Majoring in Health Care AdministrationFeb 10, 2023
Do you love the idea of a healthcare career, but hate the thought of all of the science classes required for a medical or nursing degree? If so, consider a major in health care administration, one of the fastest growing career paths in the health care industry.
When most people think of hospitals, they picture doctors, nurses, and other medical caregivers. However, behind the scenes, healthcare executives play a vital role in healthcare delivery by making sure that the systems and services are in place to support the work of medical personnel at hospitals, nursing facilities, managed care companies, and other healthcare organizations.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, virtually all new private-sector jobs created in the last five years were in the healthcare industry. Healthcare is the second largest employer in the U.S., employing over 11 million people, and healthcare administration/management jobs are expected to grow 28% over the next ten years. Healthcare managers and executives are also well compensated, with a median pay of just over $101,000 a year. Top executives at large hospitals can make $800,000 or more.
Healthcare managers, administrators, and executives work in a variety of positions including patient care coordination, health communications and marketing, human resources and staffing, healthcare planning, finance, and information technology. They don’t just work in hospitals, either. Healthcare executives can be found working in physician offices, managed care and insurance companies, and even in consulting firms and government agencies. It’s an exciting and diverse field, offering lots of room for career growth and the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping to make a difference in people’s lives.
A career in health care administration might be right for you if you are:
- Concerned with the health and well-being of people from all walks of life.
- A problem-solver who can keep up with ever-changing situations and new laws and regulations
- A good communicator with excellent interpersonal skills
- Analytical, detail-oriented, and organized
A bachelor’s degree in health care administration is usually a prerequisite for entry-level jobs in health care management. At present, 49 colleges and universities offer undergraduate majors in health care administration, certified by the Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA). As a healthcare administration/management major in college, you’ll combine classes in business subjects such as accounting, marketing, human resources, and information technology with healthcare-specific courses such as hospital management, healthcare policy, medical economics, and health delivery systems. In many programs, you’ll also take classes in epidemiology (the study of disease causes and effects), health psychology, sociology, and anthropology. A healthcare administration major is flexible enough so that students considering medical school can also fit in the required science and math pre-requisite courses.
Most healthcare administration programs require majors to complete a semester-long internship in a healthcare organization; a few programs alternate classroom time with a full-time on-the-job learning program called cooperative education. Some programs also allow students to specialize in specific areas of healthcare administration, such as health informatics. Another pathway into this field is to complete an undergraduate degree in a relevant academic area, such as business or public health, and then pursue a Master's degree in health care administration/management.
If you want to learn what college major fits your teen, schedule a No-Cost Consultation with Ryan Clark.
Photo by EVG Kowalievska: https://www.pexels.com/photo/three-person-looking-at-x-ray-result-1170979/
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