For those who feel passionate about helping people, working in the medical field can be an exciting career choice. Working in a medical specialty can take a variety of different formats, with each one benefitting the patients receiving the care. One such specialty is that of the medical and health services manager. In this article, we’ll explore this valuable role, including the types of responsibilities these professionals have in a medical setting and the level of demand that you can expect to encounter if you decide to pursue this career path.
What Is a Medical and Health Services Manager?
A medical and health services manager works on the administrative side of a healthcare facility, focusing on the business side of running a medical facility. They can work in a variety of different environments, including hospitals or group medical practices, as well as facilities specializing in a particular type of care, such as nursing homes. Even though these businesses provide incredibly important patient care, they must also stay on top of their business responsibilities, such as finances, human resources, and marketing. The manager will help them achieve these goals.
Professionals entering this field do not have to have a particular background in medicine or nursing to work in this role, although some will enter the field with this type of knowledge. While most medical and health services managers will earn a master’s degree, or at least a bachelor’s degree, they can build the experience needed for this role working in other administrative or clinical positions in healthcare.
Health services managers bring together skills from a variety of areas of expertise. For example, they should have excellent soft skills related to communication, independence, problem-solving, and leadership. At the same time, they will need important hard skills to help them navigate the technology that has become standard in many healthcare facilities. Skills and background in business management will also benefit them.
What Do Medical and Health Services Managers Do?
A medical and health services manager will work closely with the medical professionals in the healthcare facility. Depending upon the size and division of the facility, they might manage the entire facility or just one department.
Within their area of management, the professional will help with various administrative tasks to keep the facility running effectively so the medical professionals can do their jobs well. Maintaining strong lines of communication with the professionals in the organization is essential.
The tasks the manager performs will often include responsibilities such as:
- Finding ways to improve efficiency, including developing goals for the department and strategies for attaining them
- Ensuring the business is up to date on any applicable codes, laws, and regulations
- Making sure that regular tasks, such as managing patient billing, are fulfilled
- Creating work schedules and helping to hire new staff members
- Meeting with the facility board
- Tracking facility data, such as the rates of usage of patient beds
The responsibilities of a healthcare manager will vary from day to day, depending on the type of facility where you work. Regardless of your environment, you can be assured that you play an essential role in keeping your healthcare facility operating effectively and providing your local community with quality healthcare.
Are Healthcare Administrators in Demand?
Many people interested in entering careers related to healthcare administration or becoming managers at healthcare facilities want to know about the potential job outlook. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you can expect to see a projected job growth rate of 28 percent through 2031, which is much faster than all other occupations, including other management career paths.
The reason for this demand comes from several sources. An important factor is the aging baby boomer population. As this large demographic begins to grow older, they will experience more health problems, increasing the need for healthcare services and the demand for managers to help keep the facilities running. Managers play a particularly vital role when coordinating care for a single patient with multiple providers. For aging populations that often have various healthcare concerns, this type of service becomes even more valuable.
Additionally, the medical field has seen an increase in the incorporation of technology, such as electronic health records (EHRs). While technology can provide many benefits for healthcare settings, including improving patient care, administrators are needed to manage the systems. Managers can help to oversee EHRs and help healthcare organizations use them effectively.
Healthcare Administration Job Outlook
As already noted, this field of medical administration will see an expected job growth rate of 28 percent between 2021 and 2031. This change corresponds to approximately 136,200 more jobs to be added over this decade, thanks to the increased demand coming from various segments of the population. The typical rates of people moving out of the field or retiring also further increase the number of open positions to be expected in the coming years.
Other Job Titles for Medical and Health Services Managers
If you are interested in becoming a medical and health services manager, it is important to note that the role and its related responsibilities appear under several titles. Some of these names might indicate that your administrative responsibilities would apply to a specific type of healthcare facility or emphasize certain parts of the role. However, you can use this list to help expand your search and find the position that best suits your interests and career goals.
Cancer Center Director
These directors will work specifically in a cancer center, helping to coordinate the care of patients coming to the center with the different doctors they need to see.
A clinical director oversees the business operations for a variety of different healthcare settings. They oversee tasks such as scheduling, managing staff, and navigating legal issues related to the clinic.
Health Information Management Director (HIM Director)
A health information management director focuses on integrity and security when it comes to the valuable data collected by an organization. For example, healthcare settings will collect patient and sensitive financial data, and a health information management director will focus keeping it secure.
Health Information Manager (HIM Manager)
A health information manager works directly with patient data, helping to organize the information and oversee its collection.
Healthcare System Director
A healthcare system director oversees operations for a particular healthcare system, such as a hospital. They work on maximizing efficiency without compromising patient care.
Medical Records Director
A medical records director will focus on managing the program the healthcare facility uses to collect medical records from patients. The director will plan and direct this program and ensure it is administered effectively.
Medical Records Manager
A medical records manager deals more directly with medical records, actively managing the information collected and taking steps to keep it secure.
Mental Health Program Manager
This type of program manager works in a facility or department that focuses on mental health. They work to support the employees helping these patients and create a healing environment for all the mental health patients that come to your facility.
The Shortage of Medical Professionals
As an increasing portion of the population continues to age, the demand for healthcare professionals who can help to oversee these important healthcare facilities will only grow. Professionals who want to have a successful career and take on responsibilities that will directly benefit people will find that this career path can be an excellent choice.
Those interested in pursuing this path should note that earning an MBA in Healthcare Administration, like the program offered by The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, can be the perfect step in the right direction. The coursework at UTC is designed to challenge students, providing them with opportunities to think and grow as students so they can excel as professionals. If you want to become an administrator in the healthcare setting, the healthcare administration concentration will provide you with specialized coursework to prepare you for the future. You will learn about evidence-based practices and navigating the complexities unique to healthcare settings and take classes like healthcare policy and economics, allowing you to take a close look at managing successful healthcare facilities.
Students graduating from our program at UTC learn from leading professionals in the field, providing them with insight and information to prepare them to pursue their respective careers. The program offered at UTC also offers students flexible options, so students can pursue their studies on their own schedule. You can study entirely from home, or you can use a flexible option that allows you to take a combination of online and in-person classes, making it easier to study if you already have a job and must fit your studies around your other responsibilities.
Take the Next Step Toward Your Future Today
If you are ready to take the next step and start working in your preferred field as a medical and health services manager, get started today. Explore and learn more about the competitive, quality MBA program offered through UTC. Visualize what you can achieve with this degree. Explore the concentrations available and see yourself in the classroom, going after the future you have dreamed about.