Public Health Program Manager: Job Description and Requirements

Sep 17, 2019

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a public health program manager. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about degree programs, job duties and licensure to find out if this is the career for you.

Public health program managers help to ensure the mission of health services programs is achieved. A bachelor's or master's degree is typically required. Some employers require certification or nursing licensure.

Essential Information

Public health program managers are responsible for overseeing health services and facilities. They may manage individual departments or whole facilities. A bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for this career, and many employers may require that these professionals have a graduate degree. Public health program managers may work in various different healthcare settings, and the job outlook for these professionals is promising.

Required Education Bachelor's or master's degree
Additional Requirements Voluntary certification and a mandatory nursing license may be applicable for managers who choose to work in a nursing home setting
Projected Job Growth* (2018-2028) 18% for medical and health services managers
Median Salary* (2018) $99,730 annually for medical and health services managers

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

Public Health Program Manager Job Description

Public health program managers coordinate and manage healthcare services and facilities, and they generally fall into two distinct types: clinical managers and health information managers.

Clinical managers direct a given department by creating and maintaining the procedures and policies that direct the doctors under their supervision. They also evaluate the performance of their clinical staff. Both of these primary tasks require an intimate knowledge of clinical duties and activities. Clinical managers also perform general administrative functions, including developing budgets and coordinating with the needs of other administrators.

Health information managers are responsible for maintaining patient records - keeping them complete, up-to-date and secure. Federal regulations mandate the existence and security of patient records, and health information managers must keep up-to-date on such legislation as well as current information security technologies and techniques.

Education Requirements

Public health program managers must be well versed in managerial techniques as well as hospital operations. A master's degree in a relevant field - such as health services administration, long-term care administration, health sciences, or business administration - is a fairly common requirement for applicants. However, small practices and departmental positions may only require candidates to hold a bachelor's degree.

Aspiring clinical managers may need a degree and relevant clinical experience, but may require a master's in health services administration or a similar degree to advance beyond a departmental position.

Health information managers may need to have a more specific bachelor's degree or a higher degree in health information management. Graduate studies in this field are generally intensive and competitive, with up to one year of supervised administrative work in addition to coursework.

Nursing care facility administrators must hold a bachelor's degree and gain a state license, which requires an examination and enrollment in continuing education. Licensing is not required for other public health managers. A voluntary certification as a Registered Health Information Administrator from the American Health Information Management Association can be beneficial to job prospects. Applicants with a relevant bachelor's degree who pass a certification exam can achieve this merit.

Job Outlook and Salary Statistics

In 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported the median annual salary of medical and health services managers as $94,500. Opportunities in this field should be good, job growth projected to increse much faster than the average from 2018-2028, with preference for candidates with healthcare and managerial experience.

Public health program managers oversee programs and facilities where health services are provided. Those with a master's degree, certification, and/or licensure are better able to advance in this career. Job growth projections are very good through 2028.

Next: View Schools

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?