December 5, 2022

How Do I Decide Between a Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate Degree or Certification in Healthcare Management?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for medical and health services managers in the US is growing faster than any other areas of the employment market. This area is expected to grow more than 22 percent through 2020, adding more than 65,000 more jobs. It is a great time to pursue careers in healthcare management to take advantage of this growth in advancing your education and career. To determine the degree to pursue it is best to first think about what career opportunities there are and the path you want to pursue. Although there are some jobs available at a bachelors level, for higher levels of responsibility and top pay, it will be necessary to have a graduate level degree.

Certification Programs in Healthcare Management

Certification programs can provide career advancement for experienced professionals and for entry-level manager alike. Some certificate programs are designed for healthcare professionals already employed in lower-level management or administrative roles but want to take on greater responsibilities and challenges. There are also problems to allow advanced level management professionals to stay current on the newest and best trends in management methods and technologies.

Bachelor’s Degree in Healthcare Management

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) outlines that generally speaking you need a master’s degree to qualify for a generalist position as a health care manager. In some smaller departments, practices or facilities, a bachelor’s degree may be suitable to qualify you for an entry-level position in administration or management. Additionally, a bachelor’s degree program prepares you to work in a medical office as an office manager. You develop the skills needed to work with doctors and manage workers in a health care facility, in addition to those necessary to handle customer service duties.

  • Bachelor of Arts in Health Care Administration
  • Bachelor of Science in Health Informatics
  • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration in Healthcare Management
  • Bachelor of Science in HealthCare Management
  • Bachelor of Arts in Health Service Administration
  • Bachelor of Arts in Healthcare Administration
  • Bachelor of Science in Long Term Care Administration
  • Bachelor of Arts in Health Administration

Master’s Degrees in Healthcare Management

Completing a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Management will provide you with an education that prepares you for career advancement in health care. Coursework can include finance, communications, marketing, managed care, strategic planning, quality control, research, operations, and policies. Depending on the specific degree you choose to pursue, you will also obtain skills and knowledge related to the specialization you follow.

  • Master of Business Administration in Healthcare Management
  • Master of Science in Healthcare Administration
  • Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Public Health
  • Master of Business Administration/Master of Public Health
  • Master of Public Administration in Healthcare

For those pursuing Masters Degrees in Healthcare – look for programs that are a part of the Association of University programs in Health Administration (AUHPHA), the Commission of Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) and the Council on Education in Public Health (CEPH). Another resource is US News and World Reports Best Colleges.

Doctorate degree in Healthcare Management

Graduate students who are interested in pursuing more advanced roles in healthcare administration research and policy will need to consider enrolling in a PhD program. PhD programs generally require significant coursework beyond the master’s level as well as a dissertation. Among the top doctoral degrees chosen for careers in Healthcare Administration include the following:

  • Doctor of Healthcare Administration (DHA)
  • PhD in Health Education and Promotion
  • PhD in Healthcare Management
  • PhD in Health Services
  • PhD in Public Health in Social Behavior and Sciences
  • Phd in Health Policy
  • PhD in Bioethics and Health Policy
  • PhD in Health Economics