Medical Administrator Career Guide

Overview

Administration is an integral part of ensuring that every business and organization runs smoothly and efficiently. In the healthcare field, these professionals are known as medical administrators. They are responsible for maintaining accurate and up-to-date records and ensuring that others within the organization abide by all national and regional laws and standards, among many other tasks. If you enjoy working in a fast-paced environment and can handle a lot of responsibility, a career as a medical administrator might be the most financially and personally rewarding choice you can make for yourself.

Job Duties

Medical administrators, also known as healthcare executives, medical service managers, and healthcare managers, oversee an entire medical facility or a specific department or area within one, if it’s large enough to warrant multiple department heads. Some of their many duties include maintaining and improving work efficiency and quality, ensuring the facility and employees are in compliance with all national, state, and local laws and regulations, managing facility finances and expenses, creating work schedules for employees, and representing the organization at board meetings.

Furthermore, they coordinate medical staff and head of departments to facilitate medical practices. They assist personnel like physicians, clinical laboratory technicians and nurses. Some other types of administrators manage admissions, staff, and finances, while still others oversee a particular department and the clinical practices of all the doctors and nurses who work in that area of the hospital or facility.

Because medical administrators have to fulfill so many important roles at the same time, anyone considering this field needs to honestly assess his or her ability to handle multiple tasks at once without sacrificing quality. They must also possess excellent time-management skills, interpersonal and communication skills, and a strong work ethic in order to succeed.

Job Outlook

Medical administrators work in every type of medical center, from community health centers and nursing homes to hospitals, clinics, private health group practices, and more. Although there were already over 300,000 administrators employed across the country in 2011, as the healthcare industry as a whole grows, more and more administrators are needed to keep things running smoothly. Accordingly, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 22 percent growth in the field through the year 2020.  The job opportunities of these personnel are favorable, projected to grow 22% till the year 2020.

Salary

As of May 2011, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the national average income for a medical administrator was $96,030 per year.

Education Requirements

Generally, an administrator position requires a college degree in healthcare management. Courses may include medical transcription, health informatics, human resources, and medical billing and records. To enhance employment chances, experience in a particular setting would be useful. For this purpose, students might obtain an internship through the Medical Group Management Association. One might have even greater employment chances after being certified by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education agency.

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