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Degree Overview: Bachelor’s Degree Programs in Health Services Management

Majors Overview March 21, 2015

Students seeking admission to bachelor’s degree programs in health services management can choose between a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.). Get information about bachelor’s degree programs in health services management and their coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, continuing education choices, and certification choices.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Programs in Health Services Management

Traditional business strategies are applied through health services management to the dynamic changes in the healthcare industry. Schools offer some bachelor’s degree programs, including concentrations covering the management of private health service, long-term care, and public health service facilities, including hospitals, individual practitioners’ offices, and rehabilitation centers. A greater focus on health services is available in B.S. programs, although some require internships.

Coursework

This four-year degree program combines business courses and courses related specifically to healthcare to augment its general education curriculum. Core coursework may include topic areas such as the following:

•Statistics
•Medical terminology
•Medical coding and classification
•Human diseases
•Managerial accounting
•Information systems for healthcare
•Finance principles
•Healthcare policies
•Health services survey
•Clinical concepts

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a faster-than-average job growth rate of 23% has been predicted for medical and health services managers (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). The prediction that there will be a greater demand for managers to assist organizations with adapting to the changes due to the continued expansion of the healthcare industry and the addition of new regulations and rules by the government drives this growth.

The need to recruit and increase retention of workers, in addition to an increasing focus on preventive healthcare also drives this growth. In 2012, about 315,500 individuals were employed as medical and health services managers in the country (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

In order to keep pace with the changes and growth in the healthcare field, continuing education will be needed by healthcare managers. They will have to stay abreast of new information ethic rules and patient record computerization programs, in addition to ways of controlling costs without any loss of quality of care. Licensure is mandatory for managers of specific kinds of health services facilities in some states; they will need commensurate continuing education to keep licensure valid.

Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) Programs in Health Services Management

Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) in Health Services Management programs require more broad business courses than a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) program. Apart from that, both programs have a similar purpose: teaching students how to manage health services organizations and businesses.

Schools offer internships, although these are not mandatory requirements. After completing the B.B.A., many students continue their education to earn an M.B.A. in a related leadership or applied health field.

Coursework

The B.B.A. program has coursework similar to the M.S. program. Core coursework may include topic areas such as:

•Microeconomics
•Macroeconomics
•Financial flow
•Marketing research
•Competitive strategies
•Business writing
•Business law
•Marketing principles
•Managing human resources
•Management ethics

Career Choices

Those who complete a bachelor’s degree program may seek entry-level careers in:

•Insurance companies
•Home healthcare
•Physicians’ offices
•Residential care facilities
•Hospitals

Certification Choices

While applicants to most health services management jobs don’t need certification, a manager can choose from several professional certifications that can help showcase his or her skills and knowledge as a specialist in critical areas. The American Health Information Management offers a commonly sought certification in the form of the Registered Health Information Administrator.

The Project Management Institute offers several credentials that benefit managers in occupations that require the professional to manage numerous projects. The initial credential offered is the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM), whereby the holder gets confirmation of his or her knowledge of the terminology and principles related to project management.

In March 2010, the development of a certification in clinical informatics was announced, with the first certification examination expected to take place in 2012.

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