The efficient use of our healthcare system is one of the most important topics in our society today. With an aging population and increasing demand for individualized and specialty care, healthcare will continue to be at the forefront of career choices for students entering college. Careers in healthcare management are excellent opportunities for individuals who have a talent for effective and efficient management and the heart for helping others.
A Career in Healthcare Management
Healthcare management is the career focus of an individual who runs the business side of a medical or nursing facility. Generally, those who work in healthcare management have a master's degree and either come from a business background or a clinical background. Careers in healthcare management or healthcare management vary greatly in their scope – some careers involve working in nursing homes, while others may involve interfacing with a large institution’s financial, legal and human resources departments. The variety and opportunities are abundant and are an exciting fit for those who have a passion for caring for others as well as those with a desire to help healthcare as a business run as effectively as possible.
Why Healthcare Management?
A degree in healthcare management, and the related degrees of healthcare management and health administration, offer many opportunities to work in a variety of different fields. While a career in healthcare management can be demanding, the opportunities to move between many different environments provide a constant stream of challenges. Additionally, healthcare managers use a broad range of skills, and interface with many different experts in both healthcare, management, and the community as they work through challenges in their own organizations. Though the work can be demanding at times, a career in healthcare management offers a salary commensurate with experience and education in a field that is expected to experience increasing demand. The diversity of a position in healthcare management can provide a lifelong career with challenge and reward.
There are a variety of careers that stem from a degree in healthcare management. A few of the broader environments include:
- At large facilities, there may be a team of administrators that work on clinical areas such as health information, therapy or surgery.
- Healthcare administrators at smaller healthcare facilities, such as small community hospitals or nursing homes may oversee a wide range of issues including admissions, finance, and personnel.
- For those with a clinical background, healthcare management usually involves overseeing their particular department of specialty. For instance, nursing administrators are generally nurses who have moved from clinical practice to management.
- Technology is another area where a degree in healthcare management can be helpful. New federal regulations are mandating electronic records, so those with a background in healthcare informatics can be tremendously helpful as healthcare administrators.
- Group medical practices are another area in which those with a degree in healthcare management can lead to a great career.
Benefits of a Career in Healthcare Management
Those with a degree in healthcare management do receive a higher salary than many others that work in healthcare due to the specialized nature of their job and their master's-level degree status. Another coveted benefit is the simple breadth of options available. With a healthcare management degree, careers can range from working with healthcare suppliers, to mental health facilities, to large hospitals, to medical practices – and dozens of other options. When it is time for a new challenge, the options in healthcare management are seemingly endless. Finally, because the need for healthcare is literally everywhere, careers can be found in every state as well as overseas.
Consider a Career as a Healthcare Administrator or Manager
Clearly, there are many reasons to consider a job in healthcare management or administration. With a variety of career paths, options for interesting work and a salary range that reflects a graduate-level of education, healthcare management can offer a lifetime of rewards. Best of all, no matter the environment that a healthcare administrator decides to work in, they always have the assurance that their hard work and effort is making a difference for thousands of patients and family members.