Program Description

This program is eligible for the MnSCU Two-Year Occupational Grant Pilot Program. Click HERE for more information


Health Data Specialist
Health Data Specialist AAS Degree (60 Credits)

Program Description
The Health Data Specialist (HDS) program at SCTCC integrates curriculum from the health information technology and computer programming field to meet the changing needs of the healthcare industry. As healthcare delivery moves to an electronic stage, the HDS program gives students a solid background in security, database modeling and cryptography, all relevant skills to healthcare in the storage, maintenance and use of digital healthcare data.

Students will apply computer programming, troubleshooting, and information technology skills to the installation, maintenance, and upgrade of standard, customized or proprietary medical software and associated hardware. The HDS program provides instruction in telecommunications, electronic healthcare records software applications, computer security and data privacy. Students will also use varied electronic health record software applications to replicate patient information and patient encounters. Legal issues surrounding electronic health records are examined including designated record sets, legal health record definitions, and response to litigation summons. Instruction in continuous quality improvement focuses on data integrity, validity, and reliability including the use of standards for data collection. Students gain communication and problem solving skills needed in the changing healthcare environment through courses in written and oral communication and critical thinking.

Students must earn a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 or higher for college-level coursework. In addition, students must earn a C or better in all program classes.

All students in this program must have a laptop meeting current specifications of the program as found on the SCTCC website.

If you have been arrested, charged or convicted of any criminal offense, you should investigate the impact that the arrest, charge or conviction may have on your chances of employment in the field you intend to study or on your chances to obtain federal, state, and other higher education financial aid.

Career Opportunities
Labor projections in the health information technology field indicate continued growth over the next several years due to the expectation of healthcare delivery being supported by electronic data. Central Minnesota’s status as the fastest growing region in the state will lead to continued employment growth. Projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics are for a 20 percent increase in jobs in health information documentation. Jobs in these areas include healthcare integration, healthcare systems analyst, clinical information technology consultant, technology support specialist, data/application analyst, application specialist, documentation specialist, and clinical quality data coordinator.

Suggested Technical Studies Semester I
CMSC1203 Structured Programming Logic 3 Credits
CMSC1212 Web Markup Language 3 Credits
CMSC1225 Java Language I 3 Credits
HITM1215 Health Information Foundations 3 Credits
HITM1228 Administrative Medical Terminology 3 Credits

Suggested Technical Studies Semester II
CMSC1216 Database Modeling I 3 Credits
CMSC1217 Data Analytics 3 Credits
CMSC1255 PHP 3 Credits

Suggested Technical Studies Semester III
CMSC1206 Basic Networking/ Security 3 Credits
CMSC2201 Database Modeling II 3 Credits
HITM2212 Quality Improvement and Healthcare Statistics 3 Credits
HITM2220 Legal Aspects of Health Information 3 Credits

Suggested Technical Studies Semester IV
BUSM1212 Customer Relationship Management 3 Credits
CMSC2220 Cryptography 3 Credits
HITM1240 Computerized Health Information 3 Credits

General Education
MATH1300 College Algebra 3 Credits
  MNTC Goal Area 1 Communications Oral 3 Credits
  MNTC Goal Area 1 Communications-Written 3 Credits
  MNTC Goal Area 5 Social Sciences 3 Credits
  MNTC Goal Area 6 Humanities 3 Credits

Estimated cost for books and supplies: $2,350 plus laptop

PLEASE NOTE: All program plans are preliminary and curriculum may change without notice. Your catalog of record may have different requirements.


Contact Info

320.308.5000 or 1.800.222.1009

1540 Northway Drive
St. Cloud, MN 56303