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8 Examples of Health Informatics Careers in Practice 

July 7, 2023

Health informatics is the intersection of patient care, data and technology, and it is a valuable part of modern medical practice. 

Using technology and data analysis, health informaticists work to improve patient care, streamline treatment and give health care providers with the information they need to make the best decisions for their patients. 

Health informatics makes everything from electronic health records to telehealth possible. By pursuing careers in health informatics, professionals can bring their skills to pharmaceutical companies, health care providers and public health agencies. This field, with all of its different applications, is rapidly changing medicine for the better. 

Electronic Health Records 

Health informaticists help manage electronic health records (EHR) systems. Every time a patient visits their local clinic, their health care providers log the patient’s vitals, symptoms, medications and diagnoses in an EHR database. These records are updated in real time, providing important information to every member of a patient’s care team. 

According to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, electronic health records allow health care providers to share patient information with providers in other organizations such as laboratories, hospitals, imaging facilities and research institutions. Health informaticists are then able to analyze this information to determine the next steps for patient care or use the data as a part of larger societal studies. 

Prior to the use of EHRs, many health care providers recorded information on paper charts. These charts could not be easily shared with other health care providers, and were vulnerable to environmental damage and decay. The electronic format of modern, electronic health records provides ways for every medical professional involved in a patient’s care to access and add to the patient’s EHR in real time. 

Predictive Analytics  

Every passing second, health care providers, researchers and health informatics professionals create and store new information. Patient data helps health care providers identify and provide preventive care for patients who are at high risk of chronic diseases. Predictive, preventive care reduces chronic diagnoses, lowers health care costs and helps to create a more patient-centric experience. 

In addition to patient care, predictive analytics can also help to identify potential public health problems. By identifying these trends, health informatics professionals actively assist in the creation of public health plans. 

Patient Portals  

Health informaticists assist in the creation, implementation and maintenance of patient portals. Patient portals are websites that allow patients to securely access their medical information and communicate with their medical teams. 

Studies have found that patient portals provide several benefits to patients, beyond increasing communication with health care providers. These benefits include helping patients consistently care for themselves by taking medications as prescribed. Portals also allow patients to review their medical records, catch errors and learn more about their health and wellness.

Patient portals directly connect health informatics and the patient experience. By using these portals, patients can be more actively involved in their treatment and develop stronger relationships with health care providers. 

The creation and management of tools such as patient portals is an important responsibility of some professionals pursuing careers in health informatics, such as health records managers. These professionals are responsible for managing patient information, working to ensure the safe storage of patient portal data and communicating with health care providers about the data and tools that are available within their organization. 

Public Health 

Health informaticists are instrumental in the public health field. Health informatics and predictive analytics play an important role in patient care, and they are also vital to widespread public health efforts. 

For example, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, medical professionals and researchers collected and used massive amounts of medical data to develop treatments and predict possible changes in the disease. Data analysis was the key to the speedy development of the first vaccines.  

Public health organizations use health informatics to track disease outbreaks, evaluate public health crises and prevent further harm through the development of timely and effective public health initiatives. The collection and analysis of medical data allows government agencies and scientific researchers to effectively improve public health and well-being. 


There are many examples of health informatics in practice, and one of these promising advances is telehealth. Technology such as video conferencing and secure messaging applications makes telehealth, a virtual form of health care, possible. 

Health informatics is an essential tool for successful telehealth. The combination of telehealth tools and electronic health records provides medical professionals with new ways to track illnesses and develop effective treatment plans based on the available data. 

Remote Patient Monitoring   

Informatics also facilitates the effectiveness of remote patient monitoring. Remote patient monitoring is an innovative method for telehealth and medical data collection. Tools such as blood pressure cuffs and activity trackers provide patients and medical professionals with helpful data, without regular visits to the hospital. 

Remote patient monitoring tools have varying degrees of complexity, so medical professionals must work closely with patients to ensure that the tools are being used effectively. While patients can use some tools — such as a blood pressure cuff — with minimal instruction, others, such as heart and apnea monitors, require patient training. 

A professional who chooses a career in health informatics, such as a nursing informatics specialist, can provide this patient training and analyze the data collected by these tools to inform patient care. 

These tools provide large amounts of data that health informatics professionals can include in the patient’s electronic health records. Remote patient monitoring provides these data points without exposing patients to the possible infections, expensive travel and delays of in-person monitoring. 

Imaging Analysis Software

Professionals who choose careers in health informatics work in a variety of settings, including software development. Medical software, such as imaging analysis software, helps medical professionals to provide more accurate information to their patients. 

Developers are using health informatics to develop highly accurate medical imaging analysis software. This software, with its inclusion of EHR data, machine learning and artificial intelligence, helps radiologists in their work. 

As the global population ages, there is an increased demand for medical imaging, but a decreased number of technicians. Imaging software provides tools that can help radiologists and technicians work efficiently and quickly while still prioritizing patient care. Incorporating imaging analysis software allows clinicians to catch and treat diseases earlier, leading to healthier communities.   

Cloud Storage 

Health informatics professionals work to develop and improve a variety of tools, including cloud storage in medical settings. Many health care organizations are transitioning to cloud-based storage systems, and health informatics professionals are necessary for this transition. 

Cloud storage systems allow health informaticists to safely store encrypted medical data. Informaticists often manage data backup processes within the cloud, facilitate data recovery and guide organizational leadership toward using the best security protocols

Pursuing a Career in Health Informatics  

Health informatics offers lucrative career opportunities for those who are interested in data analysis, medical research and technological innovation. Health informaticists directly impact medical processes, using current data to improve patient care and public health.

There are several sub-disciplines within the field of health informatics, and this field is rapidly expanding. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health services management is projected to grow 28% by 2032. This projected growth, combined with the massive influx of medical data available, points to a bright future for health informatics professionals. 

Entry-level health informatics positions require an associate or bachelor’s degree. These programs provide students with the technical skills needed to start their careers in this growing field. However, a Master of Science in Health Informatics degree can provide students with the technical and leadership skills necessary for managerial careers in health informatics. 

As technology continues to develop, so does technology’s impact on the medical field. Those who choose to pursue health informatics careers are also choosing to work at the forefront of the future of medicine.