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Manage the business side of healthcare organizations

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Why earn a master’s in health administration online?

Gain essential leadership skills

Develop emotional intelligence, conflict management, team building, and systems and strategic thinking skills.

Expand your career opportunities

Learn the latest in health administration to raise your value, increase your earning potential, and lead operations at your healthcare organization.

Connect with healthcare leaders

Find like-minded professionals across the globe who want to make patient care possible, and better.

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What is an online master of health administration?

Health administration, also known as healthcare administration or healthcare management, involves the planning, coordination, and oversight of healthcare services and organizations to ensure efficient and effective delivery of care. Professionals in this field work in various healthcare settings, such as hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and health insurance companies. They manage budgets, personnel, facilities, and healthcare policies while striving to improve patient outcomes and organizational performance.

An online master's in health administration (MHA) is a graduate-level program designed to equip individuals with the knowledge and skills required for leadership roles in healthcare management. It typically covers topics such as healthcare finance, healthcare policy and regulation, healthcare ethics, quality improvement, and healthcare information systems. An MHA program aims to prepare graduates for positions like hospital administrator, healthcare manager, health services manager, and healthcare consultant, allowing them to play a crucial role in enhancing the quality and efficiency of healthcare delivery.

Admissions requirements for an online master’s degree in health administration

All online master’s in health administration programs require that applicants hold a bachelor’s degree. Many schools offer online bachelor's degrees to complete this requirement, including online bachelor's degrees in health or social services. While specific admissions requirements may vary depending on the program, most require:

  • Minimum undergraduate GPA

  • Current employment in health or human services

  • Previous work experience in health or human services

  • Résumé/CV

  • College transcripts

  • Personal statement 

  • Letter(s) of recommendation

  • TOEFL scores (if applicable)

Want to explore other fields for your master’s education? Browse master’s programs

How to apply

Once you’ve decided to earn your MHA degree online, request more information to get in touch with an admissions advisor. Your advisor will discuss the program, admissions requirements, and your unique goals before you begin your application.

Online MHA curriculum

Many schools offer the option to learn healthcare online with a variety of online masters in healthcare programs. If your goal is to learn healthcare administration in a flexible format, an online MHA degree may be the right fit for you. This kind of program prepares you for leadership roles in the healthcare industry. You’ll complete core courses with optional electives. Core and elective courses often cover topics such as healthcare policy and ethics, leadership and organizational behavior, healthcare finance, quality improvement, information systems, health law and compliance, human resources management, and operations management. 

Plus, many online MHA programs offer specializations to tailor your degree to your specific career goals. Examples include:

  • Health policy: Explores healthcare policy development, advocacy, and the impact of policy on healthcare organizations and the broader industry.

  • Health informatics: Concentrates on healthcare data management, health IT systems, and leveraging technology for healthcare improvements.

  • Healthcare marketing: Focuses on marketing strategies, patient engagement, and healthcare branding in the context of healthcare organizations.

  • Project management: Equips you with project management skills relevant to healthcare, including managing healthcare projects and initiatives.

Ready to start or advance your career in healthcare? Browse executive education in healthcare

Want to become a great business leader? Learn business administration.

Careers in healthcare administration

Healthcare organizations need leaders who can run business operations behind the scenes. In fact, employment for medical and health services managers is projected to grow 28% from 2022 to 2032.Footnote 1 Earning an MHA online can help you fill that role in a variety of positions. Job titles include:

  • Healthcare Administrator

  • Nursing Home Administrator

  • Health Services Manager

  • Biopharmaceutical Manager

  • Quality and Safety Manager

  • Risk and Compliance Manager

  • Hospital Administrator

  • Hospital CEO

  • Healthcare Consultant

  • Clinical Director or Supervisor

  • Clinical Trials Manager

  • Operations Manager

Frequently asked questions

With a healthcare administration degree, you can pursue various careers in healthcare management and administration. These roles involve overseeing the day-to-day operations of healthcare facilities, managing budgets, ensuring regulatory compliance, and improving healthcare delivery. Potential career paths include hospital administrator, healthcare manager, health information manager, healthcare consultant, and health services manager.

This depends on your personal and professional goals. A master’s in healthcare administration (MHA) provides specialized knowledge and skills crucial for leadership roles in the healthcare industry. It can lead to higher earning potential and increased job opportunities in a growing field. Healthcare administrators are in demand to manage complex healthcare systems, navigate evolving regulations, and improve the quality of care. Additionally, the potential for positive impact on patient outcomes makes it a rewarding career choice. 

The duration to complete an online master's in healthcare administration (MHA) typically ranges from 1.5 to 3 years. Factors include the program's structure (full-time or part-time), the number of credits required, and the student's pace. Many online MHA programs offer flexibility, allowing students to balance their studies with work and other commitments. Accelerated options may enable completion in as few as 12–18 months, while part-time students may take longer. Ultimately, the specific program and your personal schedule will determine how long it takes to earn an online MHA degree.

Healthcare management and healthcare administration master's degrees have overlapping elements but differ in focus. A healthcare management degree emphasizes leadership, strategy, and decision-making skills to run healthcare organizations effectively. On the other hand, a healthcare administration degree focuses on the operational aspects of healthcare facilities, including managing staff, budgets, and regulatory compliance. While there is some overlap, healthcare administration leans more toward day-to-day operations, whereas healthcare management emphasizes strategic leadership and decision-making at a higher level. The choice depends on career goals and interests.

The primary difference between a healthcare administration certificate and a degree is the depth and scope of education. A healthcare administration certificate is a shorter, more focused program that provides specific skills and knowledge in healthcare management or a related area. It takes less time to complete and is suitable for individuals seeking to enhance existing skills or pivot into healthcare management quickly. In contrast, a healthcare administration degree offers a comprehensive education, covering a broader range of topics and often leading to more advanced career opportunities in healthcare management.

The key difference between business administration and healthcare administration lies in their focus. Business administration encompasses many industries and teaches general management principles applicable across sectors. Healthcare administration is a specialized field focused on managing healthcare organizations and navigating the unique challenges of the healthcare industry, including regulations, patient care, and healthcare finance. While both fields involve management skills, healthcare administration requires a deep understanding of healthcare-specific issues, making it tailored to careers within hospitals, clinics, insurance companies, and other healthcare-related settings, whereas business administration is more versatile across industries.

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