (4)
    • Tennessee (2)
    • Texas (7)
    • Utah (1)
    • Virginia (3)
    • Washington (3)
    • Wisconsin (1)

    Online and Classroom-Based Programs

    What is your classroom preference?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    • Currently not accepting applications from Texas residents
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Which subject are you interested in?

  • School locations:
    • California (3 campuses)
    • Florida (2 campuses)
    • Indiana (1)
    • New Mexico (1)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    What year did you graduate from high school?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must live within close proximity to school locations
    • Must be graduated from high school by 2011
    School locations:
    • Minnesota (1 campus)

    Classroom-Based Programs

    • Associate
        • Associate - Medical Billing and Administrative Services

    What is your highest level of education?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    Online Programs

    Do you prefer online or campus based learning?

  • Minimum eligibility requirements:
    • Must be a high school graduate or have completed GED
    School locations:
    • Online Learning

    What is your highest level of education completed?

Other Schools:

  • School locations:
    • Louisiana (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Louisiana Tech University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Communication Disorders Sciences
      • Health and Fitness
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Information and Records Admin
        • Health Information Technology
      • Nursing Professions
      • Nutrition Services
  • School locations:
    • Idaho (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Boise State University include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework, Diploma
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Dental
      • Health and Fitness
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Care Administration
        • Health Information and Records Admin
        • Health Information Technology
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Mental Health Services
      • Nursing Professions
      • Public Health and Safety
  • School locations:
    • Kentucky (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Eastern Kentucky University include:
      • Graduate: Master
      • Non-Degree: Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Communication Disorders Sciences
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Care Administration
        • Health Information and Records Admin
        • Health Information Technology
        • Medical Office Management
      • Medical Assisting
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Mental Health Services
      • Nursing Professions
      • Nutrition Services
      • Public Health and Safety
      • Therapeutic and Rehabilitation Professions
  • School locations:
    • Michigan (1 campus)
    Areas of study you may find at Ferris State University include:
      • Graduate: First Professional Degree, Master
      • Non-Degree: Certificate, Coursework
      • Post Degree Certificate: Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Medical and Health Professions
      • Clinical Laboratory Science Professions
      • Dental
      • Health and Fitness
      • Medical Administrative Services
        • Health Care Administration
        • Health Information and Records Admin
        • Health Information Technology
        • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
      • Medical and Health Preparatory Sciences
      • Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Professions
      • Nursing Professions
      • Optometric and Ophthalmic Services
      • Pharmaceutical Sciences and Administration

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Avg. Wages For Related Jobs

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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