As a specific type of healthcare executive, hospital administrators oversee the health and medical services in a hospital. They execute financial planning, represent the hospital at meetings and ensure that the facility is up to date and legal. Hospital administrators might supervise an entire facility, a medical practice with a group of physicians or an individual department.
The general responsibilities of a hospital administrator include improving the performance and quality of healthcare services and ensuring that the hospital runs smoothly. They also make sure that their facility is compliant with current laws and regulations and work to expand the hospital’s operations as necessary. Hospital administrators establish departmental goals and communicate with medical staff and upper management.
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Additionally, they conduct administrative tasks, such as organizing their facility’s records of services and monitoring and preparing budgets to confirm that departments are performing within funding limits. Hospital administrators also recruit, train and manage staff members and generate work schedules. They may speak for the facility on governing boards and at investor meetings.
Typically, hospital administrators work full-time in offices. They may be on-call after hours in case of emergency. Evening and weekend work could be required at facilities that are open 24/7. About three out of 10 hospital administrators worked more than 40 hours per week in 2016, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Hospital Administrator Salary
As of 2016, the median annual salary for hospital administrators was $96,540, according to the BLS. At state, local and private hospitals, the median annual wage was $104,340. Employment for the career is expected to grow 20 percent by 2026, which is much faster than the national average for all jobs.
While a bachelor’s degree is sufficient for a position as a hospital administrator, most employers prefer master’s degrees. Usually, graduate programs take two to three years to complete. Up to a year of supervised administrative experience in a hospital or healthcare consulting environment might also be included within the graduate program. Degrees in areas such as business or health administration and health management are common for hospital administrators. A program that focuses on both healthcare and management is ideal for a hospital administrator career.
Campbellsville University offers an online healthcare MBA. This fully online program gives students the skills and knowledge needed for leadership roles in the healthcare industry. With this degree, graduates can become hospital administrators or take on other administration and management roles in clinics or medical offices. Completing this degree online also has the added convenience of being able to work the coursework into the student’s busy schedule.