According to PwC's Health Research Institute, health organizations are facing a shortage of staff who possess the skills to handle the volume and complexity of health information as use of electronic health records (EHRs) grows. Consequently, a hiring phase is now underway to employ health informaticists with both clinical and technical expertise and certificate program graduate Tim Clark just secured one such position.
Because Clark didn't have a clinical background, pursuing a full nursing or other clinical degree was not a viable option. He says he had to find a way "to improve my technical knowledge and broaden the scope of my clinical understanding, which is how I came upon the health informatics field."
Seeing as Clark traveled extensively for his job at that time, only an online program fit into his schedule. "I researched a lot of different programs available and found that UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education's offered everything that I was looking for. The instructors were not only very knowledgeable about their subject areas, but also approachable and responsive to questions," he says. "Plus, the material covered was relevant to what I was already doing on a day-to-day basis, ultimately leading me to where I wanted to go in my career."
And that's exactly where the program led him. Although Clark's experience in health care software implementation and project management got him an initial interview with a leading health information exchange company, he was able to stand out because of all that he'd learned in UC Davis Continuing and Professional Education's health informatics program.
Throughout the interview process, Clark's experience in the program came up time and again. "The knowledge I gained from the program enabled me to separate myself from the other candidates," he says, "and I'm sure that my work in the Health Informatics program gave me the edge to actually get the job." One of his interviewers even remarked that what he'd learned in the program was exactly the type of knowledge the company was looking for in candidates for the position.
"I was able to prove that I was not just a project manager or an IT resource, but an informaticist," he says. "I'm now able to apply that knowledge to 'real world' situations that help me perform my new job to the best of my abilities. I'm very excited about this new opportunity, and I'm thankful for what this program has given me. It has made a big difference in my career."