Many of us associate a career in healthcare with nobility and helping others, treating doctors, nurses and other primary patient care providers with awe and admiration. But we forget that healthcare is also a business and like any other business, it needs efficient management and administration to survive. So, who are the people working tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure the delivery of healthcare is smooth at all times? These professionals are none other than health service managers or healthcare administrators trained and qualified to plan, direct, supervise, and coordinate the delivery of healthcare.
Healthcare management is an ideal career choice for individuals who want to take advantage of the growing job opportunities in this sector, but away from direct patient care. Interested? Then read on to find out more about the different healthcare management careers.
The first thing you need to do for a healthcare management career is to get appropriate training. A health services manager is much like a manager in any other business unit who should have strong business and management skills as well as the ability to communicate effectively. A solid academic program definitely helps you acquire some of these skills. To work your way up the corporate ladder, a Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Administration degree would be a best suit for you. However, the standard credential for more senior positions in the field is a Master’s in Healthcare Administration degree.
Technological advancements and complex medical regulations have made the job of a healthcare administrator both exciting as well as challenging. As described earlier, healthcare managers are involved in planning and supervising the healthcare delivery system of a facility. Depending on its size, expertise and experience levels, they could lead an entire healthcare facility or be part of a team of health service managers working under a top administrator. Their day to day activities include management of finances, personnel, operations and admissions.
Other healthcare management careers that can be considered are clinical management and health information management. Clinical managers are trained and experienced in a particular clinical area, and are responsible for taking care of that respective department in the healthcare facility. To become a clinical manager, you need to have a degree in a related field. You can supplement your education and boost your career with a Master’s in Healthcare Administration degree.
Health information managers, on the other hand, maintain patient records in a secure manner in keeping with the federal government regulations. Health information managers need to have completed an undergraduate or graduate program in health information management.
According to 2010-11 edition of the Department of Labor’s Occupation Outlook Handbook, the employment opportunities for healthcare managers should be good, and the profession is expected to witness a “faster than average” growth through 2018. The writing on the wall is bold and clear. This is the time to enter healthcare management careers. Undeniably, it’s a choice that requires considerable investment of time, money and effort. But equally irrefutable is the fact that you will soon see your investment turn into gold. Like a wise man once said – as you sow so shall you reap!