Having a certification next to your name on a resume is a quick way for recruiters to know that you’re well qualified in a specific area – even without them reading anything beyond the byline of your resume. This stamp of excellence not only helps boost your salary but more importantly, give you a better opportunity to work on your organization’s most critical projects.

On this page, you’ll find the top 5 certifications, broken down by role, that I think will help you in an ehealth career in Canada. Given the talent pool for ehealth professionals is already small in Canada, many advance in their careers without ever getting any certification. That said, having certifications on this page will make you stand out and put you on the better side of the negotiation table for a new job.

Project Management Role

Name

PMP (Project Management Professional)

Prerequisite

If you have a four-year degree:

  • 36 months leading projects
  • 35 hours of project management education/training or CAPM Certification

If you do not have a four-year degree:

  • A high school diploma or an associate's degree (or global equivalent)
  • 60 months leading projects
  • 35 hours of project management education/training or CAPM Certification

Level

Experienced

Fee

$405 USD member or $555 USD non-member

Exams

1 exam

After Certification

Continuous professional development required to maintain PMP certification

Get Started

https://www.pmi.org/certifications/project-management-pmp

Project managers play a critical role to ensure the project team is on track toward the project goal while staying in budget and being on time. While projects are not exclusive to ehealth, the career bonus for project managers to having a PMP certification is equivalent in any industry. Project Management Institute, the organization that issues the PMP certification, claims that the median income of PMP certified project managers is consistently above six-figures.

A significant amount of experience is necessary to register for the PMP exam. If you are entry level, there is also the CAPM (certified associate in project management) certification. However, if you have taken any course in project management, it is not advantageous to get the CAPM certification. As the prerequisite for PMP hints, the CAPM is equivalent to 35 hours of project management education/training. At entry level, I'd recommend to find a role in project analysis or coordination and then build on from there.

Business Analyst Role

Name

CBAP (Certified Business Analysis Professional)

Prerequisite

  • 7,500 hours of Business Analysis Work experience in the last 10 years.
  • 900 hours completed in 4 of the 6 Business Analysis Body of Knowledge Guide Knowledge Areas, for a total of at least 3,600 hours of the required 7,500 hours total.
  • Complete a minimum of 35 hours of Professional Development in the last 4 years.
  • Provide two references.

Level

Experienced

Fee

  • $125 USD application fee plus
  • $325 USD member or $450 USD non-member

Exams

1 exam

After Certification

Re-certification every 3 years with evidence of professional development

Get Started

https://www.iiba.org/certification/iiba-certifications/cbap/

Business analysts is important to the ehealth team to interface between the technical members and clinicians. The breadth of knowledge required for this role is significant. Business analysts in ehealth are often fluent in both technical terms and clinical terms – although not necessarily being in-depth in either field.

The CBAP is the most experienced form of certification for business analysts. Entry level equivalent certification is the ECBA. However, at entry level, having work experience is better than being certified.

Just like the PMP, business analysis isn’t limited to healthcare. Organizations compete to hire high quality business analysts. PayScale ranks CBAP professionals at an average salary of $91k USD.

Electronic Health Record Implementation, Support, and Maintenance

Name

EPIC Certification

Prerequisite

Working at an employer that uses EPIC health information system

Level

Entry

Fee

Employer sponsored (unless if you're a consultant)

Exams

1 exam

After Certification

Re-certify on newer EPIC versions if the EPIC version you were certified on expired

Get Started

Ask employer (usually a hospital)

EPIC is an electronic health record that is used by hospitals and independent clinics to manage patient charts, coordinate patient flow, store lab results, create insurance billing among others. You might ask why EPIC certification but not another EHR. That’s because EPIC is extremely popular among hospitals. According to a 2020 US Hospital EHR market share report, EPIC has about 30% of the EHR market. So you’d expect about a third of hospital EHR jobs to come from a hospital using EPIC. That said, there are other popular EHRs out there, such as Cerner, Meditech, or AllScripts.

Being EPIC certified isn’t really a choice you make. A typical entry-level job related to EPIC will ask you to be certified within say 6 months after starting the job – as in, your employer will sponsor you to become certified after hiring you. Having solid understanding of EHR systems hospitals use will also open a wide array of other career options such as consultancy.

Health Information Management

Name

CHIM (Certified Health Information Management)

Prerequisite

  • Membership with Canadian Health Information Management Association (CHIMA)
  • Graduate from a Health Information Management program accredited by the Canadian College of Health Information Management (list here)

Level

Entry-Intermediate

Fee

  • $325.71/year + tax membership ($39.18/year + tax if student enrolled in accredited health information program)
  • $498 exam

Exams

1 exam

After Certification

  • Annual membership with CHIMA
  • Do no evil
  • Continued professional education credits

Get Started

https://www.echima.ca/chim-nce-process/

CHIM is another popular professional certification to get. It’s an entry level accreditation from this list that can help jumpstart your career in health informatics. In order to qualify for CHIM, you must complete training from an accredited health information management program – which is 1-2 years online and can be completed on a part-time basis (so you can do this while having another full-time job).

CHIMA has a registry of professionals where you can look up where CHIM professionals are currently employed. I did random spot checks and found that most CHIM professionals are either working in a hospital or with a government agency related to health information. If that is your career goal, then CHIM is right for you. You can have a look yourself on CHIMA's professionals registry.

Executive

Name

CPHIMS-CA (Certified Professional in Healthcare Information and Management Systems - Canada)

Prerequisite

  • Digital Health Canada course
  • If you don't have a degree, you need 10 years of information and management systems experience (including 8 years in healthcare)
  • If you have a Bachelor's degree, you need 5 years of information and management systems experience (including 3 years in healthcare)
  • If you have a graduate degree, you need 3 years of information and management systems experience (including 2 years in healthcare)
  • If you don't have a degree or your degree was awarded more than 5 years ago, you need 45 hours of continuing education in health IT, digital health, or ehealth.

Level

Very Experienced

Fee

  • CPHIMS exam: $534 + tax (Digital Health Canada member) or $697 + tax (non-member)
  • Canadian supplemental exam: $244 + tax (Digital Health Canada member) or $345 + tax (non-member)

Exams

2 exams

  • CPHIMS exam
  • CA (Canadian supplemental exam)

After Certification

60 continuing education units before certificate expiry, otherwise re-write exam

Get Started

https://digitalhealthcanada.com/achieving-cphims-ca/

CPHIMS-CA is the most advanced certification for ehealth professionals in Canada. If you meet the prerequisites for the CPHIMS-CA certification, chances are, you are already well-versed with ehealth – you are also likely to already be in a senior or leadership position in your career. You have also likely have demonstrated your proficiency in ehealth in many ways and made some meaningful contributions to the field. Having the CPHIMS-CA adds about your commitment to lifelong learning and dedication to staying active in the ehealth community.