The first certificates in Clinical Information Science (CIS) have been awarded by the Carolina Health Informatics Program (CHIP) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s School of Information and Library Science (SILS). The students who received the CIS certificates are Emily Pfaff, Ashraf Farrag and Dr. Rich Medlin. In keeping with CHIP’s mission to provide an information technology foundation to professionals interested in designing and implementing systems to improve health care and services, the CIS certificate program offers training focused on clinical systems analysis, data management and clinical decision-making.
CHIP’s CIS certificate program is open to graduate and professional students and post-baccalaureate professionals. The first certificate recipients reflect the diversity of background to which CHIP aspires. Emily Pfaff, who currently works as a research assistant to Dr. Bob Hamer in UNC’s Department of Psychology, is a Master’s in Information Science candidate at SILS.
“My CIS certificate helped to start me on a great career path in health informatics,” Pfaff said. “As one of the first graduates of the program, I’m looking forward to seeing how the program continues to evolve.”
Ashraf Farrag, a nearly 20-year veteran of the information technology field, found the CIS program a useful way to combine professional interests and research.
“Completing my certificate has allowed me to develop new colleagues both in the university and UNC Healthcare. It has fostered working relationships helpful both for my future career in the workforce and research projects for my future academic endeavors,” Farrag said. “As for being one of first recipients, I hope that the work on clinical decision support I did for my research practicum – and am continuing to work on post-certificate – will represent CHIP favorably, as well as set a good example for future graduates as to what they can achieve upon completing the program."
Rich Medlin, an Emergency Medicine physician who works in UNC Hospital’s Emergency Department, has been a full-time physician since 1996.
“Hospital use of advanced information science techniques has lagged behind the rest of the digital world,” Dr. Medlin said. “SILS produces cutting edge research and functional systems that have the potential to revolutionize the way that physicians evaluate and treat patients. However, substantial barriers exist to their implementation, particularly in the areas of security and privacy. The program at SILS, which is funded by the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, aims to educate physicians about these techniques. Forward thinkers like Javed Mostafa, Brad Hemminger, Stephanie Haas and Gary Marchionini make the CHIP program at SILS first rate.”
For more information about CHIP, please go to the CHIP Web site.