Online Schools with Medical Office Management Degrees
Read about studying medical office management online, usually through a bachelor's-level program in healthcare management. Find out how online programs work, and get info on choosing a school for your education. Explore the courses you'd take and the skills you'd develop in a healthcare management program.
A bachelor's degree is requisite for a career in healthcare management, and can be earned online. This article will highlight the courses required and learning outcomes of these programs, as well as where to find them.
Is There a Degree in Medical Office Management?
If you are interested in the administrative side of healthcare services, you might consider the position of medical office manager. You can qualify for such a position by finding a program that leads to a Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Management or a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Healthcare Management. A bachelor's degree is the minimum education requirement for management positions in healthcare, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Several colleges offer appropriate degree programs that are presented entirely online. These programs may include a capstone course that requires students to complete a final project or externship in healthcare management. These externships cannot be completed online.
How Should I Choose a School?
Other than a simple search for online medical office management programs, you can access the Association of University Programs in Health Administration (www.aupha.org). The AUPHA offers a list of schools that present accredited undergraduate programs in various areas of healthcare administration.
The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education provides a database of schools offering accredited, approved degree programs (www.cahme.org). By accessing the schools' websites, you can find out which schools offer an online program in medical office management.
Which Schools Offer Healthcare Management Bachelor's Degree Programs?
Bachelor's degree programs in healthcare management can be found at multiple schools. A few of these are:
- Western Governors University is home to a Bachelor of Science in Business - Healthcare Management degree program offered online
- Southern New Hampshire University offers an online Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Management degree program
- Northeastern University has an online degree program leading to a Bachelor of Science in Health Management
What Skills Will I Learn?
These programs will prepare you to perform medical office managerial duties, from general administration to medical office-specific tasks. You'll learn to coordinate the schedules of physicians in the office and set up and record patient appointments. Accounting principles are often covered, so you'll be able to conduct a financial review of your employer's practice. You'll also be qualified to handle the office's day-to-day financial operations. One of the more important duties you'll be trained for is the submission of insurance claims and processing communication between your office, patients and insurance companies. These skills will help you organize and oversee healthcare operations in your office.
What Courses Will I Take?
Since this is a degree-granting program, you'll probably be required to complete a certain number of general education courses, such as English, written and oral communication, mathematics, psychology and social sciences. A course in medical terminology is typically mandatory, as are familiarization courses in anatomy and physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology.
Courses in medical office management will provide you with instruction in the preparation and recording of medical records, patient education, medical law and ethics, insurance programs, Medicare and Medicaid, workers' compensation and managed care. You'll receive considerable instruction in coding, including ICD-9-CM (International Classification of Diseases-9th Revision-Clinical Modification) and CPT (Current Procedural Terminology) coding. Since a good deal of your work will likely require the use of a computer, you might need to take courses in various software and database applications, as well as keyboarding.
For a career in healthcare management, a bachelor's degree is a must. There are a number of online programs that can lead to a degree in healthcare management, teaching important management skills along the way through courses in medical law, coding, health insurance programs, and more.