Using Data for a Healthier World
The online Master’s in Health Informatics and Analytics program at Tufts University School of Medicine welcomed its first students in Fall 2019. The new program is designed for professionals in the health-care, data, and computer science fields, to give them the knowledge and skills to improve health care through information technology.
Health informatics is the collection and management of health data, including deciding what data to collect from patients and others and the design of the systems that collect it. Health analytics is about leveraging that data to answer pressing questions related to disease prevention and treatment, access to care, and health-care delivery.
Health professionals from both sides need to work closely together to ensure data quality and value, said Olaf Dammann, director of the Health Informatics and Analytics Program. At Tufts, the two tracks share introductory courses but split into informatics-related and analytical paths thereafter. “The informatics track focuses on how and for what purpose data are needed and used, while the analytics track zooms in on analytical methods, such as biostatistics and machine learning,” Dammann said.
Tufts Now caught up with four students to see why they enrolled, what it’s like taking online classes, and how the program will help them achieve their career goals.