Health Care Administration & Degree Programs
- Top 50 Fastest-Growing Industries, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Accessed August 2017, https://www.careerinfonet.org/indview1.asp?nodeid=45
- Colorado Springs (North), Colorado, National American University, Accessed August 2017, http://www.national.edu/locations/campuses/colorado-springs/
- Illinois College Campuses, Rasmussen College, Accessed August 2017, http://www.rasmussen.edu/locations/illinois/
- Minnesota College Campuses, Rasmussen College, Accessed August 2017, http://www.rasmussen.edu/locations/minnesota/
- Health Administration, Baker College, Accessed August 2017, https://www.baker.edu/programs-degrees/health-administration/
- Madison Campus, Herzing University, Accessed August 2017, https://www.herzing.edu/madison
- Gainesville, City College, August 2017, https://www.citycollege.edu/location/gainesville/
- New Orleans, Herzing University, Accessed August 2017, https://www.herzing.edu/new-orleans
- Academic Programs in DU, Davenport Universty, Accessed August 2017, https://www.davenport.edu/academic-programs-at-davenport
- Florida College Campuses, Rasmussen College, Accessed August 2017, http://www.rasmussen.edu/locations/florida/
- Wisconsin College Campuses, Rasmussen College, Accessed August 2017, http://www.rasmussen.edu/locations/wisconsin/
- Bachelor of Science in Health Care Administration, California State University Long Beach, Accessed August 2017, http://web.csulb.edu/colleges/chhs/departments/hca/advising/BachelorofScienceinHealthCareAdministration.htm
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Administrative Services Managers, Accessed August 2017, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/administrative-services-managers.htm
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Medical and Health Services Managers, Accessed August 2017, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/medical-and-health-services-managers.htm
- Career Resources, American College of Healthcare Executive, Accessed August 2017, http://www.ache.org/newclub/career/resources_for_students_and_early_careerists.cfm
The health care industry is one of the fastest growing segments of the economy, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As medicine advances and the population ages, there is a growing need for qualified doctors, nurses and other practitioners. However, these professionals can only do their jobs well with a team of administrative staff behind them. From front desk receptionists to facility managers, health care administrators and assistants keep the medical system running smoothly.
Education requirements for health care administration jobs can vary depending on the position. Many schools offer certificates and associate degrees in the field. For those planning to seek management positions, a bachelor's degree is the preferred level of education for many employers.
Online degrees for health care administration allow busy adults the opportunity to advance their careers while continuing current jobs. Keep reading to learn more about the best schools for on-campus and online health care administration degrees as well as scholarship opportunities and job prospects in the field.
Best Colleges for Health Care Administration Degree Programs
To find the best schools for health care administration, we used a methodology that considered factors such as the prominence of a program within a school as well as its tuition, support services and graduation rate.
The Colorado Springs campus of North American University tops this list of best colleges for health care administration degree programs. The university is focused on providing students with a practical education that will lead to real-world success. In addition to maintaining campuses in ten states, students at NAU can earn many degrees entirely online.
At the College of Health and Sciences on its Colorado Springs campus, NAU offers the following programs, among others, which can lead to jobs in health care administration:
- Associate degree in medical administrative assistant
- Associate degree in medical staff management
- Bachelor's degree in healthcare management
North American University - Colorado Springs ranks high for the prominence of its program. It also has the best graduation rate among the schools on this list.
Rasmussen College is another institution focused on offering practical degree programs. They are designed to take students immediately from the classroom to the workforce. Like NAU, Rasmussen College operates in a number of states and also provides online degrees for health care administration and other fields.
The Illinois college is the first of several schools within the Rasmussen system to make this list of best colleges for health care administration degrees. Students can study either online or at the state's campus locations in Rockford, Aurora/Naperville, Romeoville/Joliet and Mokena/Tinley Park.
The school ranks high for the prominence of its health care administration degrees. Available programs include a bachelor's degree in health information management and a medical administrative assistant certificate.
Right behind the Illinois location of Rasmussen College are the Minnesota campuses. With several buildings within the Twin Cities metro area, the college offers both on-campus and online health care administration degree programs. Other learning centers in the state can be found in Mankato, Moorhead and St. Cloud.
The college's career-focused degree programs include a number of options for those interested in working directly or indirectly with patients. Within the field of health care administration, a medical administrative assistant certificate and a bachelor's degree in health information management are both options.
Rasmussen College - Minnestoa is notable for its good student-to-faculty ratio, student support services and flexible learning options.
Baker College earned its spot as one of the best schools for health care administration degree programs, in part, because of its tuition rate. It ranked highest for affordability among the institutions on this list.
As Michigan's largest independent college, Baker College has 14 campus locations throughout the state. In addition, many of its programs, including those in health care administration, are available online. In total, the college has nearly 28,000 students enrolled both online and on-campus.
For health care administration students, there are currently six degrees available. These include both undergraduate and graduate options:
- Associate degree in coding specialist
- Associate degree in health information technology
- Associate degree in medical administrative specialist
- Associate degree in medical insurance specialist
- Bachelor's degree in health services administration
- MBA in healthcare management
Founded as the Wisconsin School of Electronics in 1948, this school is the flagship campus of Herzing University. It is also the first of two campuses within the university to rank among the best schools to study health care administration.
The school ranks high on this list for the prominence of its health care admin program. It also has a 14-1 student-to-faculty ratio which allows for more personalized instruction. Academic counseling, career placement for graduates and other support services are available.
Students enrolled at Herzing University - Madison can earn a bachelor's degree in healthcare management. Other programs in health information management and administration are also available. In addition to studying on-campus, students can enroll in online health care administration degree programs.
City College can trace its history back to 1984 when it was established as the Draughon's College of Business. Since then, the college has evolved to offer programs in business, health care and the legal fields. City College now has five locations in Florida as well as an online division.
The Gainesville campus of City College has one of the best student-to-faculty ratio among the schools on this list. At 13-1, students shouldn't feel lost in a classroom. City College - Gainesville also had a high rank on this survey for the prominence of its health care administration program.
Health care admin students can choose from two programs at City College - Gainesville: an associate degree in medical office administration or a bachelor's degree in health care administration.
The Kenner campus -- also known as the New Orleans campus -- is the second Herzing University location to make this list of top schools for health care admin degree programs. Students can earn a bachelor's degree in healthcare management. There is also an associate and bachelor's degree program in health information management.
Among the schools on this list that don't have open admissions policies, Herzing University - Kenner admits the greatest percentage of applicants. It also ranks high for the prominence of its health care administration program, its favorable student-to-faculty ratio and the range of support services it provides.
In addition to studying on-campus, students enrolled in Herzing University - Kenner have the option to complete their degree online for health care administration.
Based in Grand Rapids, Davenport University was founded in 1866 and now has ten campus locations scattered throughout the state of Michigan. In addition to studying on-campus, the school's 7,500 students can also enroll in online coursework.
Within its College of Health Professions, there are both undergraduate and graduate degree options suitable for careers in the field of health care administration. These include the following:
- Associate degree in health information technology
- Bachelor's degree in health services administration
- Bachelor's degree in health information management
- Master's degree in health informatics and information management
With an 11-1 student-to-faculty ratio, Davenport University ranks first on this list for that metric. It is also notable for its graduation rate and academic support services.
Rasmussen College takes another spot on this list with its Florida location. There are five campuses within the state system. These include three within the Tampa metro area and two others in Fort Myers and Ocala.
Students enrolled in Rasmussen College - Florida can earn an associate degree to become a health information technician or a bachelor's degree in health information management. The four year degree offers a Flex Choice option which combines traditional courses and self-guided assessments.
The college ranks high for its flexible learning options, with online, night and weekend courses available. There is also academic advising for students and career placement services available for graduates.
Rasmussen College - Wisconsin rounds out this list of best colleges for health care administration degree programs. With its combination of on-campus and online course options, it provides students with flexible learning opportunities that may appeal especially to working adults.
The Wisconsin college of Rasmussen has campuses in Green Bay and Wausau. It ranks high for the prominence of its health care administration program, its open admissions policy and its range of support services. In addition to online coursework, night and weekend classes are available to accommodate busy schedules.
Degree programs within the field of health care administration include programs covering health information management and health information technicians. These is also a program specifically for those interested in working as a medical administrative assistant.
Degree Programs and Common Career Paths
Earning a degree in health care administration can open the door to a number of career paths. Some short-term programs are intended to provide enough knowledge for entry-level positions while more advanced degrees cover a curriculum including information about both medical and administrative topics.
Bachelor's Degree Programs in Health Care Administration
For those who want to work as a manager or director rather than an assistant, a bachelor's degree in health care administration or a similar field may be required. Classes will vary by institution but likely cover topics such as medical terminology, legal aspects of the field, patient safety and quality assurance. After graduation, students may go on to work in one of these or similar occupations.
- Medical and Health Services Manager: Also known as health care executives or health care administrators, these professionals oversee medical facilities and organizations. They may be responsible for creating budgets, work schedules and strategic plans.
- Administrative Services Manager: Administrative services managers may perform many of the same duties as medical and health services managers. However, they may be employed by firms not only in the medical field but in other industries as well.
- Pharmaceutical Sales Manager: These managers may oversee a team of sales representatives. In addition to supervising the work of other employees, they may responsible for meeting with physicians, developing sales programs and otherwise marketing pharmaceutical products.
- Emergency Room Director: Emergency room directors provide specialized services to ensure the emergency department of hospitals and similar facilities run efficiently. They oversee day-to-day operations and may also help create policies and processes to improve patient care.
Career Outlook for Health Care Administration Majors
As with other occupations within the medical industry, job opportunities for health care administrators are expected to be robust in the years to come. Here's a closer look at the career outlook for some popular occupations within the field.
Expected Job Growth
|Medical and Health Services Managers||332,150||$109,370||16.9%|
|Medical Records and Health Information Technicians||200,140||$41,460||15.4%|
|Receptionists and Information Clerks||997,770||$29,120||9.5%|
Q&A with an expert
Why would you encourage someone to consider a degree in health care administration?
People think healthcare consists of just doctors and nurses which are vital, but administration is what works to ensure a patient is actually seeing a doctor covered by their insurance provider. Medical Office Administrators (MOAs) are relied upon to be the liaison between the patient, the healthcare team and the insurance company.
What are the usual educational paths for those interested in health care administration?
There is no formal training required to become an MOA but, with the increased complexity of health care administration, employers prefer to hire people with training in areas such as medical vocabulary, customer service, coding and billing, record keeping and insurance coverage, to name a few. Such training programs typically require 9-12 months for a diploma or 15-21 months for an associate degree.
American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management - Founded in 1968 for hospital patient account managers, this association now represents the interests of a variety of administrative professionals although it continues to have a special emphasis on the revenue cycle.
Health Care Administrators Association - Offering education and networking events for members, this association advocates for administrators working within health care and related industries.
Association for Healthcare Administrative Professionals - This organization is dedicated to administrative workers who support healthcare executives.
Financial Aid and Scholarships for Health Care Administration Degree Programs
Financial aid is available to many students, regardless of whether they are earning on-campus or online health care administration degrees. Much of this assistance is provided through government programs or directly from a college or university. However, there are private scholarships available, particularly for students at the graduate level, from organizations such as the Foundation of the American College of Healthcare Executives.
Renewable for up to four years if recipient continues to meet eligibility requirements. Recipient must reapply for renewal.
Renewable for two additional years if recipient reapplies.