Individuals responsible for behind-the-scenes management of medical services don't usually come to mind when we think of healthcare, which makes healthcare administration a "hidden" career.
The first recognized mention of a need for formal education for hospital administrators was in 1929 when Dr. Michael Davis published a book calling for a graduate curriculum for hospital business administration. After a few attempts, graduate education became available for healthcare administrators in 1934, and the availability of these programs has continued to rise. Today, an MBA with a healthcare emphasis is critical for professional success in healthcare administration.
Healthcare Administration - Areas of Employment
Approximately 40 percent of healthcare administrators work within a hospital system (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Other areas requiring oversight and management include:
- Private physician offices
- Home health agencies
- Outpatient clinics or centers
- Long-term care or nursing home facilities
- Physical therapy practices
- Insurance companies
- Government health offices
- University/college student health centers
- Sports programs and teams
Professional administration roles are available in:
- Strategic planning
- Human resources
- Patient advocacy
- Cost analysis
- Data collection/analysis
- Financial management
- Facility management
- Maintenance of mission and vision goals
- Policy facilitation, implementation and compliance
- Regulatory compliance
Using Your MBA in Healthcare Administration
Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics projects that the number of jobs for medical and health services managers will grow 20 percent between 2016 and 2026 — significantly faster than all other measured occupations. Salaries in this field vary depending on the type of facility, level of responsibility and experience of administrator. Medical and health service managers across the U.S. earned a median annual wage of $98,350 in 2017. The mean annual wage for medical and health service managers in Colorado is $116,570.
The field of healthcare administration includes a large and varied pool of opportunities. Below is a sampling of some of the more common options available, with salary ranges. Salaries depend on education and experience.
Healthcare consultants are usually employed by large private organizations. As a consultant, you will conduct research, identify problems, suggest solutions, prepare reports, etc. In the Denver area, healthcare consultants typically earn $56,000 to $108,000 annually.
Health information managers are usually employed by hospitals, healthcare facilities, community care clinics, federal health departments or health insurance companies. Health information managers are responsible for oversight of data systems and maintenance of accuracy, privacy, and regulatory requirements of databases containing patient and hospital information. In the Denver area, health information managers typically earn between $32,000 and $71,000 annually.
Clinical managers oversee a specific department such as nursing, surgery or physical therapy with responsibilities specific to the specialty. They oversee adherence to policies, goals and procedures. They also review employee performance. In the Denver area, clinical managers typically earn between $41,000 and $110,000 annually.
Practice managers oversee the daily activities of a medical practice including physician offices and physical therapy clinics. They are responsible for hiring, firing and supervising staff. They manage the implementation of processes and programs for maintaining and improving functionality and efficiency within the practice. In the Denver area, clinical managers typically earn between $41,000 and $110,000 per year.
Learn more about the UNC online MBA program with an emphasis in Healthcare Administration.
Sources:PayScale: Average Salary - Medical Practice Manager in Denver, CO
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