Healthcare organizations looking to create their own brand of health IT training materials can get a head start from the U.S. Energy Department, which has created a free, open-source online development and presentation platform
for distance learning courses.
Michelle Fox, chief strategist for education and workforce development at the Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, pitched the development site to a Health Information Technology Policy Committee subgroup on health IT workforce development.
"We just launched publicly in June this year, although it's been in beta for about two years," Fox said in a telephone interview.
Several health IT projects are already using the software, including Bellevue (Wash.) College
, a participant in the health IT workforce development program funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
"We're really excited because some of the community colleges have not only put their content on there, but are offering improvements," Fox said. "Then it helps everybody, and they're not building the tools on their own."
Courses already online include Health Informatics 101
and Health IT Foundations for IT Professionals in Healthcare Organizations
, both eight-week, 40-hour programs.