Health informatics education for clinicians and managers--what's holding up progress?

Int J Med Inform. 2004 Mar 18;73(2):205-13. doi: 10.1016/j.ijmedinf.2003.12.003.


This paper reports outcomes of a national survey of health informatics (HI) education and training carried out in the UK. A questionnaire to elicit details of HI and IT skills teaching was derived from a national consensus document (Learning to Manage Health Information, LtMHI). Forms were sent to all pre-qualification medical and nursing schools and to a stratified sample of postgraduate and post-registration programmes. Three case studies were carried out in acute hospital trusts to gain insight into opportunities for continuing professional development in health informatics and IT. Our evidence suggests that in the UK, health informatics is not yet integrated into the clinical curriculum. Nearly all the pre-qualification courses made some provision for teaching IT skills. Nonetheless, many respondents felt that students did not receive sufficient training. There was considerable variation in the amount of HI teaching provided in the different educational sectors. The case studies suggested very little HI training was provided for clinical staff and take-up of provision was not monitored. A number of factors are holding up progress, the most important being a lack of staff with the knowledge and skills to provide academic leadership. The paper outlines some steps that need to be taken to ensure health informatics is embedded in all clinical curricula.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Computer Literacy
  • Computer User Training
  • Curriculum / trends*
  • Education, Professional*
  • Humans
  • Medical Informatics / education*
  • Staff Development
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United Kingdom