Online Healthcare Management Bachelor's Degree

An aging population increases demand for healthcare services. To this end, more healthcare facilities necessitate educated and highly-trained professionals to manage their daily operations. On this page, students can explore program options for online bachelor's healthcare management degrees along with career opportunities and educational paths that might lead them there.

What is Healthcare Management?

With a projected growth of nearly three times the national average and median annual wages that far exceed that average career, healthcare management represents a desirable option for students. For those looking to concentrate their education or advance in healthcare management, a healthcare management degree online acts as a solid launch pad for further training.

A healthcare management degree online offers specializations that allow students to hone in on their interests. Specializations give students skills outside the core curriculum and separate students from their peers, which could provide them with additional career opportunities. Furthermore, an online bachelor's degree in healthcare management allows students to pursue healthcare subfields, such as ambulatory care or hospital administration. With a career-specific education, students focus their learning and obtain more intensive skills for their future.

After graduation, a healthcare administrator's educational pursuits do not necessarily end. While a bachelor's degree helps applicants meet the minimum requirements for most healthcare administration positions, it also meets the admission requirements for graduate programs. Since many upper-level management and administrator positions require advanced degrees, many experienced professionals consider continuing education at some point in their careers. Moreover, a bachelor's degree provides a solid foundation for other types of continuing education, like certificates, licensure, and on-the-job training.

What Can I Do with an Online Healthcare Management Bachelor's Degree?

Graduates with a healthcare management degree online benefit from skills and training that qualify them for entry into a variety of fields and careers. While students may wait until graduation to choose a specific career path, some may wish to improve their application by obtaining career-specific skills and concentrations within the program. The following information lays out the different career and industry options available to healthcare management graduates, along with some of the skills required to obtain those positions.

Skills and Knowledge Gained

While pursuing a healthcare management degree online, students gain skills that allow them to complete specialized tasks in a healthcare setting, including how to interact with others in a medical facility and how to operate a healthcare business. Many healthcare management online degrees also offer specialized and concentrated skills for students with a more precise vision of their ideal career.

Within a healthcare management program, students benefit from some choice in their courses. For students looking to become healthcare or practice administrators, obtaining skills in training, finance, and performance evaluation creates a direct avenue towards that profession. These skills improve candidates' qualifications for a desired position and show their dedication.

Many online colleges for healthcare management also provide specialized training that allows graduates to enter into more restricted healthcare management fields. For instance, students aiming for positions in government might concentrate in healthcare law and policy to gain a competitive advantage. Meanwhile, students with an interest in information technology might explore a concentration in health informatics to learn advanced skills in IT-based solutions.

Most programs encourage students to explore a variety of courses early on to allow for self-discovery. As students progress, they can focus their degree to meet end goals and obtain skills that best set them up for success. While most relevant careers do not make skills outside the core program mandatory, applicants that possess them may set themselves apart from others.

Careers and Salary Potential

Graduates of a healthcare management degree online receive foundational training that applies to various industries and careers. While students learn to manage the staff and operations of healthcare facilities, these marketable skills transfer into other professions as well. The following lists identify some of the primary industries and careers available to healthcare management graduates and highlight some of the tasks and skills required by them.

  • Hospitals: With 36% of healthcare managers working in hospitals, most healthcare management programs prepare students for these facilities. Hospitals employ graduates in human resources, administration, and patient care services, typically giving preference to applicants with specialized training in these areas.
  • Physicians' Offices: Physicians' offices employ approximately 11% of healthcare managers to organize and coordinate daily business operations. These positions may require managers with finance, staffing, and healthcare policy training.
  • Nursing Facilities: Covering facilities in residential and palliative care, 10% of healthcare managers work in nursing facilities. Managers in these facilities optimize patient care, staffing, and medical coverage, all skills earned in healthcare management programs.
  • Government: While government careers typically appear more restrictive, the general administrative skills -- along with the more advanced policy and law skills owned by healthcare managers -- make them ideal candidates for these positions.
  • Outpatient Care Centers: Outpatient or ambulatory care centers require trained managers to coordinate the daily business operations, from staffing to equipment procurement. Healthcare management graduates receive the leadership and administration skills necessary to complete the varied tasks required by this industry.
Medical and Health Services Managers

Annual Median Salary: $98,350

Medical services managers take charge of medical offices, clinics, and units, ensuring the facility adheres to proper healthcare laws and policies. Managers also take responsibility for the facility's staffing needs, finances, and training.

Administrative Services Managers

Annual Median Salary: $94,020

Within a healthcare or medical facility, administrative services managers supervise the office activities, including maintaining patient and employee databases, and monitoring clerical work. These managers ensure the office runs smoothly and as efficiently as possible.

Hospital Administrator

Annual Median Salary: $89,029

Hospital administrators ensure the effectiveness and efficiency for all hospital operations. Administrators supervise employee performance and training, and monitor and improve standards, procedures, and practices.

Medical Office Manager

Annual Median Salary: $48,278

Medical office managers work to improve the operations of medical offices and facilities. These managers coordinate staffing, finances, and office equipment needs, ensuring day-to-day activities run smoothly and the medical staff receive support necessary for success.

Practice Administrator

Annual Median Salary: $71,773

Practice administrators work within medical practices to recruit, staff, and support medical professionals. Administrators may also take charge of business tasks like ordering supplies, financing, and training.