What does it mean to be a CHIA?

Let me take you on a brief journey to my CHIA credential. 

It was 2007 and I was a Clinical Nurse Consultant specialising in HIV Palliative Care.  The epidemic was taking a very welcome turn for the better, people were staying well for much longer and my role was becoming obsolete.  A fork in the road had appeared…do I continue in a new direction in clinical nursing, or do I look at something entirely different? 

I had been using some clinical information systems on a regular basis, constantly in frustration and awe; (often in equal quantities) using sometimes clunky interfaces, but then having something so clever and funky as a way to view clinical results….on my mobile! (Yes, I am that old!) 

I moved into a Clinical Training and Support role – some of my colleagues told me I’d sold my soul to the devil! Why was I swapping patients for computers?   

It was the start of a fabulous, sometimes frustrating but always interesting ride! 

During the intervening years, I have been a trainer, clinical business analyst, functional specialist, health informatician; there have been many hats, but registered nurse has remained the whole time.  My experience has been very clinical informatics focussed, particularly clinical documentation and medication management.  Health Informatics is so much broader than this so I felt it was important to expand my knowledge and exposure to other aspects of the health informatics world – I wasn’t sure that I wanted to undertake a post graduate course at the time, and saw CHIA as a way of expanding my knowledge.  I can’t lie, it wasn’t a walk in the park, it’s a challenging body of knowledge to absorb, but the sense of achievement was worth it!   

Having gained the CHIA credential tells the world that I am a passionate health informatician, that I care about the development, use and evaluation of technology in healthcare.  Being part of the CHIA alumni provides amazing access to an incredibly diverse, yet equally passionate group of people that I can liaise with.

Kelly Tank CHIA

Kelly Tank CHIA

Functional Specialist, eHealth NSW