Health care is a resilient, growing, and evolving industry, which means endless opportunities for those in the field. In addition to the clinical career paths you might first picture when you think “health care,” there are a variety of non-clinical, administrative roles that can still enable you to make a difference in the lives of patients and those caring for them.
To seize these opportunities, you should consider earning a Master of Business Administration in Health Care Administration (MBA-HCA).
If you’re considering this type of advanced degree, you probably want to know what you can do with it, who is a good fit for this program, when is the best time to start a program, and what you can expect regarding compensation. Keep reading to find the answers and get all the information you need to know if an MBA-HCA is right for you.
Who Is a Good Fit for an MBA-HCA?
Those entering an MBA-HCA program come from various backgrounds. Most have some experience or education, but it’s not a requirement. What’s most vital is having a passion for being part of the health care ecosystem and desiring to be on the administrative side versus the clinical one.
Here are some reasons you might be a good fit for this degree:
You already work in health care management and want to advance your career.
If you are currently in health care management or administration and know it’s your calling, then an MBA-HCA can further your career. With this additional education, you’ll be ready to advance into higher-level leadership roles.
You have an undergraduate degree in health care.
Whether you graduated last year or a decade ago, continuing your education can be an excellent way to build on your achievements. With an MBA-HCA, you’ll learn more aspects of the business and administrative side, building on an existing foundation.
You work on the clinical side of health care and are ready for a change.
Many clinical health care workers—especially nurses—want to remain in the field but in a different capacity. If that’s where you’re sitting today, earning an advanced degree can facilitate this. It’s no secret that nurse burnout is real and rising. Instead of leaving health care completely, you can reposition your future and continue influencing care from a different angle.
You have an undergraduate business degree and want to make the leap to health care.
A health care system is a business. There are differences between it and other businesses, of course, but if you already have a background in operations, administration, finance, or management, you can transition to health care. By entering an MBA-HCA program, you’ll get the knowledge needed to be proficient in the health care business.
When Is the Right Time to Explore and Start an MBA-HCA Program?
Going back to school is a complicated decision. It has financial, professional, and personal implications and requires time and money. However, today’s education programs are flexible, online, and offer asynchronous learning. The entire concept of a master’s degree has been reimagined for the 21st-century learner. Many programs have a less than two-year completion range, and accelerated programs can be even shorter. They also allow you to continue working and balance your life's priorities.
- Know the position you want requires or favors a master’s degree.
- Have advanced as far as you can in your current role and realize higher education is the way to move forward.
- Max out your earning potential with the degree you have.
- Realize that clinical work isn’t sustainable for you in the long term.
- Feel secure in your support system and confident you can take this moment to invest in yourself.
There will never be a “perfect” time to enter an MBA-HCA program. You’ll have to make some life adjustments, but you can achieve a financially and emotionally rewarding career when you earn your degree. So let’s look at all those things you can do with an MBA in Health Care Administration.
Top Careers for an MBA in Health Care Administration
You have many options with an MBA in Health Care Administration. Here are some of the roles you can pursue:
This role is critical in ensuring that a hospital runs efficiently and effectively and that patients receive great care. A hospital administrator oversees operations and staffing for a medical facility. There may be multiple administrators for large health care systems, with one for each department. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the high-end average pay is near six figures, and the demand for these roles will grow by 7 percent through 2031.
Medical Practice Manager
If you would rather work outside a hospital setting, becoming a medical practice manager is a good option. They do much of the same thing as a hospital administrator but for a practice, which could include various specialties from orthopedics to cosmetic surgery to dental.
Home Health Administrator
Home health demand is rising as a result of an aging population. Thus, home health administrator positions are too. BLS expects the growth to be 28 percent through 2031. Again, the job has many of the same responsibilities as hospital and practice administrators, but the delivery of care is different.
Clinical Laboratory Manager
Labs are unique parts of the health care landscape. Managing such an organization would include responsibilities for:
- Inventory control
- Equipment validation
- Safety, quality, and compliance measures
- Employee management
- Other operational duties
A clinical laboratory manager role would allow you to use your management skills and develop strategies to ensure policies and procedures are accurate and followed.
Public Health Administrator
By earning an MBA-HCA, you could influence and improve community welfare and the flow of health information. Most public health administrators work for government agencies, nonprofits, or educational institutions. If you want to work in outreach and design programs for the greater good, this would be an excellent career option after earning your MBA in Health Care Administration.
Pharmaceutical Brand Manager
Working for a pharmaceutical company is another path to take. They need managers to oversee product development projects, which are complex and lengthy. Supervising staff and budgets are other common duties.
Health Care Consultant
If you love being a problem solver, you may thrive as a health care consultant. You could work with various health care organizations, helping them solve challenges and improve their operations, finances, and more.
If you want to carve out a unique career, you can go the entrepreneur route. Depending on your specialty, you could develop new products or technology that help health care entities overcome hurdles or disrupt the status quo.
Learn More About an MBA-HCA
Now that you know what you can do with an MBA in Health Care Administration, you can decide what program is right for you. You can explore more about an MBA-HCA and how it differs from a standard MBA by reading, Comparing MBA Online Degrees for Health Care Professionals: MBA-HCA vs. MBA. It’s an excellent resource for ensuring you select the best program for your future, including information about the MVNU Online program. Read it here.