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Healthcare Management & Administration

Healthcare Management & Administration Career and Training Profile
Healthcare Management Schools

Healthcare Management & Administration

Healthcare Management Job Description
Medical and health services managers, also referred to as health care executives or health care administrators, plan, direct, coordinate, and supervise the delivery of health care. These workers are either specialists in charge of a specific clinical department or generalists who manage an entire facility or system.

The structure and financing of health care are changing rapidly. Future medical and health services managers must be prepared to deal with the integration of health care delivery systems, technological innovations, an increasingly complex regulatory environment, restructuring of work, and an increased focus on preventive care. They will be called on to improve efficiency in health care facilities and the quality of the care provided.

Large facilities usually have several assistant administrators who aid the top administrator and handle daily decisions. In smaller facilities, top administrators handle more of the details of daily operations.

Clinical managers have training or experience in a specific clinical area and, accordingly, have more specific responsibilities than do generalists. For example, directors of physical therapy are experienced physical therapists. Clinical managers establish and implement policies, objectives, and procedures for their departments; evaluate personnel and work quality; develop reports and budgets; and coordinate activities with other managers.

Health information managers are responsible for the maintenance and security of all patient records. Recent regulations enacted by the Federal Government require that all health care providers maintain electronic patient records and that these records be secure. As a result, health information managers must keep up with current computer and software technology and with legislative requirements. In addition, as patient data become more frequently used for quality management and in medical research, health information managers ensure that databases are complete, accurate, and available only to authorized personnel.

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Healthcare management positions are available in many specializations such as:

  • Finance
  • Government relations
  • Human resources
  • Information systems
  • Marketing and public affairs
  • Material management (purchasing of equipment and supplies)
  • Medical staff relations
  • Nursing administration
  • Patient care services
  • Planning and development

There are many settings for managers and administrators in the healthcare system:

  • Clinics
  • Consulting firms
  • Health insurance organizations
  • Healthcare associations
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Physician practices
  • Mental health organizations
  • Public health departments
  • Rehabilitation centers
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • Universities and research institutions

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Healthcare Management Career Outlook
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of medical and health services managers is expected to grow 17 percent from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for all occupations. The enormous size of this industry ensures a large number of new jobs for the next several years.

Managers in all settings will be needed to improve quality and efficiency of health care while controlling costs, as insurance companies and Medicare demand higher levels of accountability. Managers also will be needed to oversee the computerization of patient records and to ensure their security as required by law. Additional demand for managers will stem from the need to recruit workers and increase employee retention, to comply with changing regulations, to implement new technology, and to help improve the health of their communities by emphasizing preventive care.

Hospitals will continue to employ the most medical and health services managers over the 2006-16 decade. However, new jobs will be created at a faster rate in clinics and other outpatient care sites. Employment will grow fastest in practitioners' offices and in home health care agencies. Demand in medical group practice management will grow as medical group practices become larger and more complex.

Medical and health services managers also will be employed by health care management companies that provide management services to hospitals and other organizations and to specific departments such as emergency, information management systems, managed care contract negotiations, and physician recruiting.

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Healthcare Management Salary
According to the US BLS, median annual wage for medical and health services managers was $94,500 in May 2015. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $56,230, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $165,380.

Salary and employment figures are based on a national median and may vary by location.

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Healthcare Management Education
Medical and health services managers must be familiar with management principles and practices. A master's degree in health services administration, long-term care administration, health sciences, public health, public administration, or business administration is the standard credential for most generalist positions in this field. However, a bachelor's degree is adequate for some entry-level positions in smaller facilities, at the departmental level within health care organizations, and in health information management. Physicians' offices and some other facilities hire those with on-the-job experience instead of formal education.

For people seeking to become heads of clinical departments, a degree in the appropriate field and work experience may be sufficient early in their career. However, a master's degree in health services administration or a related field might be required to advance. Health information managers require a bachelor's degree from an accredited program.

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Professional Licensure
All States and the District of Columbia require nursing care facility administrators to have a bachelor's degree, pass a licensing examination, complete a State-approved training program, and pursue continuing education. Some States also require licenses for administrators in assisted living facilities. A license is not required in other areas of medical and health services management.

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Healthcare Management Professional Organizations

American College of Healthcare Executives American College of Health Care Administrators Medical Group Management Association
    www.mgma.org
    104 Inverness Terrace East
    Englewood, CO 80112
Professional Association of Health Care Office Management
    461 East Ten Mile Rd.
    Pensacola, FL 32534
American Health Information Management Association
    www.ahima.org
    233 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 2150
    Chicago, IL 60601



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