Healthcare Administration Degrees

Reviewing A General Health Administration Degree

Aspiring leaders in health care can earn a masters in health administration to propel them to professional success. This two-year health care administration degree, which follows the completion of a four-year bachelor’s degree, offers diverse courses, exposing students to a number of health care topics, which can guide them to a specific area in the broad health administration field. Health administrators can find success in the ever-changing and always-growing health care field, where they will adjust to changing regulations to direct and coordinate the delivery of health care. Earning a health administration degree online can lead to long-term success; the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as hospitals become larger and more complex, they will rely on health administrators and managers to oversee the delivery of health care. Thus, a need for well-educated health administrators exists, and MHA programs can lead individuals to professional success. Many students opt to earn this health administration degree online.

Admissions

Students interested in earning an online health administration degree must first earn a bachelor’s degree in any field. They must submit an application and their undergraduate transcripts when applying to an MHA program. Many programs require personal statements, resumes or curriculum vitas, and recommendation letters. In addition, most MHA programs require graduate-level standardized test scores, such as the GRE or GMAT. Work experience generally is not a requirement, but many aspiring MHA students do have some experience working in health care. Students applying to multiple MHA programs should consider using the Health Care Administration, Management & Policy Centralized Application Service (HAMPCAS), where they can submit their application, transcripts, and other information to multiple MHA schools through one database. Many of these admissions requirements are standard, even for students earning an online health administration degree.

Curriculum

Masters in Health Administration students take courses in a wide variety of health topics. Students can expect to begin their coursework with basic business classes, which will serve as the foundation of their MHA studies. Such courses include management, economics, and accounting. Health-specific courses look at a number of topics in the field, including health care policy, legal issues in health care, health information systems, and financials of health care facilities. In many programs, MHA students participate in assistantships, internships, and project-based assignments that expose them to health administration firsthand. This hands-on aspect of the MHA curriculum gives students a sense of the issues they will encounter in their professional careers. Most MHA curriculums include 40 to 60 credits of coursework, which full-time students can typically complete in two years.

Choosing an MHA Program

When assessing where to earn their healthcare administration degree, aspiring students should first ensure that the program is accredited. Organizations such as the Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Management Education accredit MHA programs, including those offering online health administration degrees. Students should focus on programs that have earned accreditation from a reputable organization. Accreditation ensures that the program meets the highest standard set forth by the accrediting organization, giving more value to the degree. An accredited MHA program is one that offers a high-quality curriculum and has an alumni base that has succeeded professionally. Therefore, online health administration degree students should place significant emphasis on the school’s accreditation.

Benefits of an MHA

Earning a health administration degree presents students with a number of personal and professional benefits as they launch their careers. First, students who want to move up the ranks in health care administration need an MHA, which is the most well-known graduate degree in health care management. So, having a health care administration degree in hand can go a long way in landing a job after graduation. Working in health care can be a rewarding career as well. As health care administrators, former health administration degree students can work toward improving the health care system and outcomes for patients. They can collaborate with the community or local, state, or federal governments to improve health care. These opportunities allow for a fulfilling career as a health administrator, one that former health administration degree students can enjoy thanks to their degree.

Career Opportunities and Professional Resources

Students who earn their health administration degree online can follow a number of career paths after earning their degree. They can work as administrators and executives at large hospitals, overseeing hospital and health care policy, for a specific department or the entire hospital system. They might work with community-based organizations to advance health care access to different demographic groups. Healthcare management MBA degree holders can also find rewarding career opportunities in smaller health care facilities, such as nursing homes, where they can direct health care delivery and manage personnel, finances, and admissions.

There are many opportunities for professional development for individuals who have earned an online health administration degree. Joining professional organizations, such as the American Association of Health Care Administrative Management or the Association for Health Care Administrative Professionals, gives MHA professionals access to a number of resources. They can attend events and conferences where they learn about industry trends and network with other professionals in their field. These organizations also offer continuing education opportunities, keeping MHA professionals knowledgeable about their ever-changing industry.