Is a Health Informatics Associate’s Degree Worth It?

If you’re pondering degrees that will help you to enter the medical field, you may be wondering about the value of a Health Informatics Associate’s Degree.

While some medical professions require a great deal of education, an associate’s degree still provides an entry level opportunity for some fields, including nursing and health informatics.

Health informatics is a relatively new field that specializes in using information technology to improve patient healthcare. Some health informatics roles including record keeping, consulting, and project management jobs. Depending on your role, you could be gathering data but also analyzing and interpreting it.

An Associate’s Degree as a Doorway Into the Profession

An associate’s degree is generally a two year college degree. Not all medical fields will accept someone with only a two year degree, but health informatics is a field where you can start with this level of education. One advantage to getting an associate’s degree is that it allows you to enter a field and get your start in a profession relatively quickly.

Resource: Top 10 Health Informatics Online Associate’s Degrees 2016

Jobs with this level of degree will generally pay less than those with a higher level of education, such as a bachelor’s degree or a graduate degree. However, according to, even associate’s level jobs in health informatics can provide pretty competitive salaries. They based their findings on research done by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), which has an in-depth look at various salaries in the field on their website. Their information shows how salaries vary according to roles and settings, as well as educational levels, and while it’s no surprise that higher level jobs dependent on higher education pay more, there are good salaries to be had even at lower level jobs, such as transcriptionists, coding specialists, and clerical support workers.

The other good news is that health informatics is a growing field, and that salaries on generally increasing across the board as the field grows in importance. Most workers in health informatics made more in 2012, on average, than they did in 2010.

An Associate’s Degree as Stepping Stone

Because the health informatics field is growing, the demands for stronger skills among its workers are growing too. Accordingly, AHIMA has begun initiatives to encourage students to go on to higher level degrees as a way of earning those skills and gaining more respect. Job holders who have higher degrees generally face less risk of unemployment too.

None of this should be cause for alarm, however, if you are still considering getting a associate’s degree. It can be a stepping stone that allows you to enter the profession, gain skills as you work within it, and prepare to continue your studies if you decide to stay within the profession. Especially if you are in need of entering the work force relatively quickly, gaining a lower level degree can definitely be worth the time and effort. It can be a good place to start. Just remember that you don’t have to stop with a Health Informatics Associate’s Degree, but can move ahead in your education if you want to advance your career.