101 Careers in Healthcare ManagementIn this weekly feature, the editors of SpringBoard highlight one career in the health care professions–including a basic description, educational requirements, core competencies/key skills needed, and related web sites and professional organizations where you can find more information!

The Chief Medical Information Officer (CMIO) is a new position in hospitals. The goal of the CMIO is to help facilitate and accelerate the clinical use of IT throughout the organization and serve as the bridge between the clinical staff and IT department. The CMIO directs the effective use and implementation of IT, particularly as it applies to physicians, nurses, and other clinical staff.

As part of the senior leadership team, the CMIO will:

  • Serve as a liaison between medical and technical departments and executive leadership
  • Head studies for the design and integration of IT systems and infrastructure in the medical department
  • Study trends in health informatics to develop applications that increase efficiency in patient care
  • Develop standards and “rules” in medical terminology and application to increase efficiency in patient care
  • Advise steering committees on subject of health informatics and policy-making within the organization

Hospital-based CMIOs generally require a master’s degree, although some smaller hospitals might employ an advanced practice nurse in this role. It is also expected that the CMIO have experience in medical informatics.


  • Outstanding interpersonal skills including the ability to effectively communicate with persons throughout the organization, including clinicians
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Knowledge of the process and tools for capturing, organizing, and using individual and departmental intellectual assets, such as competencies, best practices, and so on.
  • Ability to work collaboratively to create meaningful use of health IT
  • Familiarity with the legal and regulatory elements of health IT
  • Outstanding project management skills
  • Ability to educate and influence other clinicians around the adoption of health IT
  • Familiarity with the full spectrum of electronic medical records systems
  • Ability to analyze and resolve complex issues

CMIOs earn in the range of $50,000 to $400,000, although many of these persons do continue to practice medicine. Small hospitals would typically not be able to employ a CMIO, so these positions would be expected to be found at large, urban hospitals or academic health centers.

A growing number of hospitals are expanding their traditional information systems roles to include persons whose primary training and experience is in medicine or nursing. Most traditionally trained CIOs do not have the clinical expertise, which makes the CMIO role particularly important as healthcare organizations grow and develop their IT infrastructure.


Buy now on the Kindle or Nook!