March 31, 2023

How Does a Master’s Degree in Public Administration Differ from a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Management?

A Masters Degree is a beneficial thing to have no matter what your field of interest. It often reflects your passion for extended learning and promotes a sense of experience or interest in something greater than that which you already know. Most of the post-graduate degrees offered are an extension of the primary degree itself while offering a secondary aspect or learning field thus making the holder a more diverse employee.

Two common degrees that often are sought out are the Masters Degree in Public Administration and the Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration. Both degrees are administrative degrees, meaning that they deal with the administration aspects of a certain field. This is common with most post-graduate degrees. With this comes some room for interpretation, though. What is the difference between Public Administration and a Healthcare Administration Degree?

Public Administration

Having your Masters Degree in Public Administration prepares you for the many facets of working with and for the public. This can include civil engineering, public relations, and even public health related matters. This may seem like a positive thing on the surface but if you’re looking for a specific area of function to put your degree to use, you might want to focus your learning on that aspect itself. The Public Administration Degree covers a wide range of topics and is perfect for the Jack-of-All-Trades/Master-of-All. This is a great option for the person who is either trying to change industries or is trying to cross-train their talents into another industry dealing with the public or civic duties.

Healthcare Administration

Like the title of the degree states, the Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration deals specifically with the aspects of healthcare. This can include everything from patient care to engineering. The purpose of the Administration Degree is to provide an expanded knowledge of the business operations within the healthcare industry. This is ideal for those already involved in the healthcare system industry and looking to find another avenue within that industry to work. It also provides insight on the other aspects of the field where a particular degree, such as nursing, provides specific training. For the person outside looking in, the Masters in Healthcare Administration provides an opportunity to join the ranks of the industry with the most stable job growth in the country.

Both degrees serve with great purpose and choosing which degree will be determined by your career goals and with degrees you have already attained. For jobs that focus more on the administrative side of healthcare, such as patient billing or human resources, a Masters Degree in Public Administration will be sufficient. For a job that requires a stricter medical background or deals directly with patient care, a Masters Degree in Healthcare Administration would be required. Having a previous degree that isn’t healthcare oriented will likely find you on the path of a Public Administrator. Likewise, if you are seeking a position as a Healthcare Executive a Degree in Healthcare Administration is likely to be required. Both degrees are distinctive in what they provide the degree holder in terms of what they are to learn. They are both administrative in nature, but the Public Administration Degree is more generalized while the Healthcare Administration Degree deals directly with the needs of the healthcare industry itself.