Healthcare engineering is the application of engineering methods and problem solving skills to
important problems in healthcare. This interdisciplinary field integrates methods and knowledge
from statistics, economics, operations research, and computer science with social,
communication, and policy research as applied to healthcare. Working in collaboration with
medical professionals and decision makers, healthcare engineers develop data-driven tools and
methodologies that allow safe and cost effective healthcare delivery with improved outcomes
while leveraging health informatics technologies.
Healthcare engineering employs concepts and principles of engineering and applies them to
healthcare situations. Engineers look at problems or systems and design new or improved ways
of making those systems work — like finding better ways to make a car more fuel efficient, for
example. In healthcare engineering, the system is the healthcare system and includes all facets,
from medication safety to patient and family engagement.
Healthcare is the largest and fastest-growing industry in the U.S. According to the U.S.
Department of Labor, wage and salary employment in the healthcare industry is projected to
increase twice as fast as all industries combined through 2016.
Healthcare engineers are in high demand in hospitals, medical device manufacturers, healthcare
construction companies, healthcare information technology industry, healthcare consulting firms,
nursing homes, diagnostic laboratories, and other components of the health care system, for
positions such as director of engineering of healthcare companies, healthcare system engineer,
healthcare construction manager, healthcare design engineer, healthcare maintenance
engineer/manager, healthcare safety/security engineer/manager, healthcare support service
manager, medical equipment planner, healthcare facility