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Course Descriptions

Semester 1: Introduction to Healthcare & Information Systems

HIT 500- Healthcare Systems: Structure and Process

This course provides a historical foundation for the study of the current health care system and alternative views of health. Course content includes examining the structure and process of the U.S. health care system and comparison to health care systems in other developed countries. Enablers, constraints, and incentives are identified and evaluated in terms of developing a health care system that is efficient and provides patient value.

Course Objectives:

At the end of this section students will be able to:

  • Describe the current approach in the U.S. to health and alternative perspectives
  • Identify the participants in the health care system and their roles
  • Describe the flow of information and care through the system
  • Identify enablers that can facilitate the process
  • Describe constraints and incentives that impact the structure and process
  • Articulate their view of a health care system that can deliver efficiency and patient value

HIT 510- Data Management for Healthcare Decision Support

This course examines the design and the use of medical databases. Students will learn how to implement business rules and data modeling to develop medical information  management systems. The course further explores database applications for decision support including evidence-based practice, alerts, allergy management, and identification of gaps in care. Students will design databases and systems that reflect privacy and security requirements of HIPAA, HITECH Act, etc.

Course Objectives: 

At the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand the fundamental concepts of relational data modeling and database management including (a) the database development processes and (b) normalization for data integrity
  • Apply appropriate data processing methods to support operational decisions in healthcare industry including structured query language, forms and reporting, interoperability with other platforms, and user interfaces
  • Describe different healthcare database environments including hospitals, clinics, physician offices, pharmacies, health insurers, care management units, and other related organizations, and the necessity of data exchange and sharing among those entities
  • Describe the fundamentals of how business intelligence systems are used in supporting managerial and medical decision-making; understand use of data warehouses and data mining for evidence-based medicine, alerts, allergy management, and discovery
  • Understand data security, audit, privacy, integrity, access control, data backup and recovery for HIPPA and HITECH Act compliance
  • Identify challenges and opportunities in improving healthcare quality through effective and efficient data management

HIT 520- Electronic Health Records

This course focuses on regulatory policies and implementation issues concerning Electronic MedicalRecord (EMR) Systems.  The goal is to provide a solid foundation so that students are capable of leading the effort in deploying an EMR system that not only meets the mandates of federal, state,and local governments, but also improves the quality and efficiency of healthcare delivery and service.  Students also gain familiarity with medical vernacular via an online module.

Course Objectives:

With successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  • Articulate regulatory requirements such as meaningful use, HIPAA (Health InsurancePortability and Accountability Act) and other ARRA (America Recovery and Reinvestment Act) legislations and regulations involving health information technologies
  • Describe the major components of an EMR system and the characteristics, features, and objectives of each component
  • Develop basic technical system specifications based on the analyses of clinical workflow, usability requirements, reporting needs, and requirements for data exchange
  • Understand methods used to justify EMR investments and provide on-going support and improvement of an existing system
  • Identify EMR future use such as telehealth and telemedicine

Semester 2: Managing Healthcare Information Systems

HIT 530- Data Communications and Security for Healthcare

This course focuses on medical data communications and security. Students will learn communication protocols, hardware and software, and regulations required to share information among healthcare institutions while maintaining privacy. In particular, policies such as HIPAA and the HITECH Act will be discussed to demonstrate security and privacy requirements for data communications. The goal is to provide students a solid foundation for implementing a secured data communication infrastructure that meets regulatory requirements.

Course Objectives:

At the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Understand the fundamental concepts of data communication, including layered network model, wired and wireless networks, etc.
  • Describe various data communications hardware, protocols and standards
  • Identify threats to computer information systems in general and health care systems in particular
  • Understand network security measures and technologies such as firewall, authentication, encryption, and access controls
  • Describe and explain the necessities of the privacy and security requirements in HIPAA and the HITECH Act, and demonstrate the existing best practices that comply with these requirements
  • Identify barriers that need be overcome and benefits or incentives that may be leveraged among different healthcare participants to deploy adequate security policy
  • Design the mechanisms and strategies to implement recommended data communication networks and security systems
  • Monitor privacy/security activities and responsibilities of collaborating vendors

HIT 540- Managing Healthcare System Change

The adoption and meaningful use of health information technology requires an understanding that major challenges to system success are more often behavioral than technical. The goal is to understand core theories supporting change management, learn effective leadership skills to overcome behavioral resistance to change, and apply change management techniques in complex health care organizations.

Course Objectives:

At the end of this section students will be able to:

  • Describe components of the technical change process and articulate how they will alter the way work is conducted
  • Conduct a situational analysis that assesses an organization's readiness for change
  • Identify stakeholders and define their role in the change process
  • Discuss strategies to minimize resistance to change and how to convert resistance into commitment
  • Identify types of change (operational, strategic, cultural, and political) that will occur with the information system change
  • Apply change management theories to the implementation of informatics in a healthcare environment

HIT 550- Project Management and Process Improvement for Healthcare

This course will focus on the management of operations and how HC systems can use more advanced methods to improve healthcare processes, delivery, and outcomes. Specific focus will be on reducing cycle times (e.g., patient wait times), measuring productivity, streamlining process flows, tracking outcomes and performance metrics, and generally improving health management processes and health outcomes. The process improvement will be measured by how it can improve quality of care and safety of HC delivery, reduce waste, and reduce costs. The role of technology and innovative approaches in improving EQS in HC delivery will be presented.

Course Objectives:

At the end of this course, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of health operations
  • Use analytical tools and software to help simplify and streamline decision processes
  • Apply tools of operations management and data analysis to improve Efficiency, Quality, and Safety in HC delivery
  • Manage and re-engineer the health care process flows
  • Distinguish existing commercial applications and tools that improve EQS in HC delivery
  • Design and evaluate studies to improve EQS in HC delivery
  • Ensure that the system produces quality patient care