Arkansas Healthcare Administration Masters Degrees & Programs
With a masters in healthcare administration, graduate students learn to manage health care facilities and systems. Study combines elements of business strategy, public policy, and health care to help students specialize in the field.
While it’s possible to pursue a career in health care administration position with only a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree might be considered a standard requirement for some health care administration postitions. Health care administration graduate programs may also be known by the titles “health systems management”, “health management” and “health administration”.
Other programs such as “business administration” and “nonprofit management” may also be applicable, as they may offer a concentration in health care. Some programs offer a dual degree; for example, a joint M.S.N. / M.S. Depending upon the program and the school in which it is housed, the master’s degree conferred could be an M.S., a M.B.A., M.P.A., or an M.P.H.
An ideal applicant to health care administration graduate school would ideally possess the following qualities:
- Background in business, accounting and/or medicine
- Highly organized
- Systems thinker
- Excellent communication skills
- Team player
- Detail oriented and able to multi-task
Health Care Administration Graduate Programs and Curriculum
Students enrolled in health care administration grad programs may encounter the following types of courses:
- Health care leadership
- Intercultural communication
- Financial management for health care organizations
- Legal and ethical considerations
- The American health care system
- Research methods for health care administrators
While most health care administration master’s programs take two to three years to complete, some accelerated programs are available. In order to graduate, the student must complete coursework with passing grades, and in most cases, complete an internship and thesis. The Ph.D. in health care administration takes an average of four to six years to complete and has similar, but expanded, requirements to the master’s program. Students are required to complete a dissertation, and oral and written exams are also usually required.
The Commission for Accreditation for Health Management Education is the accrediting body for health care administration graduate programs.
Healthcare Administration and Mangement Graduate Program Application Requirements
All health care administration graduate schools require an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university. In addition, most institutions require a completed application, including a personal statement, transcripts, letters of recommendation and any relevant standardized test scores. Some schools have a minimum GPA and standardized test score requirement. In addition, some schools have curriculum prerequisites, such as accounting or statistics. Work or volunteer experience at a health care facility, particularly in a business capacity, can enhance your resume. Be sure to check with the school of your choice well in advance of applying in order to clarify its particular requirements.
Health Care Administration Career Paths
Health care administrators may pursue careers managing settings including physician’s offices, hospitals or entire health care systems. In addition, they may manage the entire organization, or one particular aspect of it. Health care administrators might pursue careers in consulting providing expert guidance to governmental, private, and public entities, or work to help create health care policy. Those holding Ph.D. degrees may teach and conduct research at colleges,universities, or private and public companies.
Health Care Administration Salary and Job Outlook
In 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median annual salary for medical and health services managers was $88,580. The lowest 10% of earners made less than $53,940 a year, while the top 10% of earners made more than $150,560. Employment in this field is projected by the BLS to grow by 23% between 2012 and 2022, which is faster than average. This growth can be attributed in part to an aging baby boomer population with increasing medical needs, as well as recent advances in medicine, health and technology leading to increased options for treatment.