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Ready or not, informatics is now driving radiology

by John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | December 04, 2019
Business Affairs Health IT

The rest of the session was spent reviewing informatics education tracks, ranging from certification, degrees, fellowships, board certification, and Ph.D.-level education. Dr. Doug Fridsma, president and CEO of the American Medical Informatics Association, said an essential first step is to decide why a radiologist wants more informatics knowledge.

Is the goal to better navigate their practice informatics? A leadership career in informatics? Or perhaps a research focus? The end purpose determines what investment of time and money is necessary, or in other words, what level of knowledge will help the radiologist be successful. He offered several guidelines for establishing professional informatics need, including:

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– Conduct a practice analysis every five years or so related to interoperability;

– Be ready to fill in knowledge gaps related to new technology, such as blockchain;

– Keep up the professional education necessary to maintain certifications;

– Rely on practice analysis as the underlying framework for competency-based workforce development and recruiting;

– Understanding that certification of general informatics competency is more resilient to technology changes than technology-focused education.

“Don’t make certification a merit badge,” added Fridsma, making a case that informatics education above all must be useful. “It works best when it sits within an ecosystem of education, career development, and lifelong learning.”

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