Bachelor's and Master's in Health Management and Administration in the District of Columbia

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Healthcare Administrators and Managers in the Washington D.C. area earn average annual salaries of $157,590, well above the national average in this field. Along with great compensation packages, this field is also currently expanding and adding jobs every year. The D.C. Department of Employment Services estimates that this field will experience a growth rate of 9.7 percent between 2018-2028.

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Washington’s healthcare industry has remained fairly stable over the past ten years. This is partially due to the fact that a larger than average percentage of Washington D.C. citizens have health insurance – about 97 percent. The majority of these citizens are covered by insurance plans provided by their employers. There are over eight hospitals total in the D.C. area, and some of the nation’s most skilled medical professionals are employed there.

Earning a Healthcare Administration Degree in Washington, D.C.

Individuals looking to enter the healthcare administration field in the D.C. area will find no shortage of options as far as degree programs. There are numerous online programs (both undergraduate and graduate) available to students who require a more flexible option, and there are also many on-campus programs offered in the Washington D.C. metro area.

Undergraduate Degree Programs in Health Administration

There are a variety of bachelor degree programs available to students in the D.C. area (through online and on-campus programs):

  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA)
  • Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Administration or Management (BS)
  • Bachelor of Health Administration (BHA)

Undergraduate degrees commonly are made up of 120 credit hours, and students usually take four years to complete them. About half of these credits are part of a general education core that students are required to take – this is usually done during the first two years of the degree program. The major-specific courses are taken by upperclassmen during their final two years. Topics covered in these courses may include the following:

  • Medical terminology
  • Human resources
  • Business communications
  • Introduction to healthcare administration
  • Management
  • Financial management

Graduate Degree Programs in Health Administration

A graduate degree is the most commonly accepted industry standard, particularly for those seeking director and executive level jobs in larger healthcare institutions and integrated systems. There are a number of graduate degree types available to students in the D.C. area:

  • Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Healthcare Administration
  • Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA)
  • Master of Science (MS) in Health Policy and Management
  • Master of Science in Healthcare Administration (MSHA)
  • MHA/MBA dual degree programs

Graduate Program Admission Criteria

Specific admission requirements tend to vary between programs, but the most commonly used criteria for admission into a graduate program includes:

  • Official undergraduate transcript
  • Relevant experience in the healthcare field
  • Letters of recommendation from supervisors or professors
  • Essay or statement of purpose
  • A minimum GPA requirement (specific GPA varies from program to program)

Though many graduate schools do not necessarily require students to have undergraduate degrees in healthcare administration, those who have a degree in a different field may be required to take additional prerequisite courses before beginning their graduate program.

Program Content

Students typically complete these programs in approximately 18-24 months depending on how many credits they take on per semester. Once students complete the 36-60 credit hours of normal coursework, they may be required to complete a capstone project or culminating thesis paper before graduating.

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Courses in healthcare graduate degrees will cover topics such as:

  • Finance and accounting in healthcare
  • Policy, ethics, and law
  • Decision making strategies
  • Quality of performance
  • Medical informatics
  • Community and public health
  • Strategic leadership


Jobs in Healthcare Administration

The following job openings were pulled from job boards that were posted in the D.C. area. These descriptions were gathered to provide an example of what healthcare recruiters typically look for in an applicant as far as education level and professional experience. (These examples are shown for illustrative purposes only. They should not be interpreted as job offers or a guarantee of employment.):

Comprehensive Health Services

  • Executive Administrative Assistant – Handles billing, correspondence between supervisor and staff, organizes health claims information, supervises and delegates other daily operations tasks; bachelor’s degree required, relevant training or experience is preferred.

MedStar Washington Hospital Center

  • Executive Administrator – Leads all daily operations and coordinates the administrative department at Medstar; bachelor’s degree in healthcare administration or a directly related field is required, plus at least three years of relevant hospital experience.

Washington Wound Care Center

Avalere Health

  • Manager, Health Systems Advisory Services – Studies and provides insight on business tools and analytics that can be put to use in healthcare companies, consults and supports providers; bachelor’s degree in the healthcare field is required, as well as at least four years of professional experience.


Largest Employers and Professional Resources for Healthcare Administrators and Managers in D.C.

Healthcare professionals in Washington D.C. have an abundance of resources at their fingertips. These institutions and associations have been put in place to provide professional support, industry information, and employment opportunities.

Top Employers of Healthcare Administrators and Managers

  • Inova Fairfax Hospital
  • MedStar Washington Hospital Center
  • Inova Fair Oaks Hospital
  • Mary Washington Hospital
  • MedStar Georgetown University Hospital
  • Inova Mount Vernon Hospital
  • Holy Cross Hospital
  • Virginia Hospital Center
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Professional Resources

2020 US Bureau of Labor Statistics salary figures for Medical and Health Services Managers.

Job growth projections sourced from the District of Columbia Department of Employment Services and published in the U.S. Department of Labor-funded Long Term Occupational Projections (2018-2028) database –

Salary figures and job market projections represent state data, not school-specific information.

Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed August 2021.

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