A bachelor's degree may be sufficient for some entry-level health care management positions, but a master's degree in health sciences, health care administration, public health or a related field is generally required for the majority of employment opportunities. Doctoral programs are also available.
Bachelor's degree programs provide a general introduction to the field, while graduate programs provide the opportunity for further specialization. Some schools offer health care management courses partially or entirely online, though practicum components must still be completed at local facilities. Some schools allow students to apply work experience to graduate programs for credit.
Some common concepts covered in health care management courses include:
- Health care terminology
- Quality control
- Health care policies
- Devices and equipment
- Health care marketing
- Comparative health systems
List of Common Courses
Introduction to Health Care Management Course
This course acquaints students with the basic principles of health care management and administration. An overview of common health care terminology related to topics like legal issues, finances and patient safety is discussed in order to prepare students for more complex concepts in later coursework. Students gain insight into current trends in public policy and management approaches related to the health care industry.
Health Care Financial Management Course
Here students gain an introductory understanding of the fundamentals of accounting and managing financial resources in a health care environment. Emphasis is placed on budgeting and analyzing performance for all aspects of specific health care sectors. Students are challenged to seek cost-effective solutions for management needs.
Legal Issues in Health Care Management Course
This course provides an overview of the evolving legal concerns connected with the health care industry. Students will study a wide variety of topics and scenarios relating to patient rights, proper credentialing, negligence, hospital liability and other ethical issues that may arise in a health care management position.
Ambulatory Care Management Course
This class introduces the concepts of outpatient medical care and the leadership capabilities necessary to effectively manage staff, schedule and budget within ambulatory care services. Emphasis is placed on improving the quality of patient care and maintaining cost-effectiveness.
Hospital Management Course
Having gained a solid foundation with outpatient medical services, students in a hospital management class develop their knowledge of specific issues related to delivery of health services in a hospital setting. This course examines the responsibilities and organizational structure of each hospital department relative to other departments. Students learn about managing medical staff, organizing hospital programs and working with unions.
Independent Study in Health Care Management Course
With a strong knowledge of a variety of topics within health care management, students gain hands-on experience by observing and participating in actual health care environments. They also develop personal plans of action to improve their readiness for careers within the health care industry.