The healthcare administration field attracts individuals who want to manage and improve the quality, delivery, and outcomes of health programs and systems. Online healthcare administration degree programs offer a full suite of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs (both PhDs and professional doctorates) that provide students with a continuous, convenient path for career advancement and industry improvement.
These top healthcare administration degrees feature similar strengths, including:
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- Foundational studies and practical exercises.
- Development of scholarly research skills.
- Integrated case studies that engage students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills on global and domestic levels.
- Multimedia courses enhanced with videos and simulations.
- Opportunities for field experiences and internships in master’s programs.
- Face-to-face residencies in doctoral programs.
PhD in Health Services
A doctoral program such as a PhD in Health Services helps prepare you for administrative leadership positions in the delivery of healthcare services. You’ll find career opportunities in a variety of settings such as hospital administration, government health agencies, healthcare corporations, nonprofit organizations, public health agencies, and pharmaceutical companies. Your online PhD degree program may offer a healthcare administration specialization, in which you’ll review the core concepts and principles that impact healthcare decisions; implement and analyze your own doctoral research; and explore how to manage and implement healthcare programs and services.
Doctor of Healthcare Administration (DHA)
Online DHA degree programs teach high-level critical thinking and problem-solving skills, set within a framework of sound business strategies to help prepare you to manage healthcare delivery services by your organization and in your community. The best online DHA degree programs add a real-world perspective to your learning experience with interactive multimedia, simulations, and presentations. With doctoral committee guidance, you’ll independently explore a healthcare administration issue or problem and prepare a written study on your findings. Career advancement opportunities may include positions such as chief executive officer, chief financial officer, and chief operations officer in hospital systems, healthcare associations, consulting firms, medical group practices, university or research institutions, and mental health organizations.†
Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA)
Graduate programs like this one help prepare you for influential positions. They emphasize in-demand business skills healthcare administrators need to succeed in today’s challenging, ever-changing healthcare landscape. In addition to a general healthcare administration program, some online degree programs provide specialization options in areas such as leadership and organizational development as well as systems and policy. Graduates of MHA programs may be qualified for key positions such as director of managed care, assistant administrator, compliance or business operations director, hospital or health services administrator, and medical and health services manager.*
MS in Health Education and Promotion
This type of master’s program can prepare you for a career as a health education specialist. With a master’s-level foundation of health behavior theories and trends, you can gain the skills to assess community needs, which in turn can help you create and implement health communications and prevention programs designed to positively affect your community’s health. You may have the opportunity to fine-tune your career focus with online master’s degree specializations like emergency preparedness or health policy and advocacy. An advanced degree in health education and promotion provides in-demand skills for influential positions* across the healthcare system—from community health agencies and nonprofit organizations to schools and universities, hospitals and clinics, and businesses and corporations.
BS in Healthcare Management
Prepare for a career in healthcare management with a focused online bachelor of science degree. Coursework provides a foundational overview of important aspects of the healthcare system such as health promotion, trends in healthcare delivery, behavioral and cultural issues, research and informatics, and healthcare management. A bachelor of science in healthcare management can position you for jobs in a broad range of healthcare settings such as hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, physicians’ offices, home healthcare settings, and retirement communities.
Job Market for Healthcare Administrators and Health Educators†
The job market for healthcare administrators is projected to increase by 23% between 2012 and 2022. This increase is more than double the average rate for all professions. In 2012, the average median salary for medical and health services managers was $88,580, and the top 10% earned more than $150,560. The job market for health educators is projected to increase by 21% between 2012 and 2022. In 2012, the average median salary for health educators was $48,790. Rapid job growth for healthcare administrators and health educators is the result of people living longer, millions of newly insured Americans due to healthcare reforms, a stronger emphasis on preventative care, and the aging of the baby boomer population.
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*Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of this program.
†Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014–2015 Edition, Medical and Health Services Managers, Health Educators and Community Health Workers, on the Internet at www.bls.gov/ooh/home.htm.