There are many impactful career paths within the healthcare industry that focus on helping patients receive the best possible care. Many professionals enter the healthcare field due to a deep desire to help others and advocate for healthy living in their community. If you have that drive but lean toward the business side of medicine rather than direct patient care, then a career in healthcare management could be the perfect fit for you.
Earning a degree is essential to ensuring that you're ready for a career in healthcare management. Learn more about the reasons to get a healthcare management degree, the responsibilities of the job, its salary and career outlook, and more.
What is healthcare management?
Healthcare management refers to the administration, organization, and coordination of services, resources, and people to ensure the effective delivery of healthcare. Healthcare managers oversee the planning, implementation, and evaluation of healthcare policies and processes to optimize the quality of care and patient outcomes. They may work in hospitals, clinics, or other healthcare organizations to help control policies, staffing, finances, administrative tasks, and more.
These healthcare administration experts aren’t directly involved in patient care. Instead, they direct the business side of healthcare by helping their facility or organization run smoothly. Healthcare management involves overseeing all of the important financial and organizational elements of a clinic or department, and these administrators must be prepared to face many responsibilities every day.
1. Positive Job Outlook
Employment of medical and health services managers is projected to grow by 28% from 2022 to 2032, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This is much faster than the national average for job growth and is largely due to the fast growth pace of hospitals and clinics, the creation of new medical technologies, and continuously evolving laws and regulations. More hospitals and facilities than ever are relying on healthcare management professionals to help efficiently run their organizations.
With so many projected openings in healthcare management, professionals can find comfort in the search and stability when they get a job. It’s a viable career path, even in uncertain economies, as there is always a need for healthcare. If you’re looking for a steady, in-demand profession with many job options to choose from, healthcare management could be an ideal choice. A degree helps administration professionals set themselves apart with these job opportunities. While an MBA or master's degree may be preferred for management roles, getting started in healthcare management begins with a bachelor's degree.
2. Competitive Salary
The average annual salary for healthcare managers is $104,830, according to the BLS. The top 10% of healthcare managers earned around $209,990 per year, while the lowest 10% earned around $64,100 per year. This annual salary range, even for entry-level healthcare managers, is higher than the national average of $56,000. Salary is impacted by level of education and years of experience, making a degree in healthcare management extremely valuable.
A healthcare administration degree shows employers that you have the relevant skills and knowledge in accounting, communications, regulation, financial resource management, leadership, and more. With so many duties and responsibilities, healthcare managers are an integral part of an organization and justify a competitive salary to reflect their contributions. Those with an MBA or other post-graduate degree are likely to earn a higher salary, be more effective leaders, and move up faster in their career.
3. Variety of Job Settings
Healthcare managers work in a variety of administration settings and can have diverse job titles, such as:
- Healthcare manager
- Healthcare administrator
- Healthcare supervisor
- Clinical director
- Nursing home facilitator
- Public health educator
- Health coordinator
Healthcare managers also have many job settings they work in, including:
- Departments in hospitals
- Nursing homes
- Private practices
- Public health centers
- Mental health facilities
- Colleges or universities
- Insurance companies
- Pharmaceutical companies
If you’re interested in a profession that allows you to make a difference in a leadership role, then a career in healthcare management could be your ideal choice.
- Insurance companies
- Pharmaceutical companies
If you’re interested in a profession that has many different and unique options and opportunities, a career in healthcare management could be your ideal choice.
4. Community Impact
If you are looking for a career that instills a meaningful sense of purpose and allows you to give back to your community, then healthcare management is a great choice. Healthcare managers have a great impact on individual patients, the medical professionals they work with, their organization, and their community. They may work with community leaders for public health initiatives or on plans and budgets for a new hospital or clinic. Healthcare managers may also work directly with medical staff to train, schedule, and enhance their work environment. Healthcare managers often communicate with patients to sort out billing, insurance, and other needs. Their work connects them with everyone involved in the healthcare journey, helping them create impactful moments in the lives of people around them. The direct impact on the well-being of individuals and communities can be emotionally rewarding. And for many healthcare managers, that personal satisfaction that comes from their work motivates them to continue even during challenging circumstances.
The first step to a career in healthcare management is acquiring the essential skills for success. WGU’s online bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration combines industry-specific knowledge with the fundamental business skills needed to effectively run and manage medical facilities. This accredited healthcare management program is highly valued by employers and highlights proficiency in both business and healthcare practices, which can allow you to you stand out from the competition. You’ll also be prepared to pursue an MBA program or other master's degree program, which can lead to management opportunities and career growth.
Healthcare management is a great option for professionals looking for a rewarding career with a competitive salary. Get started on the path toward this exciting, in-demand career today.