Bachelor of Science (BS): Healthcare Administration Degree Overview
A Bachelor of Science (BS) degree program in healthcare administration spans four years. It prepares students to oversee the finances, human resources, community services, and business operations at hospitals, nursing homes and other medical facilities.
Health administration bachelor's degree programs are offered at public and private colleges and universities, some of which may feature online-study opportunities and flexible scheduling for currently employed individuals. Students are expected to learn business fundamentals while also picking up specialized skills that will help them to coordinate technology, people, and resources efficiently in healthcare facilities. Programs may also feature internships and capstone course requirements. Applicants to these programs typically need a high school diploma or GED.
- Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED; May have college credit minimum and prerequisite classes; Work experience may be required
- Online Availability: Online courses are available
- Program Length: Four years
- Other Requirements: May require internships; Capstone project for graduation
Bachelor's Degree in Healthcare Administration
In a healthcare administration bachelor's program, students develop managerial, computer technology, critical-thinking, and effective policy-making skills. Programs teach public health regulations, accounting, marketing, communication, and personnel management. Students also learn how healthcare systems are structured and operated. Typical classes include:
- Personnel management
- Healthcare law
- Healthcare economics
- Public relations
- Operations management
- Medical records management
Popular Career Options
Graduates with a bachelor's degree in health administration usually obtain entry-level positions as administrative assistants at large healthcare organizations or may acquire more advanced positions at smaller organizations. Mainstream employers include hospitals, home health businesses, community health organizations, and nursing homes. Some career choices include:
- Assistant administrator
- Health information manager
- Nursing home administrator
- Assistant department head
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that employment opportunities for all medical and health services managers could increase by 23% between 2012 and 2022. These individuals had a median salary of $92,810 as of May 2014.
Continuing Education and Licensing Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that master's degrees are the norm for many healthcare administrator jobs and are often necessary for advancement (www.bls.gov). A bachelor's degree and possibly work experience are required to gain entrance into a healthcare administration master's degree program. All states mandate that health administrators working at nursing homes obtain licensure. Those in assisted living services are also required to obtain licensure in some states.