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School of Informatics and Computing adds graduate certificate program in clinical informatics

March 23, 2010

Electronic health records, digital imaging and sophisticated diagnostic systems are revolutionizing how we provide patient-centered care. These increasingly pervasive technologies not only improve the quality, safety and efficiency of our health care system, but also change the skill sets required of qualified health care practitioners. A new online graduate certificate program in clinical informatics from IUPUI instructs local health care professionals on how to effectively apply and interpret emerging information technologies to their practice and career.

The clinical informatics graduate certificate program available at the IU School of Informatics and Computing at IUPUI is the first of its kind in the state and one of few in the nation. The program developed from clinical informatics’ increasingly high profile on the national stage in the last several years. In 2004, former President Bush set into motion a plan to develop electronic health records (EHRs) for every American by 2014. That plan was reinforced in 2009 when President Obama signed the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) into law, designating $19 billion in incentives to spur the adoption and use of health information technology.

Local health care industry leaders recognize the current and future value of its professionals – including doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners and pharmacists – gaining knowledge and practice in clinical informatics. “We know a lot about medicine. We also know how to acquire patient information,” said Dr. John Clark, MD, JD, Medical Director for Clarian Medical Quality and Patient Safety. “Our industry’s challenge is interpreting that information in meaningful and efficient ways. It requires experienced health care practitioners who understand data acquisition, storage and analysis.”

Alan Snell, MD, MMM, Chief Medical Informatics Officer of St. Vincent Health and Chairperson of the Physician Informatics Council through Ascension Health, echoes this sentiment. “We’re becoming more reliant on new information technologies and moving towards the elimination of paper records. In today’s environment, health care systems are embracing clinical informatics as a means to improve workflows, information exchange, and, ultimately, patient care.”

The graduate certificate program in clinical informatics consists of six courses available in the evening and accessible through online distance education. Applicants must have clinical backgrounds, be licensed and hold a four-year degree from an accredited institution. For more information, including admission requirements and how to apply, please visit or call (317) 278-4636.

Media Contact

Joanne Lovrinic