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With an increase in the number of people who are insured as a result of recent health care reform, North Carolina health care organizations can expect an increase in primary care visits. With a nationwide shortage of primary care physicians, strong administrative leadership is vital for clinics to successfully care for patients.
Some of the best leaders in healthcare are people who have experience providing direct patient care. Positions with the most responsibility and opportunity for impact often require additional education and training, which can be achieved with a master’s degree in health administration. If you are ready to take your healthcare career to the next level, check out the Master in Healthcare Administration (MHA) programs North Carolina has to offer, listed below.
Careers in healthcare administration provide opportunities for individuals to impact healthcare quality and patient satisfaction in a systematic way. Rather than working one-to-one with patients, healthcare leaders work to improve standards for the delivery of care across an organization, and set departmental policies to ensure that patients have access to effective and timely care. Administrators frequently manage budgets and finances and have influence over how resources are used, and hire and supervise staff.
Master’s in Healthcare Administration Programs in North Carolina
Healthcare administration programs can be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME). To be accepted into a North Carolina master’s degree program in healthcare administration, you must have a bachelor’s degree and take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). The application process typically requires a written statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, and a resume or CV.
Course work is interdisciplinary, focusing on leadership and management of people, resources, and services. Classes include health care management, finance and economics, policy, marketing, and public health promotion. Most MHA, and even public health (MPH) programs in North Carolina typically require a 12-week internship to gain practical experience, and completion of a master’s project or thesis. A master’s degree is typically completed in two years attending school full-time.
The financial needs of most graduate students are met through a combination of loans, awards, loans, and jobs. Prospective students are urged to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) early in the application process. Many students rely on public and private loans to pay for a substantial portion of their degrees. Scholarship awards typically require a separate application, and can be granted by the university or a variety of foundations and professional organizations. Financial assistance is sometimes available through paid teaching and research graduate assistantships. Prior work experience in health care can be a great asset in being hired for a graduate assistantship.
Salaries & Job Outlook For Healthcare Administrators in North Carolina
The average starting salary for healthcare administrators in North Carolina is $60,000, with an average salary of $88,000. With several years of experience, healthcare managers and leaders who have earned a master’s degree can expect to earn even more annually. These positions typically offer generous benefits including health insurance, retirement contributions, and paid time off.
Healthcare administrators work in all types of settings including hospitals, private practices and clinics, long term care facilities, managed care organizations, pharmaceutical companies, local/state/federal health agencies, health insurance companies, and more. Job prospects are excellent in this field, where growth is projected at 10 to 15 percent in the state over the next 10 years.
Healthcare administration is a natural progression for people with healthcare experience who want to take the next step in their careers. A master’s degree provides the education and key experiences needed to find rewarding positions in healthcare leadership. Contact the schools that offer MHA degrees in North Carolina to get started today.