What Is a Health Administration Degree?

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Health administration degrees prepare students to work in health care facilities as managers rather than as doctors or nurses. The classes that you take teach you about theories of management, financial skills needed for administrative jobs and background information about the health care industry. Classes include leadership, economics and health care law.

Levels of Health Care Administration Degrees

  • Health care administration degrees can be bachelor's degrees, master's degrees or doctoral degrees. Bachelor's degrees give you an entry-level background in the health care management profession and can get you into the field. Master's degree are more advanced studies and usually focus on a specific aspect, such as a health care administration MBA program that focuses on the business aspect of running a hospital. Doctoral degrees are usually pursued by individuals who want to research or teach about health care policy at a college or university.

Nursing Care Facilities Administrators

  • Nursing care facilities administrators manage facilities that provide constant care for those who cannot care for themselves, such as the elderly. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nursing care facilities administrators are the only health care administrators who are required to take a state-sanctioned program and pass a licensing exam in every state. The only other health care administrators required to take a test in some states are those working in assisted-living facilities.

Health Information Managers

  • Health information managers are responsible for keeping track of patient records so that they can be accessed quickly when necessary. This can include developing filing systems as well as determining how to digitize patient records. In addition to making sure the right people have access to records, health information managers have to protect patient files from unauthorized access.

Health Care Facility Administrators

  • The duties of health care administrators depend on how large the health care facility is. For smaller facilities and clinics, there may be just one administrator who handles all of the financial responsibilities, hiring and retention of employees and keeping the hospital well-supplied. Large hospitals may have several administrators, each in charge of a specific department.

Job Outlook for Health Care Administrators

  • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of people working as health care administrators is expected to grow by about 16 percent, which is a higher rate than the average job expansion. The increased demand is expected because of the digitizing of health records and the increasing demands for health care. Smaller offices and home care companies are expected to grow fastest because technological innovations will allow them to provide more of the services hospitals are currently relied on to provide.

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