Career Info for a Degree in Healthcare Administration

Sep 29, 2019

Healthcare administration is generally a program that prepares students for management and administrative positions at hospitals, physicians' offices, clinics and more. Continue reading for an overview of the training, as well as job duties and salary info for some career options for graduates.

A degree in healthcare administration can lead to a career as a medical records administrator, clinic manager or nursing home administrator. These professionals may oversee patient records and determine data entry protocols, manage a department in a medical facility, or oversee a nursing home's finances and daily operations.

Essential Information

Healthcare administration degree programs are available at the bachelor's degree level, although there are many related master's degree programs that allow individuals to specialize in such areas as long-term care administration, public administration, public health, or business administration. Degree programs in healthcare administration prepare individuals to be medical and health services managers.

These workers plan, coordinate and oversee the efficient delivery of healthcare to patients and their families. They may also maintain patient records and supervise staff. Graduates of healthcare administration programs could be qualified to work as medical records administrators, clinic managers, or nursing home administrators.

Career Titles Medical Records Administrator Clinic Manager Nursing Home Administrator
Education Requirements Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree
Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)* Medical and health services managers: 18% Medical and health services managers: 18% Medical and health services managers: 18%
Mean Annual Salary (2018)* Medical and health services managers: $113,730 Medical and health services managers: $113,730 Medical and health services managers: $113,730

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Career Options

Medical Records Administrator

Also known as health information managers, medical records administrators oversee all patient records. They may determine data entry protocols that maintain confidentiality requirements, verify that records are accurate, and they may also implement the proper security procedures needed to protect all records.

Most employers only require these workers to hold bachelor's degrees. Possessing some experience in the field or management experience may also be required. While certification is not required for this career, optional credentials are available. For example, the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) offers the Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) credential to individuals who pass the required examination.

Clinic Manager

These professionals usually manage individual departments within a medical facility. For instance, they may manage the physical therapy department. Duties for clinic managers vary based on their individual departments. For the most part, they verify the quality of services offered by their departments, make sure their department stays on budget, implement policies, evaluate department staff, and review departmental progress reports.

The majority of clinic manager positions only require candidates to hold bachelor's degrees. Departmental experience may prove beneficial as well. In general, there are no licensure or certification requirements for this profession, although voluntary certification may impress some employers.

Nursing Home Administrator

Administrators who work in nursing homes manage the facility's finances and monitor the facilities daily operations. These professionals tend to supervise all staff members, oversee patient admissions, and implement various policies.

Nursing home administrators require the minimum of bachelor's degrees to find employment. Professionals also need bachelor's degrees to obtain mandatory state licensure. Besides educational requirements, licensure candidates must also pass the necessary state exams, complete additional state-approved training, and meet all the prerequisite requirements. Each state has slightly different regulations for licensure. Like the other career titles listed above, certification remains optional for this career as well.

Job Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that medical and health services managers could see a 18% employment growth between 2018 and 2028. Prospects should be best for those with experience and business leadership skills. Medical and health services managers earned a mean annual wage of $113,730 as of May 2018, the BLS reported.

A degree in healthcare administration will prepare individuals to pursue a career as a medical records administrator, clinic manager, or nursing home administrator. Nursing home administrators are required to have a state license, while certification for clinic managers is optional, but may impress employers. Medical records administrators may opt to take the Registered Health Information Administrator exam, although it is not required for employment in this field.

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