What is Healthcare Management?

Casual Medical MeetingWhether you’re dreaming of a medical career or are already working in the field, you may want to consider healthcare management as a viable career option. As the name implies, those in healthcare management positions oversee and manage many aspects of healthcare facilities of all shapes and sizes – including private practices, nursing homes, hospitals, and more. From handling patient records and supervising specific departments within a hospital to overseeing entire medical practices, those working in healthcare management enjoy challenging yet rewarding careers.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, this field is projected to grow 32% by 2030—which means there will be plenty of opportunities for those with healthcare management degrees.

What is a Healthcare Management Degree?

You may be wondering, “why should I study healthcare management?”

A bachelor’s degree in healthcare management will help you develop the skills needed to become successful in this dynamic and competitive field. Some specific skills you can expect to gain from a degree program in healthcare management include leadership skills, management theory, organization, and communication, as it relates to the healthcare industry.

Depending on the specific school and program you’re looking at, you may be required to have some prior healthcare work experience in order to be accepted into a healthcare management program. It is not uncommon for schools to require a minimum of two years’ work experience in the field.

What Can You Do with a Healthcare Management Degree?

Is healthcare management a good major? There are many rewarding and stimulating jobs you can obtain with a degree in healthcare management. Explore a handful of the most common healthcare management positions below.

Department Manager: Those working in healthcare department manager positions typically oversee individual departments within a larger medical facility. For example, a department manager in a hospital may oversee those working in physical therapy. The responsibilities for this type of role can vary greatly but typically include managing healthcare employees, scheduling, training, and the like. This role is well-suited for those who already have experience working in a larger healthcare setting, though prior experience here is not absolutely required.

Finance Manager: Another career opportunity to consider with a degree in healthcare management is a finance manager. All medical offices need experienced and knowledgeable professionals to handle their everyday finances. This is where healthcare finance managers come into play, assisting with cash flow management, budgeting, and compensation/benefit plans. These professionals play a vital role in keeping healthcare facilities’ budgets streamlined so that patients can receive the best care possible. This type of job is ideal for those who are interested in the business and financial aspects of healthcare.

Quality and Improvement Manager: If you’re more interested in the training side of healthcare, then a job as a quality and improvement manager may be suitable for you. Quality and improvement managers work to ensure that medical facilities are operating in compliance with all current industry standards. As part of your job, you may hold regular training sessions and seminars to keep other medical professionals, such as nurses and medical assistants, informed on regulatory changes. This can be a great career opportunity if you enjoy working with people.

Physician Practice Manager: If you like the idea of working as a healthcare administrator but would prefer to work in a smaller facility, then a job as a physician practice manager is a great option. These professionals have many of the same responsibilities as healthcare administrators, but they work with smaller and more specialized practices. As a physician practice manager, you might assist with creating budgets, implementing growth strategies, and other aspects of the practice’s daily operations.

Administrator: You might also consider becoming an administrator with your healthcare management degree. A healthcare administrator plays an important role, often running and overseeing entire hospitals or healthcare facilities. This can include carrying out day-to-day functions that keep these facilities running smoothly, as well as bigger-picture tasks. This career option should be considered more of a long-term goal, with most employers preferring to hire healthcare administrators with at least a master’s degree and plenty of years of experience. A bachelor’s degree in healthcare management is an excellent first step toward this ultimate goal.

Management: Overall, if you like working in healthcare but are more interested in the business side of things, then a career in healthcare management may be the right path for you. With so many job opportunities available, you can find the right fit for your needs and aspirations. Meanwhile, you’ll enjoy working with others to better patient care, improve working conditions for healthcare professionals, and keep medical practices running smoothly.

It’s also worth noting that the above list of healthcare management jobs is in no way exhaustive. Some other examples of jobs you may be able to land with a degree in healthcare management include:

  • Operations Assistant
  • Medical Secretary
  • Patient Service Representative
  • Administrative Coordinator
  • Administrative Support Specialist

Healthcare Management Degree

If you’re interested in taking the next step in obtaining your healthcare management degree, you’ll want to begin by finding the right school to suit your needs and schedule. At Siena Heights University, we pride ourselves in our accessible degree programs; this includes our Bachelor of Applied Science in Healthcare Management program. With a focus on leadership theories and management skills, this program is tailored to healthcare workers with at least two years of experience and could prepare you for a lifetime of success in this growing field.

Meanwhile, if you’ve been looking for an accredited healthcare management program that has 100 percent online classes, ours has you covered. The Bachelor of Applied Science in Healthcare Management at SHU offers flexible scheduling to suit your busy life, with courses starting every seven weeks. This can be especially convenient if you plan to continue working while you complete your healthcare management education.

If you’re serious about taking your healthcare career to new heights, consider enrolling in a healthcare management degree program today. Don’t hesitate to reach out for more information about our program or begin your application online!