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Interested in MS Health Informatics?

Has it been that long?! My last post was February πŸ™

It’s because I’ve been busy at my new post as Chief of the UP College of Medicine Medical Informatics Unit. As part of my responsibilities, I also serve as the program director of the MS Health Informatics program (medical informatics track).

If you’re interested in enrolling in the masteral program, please go to the website of the UP Manila National Graduate Office for Health Sciences at to learn more about the requirements. You can also email me at Check out the study plan here.

The MS Health Informatics program has two tracks – bioinformatics (under the UP Manila College of Arts and Sciences) and the medical informatics track (under the UP College of Medicine). Since the program began in 2005, only three students have completed their theses and graduated in medical informatics track: myself, Dr. Godofredo Inciong Jr. and Dr. Millicent Tan Ong.



41 thoughts on “Interested in MS Health Informatics?”

  1. Charmaine Soliven-Tubera

    Hi I am interested in this course? is there any way I can enrol under this program even when I’m overseas. does UPOU offer this course? thank you.

    1. Sorry, UPOU is not offering this course. I will let you know when we roll out the short courses, which will likely be online. Thanks for your interest!

  2. Cynthia J. Labiaga

    Good morning Madam! My daughter is already in her 4th year this coming school year. She wants to be an OB-GYN, but due to budget constraints she is having a hard time deciding what course to take. She is also adept in computer…which means this is her second choice. As I browse…I saw this course HEALTH INFORMATICS…which I presume is a combination of medical and IT course. My daughter is an honor student of her school, a very determined person and good natured. As a mother, I would really want for her to choose the right career path. With your available time, may I know:
    1. the requirements needed in order for her to pursue this career,
    2. how long would it take to finish the course,
    3. what school can you suggest to take this course.

    I’ve been really praying for guidance.
    Thank you so much, more power to you.

    1. Hi Cynthia! When you said your daughter will be in 4th year – did you mean high school? Health informatics is a masters program. In UP Manila, it has two tracks – medical informatics and bioinformatics. To be eligible for the medical informatics track, the applicant must be a doctor or a graduate of paramedical courses such as nursing, pharmacy, PT etc. For the bioinformatics track, a graduate of BS Biochemistry or computer science. It takes two years of coursework then a thesis.

      1. Cynthia J. Labiaga

        Hi Madam! My daughter is still in high school. Thanks for the info and thank you also for accomodating my queries. God bless.

  3. Jerick Smith M. Estrada

    hi chief, i would like to ask if i am allowed to take MS in health informatics even though im a BSN, RN?,
    i’m really interested in taking this course and i have an ardent desire to learn all about health informatics.
    i look forward in your response. thank you in advance

    1. Yes you can take the medical informatics track. The bioinformatics track of the MS Health Informatics program is for those with a degree in computer science or biochemistry.

  4. Good day. I have been interested about health/medical informatics since my med school days but I haven’t spoken to anyone who particularly specializes in this field. Is it advisable to take a straight track on medical informatics or take a specialization then pursue medical informatics? I’m already a medical doctor and leaning towards taking a straight track on medinformatics. Thank you in advance.

    1. Thanks for your inquiry. Dr. Ryan Banez is an example of someone who went straight into medical informatics right after finishing medical school. I took up internal medicine and endocrinology subspecialization before going into health informatics. My mentor Dr. Alvin Marcelo also finished surgery residency before going into the field. My take is having a medical specialty gives you a back up plan. But for me personally, the advantage is in being able to introduce the field of informatics to those in endocrinology as I am one of them as well. Because of the current need for informatics professionals in the Philippines, proceeding straight to medical informatics training is a viable career path, but be prepared to blaze trails.

  5. Good day Dr.Tan! I am Dianne Sanchez a registered nurse, and I am very interested to proceed a masters degree in Health Informatics since I participated in the 1st Philippine Healthcare Social Media Summit last February in cebu in which you are one of the speakers. I would like to ask if UP- Cebu is offering health informtics, instead of taking it in Manila. thank you so much and God bless.

    1. Thanks for attending the summit! Sadly, the MS Health Informatics course is only available at UP Manila. Thanks for your interest.

  6. Hi! I’m interested to take a masters in health informatics since i heard about it from a friend. However, i would like to know if the course is applicable for dentists. Is it possible to take the course while working or does the course require students to be on full load? Thank you & God bless! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi, yes dentists are eligible to take the medical informatics track. You can take only as many units as you can handle. It does not have to be a full load. Thanks!

  7. Artemio Timmy Castillejos

    This is to request more information about your Master degree in Health Informatics. I am extremely interested in this course and I am anxious to apply for it in your renowned University for the academic year 2015/2016.
    First, I would like to inquire about qualifications, in particular I don’t have allied medical background as I hold a degree in Hospitality Industry (BSHRM) thought I’ve been in the BPO Industry-Medical Account for almost 3 years having diversified experience as Certified Medical Coder and currently employed as Multi-specialty coder. Moreover, I would be grateful if you could indicate the formal degree qualification.
    Second, does the Degree for HI is accredited by CCHIIM and does it qualify me to take the RHIT/RIA certification?

    Thank you in advance for your attention to my request. i look forward to receiving your response.


    1. Hi Timmy, if you don’t have a medical or paramedical background then you will be eligible for the bioinformatics track and not the medical informatics track. The bioinformatics track requires units in biochemistry and computer science. And no, it is not CCHIIM accredited.

  8. Hello Dr. Tan,
    I am interested in taking the masters in health informatics and I have a bachelor of pharmacy degree.
    I am from Africa and will need to come in as an international student, however I need guidance on the procedure for application for admission, the application deadline as well as the month of the year that the program normally starts.

    Also may I know if there is a link where I can get information on the best neighbourhoods for an international graduate student with kids to live in Manila? I will appreciate your response. Thank you.


  9. Doc, ive been interested in emr’s cpoe pos etc since i came across the topic in my 5th yr pharma undergrad. I would have applied in the masters course had i known about it sooner but Im a med student now. Im particularly interested in the “creation” part esp. on software and hardware reqmts, and a little on govt policies if any. I have a little background in MS access in high school. I plan to self-study for the time being. May I request for references from you? I hope you have course programs and ebooks etc to share. πŸ™‚ I find myself wandering aimlessly in the internet for info and wasting time and energy. Im hoping for your favorable reply

    1. Wow, thanks for your interest. Our courses sadly only currently reside inside UP’s learning management system. But maybe you can get in touch with my master’s student Anica @wired_ann who is also a pharmacist.

  10. I would like to request information about your Master degree in Health Informatics. I’m interested in pursuing studies on this program. I’m PH-RN, and a online independent contractor working from home as EMR (EHR) Analyst and HCC Coder. Thank you.

  11. Good day,

    I am an RN and currently working on a software company which creates Hospital information systems. I am aiming for an application this year for this program. I am sending an email to as per what I have read above.

    Thank you,

    Lhou Ghin Magluyan

  12. Richard Ronald B. Cacho

    Hi Iris. I am Richard Ronald Cacho, your classmate in med school. Hahahaha. I wanted to ask you privately, but I thought some of the queries might be related to my question. So, do you think I can finish the course if I attend Saturday sessions? Tom Magno said you have Saturday scheds as well. Thanks and regards.

    1. Hi Cach! There are certain subjects that are not offered during Saturdays, like mine πŸ™‚ but we use blended learning (a mix of online and face to face) and allow for web presence (skyping in to class) so yes, it is possible.

  13. Good Day,

    I am an RN, aspiring someday to become an MD. I haven’t yet taken my NMAT. Technically, I’m still at the earliest stage on the process. If I’m lucky enough to be accepted in a Medical School, will it be feasible to take MS Health Informatics together with Medical School / Medicine Degree? I have a strong background in Python and C#, and wanted ever since I was at my undergrad sophomore year to become someday a Health Informatics Specialist. If it is not feasible to take this MS Degree together with Medicine, is there a possibility that this MS Degree will still be offered on year 2022? Hehe, I would be graduating then by that year.

    1. There is no such plan at the moment since medical school is difficult enough as it is. There is an MD-PhD program though that is focused on biochemistry.

      1. Hi

        As with the other people who have made comments regarding your article, I too am very much interested with this idea of crossing both the medical field and it world. I would like to know if this is still open and how long is this going to take.

        1. Yes, you can inquire at UP Manila National Graduate Office for the Health Sciences (NGOHS). It takes 2 years.

  14. Emanuel Y. Gloria

    Hi! I’m interested to apply in the MSHI program under the BioInformatics track. I’m an Applied Mathematics graduate from UP Mindanao, a Statistician-I at the Provincial Health Office in our province for almost a year now, and I also do computer programming – I have units in programming and also training. Would these suffice the admission requirements for the said program? Thank you.

    1. I’m not in charge of the bioinformatics track, Dr. Magboo at the College of Arts & Sciences is. I do know however that they give a computer proficiency exam and require some biochemistry units.

  15. Good Day! I’m glad that Ive found this site and read your article. Anyway, I’m a PH-RN since 2013, and decided to go back to school to learn more, and this course (MS Health Informatics) is a good shot for me, I guess. I finished college with my thesis, efficiency of computer-based system in 4 main hospitals in Quezon Province, and that was 4 yrs ago. I can only imagine how much improvements they have now using these technologies, and still looking forward for more innovation. I hope this course is still open until now, and does the 2-yr span of time is a loaded schedule? Because I’m planning to study while working. Also, do you offer subjects that can start for this coming 2nd Sem or should I wait until April? Thanks!

    Warm regards,
    Tee Jay M. Oabel, RN, BSN

    1. MSHI is an active program. However we have already accepted 10 first year students for 2017. Unfortunately, we do not accept applications for 2nd semester so yes you will have to wait until 2018.

  16. I am looking forward to be one of the students for next year’s intake! I have yet to ask NGOHS if they accept application by mail.

  17. Hi doc! I want to ask do you have a stat of how much has this degree grew from when it started in the country? As much as i am interested, i also am curious as to how i am going to get a job out of it in the future. Hehe i am actually getting tired of being in the bedside and wants to try a new field where i can also excell as a nurse πŸ™‚ thank you

    1. Around 10-12 people mostly nurses apply to the program yearly. You can post on the Facebook group of the Philippine Medical Informatics Society to ask our graduates about their jobs. Many hospitals are beginning to form nursing informatics units.

  18. Jon- Erik H. Villamater, DMD

    good day Dr. Tan. i am a dentist by profession. me and my wife (a physician) taught in a dental school for a semester but eventually gave up since she is a pinoyMD scholar leading to DTTB return of service. i taught Dental Informatics and this sparked my interest even during dental school days. i even followed University of Pittsburgh’s Dental Informatics specialization but eventually they have shut down the program due to, maybe, lack of funding or support or whatever. however, just recently i stumbled upon this Masters degree which was surprisingly available here in our country. i would like to ask since the program started 2005, only 3 students completed thesis and graduated MS HI-MI? as in seriously?!? how many students on that track for the last 13 years? i am interested but as you have said on this blog, with the ratio of the years in operation vs the graduates produced, chances of completing the course takes a decade.

    1. Hi! That’s an old post. Since I became Chief of the Medical Informatics Unit, I’ve graduated four more πŸ™‚ the problem really is the thesis. I have very good completion of the coursework but most students are unable to complete the thesis because they are hired by private companies or promoted to informatics-related jobs at their workplace. Currently, I have around 60 students in various stages of completion of their studies/thesis. Every year, I get 8-12 students coming into the program.

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