Healthcare Management Salaries

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Everyone cares about what salary they’ll earn. Healthcare managers are no different. Thankfully, the healthcare administration industry offers healthy financial rewards for those who are dedicated and hard-working. It’s also experiencing a remarkable job growth and does not look like it will be slowing down at least for the next decade, making this a great time to research salaries—and consider earning a degree in the field.

There are many different jobs you can pursue with a healthcare management degree. There are also many different settings where you might work. All of these environments pay differently, and include a wide range of interest areas such as insurance, pharmaceuticals, the dental sector, clinics and hospitals. Let’s take a look at some of common healthcare management job titles you could pursue—and the salary you could earn for each:

  • Nursing Home Manager
  • Health Services Manager
  • Practice Administrator
  • Hospital Administrator
  • Healthcare Information Manager
  • Hospital Chief Operating Officer

Nursing Home Manager

Nursing home managers are often nurses who have moved up into management and have earned either a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or consequently, a Master’s of Science in Nursing (MSN). They are intimately involved in the day-to-day operations of nursing home, long-term health care and assisted living facilities, including meeting with new patients and their families. The nursing home manager will often do follow up meetings with families to review the progress of their loved one.

In addition to the personal interactions, nursing home managers oversee the workings of the entire facility. They will make sure that staff is adhering to state and federal regulations and that the daily schedules are obeyed. Nursing home managers can also be involved with ensuring that costs are contained and that inventories are maintained.

Median annual salary:  As of 2017, the median annual salary for this position is $68,784 and the highest end of the pay spectrum is over $120,000 annually. The higher paid percentage may have more education, have worked in the field longer and work in a large metropolitan area where the cost of living is higher, and pay is higher. Some may manage multiple long-term care facilities, while others might be in charge of small, single-location businesses.

Health Services Managers

This versatile role performs many high-level duties in different settings, but no matter where they work, the primary purpose of the job is to plan, direct, and coordinate medical and health services. Health services managers must stay abreast of law and regulation changes in the field, and act as support to the facility and staff they serve.

Median annual salary: A bachelor’s degree is the minimum to enter the field, and more and more a master’s degree in business or healthcare management is the norm. For earning this higher credential, health services managers earn a healthy median annual salary of $94,400 and the top 10 percent in the field earned more than $165,380 says the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Healthcare Practice Administrator

Practice administrators keep a medical practice humming. They coordinate the nurses and receptionists, oversee the finances, and they may even be involved in recruiting new employees to the practice. Frequently, administrators get their start as residents in hospitals, where they complete a year-long residency, which is basically a clinical externship for healthcare workers, or an apprenticeship similar to the training doctors undergo.

Median annual salary: This role often requires advanced business skills, including financial analysis, negotiation and human resources duties. For your expertise you could be paid a median annual salary of $70,328, with the potential to earn as much as $110,000, according to 2017 data available from Payscale.com.

Hospital Administrator

Hospital administration is the next rung in the career ladder after practice administration. The duties may appear to be similar but a  hospital administrator oversees a much larger operation and handles budgets and planning that are several times the size of a medical practice. Because their responsibilities expand dramatically, their salaries may also increase.

While you may be able to find a hospital administrator job with a bachelor’s degree in healthcare management, you’ll most likely need to earn a master’s degree in business administration, healthcare administration or even finance and accounting. The job requires intense financial analysis and the ability to audit people and systems, as well as a working knowledge of medicine and functions and basics of public health administration.

Median annual salary: According to Payscale.com, median annual salaries for hospital administrators were $90,133 in 2017, with  top salaries for the position reaching $170,000.

Health Information Manager

Health informatics is a relatively new and fast-growing area of healthcare management, and as nearly all medical facilities shift to medical software and electronic health records (EHR) systems, is an integral role in the healthcare management tree. These Information Systems/IT professionals have a lot of responsibility for the safety and security of patient and hospital data, from payroll and employee records to detailed patient health records. Federal laws passed in 2009 have made it mandatory for all healthcare facilities to update their processes to technology platforms, so this management role is critical and in-demand.

Median annual salary: The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) lists median annual healthcare information director salaries at $87,734, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports information systems manager salaries at $131,600 annually.

Hospital Chief Operations Officer (COO)

The next step beyond hospital administrator is hospital chief operations officer, or COO. The COO in a hospital oversees the day-to-day dealings of the entire facility. COOs evaluate how different systems in the hospital can be streamlined for greater efficiency, and negotiate new contracts with uniform vendors or institutional food providers. The only person above a COO in the hospital hierarchy is the CEO, so this role carries a lot of responsibility. Top-level executives must also answer to the board of directors, as many hospitals are owned and held by large, public corporations. Because of the responsibility, COOs must have at least a master’s degree and are compensated well for their services.

Median annual salary: Payscale.com shows that the median annual salary for COOs is $136,967 in 2017. The top end of the pay range for this position is around $230,000 plus a bonus package, stock options and other benefits that go beyond the base salary.

If you think you have what it takes to succeed in healthcare management, start researching degree programs that can help you get there. We can help you find accredited bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in healthcare management and business. All you need to do is take the first step.

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