Nursing Home Administrator Education Requirements and Career Info

Nursing home administrators require significant formal education. Learn about the degree programs, job duties, salary and licensure requirements to see if this is the right career for you.

Essential Information

Nursing home administrators must have a bachelor's degree, and most hold master's degrees in health administration or other relevant fields. Nursing home administrators are involved in the day-to-day aspects of running a long-term care facility, including admitting patients, managing the building, directing staff, budgeting, accounting and financial planning. Their degree programs include business courses as well as instruction on healthcare regulations and ethics.

Nursing home administrators in the U.S. are required to complete a state-approved training program and an internship. They must pass a licensing exam and complete continuing education programs for renewal.

Required Education Bachelor's degree in healthcare administration; master's in long-term care administration, health services administration or related field recommended
Other Requirements State training program, internship, licensing and continuing education
Projected Job Growth (2012-2022)*23%
Median Salary (2013)* $83,340

Sources: * U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Education Requirements to Be a Nursing Home Administrator

Being a nursing home administrator requires a minimum of a bachelor's degree in healthcare administration. However, most nursing home administrators have master's degrees in long-term care administration, health services administration, public health or business administration. Professional degrees in healthcare management are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME). The organization's website lists qualifying programs by state.

A typical program may result in a Master of Science in Health Administration degree. Courses may focus on business skills, such as leadership, marketing, operations management, organizational behavior and financial affairs as they relate to healthcare. Students also learn about health law, healthcare information systems and medical statistics.

Licensing Requirements

In all states and in the District of Columbia, nursing home administrators must complete an accredited, state-approved training program and internship. They must also pass a state licensing exam. For license renewal, continuing professional education is also required.

Career Info

Career Duties

Because nursing homes are strictly regulated by state and federal agencies, nursing home administrators must ensure that their facilities comply with health and safety codes. They prepare official reports and attend community and institutional meetings. They also set goals, coordinate programs and take responsibility for the facility's success.

Career and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), overall opportunities for medical and health services managers is expected to grow by 23% between 2012 and 2022, which is faster than average for all occupations. Also reported by the BLS, the annual mean salary for health service managers at nursing care facilities was $83,340, as of May 2013.

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