What Jobs Can You Get With a Healthcare Administration Degree?

May 02, 2024

Byron Barton

Chair, Healthcare

Two healthcare administrators help a patient

Healthcare is a multi-trillion dollar business in the United States, and will continue to be a growth sector for the foreseeable future. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, healthcare expenditures accounted for 17.3% of the GDP in 2022. The US Bureau of Labor and Statistics reported that 14.7 million people, or nearly one in ten workers, is employed in the healthcare industry. This number is likely to increase every year for the foreseeable future.

One critical segment of the healthcare industry is healthcare administration. Healthcare administrators are the backbone of the healthcare industry. They’re responsible for a wide variety of important functions in health organizations, from patient intake at local clinics to executive-level decision making that can impact regional and national health organizations.

What jobs can you get with a degree in healthcare administration?

Some potential career paths for a healthcare administrator include an administrator or human resources specialist at a hospital, clinic, assisted living facility or other health organization. You could also focus on areas within healthcare that have cross-industry applications, such as a medical records, information management specialist, finance or coding specialist at a health organization. As you progress along your career path and take on more leadership responsibility, you could grow into manager or director roles within your specialty. This experience can then be leveraged to assume manager or director roles for an entire healthcare facility or health organization, or even for executive director positions for a healthcare system.

What do you do as a healthcare administrator?

At the basic entry level position, a healthcare administrator’s day to day function will depend on the requirements of the position and organization, but most healthcare administrators will need to be proficient in interpersonal communication and data entry in software suites required for scheduling, coordination, forms or billing.

For example, a clinic coordinator might be responsible for scheduling patient visits and ensuring patient data is up to date in the system. Healthcare administrators in this position would need to interface with patients and ensure their information is entered correctly in the system. This is an important job, since incorrect information could result in issues with insurance and billing, which would not only impact the healthcare organization, but would also create headaches for the patient, as anyone who has ever had a claim denied due to a clerical error can attest.

What education do you need to work in healthcare administration?

A successful career in healthcare administration starts with education. An associate degree, either an AS or AAS, is a good gateway to a career as a healthcare administrator. An AS or AAS can help you obtain a variety of entry level positions in healthcare administration and the healthcare industry.

When you are ready to take on more responsibility and transition to a leadership (and higher paying) role, a bachelor’s degree is beneficial to career progression. Programs like ACE’s fully online bachelor’s-completion program in healthcare administration will give you the foundational skills and knowledge to pursue leadership roles in health administration within a variety of healthcare settings. ACE’s program engages in application-based coursework, where you’ll learn how to analyze complex health data to promote evidence-based decision-making. The curriculum emphasizes the role of globalization, diversity, community health, interdisciplinary collaboration and resource allocation in creating an effective balance in managing healthcare costs, quality and access.

Of course, education can be a challenge for working professionals with a full-time job and other personal obligations. Fully online programs like ACE’s bachelor’s degree are great options for those who need to learn on their own schedule. At ACE, classes are asynchronous and qualified professors are only an email away if you have questions or need assistance. ACE also has a plethora of additional student supports and resources, such as individualized student success coaches and free access to Tutor.com.

A bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration is a solid foundation on which to build a fulfilling career in healthcare administration, one that can lead to manager, director and other leadership positions that truly drive the landscape of healthcare forward. If you have a drive to guide the planning, policy and operations of health organizations, creating a system that ensures efficient operations, data-driven decision making and, ultimately, positive patient outcomes, this is the career path for you.

American College of Education is ready to help you build a rewarding career in healthcare administration. With our fully online bachelor’s-completion and master’s degree in healthcare administration, we’ll equip you with the knowledge you need for the jobs you want.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of American College of Education.
Byron Barton
Byron Barton, Chair, Healthcare

Dr. Byron Barton graduated from Butler University in Indianapolis with a bachelor's degree in biology. He received his doctorate from the University of Vermont, where he studied insect flight muscle using a classical and molecular genetics approach. After receiving his PhD in biology, Dr. Barton taught genetics and cell biology at Heidelberg University in Ohio, and then transitioned to international education. He taught in the premedical and medical curricula at Xavier University School of Medicine, Aruba, and was the Dean of Premedical Sciences. As Dean, Dr. Barton was responsible for facilitating the transition to an integrated curriculum in the premedical program.

At ACE, Dr. Barton has focused on helping students achieve their academic and career goals through higher education. He is an advocate of ACE’s mission to provide high quality, affordable, and accessible programs to working professionals in the healthcare field.

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