Chamberlain College in the forefront of change

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Care control: Nurse informaticists work at the intersection of health care and information technology to improve the delivery of patient care. | SUPPLIED PHOTO

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As the health-care industry continues to adopt information technology in an effort to improve patient care, an increasing amount of Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree graduates and registered nurses (RNs) are seeking to acquire new skills and competencies in a field that is increasingly experiencing growth: nursing “informatics.”

In essence, nursing informatics integrates nursing science, computer science and information technology to help nurses more effectively acquire, store, retrieve and utilize the mass quantities of health information that are critical for them to properly do their job. Informatics is not confined only to nursing schools, either. Professional nurse informaticists are working in a variety of health-care settings, from clinical labs and physicians’ offices to emergency rooms and operating rooms.

With the approval of the HITECH Act in 2009 and funding towards adoption of electronic health records (EHR) technology, the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology (IT) anticipates that 50,000 new health IT jobs, including nurse informaticist jobs, will be created within the next five years.

This rapidly evolving health-care environment requires nurses to possess the necessary training to leverage new technologies, better manage information and facilitate smarter decision-making.

To meet the demand for advanced practice nurses in this field, Chamberlain College of Nursing offers a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree program with a nursing informatics specialty track for students interested in pursuing a career as a nurse informaticist. Chamberlain’s online MSN Informatics specialty track allows RNs the opportunity to advance their careers with a specialized graduate degree in as few as six semesters while juggling responsibilities at work and home.

Upon graduation, the students can be prepared in both the technological side and patient side of health care: they can interpret, analyze and utilize innovative EHR technology and do so in ways that set standards for effective patient care. As newly trained nurse informaticists, they should have acquired the skills and competencies necessary to apply for job openings in this growing field of health care.

What are future informatics nurse specialists capable of?

They can:

Make the transition to a technologically advanced health-care system smoother, more efficient and safer for nurses and patients.

Help design information systems to optimize practitioner decision-making.

Develop and troubleshoot tools for consumer health care, such as health-related websites, home care management systems, remote monitoring, wearable monitoring devices and tele-nursing.

Promote health literacy through the design and development of tools and devices that bring health information to diverse populations.

Engage in local and national policy debates over the need for more advanced health information technology.

If you seek a career as a nurse informatics specialist — whether it’s in a clinical, administrative or academic setting — you can learn the knowledge needed to improve health professionals’ access to vital information, define new standards in health-care information technology and advance the overall delivery of quality patient care.

For more information on Chamberlain College of Nursing’s MSN Informatics specialty track, visit

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Chamberlain College of Nursing