Many people like to think of Healthcare as a noble, caring profession, full of dedicated individuals striving to help make the world a better place. We love to romanticize the medical industry to the point where we sometimes lose track of the fact that Healthcare is, at its core, a business. Just like every functioning business, the industry requires management. That's where Healthcare Administrators, also known as Healthcare Executives or Medical & Health Services Managers, come in to the picture.
Each independent physicians office, rehabilitation clinic, hospital or any other type of medical facility is its own business. These offices are subject to the same legal processes and licensing agreements as your favorite corner pizza shop, clothing boutique or record exchange. As businesses, these companies must meet certain financial obligations and, in a perfect world, turn in a profit through each designated time period. Healthcare Administrators are largely responsible for this side of the business. This is not to say that these are simply vapid businessmen and businesswomen with no interest in the work done by the healthcare professionals working within their institutions. This couldn't be further from the truth. Healthcare Administrators are simply held responsible for budgetary needs and managing operational tasks, such as payroll, technological innovation and relationships with insurance companies.
Many hospitals actually have a full board of directors made up of not only medical representatives, such as highly-touted physicians, but also business-savvy Administrators and Administrative Assistants who are in charge of negotiating the capabilities or the facility in question. If you're interested in a career where helping people is the top priority, but also have an affinity for trade and commerce, working in Healthcare Administration may be your ticket to finding your dream job.
Choosing the best school for Healthcare Administration programs begins with knowing what your professional goals are. You should begin by making a list of schools whose programs are geared towards helping you reach these aspirations, and narrow the list down according to the accreditation and reputation of not only each school, but each respective program. If you're mind is still not made up, take a look at the other qualities that help to set the programs apart, such as course requirements, financial aid availability, internship opportunities and job placement services.
Most positions in this field do seek out candidates with at least a Masters' Degree but in many situations, a Bachelors' Degree will still qualify prospective employees for certain entry-level positions. Much of the work done in the field does deal specifically with standard business and management principles and practices as applied to the medical industry. Each state and Washington D.C. does require that Healthcare Administrators working in nursing facilities have at least a Bachelors' Degree, pass a Licensing exam pursue continued education and complete a State-approved training program.
Students interested in expanding their career horizons but uncertain about the type of time commitment required to actively pursue post-secondary education can find great Healthcare Administration programs online. These programs are designed to help anyone earn the education they deserve, no matter how full his or her life may be. Many individuals working in private corporate positions go on to earn Certification to practice Healthcare Administration.
If you're still in high school but already learning towards a career in Healthcare Administration, here are some easy ways you can go ahead and start working towards your future now:
As Healthcare faces many impending changes under President Obama's field legislation, Healthcare Administrators are growing increasingly important. These individuals are being called upon to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare while meeting new standards regarding accountability and, in essence, being forced to make more with less. Over the next ten years, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that job prospects for Healthcare Administrators will grow more swiftly than most other occupations and at a quicker pace than the national average.
Most of these jobs will continue to be found in Hospitals, but the amount of new jobs being created in these roles is expected to slow, with more and more private offices and facilities looking to hire Healthcare Administrators to combat the impending crunch that many fear will be brought on by "Obama-care." More and more professionals with private-sector business experience are finding work in this field, but the main thing to market when distributing your resume to prospective employers is that you have great management and communication skills.
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