Health Care Manager Certifications and Certificate Programs

Learn about certificate programs in health care management, including program prerequisites and courses. Find out about certification options for health care managers.

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Essential Information

Health care managers work in hospitals, nursing care facilities and other health care offices. Health care management certificates are widely available and are intended for professionals in a variety of health care roles, including aspiring managers and middle managers interested in career advancement. These programs provide an understanding of legal and ethical issues, health care finance and problem solving. Students learn through the study of health care theory, case studies and team-based exercises. Health care management certificate programs are commonly available through distance learning, as well as campus-based schools. Health care manager certification, though often not required, is available for managers in many different roles.

Educational Prerequisites

Certificate programs in health care management are available at 4-year colleges, 2-year community colleges and online universities. Applicants are required to possess a high school diploma or the equivalent. Some programs require the submission of ACT or SAT scores.

Program Coursework

Courses in health care management certificate programs provide well-rounded training in issues faced by managers in the health care field, ranging from finance to personnel. Common courses include the following:

  • Ethical issues in health care management
  • Health care finance
  • Budget management in health care
  • Diversity issues in health care management
  • Health care management leadership skills
  • Problem-solving in health care management

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) (www.bls.gov), there were approximately 303,000 employed health care and other medical services managers in 2010. This number was expected to grow 22% between 2010 and 2020, largely due to expansion in the health care industry. Managers will be needed in many roles as the industry works to control costs, improve accountability, modernize record-keeping and strengthen quality. The median annual salary for health care and medical services managers was $88,580 in May 2012, according to BLS figures.

Continuing Education and Certification Information

Certification requirements in health care management depend upon the field and are not always required. For example, health information managers, who are not required to obtain certification, may elect to take a certification exam offered through the American Health Information Management Association in order to become a Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA).

Conversely, health care managers working in nursing care facilities are required in all states to complete licensure requirements, which is possible by earning a bachelor's degree, passing a licensing test and completing an approved training program. Health care managers can often find entry-level work with a bachelor's degree in the field. Those seeking advancement often pursue a master's degree in health care management.

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