Online Medical Records Degrees

U.S. law requires that all medical records be computerized by 2014, which should expand the role of information management in health services. Studies at the associate, bachelor's or master's level could lead to online medical records degrees. Coupled with the proper certifications, a degree in medical records could open the door to work in a variety of health care settings.

Medical Records Health Information Administration

Careers in medical records

Medical records technicians, also known as health information technicians, are responsible for patient health information, including medical history, test results, symptoms reported, treatment given, and any other data that might be included in a physician's report on the patient. Medical records technicians ensure the accuracy, security, accessibility and overall quality of patient records. Related careers include medical transcription, medical office administration and health services management.

Medical records: education and training

An associate degree is typically required for medical records technicians. Certificates are also available, based on coursework in medical terminology, legal issues in health care, records management and information technology. Many employers look for a Registered Health Information Technician credential, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Other credentials, such as those in medical billing and coding, can enhance employment qualifications, and a bachelor's or master's degree could lead to a role in health services management. Online medical records degrees can help build the groundwork for more advanced studies. Training in emerging technology and medical software can provide a competitive edge, no matter the degree level.

Career outlook and salary

As the population continues to age, medical records are expected to grow both in volume and complexity. In September 2010, the BLS projected a 20 percent increase in jobs for medical records technicians between 2008 and 2018, with employers seeking candidates trained in electronic data management. In 2010, the mean annual wage for a medical records technician was $35,010.

Trends in the medical records field

The Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010, calls for all medical records to go digital by 2014. Though electronic records are already commonplace in many doctors' offices, hospitals and skilled nursing facilities, this trend could give anyone involved in a patient's care quick access to a complete medical history. As more health care facilities move to digital records, medical records technicians who have a deep understanding of computer software are expected to be in high demand.

Medical Records Schools

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  • Ranked among the Best Online Graduate Business Programs and Education Programs in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Financial aid is available for students who quality, with more than $1,000,000 through 10 scholarships.
  • Offers 24/7 student services, including financial aid help, course registration, and career counseling.
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  • Active-duty military, veterans, and Veteran’s Administration employees can save 15% on tuition.
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  • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Lets undergrad students try classes before paying any tuition.
  • Has an average class sizes of 18 for undergraduate and 13 for graduate-level courses.
  • Offers numerous scholarship opportunities that can help students save up to $750 per term on their tuition.
  • Tends to educate degree-seeking online and campus-based students who are adult learners with families and students who work while pursuing higher education.
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  • Ranked among the top 50 Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • 50% of undergraduate classes have 17 or fewer students, and 75% of  classes have fewer than 27 students.
  • More than 40 endowed scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
  • Research and sponsored program expenditures totaled $331 million in the 2014 fiscal year.
  • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
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  • 95% alumni satisfaction rate.
  • Currently holds more than 500 professional alliances, including 19 of the top Fortune 100 companies.
  • Courses are taught by expert faculty, with 86% of professors possessing a doctoral degree.
  • Offers credit for prior experience and learning, as well as scholarships, accelerated programs, and several other ways to help reduce tuition costs.
  • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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  • Recognized as the largest university in the Chicago area, with 27,580 students and 15 colleges.
  • Listed as one of the top 200 research-funded institutions in the world, with more than $291 million research funds in FY 2013.
  • Proud to be a tobacco-free campus, prohibiting all forms of tobacco within campus boundaries.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA).
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