Is A Healthcare Administration Degree Right For You?

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doctorglobeYou don’t have to go to school for eight years to work in the medical field and earn a sizable income. Jobs in healthcare administration are readily available and offer competitive salaries, with regular raises and benefits. Not only does the healthcare administration field pay well, but these jobs are available at medical institutions both in the private and publically funded sectors. That means, no matter where you live, there will be jobs in your field available to you.

Best of all? A Bachelor of Science in Health Services Administration degree only requires 4-years of college. That’s an average amount of schooling for an above average degree.

Is Getting a Health Services Administration Degree Difficult?

Not all college experiences are the same. Some people will find that homework is manageable, deadlines are reachable and classes are simple. Others may struggle with assignments, finding coursework demanding and classes and homework difficult. For those people, who are struggling with their education, there are services available, including peer tutoring programs and free study groups.

In order to receive your healthcare administration degree, you’ll be called upon to complete a number of courses, including Health Services Management I and II. The online program offered by the Bryant & Stratton College also emphasizes financial and legal aspects in healthcare, as well as disaster planning and management, and information systems. You’ll be required to learn and understand field jargon, as well as pass classes related to performance and business management. Before you can graduate, you’ll need to pass your career courses, as well as pass any extracurricular classes and electives your degree requires.

For some, these courses will be a walk in the park. For others, this coursework may prove difficult and may require additional nights of study. For most, there will be classes you excel at and those that require some additional efforts, but overall, the experience is rewarding.

What Does a Healthcare Administrator Do?

Healthcare administration is going to vary depending on where you work. In a smaller physicians’ office, you may be the only administrator. It will be your sole responsibility to handle all administration duties, sometimes including scheduling and billing. In larger healthcare facilities, like a hospital, your primary role may be to supervise the other administrative employees, ensuring the practice is delivering top-notch care.

In general, a healthcare administrator will have one or all of the following duties:

• Act in a managerial capacity in a health services setting

• Handle financial planning, budget planning, project management, public safety, emergency disaster planning, human resources and more

• Research and evaluate information management systems, ensuring the proper technologies are being used in your healthcare setting

• Strategize, instruct and manage staff, including assistants, nurses, administrative staff and any others

• Use legal and ethical principles to ensure proper management practices and ensure quality patient care is delivered

How Much Does a Healthcare Administrator Get Paid?

healthyheartbpHow much you make as a healthcare administrator depends on where you live and work. In general, salaries are competitive because healthcare administrators are depended on in every healthcare setting there is, especially doctor’s offices, elderly care facilities and hospitals.

Popular job seeking website,, calls healthcare administrators, “the backbone of the healthcare system.” lists the best and worst paying states, each one rated by the average hourly wage they pay a healthcare administrator. Even in a low paying state, an administrator can expect to make over $40 an hour.

Here are the highest paying states for this field:

1. California $70+

2. Connecticut $70+

3. Florida $70+

4. Massachusetts $70+

5. New Jersey $70+

And the lowest paying states:

1. Idaho $43.47

2. Louisiana $44.05

3. Iowa $44.50

4. Kansas $45.95

5. Arkansas $46.26

Where Can a Healthcare Administrator Work?

There’s no shortage of jobs available to professionals with a healthcare administration degree. There is a wide range of healthcare working environments, including everything from college nursing offices to large multi-story hospitals.

Determine which healthcare facilities are nearby. You’re also going to want to pick something that fits your needs and lifestyle. For example, you wouldn’t want to work as a nurse practitioner if you’re uncomfortable drawing blood. You’re also going to want to choose between the private and public sectors.

Private Sector Healthcare Administration Jobs:

• Hospitals

• Insurance Companies

• Nursing Care Facilities

• Pharmaceutical Companies

• Private Practices

• And, Home Health Care Providers

Public Sector Healthcare Administration Jobs:

• Academic Medical Centers (For example, the fictional Seattle Grace hospital, in the popular television show, Grey’s Anatomy, is an academic medical center)

• Health Departments

• Regulatory Agencies (Jails, prisons, etc.)

• Mental Health Agencies

• And, Community-Based Agencies (Schools and other educational institutions)

So, what’s stopping you from exploring a career in healthcare administration? You’ll be earning the kind of money only a healthcare employee can, but without all the blood and needles. If you’re comfortable with paperwork, management and patient care, you’re ready to start a career in healthcare administration.

– Submitted by Katherine Smith