With a Healthcare Management degree, graduates can find employment in one of the fastest-growing healthcare careers and advance their careers! Whether we want to perceive health care as a “helping” career or not, it’s big business. Contemporary healthcare also requires organizations that can handle complex logistical, operational, marketing, and human resources tasks. Sounds like a job for a businessperson. Well, it is, or at least for qualified healthcare management professionals.
Healthcare management is one of the fastest growing health care careers. And a wide variety of bachelor’s in healthcare management and graduate healthcare management programs have sprung up that are tailored to adult learners. Find out what you can do with a health care management degree or healthcare administration degree below!
- What is a Healthcare Manager? What is a Healthcare Management Degree? What Do Healthcare Managers Do?
- What are the Available Health Management Degrees and Specializations?
- Ask Yourself and Consider the Following About Your Health Care Management Education and Career
- How Can We Help You In Your Healthcare Management Education and Career?
- What Can You Expect to Earn as a Health Care Manager? What are Some Important Stats About Health Care Management Employment?
What is a Healthcare Manager?
Our healthcare system in America is enormous with thousands of insurance plans, hospitals, nursing homes, doctors’ offices, and other medical facilities. The goal of a healthcare organization is to create the best health outcomes at the lowest costs possible and also meet organizational goals and standards. The field of healthcare management strives to improve patient care and offer the best healthcare services at the lowest cost.
Healthcare managers are healthcare executives that run healthcare facilities. They oversee healthcare administrators and also medical staff and departments. They oversee hospital finance, nursing departments, patient records management, and affiliated medical clinics. Healthcare managers may also do things like purchase medical equipment, public health programs, and research programs. These management roles require a combination of medical knowledge, business administration, human resources, and leadership skills.
What is a Healthcare Management Degree?
For the health care system to run correctly, it depends on hundreds of thousands of adequately qualified managers. These managers are often highly compensated and enjoy an expanding job market with more demand for skilled managers than supply.
A health services manager oversees a healthcare facility or organization’s medical staff. These executive level positions in the healthcare industry generally require an advanced healthcare management degree, such as an MHA or an MBA program. And senior level positions in the healthcare field require a Doctor of Healthcare Administration (DHA).
What Do Healthcare Managers Do?
Healthcare Managers help people by running efficient, active organizations. They may work in residential care facilities, a doctor’s office, a long term care facility, a large hospital health care facility, or its various departments. For example, healthcare managers may work directly with residents working in a hospital, healthcare workers in radiology, billing, or other niche roles.
To succeed in these roles, healthcare professionals need diverse management skills. Healthcare managers also need at least a master’s degree, healthcare management certifications, a medical work history, and administrative experience. A career in healthcare management involves countless administrative tasks and regular financial reports, but also a competitive salary!
In degree programs that prepare you to work as a Healthcare Manager, you’ll study healthcare law, policy, organizational behavior, marketing, healthcare finance, human resources, and much more.
What Skills Do Healthcare Management Professionals Need?
This guide will look at healthcare management degrees, how to choose between them, what we’ve done to help you in your education and career, earnings and employment statistics in the field, and much more. Healthcare Managers are extraordinarily high-functioning, dynamic utility players in competitive healthcare environments. While healthcare managers work in many different roles, they share certain qualities and these top skills.
Healthcare Managers don’t often directly provide services but must understand health information technology. They should be able to engage and direct practitioners, deal with clients, and ensure services meet organizational standards and goals. And they should be able to meet patient needs in a variety of settings.
Healthcare Managers direct staff, deal with patient care concerns and questions, answer supervisors and directors, and much more. They’ll also likely need to collaborate with outside agencies and healthcare organizations that are mutually dependent or otherwise cooperative. So, these medical professionals need strong communication skills.
Eager to Improve
Being a Healthcare Manager demands a hunger for advancing and refining your skills. You’ll need to love learning, and building competencies through attending conferences, earning new degrees, and much more. Healthcare changes in response to new research, regulations, and funding realities. You’ll need to keep up with those changes to be effective.
Healthcare Managers can be responsible for many aspects of an organization. Executive roles require detail oriented individuals. Planning, delegating, scheduling, and having a strong memory are all qualities you’ll need to have and cultivate throughout your career.
What are the Daily Responsibilities of a Healthcare Manager?
Your work in healthcare management might differ from someone else’s in a different role. However, some responsibilities run the gamut in this field. Some of the things you might be called upon to do include:
- Writing reports and evaluations of staff, policies, funding opportunities, and anything else under your purview.
- Ensuring clients and patients receive the correct services and treatments while maintaining their satisfaction.
- Supervising services like therapy, recovery, surgery, checkups, residential care, and anything else your organization provides.
- Creating and installing programs that develop staff, serve clients and patients, and create community inside and outside of your organization.
- Oversee junior health services managers and healthcare consultants.
- Ensure the safety of medical records.
- Managing budgeting and the allocation of organizational resources.
- Working with external organizations that are interconnected to your own.
What are the Available Healthcare Management Degrees and Specializations?
Now let’s look at the different levels of Healthcare Management Degrees and where these healthcare management professionals work.
Associate Degree in Healthcare Management
These degrees take two years to earn and focus on technical skills. You’ll learn necessary office skills including professional and technical, and how they apply to medical settings. You might work with medical coding software and other computer skills. You’ll likely need a GED or high school diploma to enter one of these programs. Some of the courses you might study include:
- Medical document formatting
- Human Biology
- Healthcare Administration
- Medical terminology
- Health Sciences
- Patient Privacy Rights for Patient Information
- Medical coding and billing
- Medical ethics
Graduates will likely work in entry-level positions for practice managers and healthcare providers at a medical facility or a doctor’s office. Some roles are office managers or assistant managers at hospitals, insurance companies, doctors’ offices, and office staff at other healthcare settings. Graduates also qualify to earn a bachelor’s degree.
Bachelor’s Degree in Healthcare Management
This undergraduate degree program takes four years to complete. Graduates with a bachelor’s degree qualify for a healthcare career and entry-level health administration or management jobs. With a bachelor’s degree in healthcare management, students learn how to file medical paperwork, do day-to-day administration, and also handle customer service.
In this degree program, students complete healthcare management courses. They also complete an internship or other supervised work experience in a healthcare setting to prepare for employment post-graduation. You might take courses like:
- Health Care law
- Health Informatics
- Patient Care Assessment
- Health psychology
- Medical Records and Health information systems management
- Healthcare Administration
After graduating, you could work as a practice manager, health services administrator, medical manager, health services manager, or a nursing home administrator. Some individuals with a bachelor’s degree work as healthcare consultants. However, for many of these healthcare management positions, you’ll need to complete a graduate degree. Career advancement comes with a master’s degree or even a doctorate degree.
Master’s Degree in Health Management
In a master’s degree program, you’ll study the organizational and business structures within the health care field. You’ll study decision-making and problem-solving in an array of situations and structures. These master’s degree programs take approximately two years to complete, although they can take less in an accelerated program or longer depending on your needs. You might specialize in areas like nutrition, policy, auditing, informatics, education, or operations. You might be able to take a degree program partially online. Courses might include:
- HR Management
- Health care Ethics
- Data Analysis for Quality Care
- Health care Laws
- Cost Management and Patient Financial Aid
- Healthcare Facility Quality Improvement
- Electronic Medical Records Management
- Healthcare Administration
- Conflict Resolution
- Health Marketing Research
Graduates qualify for many healthcare management careers in the healthcare industry. They can supervise the business and medical practices at a variety of health service organizations like an assisted living facility. Some of these places are residential care facilities, rehabilitation centers, pharmaceutical companies, assisted living facilities, and hospitals. Depending on the position you want to fill, you might need auxiliary licenses or certifications.
Graduates can work as Nursing Home Administrators, Public Health Engineers, Health Educators, Pharmaceutical Analysts, and Hospital Administrators. These healthcare managers can also continue onward to earn a doctorate degree.
Doctorates in Health Management
In these programs, you’ll likely need at least five years to complete coursework, research and write a dissertation, then defend it. These programs rely on extensive research and statistical analysis to analyze the performance of healthcare systems. You’ll learn how to judge health care delivery based on staff competence, treatment outcomes, patient demographics, and much more. You’ll study how to communicate your findings to laypeople and technical audiences.
Courses you might study include:
- Medical industry economics
- Healthcare policy design
- Healthcare research methods
- Financial management of health services
- Statistical analysis
Many graduates will work as educators, but you could also take on elite roles at government agencies, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, and health insurance providers, among other options.
Let’s explore some of the specializations in this field. Health management degrees can often be interchangeable with health administration degrees. We’ve also written a guide on health administration degrees.
You might consider this specialization if you want to get into the weeds of how healthcare companies stay solvent in an ever-changing healthcare industry. Health care finances are incredibly complex, and you’ll need a hefty dose of accounting and economic classes to master them.
For students who want to handle hospitals or other extensive medical facilities, this is the specialization for you. You’ll learn how to manage staff members, maximize optimal treatment outcomes, troubleshoot a specific department, write and ensure policies are properly followed, and oversee junior health services managers.
Patients are often overlooked in our health care system. By specializing in patient advocacy, you’ll understand insurance, how it denies coverage, and what can be done to mitigate those interests. You’ll study public assistance, healthcare administration, health care policy, and the shifting regulations that govern our health systems and the medical field.
Human Resource Management
In these specializations, you’ll get a crash course in how candidates are chosen, how they’re recruited, and discerning what makes good and bad candidates for specific roles. These healthcare managers spend a good deal of time at health care seminars and interact with leaders who lead hiring in health care.
In these specializations, you’ll study how government agencies and other organizations impact health and improve it in communities and society. You’ll study disease and injury prevention, how to control infectious diseases, and healthcare administration policies. Courses can include health and economic disparities, the American health care system, epidemiology, public health or global health, and biostatistics.
Health Care Informatics
Here you’ll look at how information systems organize health care and facilities. You’ll examine strategic planning, electronic patient records, security and privacy, ethics and regulations that govern information management, and much more. Career options include many posts outside of typical health environments. After graduating, you might work in public health, insurance, residential care, or research.
Your Healthcare Management Education and Career
Let’s look at how you decide whether a specific role in healthcare management and degree is right for you. When choosing a degree in healthcare management, you want to know if it’s right for you and if it will prepare you to fill a role in the field you’re aiming for. Here are some questions you should mull, along with considerations and other helpful information.
What have you done in your education and career that applies to health care? How has it prepared you for a specific degree or role you’re considering? Depending on your accomplishments, you’ll have a better sense of what you need to do next. For example, if you’ve earned a Bachelor’s degree, whether in health or not, it might be time for a Master’s. Or, if your current credentials are in another field, you might opt for a Bachelor’s in health care before going any further.
While career experience and licenses are essential in healthcare management, you’ll likely need a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in the field. A Master’s will be increasingly important if you want to work at a large health care facility.
- What are your career goals? Try to set short-term goals (think the next five years) along with long-term ones (the rest of your career). How does a specific healthcare management degree prepare you to reach these benchmarks Healthcare Management is an umbrella field with a vast array of subsections. By deciding where in the field you want to end up in, you can choose degrees with a curriculum that will prepare you for success.
- How much can you pay for a degree in healthcare management? How much would you need to borrow in loans to complete on? Always prize public loans over private, high-interest loans. Depending on the job you’re aiming for, you may qualify for loan forgiveness in this field.
How Do You Choose a Degree Program?
- Make sure any degree you’re considering is from a school with an excellent reputation and is appropriately credentialed.
- Will you need to work full-time or part-time while earning a healthcare management degree?
- Depending on your degree program, you can attend school part-time, full-time, online, on-campus, or in a hybrid of the two. You might be able to design a schedule that facilitates meeting your current responsibilities.
- Where do you want to live and work while you earn your healthcare management degree? Depending on where you opt to study, you can network and find connections that could net you a job after you graduate.
- What specializations does a specific healthcare management degree offer? How can they help you get a job in a role you want to fill after graduating?
How Can We Help You In Your Health Care Education and Career?
With a health science degree you can find many master of health science jobs. But make sure you find the degree that qualifies you for the masters in health science jobs that suit your needs and goals. You also want to make sure the degree you earn has the best master of health science salary.
Here at Best Health Degrees, we’ve worked hard to help you decide if specific healthcare roles are right for you, and if so, let you know what you need to do to qualify for them. We’ve answered common questions, written guides like this one, ranked degrees, and provided other resources to assist you in your journey into health care.
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What Can You Expect to Earn as a Health Care Manager?
Working as a Health Care Manager can mean many different things. You could fill many roles, but a common one as defined by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is working as a Medical Health Service Manager. We’ve compiled some of the most pressing stats about this role, which should give you a good sense of pay, job opportunities, job growth, hotspots for employment and high compensation, and more.
What are Some Important Stats About Healthcare Management Employment?
The BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook is an excellent source for career paths, job satisfaction ratings, and the national average for pay.
- In 2018 Medical Health Service Managers earned median annual pay of $99,730, or $47.95 per hour.
- BLS defines these roles as supervisors who “plan, direct, and coordinate” the business activities of health care providers.
- The typical entry-level education for these roles was a Bachelor’s degree, although a Master’s is also very common and preferred by potential employers.
- In 2018 406,100 health care managers were working in these roles.
- BLS projects job growth to jump by 18% between 2018-28, drastically higher than the average occupation in the American economy. This increase would create 71,600 new roles in the field for an excellent job outlook.
- The top 10% of managers in these positions earned more than $182,600 in May 2018, and the lowest 10% made less than $58,680.
- Areas associated with higher pay than the median in this field include working in hospitals and for the government.
States with Highest Employment
Below are the states with the most employment of Medical Health Service Managers and Healthcare Administration professionals.
- California, 34,510 roles, annual mean wage of $125,770
- Texas, 30,010 positions, annual mean wage of $105,450
- New York, 25,830, annual mean wage of $143,030
- Pennsylvania, 16,410 jobs, annual mean wage of $97,310
- Massachusetts, 15,380 roles, annual mean wage of $133,900
Highest Paying States
States (and cities) with the highest pay for Medical Health Service Managers are:
- Washington D.C., 1,580 roles, annual mean wage of $145,760
- New York, 25,830 roles, annual mean wage of $143,030
- Massachusetts, 15,380 jobs, annual mean wage of $133,900
- Delaware, 1,040 positions, annual mean wage of $131,260
- Connecticut, 5,510 roles, annual mean wage of $129,480
Selected Positions and Average Salary
PayScale has the following average salary information for healthcare manager positions for healthcare professionals.
- Healthcare Administrator: $51,000 average annual salary
- Hospital Administrator: $64,000 average annual salary
- Medical and Health Services Managers: $60,000 median annual salary
- Nursing Home Administrator: $72,000 median annual salary
There’s no way to deny that working as a healthcare manager means you’re likely to find a breadth of opportunities for high wages, strong job security, meaningful work, and transferrable skills. With any luck, this guide has helped you understand healthcare management and at least partially decide whether you want to pursue a degree in the healthcare industry. Please check back for new content about a healthcare management career path.
Your Healthcare Management Degree
Remember, if you find any schools or programs through our content where you want to pursue degrees or certifications through, it will be beneficial to contact them directly. By asking their support staff questions, you can improve your decision-making process, gain valuable insights about what the program requires, and practice networking. This small step can drastically improve your odds of success in many ways. Go forth and change the world of health care forever!
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