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Healthcare Administration Career Ladder

Healthcare administration is a burgeoning field, offering many paths to a successful career. A range of career options as a healthcare administrator are presented.

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Career Growth Opportunities for Healthcare Administrators

Healthcare administration is a growing field offering a wide range of career options at various levels. Those who are interested in becoming healthcare administrators can consider a wide range of positions. Some details on a range of options are presented here.

Job Title Median Salary (2018)** Job Growth (2016-2026)* Education or Experience
Discharge Planner $44,110 29% (medical and health services managers, social assistance) Bachelor's degree and possible certification as a social worker or nurse
Practice Manager $58,127 46% (medical and health services managers, offices of physicians) Bachelor's degree and office experience
Healthcare Consultant $76,126 19% (medical and health services managers, professional, scientific, and technical services) Master's degree
Nursing Home Administrator $86,356 11% (medical and health services managers, nursing and residential care facilities) Certification, varying levels of education by state
Hospital Administrator $90,025 6% (medical and health services managers, hospitals) Master's degree

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

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Health Care Administration
  • Health Information and Records Admin
  • Health Information Technology
  • Health Management and Clinical Administration
  • Health Unit Coordinator
  • Health Ward Supervisor
  • Medical Administrative Assistant or Secretary
  • Medical Claims Examiner
  • Medical Facilities Management
  • Medical Insurance Billing and Coding
  • Medical Insurance Services
  • Medical Office Computer Technologies
  • Medical Office Management
  • Medical Office Specialist
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Career Information

Discharge Planner

One potential career path to enter the field as a healthcare administrator is to take on a role as a discharge planner. Discharge planners work at hospitals to ensure that patients discharged from in-patient care to other levels of care are appropriately set up with the medical and social supports they require. Discharge planners must have strong collaboration skills to work with a range of medical professionals and strong comprehension of insurance documentation. Typically, a discharge planner will possess a bachelor's degree. Some hospitals may require licensure as a social worker or nurse for this position.

Practice Managers

Another common position for healthcare administrators is that of a health practice manager. Practice managers take care of the daily operations of private medical practices or public clinics. They are responsible for the supervision and training of the front office staff, and they oversee that medical records are managed in a way to comply with federal standards. Practice managers handle patient complaints and must be able to remedy these issues quickly. Practice managers typically have a bachelor's degree in healthcare administration and office experience.

Healthcare Consultant

For those that wish to have a position with varying responsibilities, working as a healthcare consultant would be a great fit. Healthcare consultants work with managers in various healthcare practices to identify problems or inefficiencies, and then they create solutions for these issues. They conduct studies and help the managers to create procedures to help hospitals and health practices run smoothly. Typically, a healthcare consultant has a master's degree in health administration.

Nursing Home Administrator

Experienced professionals might consider a position as a nursing home administrator. Nursing home administrators ensure that appropriate care is being provided to all residents of a nursing home facility. They oversee the budgets and compliance processes for the facility, and they also supervise all staff. Nursing home administrators must have excellent relationships with clients and with their family members. Nursing home administrators can earn certification through the National Association of Long Term Care Administrator Boards. Educational requirements to sit for the exam vary by state and range from a high school diploma to a bachelor's degree.

Hospital Administrator

Highly experienced specialists in this field may aspire to a position as a hospital administrator. Hospital administrators oversee the financial and operational management of hospitals of all sizes. They are responsible for ensuring that all regulations regarding healthcare operations are followed. Hospital administrators are responsible for the performance of the hospital's staff. Typically, a candidate will hold a master's degree in healthcare administration and have extensive experience in the field to qualify for a position as a hospital administrator.

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