Digital health and biomedical informatics is a rapidly growing and evolving field. Not only are new positions being added to the workforce in the digital health field, but the positions themselves are changing along with the development of new information technology. For example, one of the most important and common ways that most people interact with information, including digital health information, is through mobile devices: smartphones and tablets. These mobile devices are displacing traditional desktop computers and laptops, a trend that was not apparent even five years ago. Digital health and health informatics professionals will be needed for important roles in traditional healthcare settings such as hospitals, large academic medical centers, outpatient clinics. Digital health and health informatics professionals will also be needed in emerging digital driven companies, device manufacturers, pharmaceutical and insurance companies. Digital health and health informatics professionals will help to design and guide the implementation of new electronic medical record systems and digital health solutions. As data mining becomes more important for monitoring outcomes for procedures and medications, health informaticists will be involved with implementing data mining systems in these centers. Executive positions as Chief Information Officer and IT Directors will increasingly require candidates to have broad and deep training in health informatics and digital health. A burgeoning health technology startup community has emerged in recent years in Silicon Valley and in several global tech hubs. Innovative entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs will require people with an understanding of healthcare workflows, digital health, data privacy, and computer technology to staff their companies.
The MS in Digital Health Informatics program at the University of San Francisco is designed to give rigorous training at a graduate level to prepare students not only for health informatics and digital health positions as they exist today, but also to grow with the field and be at the forefront of this dynamic field as it evolves in the coming years. Thus, the program will give students skills and training in digital health, computer science, programming, clinical data standards, electronic health record systems, and emerging healthcare needs, and, importantly, the ability to analyze and design complex healthcare systems that grow and adapt as needed. The program is intended to prepare outstanding leaders and innovators in digital health and informatics for now and long into the future, with a focus on social justice and positive contributions to the healthcare ecosystem and community.