Qualifications & Objectives for a Health Manager

by Terri Williams

Students who consider pursuing a career as a health and medical services manager will discover that this is a growing field with a lucrative salary. The job outlook for this profession is projected to grow by 22 percent through 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which is a faster growth rate than the 14 percent increase predicted for other U.S. occupations. In addition, the mean annual wage for health and medical services managers is $98,468, according to the BLS. However, there are certain qualifications and objectives for this position.

Educational Requirements

Health and medical services managers need a bachelor’s degree in health administration. Coursework includes such classes as hospital organization and management, accounting, budgeting and human-resources administration. Depending on the program, students can focus on hospitals, nursing homes, group medical practices or mental-health facilities. After graduation, some students also pursue a master’s degree in public health, public administration, health services, long-term care administration or business administration. The BLS also notes that sometimes employers hire managers who have experience but not the required educational background. A physical therapist with an administrative history may be hired to manage a physical therapy facility.

Skill Set

There are certain qualities needed to succeed in a career as a health and medical services manager. These professionals need analytical, problem-solving and detail-oriented skills to comprehend new laws and regulations, discover creative solutions to administrative problems, and they need technical skills to maintain large amounts of accurate health information. In addition, health and medical services managers also need excellent communication and interpersonal skills to manage and motivate staff and to work well with patients and collaborate with others who interact with the practice.

Personnel Management

The primary objective of health and medical office managers is the smooth functioning of the medical facility. This is achieved by successfully managing the human resources of the organization, which includes directing and overseeing the duties of office personnel, handling schedules and administering discipline. In addition to supervising the staff, they must manage relationships with physicians or department heads, the patients’ family members, and such contractors as insurance representatives and drug and medical device sales people.

Operations Management

The smooth functioning of the medical facility also requires successfully managing financial and other physical resources. The manager oversees budgets and billing, in addition to ensuring the efficiency and accuracy of admissions, testing and medical procedures. Also, they ensure that staff members are trained on the latest electronic health-records technology and coding software. The health and medical services manager also sets and implements various other policies and procedures to ensure the delivery of quality health services and cost containment.

About the Author

Terri Williams began writing professionally in 1997, working with a large nonprofit organization. Her articles have appeared in various online publications including Yahoo, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report University Directory, and the Center for Digital Ethics and Policy at Loyola University Chicago. Williams has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Photo Credits

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