Healthcare is a rapidly changing and booming industry, and that growth is expected to continue well into the future. As the American population ages and technology advances, the need for healthcare services and expert healthcare leaders increases as well. With the healthcare industry moving forward at such a fast pace, more leadership positions are becoming available in all aspects of healthcare.
The role of healthcare management
Skilled healthcare management professionals might work as administrators, managers, chief executive officers, directors, department heads and chief financial officers. They can serve hospitals, clinics, medical offices, physician medical practices, nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, home health services, mental health programs, pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, university research centers, the military and government agencies. They improve patient care by overseeing the delivery of services, improving the business flow of healthcare providers and organizations, ensuring compliance with regulations and legislation, advancing the marketing and advertising of hospitals and organizations, and ensuring healthcare facilities are maintained properly and efficiently.
Many management positions in the healthcare industry require an advanced degree. A Master of Business Administration with a Specialization in Healthcare Management places special emphasis on the business of healthcare, helping students understand the financial structure and unique language of the healthcare business. Earning an MBA in Healthcare Management could lead an experienced healthcare professional looking to advance his or her career or a qualified professional looking to break into the healthcare industry as a manager to numerous opportunities in this growing field.
Because of the increased demand for expert healthcare managers with an MBA, this specialty offers strong career growth and good salaries, depending on the management specialty. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the demand for trained medical and health services managers will increase 22 percent by 2020, with the median salary in the field at $98,460 in 2012. The top 10 percent, almost always with at least a master’s degree, earn more than $144,000, according to the BLS.
Below are just a few of the numerous career options available to healthcare MBA graduates:
Hospital chief executives are responsible for day-to-day operations and long-term strategy and planning, and serve as the representative of the organization. According to the BLS, CEOs at all types of hospitals earned an average annual salary of $195,460 as of May of 2011.
An administrator is tasked with the planning, directing and supervising of the delivery of services within a hospital, clinic, hospice or drug-abuse treatment center. A hospital administrator engages in activities such as personnel management, recruiting, career development, documentation and record keeping, budgeting and accounting, communications and operational oversight of a particular process or department. According to MHADegree.org, the median salary for a hospital administrator is $110,000.
Chief financial officer
The CFO of a hospital, clinic or physician practice group is responsible for planning, implementing and evaluating the fiscal performance and ensuring the long-term financial future. The CFO manages all financial risks, handles most of the planning of finances and keeps the records. The median salary of a hospital CFO is $106,000, says MHADegree.org.
Aside from these career options, healthcare management professionals also work as admitting directors, case management directors, quality improvement managers, insurance coordinators and pharmaceutical consultants. A career in healthcare management offers multiple possibilities in a booming job market, financial stability and the satisfaction of working in an industry that provides a vital service to others. An online MBA in Healthcare Management can help healthcare professionals reach these career levels.