Clinical informatics throws up opportunities and challenges alike

Key Takeaway:

Clinical informatics is the new exciting kid on the block. With the right mix of aptitude and attitude, professionals can look forward to many opportunities and challenges in the field.

An understanding of the coining of the term "clinical informatics" gives an idea of what it is. Clinical informatics is a combination of two words, "clinical" and "informatics". Together, these relate to the knowledge of how information technology works in the healthcare sector.

It is very important for clinicians to understand the functioning of IT into its domain, because with the advent of IT; there has been a major need to integrate clinical practices with it. A clinician who understands the way IT impacts the workings on in her industry is a better equipped professional when it comes to handling IT-related issues in the clinical setting.

A clinical informatics professional should have a clear idea of the following approaches to IT:

  • Analysis
  • Design
  • Implementation
  • Assessment of information and communication that enhance the quality of clinical informatics

Single approach to multiple health areas

One important element that needs to be understood about clinical informatics is that given the scope and breadth of the area of clinical informatics; professionals from any discipline of health -be it pathology, pharmacy, dentistry, radiology, dermatology, etc. -apply the same principles of clinical informatics to optimize the use of IT in healthcare.

This requires constant coordination and cooperation with professionals and practitioners of all these areas. Clinical informatics is thus an area which is interspersed with all these other specializations and can be used and applied in any of these areas.

What should a clinical informatics professional ensure?

The aim of clinical informatics is to use this discipline to coordinate with nearly all the areas of medicine to provide optimal outcomes in patient care that delivers and ensures the following:

  • Safety
  • Efficiency
  • Effectiveness
  • Timeliness
  • Patient centeredness
  • Equitability

What should clinical informatics professionals do to ensure success?

Clinical informatics professionals need to devise a few strategies for ensuring that they have optimal knowledge of the way information technology works in their industry. These are more rules of thumb than mandatory professional qualifications or regulatory requirements. Some of these include:

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