In general, associate's and bachelor's degree programs in long-term care administration and assisted living management training cover topics like residential care strategies, healthcare regulations and long-term care financial management. Students also learn to handle staffing management and recruitment, and become familiar with state-specific requirements. After completing these programs, graduates can pursue national licensing. Enrollment into these programs requires students to have a high school diploma or GED.
Associate of Science in Long-Term Care Administration
Enrollees of this two-year program gain knowledge related to business operations, as well as an introduction to specific concerns related to caring for the older population. Students also learn about regulations placed on assisted living facilities, as well as what legal obligations must be met. As a result, course content frequently includes:
- Principles of accounting
- Social needs of residents
- Physical activity considerations
- Government programs for the aged
- Healthcare law
Bachelor of Science in Long-Term Care Administration
Individuals interested in pursuing this degree can find the program at colleges and universities, and must devote four years of full-time study. Once enrolled, students gain problem-solving and leadership skills through classes that address the ever-changing environment of an assisted living facility. Students then complete an internship to satisfy graduation requirements. Course topics students can expect to encounter include:
- Human psychology
- Death and dying
- Public health fundamentals
- Business and Finance
- Development and lifespan concerns
Assisted Living Manager Training Programs
These programs are generally offered by for-profit training centers and usually satisfy state-mandated certification requirements. Although state laws and regulations determine some learning content, all students gain a solid understanding of effective business practices and management techniques. Course topics commonly include:
- Facility management
- Employee compliance
- Residential care concerns and needs
- Maintenance and sanitation principles
- Human resource and finance management
Popular Career Options
In addition to healthcare management, graduates of these programs can compete for a variety of careers including:
- Human resources manager
- Nutrition counselor
- Medical bookkeeper
- Medical office coordinator
- Resident activity planner
Salary and Employment Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) published in May 2015 that medical and health services managers serving the needs of nursing care facilities earned an average of $87,970 per year. The employment of all medical and health services managers, including nursing home administrators, was predicted to grow by 17% from 2014 to 2024 which is much faster than the national average. Job prospects are particularly bright for those who have strong business and IT skills and experience in the healthcare industry.
Students who have completed a state-approved degree or training program of at least 40 hours in length are equipped to attempt a national licensure exam from the National Association of Long Term Care Administrator Boards (NAB). In addition to achieving a passing score on the licensure exam, students must meet minimum educational and career experience requirements. Finally, they must participate in at least 15 hours per year of continuing education opportunities related to the assisted living industry to maintain this licensure.
Students wanting to become a manager at an assisted living facility may get initial training from an Associate of Science in Long-Term Care Administration program. Students who want more leadership training may pursue a Bachelor of Science in Long-Term Care Administration.