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2015 Salary Survey Reveals Highest Paying Health IT Jobs

"Healthcare has a growing need for professionals with technical expertise, and the industry is prepared to compensate those professionals accordingly.”

By Sara Heath

If you want a lucrative health IT career, you might want to join a consulting firm. According to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2015 Compensation Survey, those working at consulting firms are earning top dollar in the health IT industry.

health IT salaries

Among other top earners in the health IT industry are those employed in corporate positions at health systems, at hardware companies, at accountable care organizations, and at health information exchanges.

The HIMSS 2015 Compensation Survey was intended to provide cold statistics regarding the compensation status of various health IT professionals:

The HIMSS Compensation Survey provides health information technology (IT) professionals with a tool to compare salaries and compensation packages. This overview provides summary information on the salaries that IT professionals earn, and whether or not they have received a raise or bonus in the past year. This information is also analyzed in key demographic categories, including organizational net revenue, facility type, geographic region, gender, professional level and length of service.

The survey, which looked at the salaries of approximately 1,900 respondents, broke down salaries by region, showing that those employed in the Pacific region of the country have the highest average salary at $127,117, and those in the West South Central region had the lowest average salary at $101,281.

Unsurprisingly, those employed at private, for-profit healthcare organizations also had the highest average salary at $116,726, and those working for government agencies had the lowest average salary at $100,645.

The breakdown of average salaries by position within a company was also unsurprising. Executives were paid the most handsomely, with an average salary of $196,472. Following executives were senior management, department heads, managers, staff, and associate staff.

Overall, HIMSS found that the average health IT salary throughout the entire industry is $111,387; however, the median salary is approximately $90,000. Furthermore, a little over a half of respondents received a salary bonus in the past year, and nearly 77 percent received some sort of pay raise.

Additionally, the survey showed insights into the most popular kinds of employee benefits health IT professionals receive. The most common benefits were overwhelmingly 401K retirement plans, health insurance, dental insurance, and life insurance, with at least 90 percent of respondents reporting that they receive those benefits.

These findings are somewhat consistent with the findings of HealthITJobs.com, a health IT job search website.

Earlier this year, the website published its own study regarding health IT job salaries, finding that the average salary for 2015 was nearly $87,443. This was a slight dip from 2014’s average of $89,837, which the researchers credited to standard deviation.

Similar to the HIMSS study, HealthITJobs.com found that those working in the C-suite had the highest salaries, with managers coming in behind them.

This survey also took into account statistics regarding job satisfaction, finding that near a majority of professionals were satisfied with their jobs. Approximately 83 percent of the individuals surveyed identified as such.

Both the HIMSS survey and the HealthITJobs.com survey showed exceptionally lucrative pay for those in the healthcare IT industry. This can most likely be explained by the recent surge in the health IT professional market.

Due to several healthcare initiatives, including the implementation of new and modified meaningful use requirements and the recently-rolled out ICD-10 code set, the healthcare industry needs an increasing number of IT professionals.

According to the researchers at HealthITJobs.com, individuals talented in the IT field are desperately needed to fill a large number of open positions.

“Health IT skills continue to be in high demand, and those who have them command impressive incomes,” the researchers stated. “From programmers to project managers, usability experts to data analysts - healthcare has a growing need for professionals with technical expertise, and the industry is prepared to compensate those professionals accordingly.”

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