Do Hospital Administrators Need Licenses?

As a hospital administrator, it's your job to manage and oversee the operations of the hospital, which places the responsibility of the safety, health and care of patients ultimately in your hands. While there is a common career path to becoming a hospital administrator, there is no licensing requirement. Schools offering Finance and Health Care degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Common Requirements for Hospital Administrator Jobs

There is no formal licensing requirement for hospital administrators; however, there are established educational paths. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that medical and health services managers, including hospital administrators, may be able to find entry-level jobs in small organizations with a bachelor's degree, though a master's degree in health services administration or a related field is a common requirement for many positions (www.bls.gov). Hospital administrators may also earn voluntary professional certification.

Important Facts About Hospital Administrators

Median Salary (2015) $96,112*
Key Skills Observation, spoken and written communication, problem solving, critical thinking, time management, situational awareness, customer focused
Job Growth Expectations 23% for all medical and health services managers (2012-22)**
Similar Occupations Administrative managers, chief operating officers (COO), director of operations, executive directors, medical office managers, operations directors

Source: *PayScale.com, **BLS

Degree Options

The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education accredits master's degree programs in healthcare management. While some programs offer parts of the degree online, you can generally expect to complete most of your degree on campus. Accredited degree program options vary widely; you might earn a Master of Science, Master of Public Health, Master of Healthcare Administration or Master of Business Administration degree.

Your particular curriculum may emphasize healthcare administration, hospital-centered administration or management, healthcare policy, healthcare planning or healthcare evaluation. The California Employment Development Department reported that some master's degree programs might require an internship component to be completed in a healthcare setting (www.calmis.ca.gov).

Certification Information

While hospital administrators aren't required to hold a license, it is possible for you to earn board certification through the American College of Healthcare Executives (www.ache.org). The requirements for becoming an ACHE Fellow, as those who earn the credential are called, include at least a post-baccalaureate degree, five years of healthcare management experience, current employment in the field, a minimum amount of specialized continuing education and a passing score on the Board of Governors Examination in Healthcare Management.

The test covers human resources, finance, organizational structure and governance, healthcare technology and information management, quality and performance standards, management, business and government regulations. The test also covers healthcare models, professionalism and ethics. Recertification is required every three years.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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