What Is Clinical Informatics?

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Clinical informatics is a method of organizing information in the health care industry. It blends information technology, computer science and biomedical informatics. Clinical informatics is a field that is constantly striving to make information more accessible in the simplest way. It involves storing, managing and accessing important health records.

Clinical informatics uses technology and computers to store data at an institution such as a hospital, doctor’s office or other health care facility. Since there are so many papers and files to process at any medical setting, an efficient system for keeping track of it all is required. Medical informatics becomes a way to organize and process the information. Examples of information stored in health informatics include disease research, patient backgrounds, statistics and treatment plans.

Clinical computing is typically the easiest way to store the required information. This use of technology allows not just for the entry of facts and figures, but for the automatic recording of a patient’s vital health statistics, such as temperature or blood pressure, into his or her electronic medical records. Clinical informatics can also be used to communicate between doctors at different hospitals or clinics. Through a process known as telemedicine, doctors can exchange pictures of medical conditions across the globe.

Imaging is another procedure that relies heavily on health care informatics. This involves a CT scanner, which uses software algorithms to recreate a three-dimensional image of the body parts. Bioinformatics also highlights, graphs and charts the body’s natural processes through a convenient data display, making it simple for doctors to review an individual patient’s chart. This leads to the use of clinical informatics as a way to determine decisions about treatments. Information technology makes it possible for immediate feedback to be available about which drugs should be administered to the patients based on their condition, symptoms, previous reactions and allergies.

Since clinical informatics is a multidisciplinary field, it combines data representation, cognitive science, policies, telemedicine and data discovery. The ability to quickly and efficiently retrieve information makes the creation of one organized database indispensable. Clinical informatics provides for this and makes the representation and interpretation of complex medical terms quite simple. Cognitive science comes into play to help those in the medical community understand, process and perceive artificial intelligence and computing. While telemedicine refers to the way patient data is transferred using information technology, policies evaluate this technology on the larger health care system.

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