“Technology should translate to better patient care,” says Raja Talati ’14 MS HI.
As a physician, teacher, researcher and medical information officer, Talati is well-equipped to make that happen.
He was recently promoted to colonel in the Air Force Reserve, where he is functional champion and chief health informatics officer at the Defense Health Agency, a joint integrated combat support agency of the Army, Navy and Air Force medical services.
“My coursework at UIC provided me with a rich background in health IT,” says Talati. “Without my training at UIC, I think this position would not have opened up to me.”
Talati was previously chief of aerospace medicine in the Air Force Reserve at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida. He is clinician and chief medical information officer at Midway Specialty Care, a nonprofit practice for HIV and other infectious diseases with offices in Florida and Guyana.
As a primary care physician, he has practiced in many different settings: urgent care, juvenile detention, multidisciplinary outpatient clinics and hospitals.
In April 2020, he served a two-month deployment at Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx, where he and his Air Force team helped care for COVID-19 patients. In July, he helped treat Florida’s surge of COVID patients at a hospital near his practice in Ft. Pierce.
Everywhere Talati looks, he sees potential technology solutions for problems in health care practice.
“IT can and will help make health care better, but we haven’t found that sweet spot yet,” says Talati.
He has high praise for the UIC health informatics program, with its strong foundation in IT governance and data security. The degree has helped expand his career, he says.
“I get to see patients, I get to play with computers, I get to create new knowledge. What more could somebody ask for?”