To work as a health information technician, you typically need to:
- have a high school diploma or equivalent; and
- graduate from a medical records technology program.
Education after high school
Most health information technicians have a certificate from a medical records technology program. Some have an associate degree in medical records technology. These programs include courses in anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, and statistics. Courses in database management and coding are also helpful. Some employers may prefer applicants who have a bachelor's degree.
Some hospitals and clinics offer on-the-job training to employees who have worked as medical records clerks. Training usually lasts two to three months. However, this type of training is becoming less common.
It is very helpful to have at least two years of experience as a medical records clerk. If you have this experience, you will be a good candidate for health information technology training offered through an employer.
Some branches of the military train people to be medical record technicians. Training lasts for six to 18 weeks, depending on your specialty. Additional training occurs on the job.