Saint Peter’s Partners with UMDNJ to Offer Joint B.S. in Health Information Management

Jersey City, N.J. – Saint Peter’s College and the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) will launch a joint Bachelor of Science degree program in health information management, effective with the start of the spring 2010 semester. The program prepares students to manage patient information and medical records, as well as understand the coding of medical diagnoses and procedures. They will also acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to administrate computer information systems, which house and transmit electronic health records.

Although only 20 percent of physicians are currently using computer information systems to store health records, the public can expect to see use of this system grow over the next five years. Congress has enacted the HITECH Act, a 2009 economic stimulus package that offers $19 billion in incentives to attract more physicians and health care systems to adopt the use of electronic health records. Although moving to electronic health records does currently incur extra cost, it is expected to prevent long-term costly errors and allow greater coordination among caregivers and patients.

Employment opportunities for graduates with a background in health information management can be found within different entities of the health care industry, including hospitals, clinics, managed care organizations, insurance companies, home health care agencies, physician practices, law firms and hospital consulting agencies.

Housed in the College’s Department of Biology, the program allows students to be enrolled at Saint Peter’s for the first two years of the program in order to fulfill their core and prerequisite courses for the major. They will then complete the degree at UMDNJ over two additional years. Students will gain expertise in community and consumer health, comprehension of the complexity of health care systems, and the ability to recognize and respond to medical emergencies, among multiple other skill sets.

UMDNJ is currently the only institution for higher education in New Jersey to offer an undergraduate program in health information management.

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Saint Peter’s College, founded in 1872, is a Jesuit, Catholic college in the liberal arts tradition located in the heart of Jersey City, N.J., with a branch campus in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and course offerings on the Jersey City Waterfront and at various corporate sites throughout New Jersey. Educating over 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students in more than 50 programs, Saint Peter’s College is committed to academic excellence and individual attention, preparing students for a lifetime of learning, leadership and service in a diverse and global society.