New York City residents considering going back to school to obtain healthcare management degrees have chosen a potentially lucrative career path. One of the real advantages of entering this field is the job versatility that healthcare management degrees offer. Few other careers have as many options available to degreed professionals.

From entry level to advanced degrees, the choices are varied.

In many fields, after obtaining a degree, the career possibilities are closely aligned with that specific field. However, those with healthcare management degrees in NYC find there is a plethora of opportunities for career growth and development. Below are a few of the areas in which you may decide to seek employment:

  • Finance
  • Human resources
  • Information systems
  • Patient care services
  • National registries and databanks

Getting in on the ground floor of healthcare management is possible with just a typical two-year associate’s degree. Your career trajectory is determined by the additional degrees that you are willing to pursue, combined with the real world work experience you will garner with the degree you have already obtained.

What’s in a name?

Many healthcare positions have fixed titles and very rigid job duties, like registered nurses, physicians, phlebotomists and laboratory technicians. When you hear these titles mentioned, it’s likely that you have a very good idea of the work they perform on a daily basis.

But the opposite is true for those with healthcare management degrees, as the job titles are very fluid and fluctuate greatly throughout the entire industry. These titles differ from facility to facility, yet some commonalities remain. Check out some of the possible titles and job descriptions you might find in this field:

  • Assistant administrators – Typically an entry level position sought by those with associate healthcare management degrees, assistant administrators are usually subordinate to administrators in hospitals and other healthcare facilities. On a typical workday, they may be responsible for the day-to-day operations of a unit or section. In smaller settings like nursing homes, they might manage the activities of the entire facility. In conjunction with their managerial tasks, these employees also engage in administrative duties like maintaining equipment, supplies and the logs that accompany them.
  • Nursing home administrators – In most healthcare settings, these positions are staffed by someone holding a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Administrators manage the facility’s finances, premises, staff, admissions and residents. New York, like all other states, requires that nursing home administrators are licensed. Often administrators are registered nurses who went on to obtain the additional training in order to get licensed by the state.
  • Health information managers – Special licensing requirements would not generally be required for those in these type of positions. These professionals secure and maintain all of the patient data and records in a given facility. Ongoing education may be necessary in order for them to remain up to date with rapidly changing data management trends, HIPPA and other laws and information technologies as they evolve. They have to be able to access and maintain massive databases of complex patient data and ensure that these systems are secure, yet accessible to those who need to access the information, like insurance companies, physicians and others in the healthcare industry.
  • Clinical managers – Those in these positions usually oversee specific departments of a larger facility, i.e., surgery units, nursing departments, physical or occupational therapies. They are responsible for developing and overseeing budgets, producing quarterly and annual reports, setting and implementing policies and procedures as well as supervising the daily operations of their departments. This type of position is typically held by someone with at least a bachelor’s degree and/or an occupational license (RN, PT, etc.).
  • Physician’s office managers – This is another position that usually won’t require more than an associate’s degree, although some in these positions may indeed have advanced degrees or licenses. Their primary function is to oversee the day to day operations of the physician’s office, assuring that everything runs smoothly for the doctors that employ them and their patients. They are responsible for hiring and managing staff, scheduling employees, ordering and inventorying supplies and equipment, setting and implementing policies and making sure that all occupational and other licenses are up to date.
  • Cancer and tumor registrars – These are data information specialists who deal solely with information and data related to cancer patients and others with tumors. Administrators of registries are responsible for recording the histories, diagnoses, treatments, prognoses and current health statuses of all cancer patients in America. This data is then stored and accessible to public health professionals, healthcare providers and researchers. Administrators may also be tasked with tracking disease trends to help improve the cancer prevention programs already in place.

Future job outlook remains high

As reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, those pursuing healthcare management degrees have a robust job market right now and in the foreseeable future. Projected growth for all jobs in the healthcare sector is 19% throughout 2024, which is a great deal higher than all other occupations. Approximately 2.3 million positions are expected to be opening up in the coming months and years. All of the federal health insurance reforms and regulations require newly created positions to deal with the massive influx of patient data. Other major factors causing this boom market include the advanced medical technologies and disease research that allows patients to live longer lives and the aging of the post-WWII Baby Boomers, the large generation that is just now entering their senior years.

If you are a NYC resident who is contemplating going back to school for a degree in healthcare management, you can be assured that the jobs should be plentiful well into the next decade. There are many accredited programs available all over the city. Speak to an admissions advisor to learn what is required of those who wish to enroll.

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