About the Course
This course is intended to help even non-technically trained students gain basic proficiency in health informatics: the application of computing to healthcare delivery, public health and community-based clinical research. This is distinct from the related field of bioinformatics, which explores the role of computing in understanding the genomic and proteomic processes within cells. Weeks 1-2 cover the US healthcare delivery system's unique structural, economic and policy issues and how they create a potentially strategic role for health informatics. Week 3-5 explain at a high level the core technologies involved in contemporary health informatics. Weeks 6-8 explore how these technologies are being deployed using some of the best commercial and open source products as examples. Weeks 9-10 present the technologies that have been developed to explore the digital data provided by these new systems with several examples of cutting edge research using "big data". As the course progresses, students can, optionally, also read the appropriate draft chapters of the instructor’s forthcoming text, An Introduction to Contemporary Health Informatics.