The number of Jobs in the field of medical and health services administration is set to experience a 20 percent growth rate during the ten-year projection period from 2012 to 2022 according to the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations.
Even as all industries in Arizona saw a major decline in jobs in the midst of the recession back in 2008 and the years that followed, the state’s thriving healthcare sector continued to add jobs. Arizona’s healthcare sector continues to be one of the most significant contributors to job creation and economic growth in the state, accounting for almost 20 percent of the state’s total employers as of 2015.
With strong job growth projections spurred on by an expanding healthcare sector rising to meet the demands of an aging population, along with a greater number of residents with access to healthcare than ever before, health services managers and administrators are enjoying an environment that supports career advancement. As of 2014, Arizona’s health services managers and administrators earned an average salary of $85,900, with those in executive positions within large integrated health systems earning much more.
Health Administration Degree Programs in Arizona
Both new students considering undergraduate programs and aspiring graduate students vying for senior positions have a number of online and residential options available to them when it comes to choosing a degree program in health administration.
Undergraduate Degrees in Health Administration
Those pursuing an undergraduate degree in healthcare administration in Arizona have a choice between three different kinds of degrees:
- Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) with a concentration in Health Administration
- Bachelor of Science in Health Administration (BSHA)
- Bachelor of Health Administration (BHA)
These degrees typically consist of 120 credit hours, and students commonly complete them in four years. The first two years usually consist of general core courses, with major-specific courses coming later on in the final two years of the degree program.
Students in these programs will be assigned coursework that covers various topics in healthcare administration, including the following:
- Medical terminology
- Ethics in healthcare
- Business communication skills
- Healthcare in the U.S.
- Human resources in healthcare
- Healthcare accounting and finance
Graduate Degrees in Health Administration
A graduate degree has become the industry standard for director and executive positions in healthcare administration. Program titles differ based on the type of school in which they are houses (schools of business, schools of public health, schools of public administration, etc):
- Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Health Administration
- Master of Science in Health Administration (MSHA)
- Master of Health Administration (MHA)
- Master of Science (MS) in Health Policy and Management
Graduate Program Admission Criteria
Admission criteria can differ greatly from school to school, but many programs commonly require the following:
- Official undergraduate transcripts
- Past work experience in the healthcare field
- A bachelor’s degree (in any discipline)
- A minimum GPA requirement
- Current involvement in the healthcare field
- Letters of recommendation
Graduate Program Content
These graduate programs usually consist of 36-60 credits of coursework, which takes students about two years to complete. After the majority of coursework is complete, students usually are required to do a capstone project or thesis.
Topics covered in these graduate-level courses include:
- Healthcare law and policy
- State and federal healthcare regulations
- Quality control and improvement in healthcare
- Budgeting and financial management
- Medical informatics
- Strategies for healthcare management
- Human resources management
- Public health
Arizona’s graduate students have their pick of graduate degrees in healthcare administration, whether they choose to take courses through online programs or traditional residential programs. There are currently accredited graduate programs in healthcare administration located in Tucson, Phoenix, Prescott, and Flagstaff.
Healthcare Administration Jobs in Arizona
The following job descriptions are shown as illustrative examples of positions that may be available to those with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in health administration (These are examples taken from a survey of job vacancy announcements throughout Arizona in November 2015. These examples do not suggest the assurance of employment or the availability of jobs):
Mayo Clinic – Phoenix
- Credentials Specialist – Provides technical and administrative support to medical staff services, ensures staff’s compliance with credentialing, licensing, and accrediting agencies; a masters degree in business or healthcare administration is preferred
Banner Good Samaritan – Phoenix
- Contracts Specialist – Negotiates contracts with hospitals and providers, forms relationships with providers and medical groups; a masters degree in business or healthcare administration is preferred
- Health Unit Coordinator – Performs various administrative duties to support the progressive care unit, acts as a liaison between patients and visitors and the healthcare team; a masters degree in business or healthcare administration is preferred
Maricopa Integrated Health System – Mesa
- Executive Administration Assistant – Provides advanced administrative support, assists with office functions, clerical work, while ensuring productivity and efficiency; a degree in healthcare administration is preferred, as well as a minimum of five years of administrative work.
- Health Information Management Tech – Handles protected healthcare information confidentially and according to state and federal regulations, filing and organizing medical paperwork; at least a two-year degree in health management is preferred, as well as at least one year of experience in health management.
Top Employers and Professional Resources for Health Administrators in Arizona
Arizona is home to many large healthcare institutions and associations that are positioned to provide support to professional administrators and those exploring healthcare administration jobs in the state.
Arizona’s Largest Employers of Healthcare Administrators and Managers
- Mayo Clinic in Phoenix
- Banner Good Samaritan in Phoenix
- Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix
- Scottsdale Healthcare Shea Medical Center in Scottsdale
- Maricopa Medical Center in Phoenix
- Boswell Memorial Hospital in Sun City
- Banner Medical Center in Mesa
- Arizona Medical Group Management Association
- American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management
- Health Management Associates
- Arizona Health Care Association
- Health Care Administrators Association
- Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association
- Arizona Healthcare Financial Management Association