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Career and Education Opportunities for Health Information Systems Technicians in Portland, Maine

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for health information systems technicians in the Portland, Maine area. There are currently 770 working health information systems technicians in Maine; this should grow 16% to 890 working health information systems technicians in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for health information systems technicians are expected to grow by about 20.3%. In general, health information systems technicians compile, process, and maintain medical records of hospital and clinic patients in a manner consistent with medical, administrative, and regulatory requirements of the health care system.

Health information systems technicians earn approximately $14 per hour or $29,450 per year on average in Maine. Nationally they average about $14 hourly or $30,610 per year. Health information systems technicians earn less than people working in the category of Healthcare Technical generally in Maine and less than people in the Healthcare Technical category nationally. Jobs in this field include: certified medical coder, health information coder, and compliance coordinator.

There are twenty-three schools of higher education in the Portland area, including one within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can get a degree to start your career as a health information systems technician. Given that the most common education level for health information systems technicians is a high school diploma or GED, it will take only a short time to learn to be a health information systems technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Health Information Systems Technician

Health Information Systems Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, health information systems technicians compile, process, and maintain medical records of hospital and clinic patients in a manner consistent with medical, administrative, and regulatory requirements of the health care system. They also process, maintain, and report patient information for health requirements and standards.

Health information systems technicians retrieve patient medical records for physicians or other medical personnel. They also protect the security of medical records to insure that confidentiality is maintained. Finally, health information systems technicians release data to persons and agencies in line with regulations.

Every day, health information systems technicians are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for health information systems technicians to inspect records for completeness, accuracy and adherence to regulations. They are often called upon to formulate, design, maintain and operate a variety of health record indexes and storage and retrieval systems to collect, classify, store and analyze data. They also identify, compile, abstract and code patient data, using standard classification systems. They are sometimes expected to train medical records staff. Somewhat less frequently, health information systems technicians are also expected to compile and maintain patients' medical records to document condition and treatment and to furnish data for research or cost control and care improvement efforts.

Health information systems technicians sometimes are asked to process patient admission and discharge documents. They also have to be able to transcribe medical reports and oversee the department and supervise clerical staff, directing and controlling efforts of personnel in the medical records department. And finally, they sometimes have to release data to persons and agencies in line with regulations.

Like many other jobs, health information systems technicians must be thorough and dependable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:

  • Cardiac Technician. Conduct tests on pulmonary or cardiovascular systems of patients for diagnostic purposes. May conduct or assist in electrocardiograms, cardiac catheterizations, pulmonary-functions, lung capacity, and similar tests.
  • Medical Laboratory Technician. Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.
  • Medical Laboratory Technologist. Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff.
  • Pharmacist Technician. Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, and record amounts and dosages of medications.
  • Respiratory Therapy Technician. Provide specific, well defined respiratory care procedures under the direction of respiratory therapists and physicians.
  • Sonographer. Produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians.
  • Surgical Technician. Assist in operations, under the supervision of surgeons, registered nurses, or other surgical personnel. May help set up operating room, prepare and transport patients for surgery, adjust lights and equipment, pass instruments and other supplies to surgeons and surgeon's assistants, hold retractors, and help count sponges, needles, and instruments.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Health Information Systems Technician Training

Central Maine Community College - Auburn, ME

Central Maine Community College, 1250 Turner Street, Auburn, ME 04210-6498. Central Maine Community College is a small college located in Auburn, Maine. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,426 students. Central Maine Community College has a one to two year program in Medical Insurance Coding Specialist/Coder which graduated eight students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Professional Coder: A Certified Professional Coder (CPC) is an individual of high professional integrity who has passed a coding certification examination sponsored by the American Academy of Professional Coders (the AAPC).

For more information, see the American Academy of Professional Coders website.

Certified Professional Coder-Payer: A Certified Professional Coder-Hospital (CPC-H) is an individual of high professional integrity who has passed a coding certification examination sponsored by the American Academy of Professional Coders (the Academy).

For more information, see the American Academy of Professional Coders website.

Certified Professional Coder-Hospital : A Certified Professional Coder-Hospital (CPC-H) is an individual of high professional integrity who has passed a coding certification examination sponsored by the American Academy of Professional Coders (the AAPC).

For more information, see the American Academy of Professional Coders website.

Certified Medical Investigator: The spectrum of professions involved in forensic investigation has broadened dramatically over the past 20 years.

For more information, see the American College of Forensic Examiners website.

Certified Coding Specialist: Coding accuracy is highly important to healthcare organizations, and has an impact on revenues and describing health outcomes.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Registered Health Information Technician: With experience, the RHIT credential holds solid potential for advancement to management positions, especially when combined with a bachelor's degree.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Certified Coding Associate: American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) recognizes that the demand for coders has never been greater, and this need is expected to continue for some years to come.

For more information, see the American Health Information Management Association website.

Certified Medical Administrative Specialist: This certification is for medical administrative specialists who serves a key role in medical office, clinic and hospital settings.

For more information, see the American Medical Technologists website.

Registered Medical Transcriptionist: AHDI offers a voluntary credentialing exam to individuals who wish to become Registered Medical Transcriptionists (RMTs).

For more information, see the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity website.

Certified Provider Credentialing Specialist: The Certified Provider Credentialing Specialist (CPCS) is typically employed or contracted by a health care organization including, but not limited to, health plans, group practices, credentialing verification organizations or hospitals (health systems).

For more information, see the National Association of Medical Services Staff website.

Certified Medical Coder: Experienced medical office professionals with exceptional coding skills are eligible to sit for the Certified Medical Coder (CMC) exam.

For more information, see the Practice Management Institute website.

LICENSES

Medical Record Technician, Accredited

Licensing agency: American Medical Record Association
Address: 919 N. Michigan Avenue-Suite 1400, Chicago, ME 60611-1683

Phone: (313) 787-2672
Website: American Medical Record Association

LOCATION INFORMATION: Portland, Maine

Portland, Maine
Portland, Maine photo by Pauk

Portland is situated in Cumberland County, Maine. It has a population of over 62,561, which has shrunk by 2.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 102, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $164,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were built in Portland, down from thirty-two the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 19 minutes. More than 36.4% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Portland is 6.3%, which is less than Maine's average of 7.6%. About 14.1% of Portland's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.

The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.4%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Mariners Church, Swedenborgian Church and Stroudwater Christian Church are among the churches located in Portland. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church.

Portland is home to the Cumberland Wharf and the Browns Wharf as well as Longfellow Square and Hadlock Field. Shopping centers in the area include Mill Creek Shopping Center, Monument Square Shopping Center and Portland East Shopping Center. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Fairfield Inn Portland Airport and Ramada Limited Portland for temporary stays in the area.