How do I Become a Healthcare Administrator?

What is Healthcare Administration?

Simply put, healthcare administration is healthcare management for the business side of patient care. While doctors, nurses, and other healthcare staff are primarily responsible for treating patients, someone needs to be working behind the scenes to ensure the many parts of a hospital work together properly. Doctors need to be hired, supplies need to be ordered, and bills need to be paid. Healthcare administrators take care of all of these things. It is similar to being a “CEO” of a hospital or other healthcare organization. If you are a business savvy, people person with an inclination of helping people, then a healthcare administration career in one of the only growing areas of the economy is the perfect fit for you.

What are the Benefits of a Career in Healthcare administration?

Though it is challenging, a career in hospital administration has many benefits. If you do a good job, you’ll have extremely stable job security. Here are a few additional benefits:

  • Variety. Healthcare administrators are always doing something different. The vast scope of responsibilities hospital and other healthcare admins have means they have to face unique challenges every day, thus keeping the job from becoming too boring or dull.
  • People-oriented. If you like working with people, health care administration jobs may be for you. Healthcare admins need to be patient, caring, and tactful.
  • Importance. While it’s nice to pretend everyone does their job for a feeling of self-satisfaction, there’s a much more rewarding sense of worth you get when you know you are actually helping people. As a healthcare administrator, you’ll be constantly helping people in meaningful ways: changing lives on a daily basis through the support work you do. You’ll also have the respect and administration of your entire staff.
  • Pay and Income. Working as a hospital administrator can pay very well, especially if you are experienced. The median annual income for entry-level hospital administrators is around $50,000 while the highly experienced administration earn $100,000 or more every year.
  • Action. There’s always something going on at a healthcare facility, especially a hospital, so you won’t be bored at your job if you work as a healthcare administrator.

What are the Duties of a Healthcare Administrator?

The responsibilities of a healthcare administrator will vary from place to place, but in general, you can expect to be responsible for the following duties:

  • Ensures patients’ quality medical care: As a health care administrator, you would be responsible for making sure patients have quality facilities, amenities, and other things necessary to ensure consistently good health care. This also means responding to quality care emergencies.
  • Business operations: A major responsibility of healthcare admins is basically acting like the hospital’s (or medical facility’s) CEO: you would need to manage budgets, establish and enforce hospital policies and standards of procedure, maintain computer systems and also manage human resources to ensure everything worked properly.
  • Manages and maintains staff: Another big duty of administrators is making sure the hospital is properly staffed at all times. There are regulations which could shut down a hospital if there aren’t enough doctors on call, so an administrator is responsible to make sure that does not happen. Hiring, firing, and negotiating with employees is all in a day’s work for hospital admins.
  • Works with external agencies and vendors: The administrator is also responsible to act as the hospital liaison for vendors, contractors, supplies, and agencies to make sure the hospital is properly stocked with supplies and is also acquiring new supplies to replace outdated technology.

There are additional responsibilities of healthcare administrators as well, but this list should give you an idea of what to expect.

As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to seek a career in healthcare administration.

Are There Drawbacks?

Like any job, there are certainly drawbacks to working in this field. Some of these include long hours and stressful days. If you’re not the type of person who can work well in stressful environments and keep your cool, you may want to consider another health career.

Another drawback is working with people. While constant interaction is a must for some people, a lot of that interaction will be dealing with people’s problems. Make sure you can be patient and polite even if the people you’re dealing with are very rude.

There are other drawbacks, too, such as the amount of education you need to begin working in this field (more on that in the next section), but if you’re a self-motivated person who enjoys having a wide variety of duties and working with people, you should definitely consider a career in this field.

How do I Become a Healthcare Administrator?

Becoming a healthcare administrator requires you to have at least a bachelor’s degree. In many cases, only applicants with master’s degrees are considered for even entry-level positions. Here’s how to improve your chances of becoming a healthcare admin:

  1. Go to the best college or university you can. Make sure to take courses in economics, political science, accounting and anything else you may need as a healthcare admin. Many schools actually have healthcare administration majors, so do this if you can. Use our School Finder on the right hand side to find the school that fits your personal needs.
  2. Obtain a master’s degree in nursing, public health, hospital, or business administration. This will give you an advantage over other applicants for openings, and you’ll also learn the business management principles you need to run a healthcare facility.
  3. Apply to be an assistant healthcare administrator or a manager after you graduate. The more experience you can get in a healthcare facility setting, the better. Try to get a job in the type of facility you’d like to work in (nursing home, hospital, outpatient care facility, etc.).
  4. Finally, obtain clinical experience. You’ll need to apply for internships and obtain malpractice-liability insurance before you begin the internship. Don’t worry—you won’t pay nearly as much as doctors do for their malpractice insurance. Internships usually last between 2 and 8 weeks in length.

After these steps, the key is to gain experience and do as much as you can in the setting where you’d like to work.

A healthcare administration career is a rewarding, challenging, and satisfying career. It’s not for everyone, but if it sounds like a career for you, contact your local university or college to see if they have programs in healthcare administration. Your dream job could be waiting after just a few years of school.

The Black Women and Breast Cancer Conference 2011

Black Women and Breast Cancer Conference


Join us at this free event! Space is limited, so you must register in advance. Please register online or by calling Jennifer at (314) 516-5994. Please bring non-perishable canned food to support Food Outreach.


  • 07:45-08:30 | Registration
    • Continental Breakfast
    • Vendor Displays
    • Can Food Donations-Food Outreach Justin O’Neal 652-3663 ext 118
  • 08:45-9:20 | Welcome and Opening Remarks
    • Musical Selections – Ms. Carmen Bonner & Ms. Theda Oliver
    • Mistress of Ceremony – Ms. Linda Galloway, KSTL
    • Greetings – Dr Margaret Barton-Burke, PhD, RN, Mary Ann Lee Endowed Professor of Oncology Nursing, University of Missouri-St Louis College of Nursing
    • Keynote Speaker – Ms. Melba Moore, Commissioner of Health, City of St. Louis
  • 09:20-10:00 | Breast Cancer Experiences – Ms. Andrea Purnell & Latonia Collins-Smith, Therapy Through Theatre




  • 10:00-10:15 | Break, Vendors & Move to 1st Breakout Session
  • 10:15-11:00 | Breakout Session 1
    • Getting Your Financial House in Order – Mr. Germone Gadsden, Wealth Management Advisor, Four Seasons Wealth Management
    • It’s All About You – Rev. Karen Anderson, Olive Chapel AME, Kirkwood
    • Exercise and Breast Cancer – Ms. PeChaz Clark, St. Louis Fitness Factory
    • Nutrition on a Budget – Dr. Perdita Fisher, Fisher Wellness, North County
    • Young Women & Breast Cancer – Ms. Zekita Tucker Asuquo, League of African American Women
    • Yoga Relaxation – Ms. Marchelle Bettis, InPower Institute
  • 11:00-11:15 | Break, Vendors & Move to 2nd Breakout Session
  • 11:15-12:00 | Breakout Session 2
    • Getting Your Financial House in Order – Mr. Germone Gadsden, Wealth Management Advisor, Four Seasons Wealth Management
    • It’s All About You – Rev. Karen Anderson, Olive Chapel AME, Kirkwood
    • Exercise and Breast Cancer – Ms. PeChaz Clark, St. Louis Fitness Factory
    • Nutrition on a Budget – Dr. Perdita Fisher, Fisher Wellness, North County
    • Young Women & Breast Cancer – Ms. Zekita Tucker Asuquo, League of African American Women
    • Yoga Relaxation – Ms. Marchelle Bettis, InPower Institute


SECOND RAFFLE DRAWING (immediately before lunch)


  • 12:00-01:50 | Lunch
    • Performance – The High Priced Hat – Ms. Linda Stewart & Ms. Penny Williams
    • Performance – MaTiff & Jr. MaTiff Dance Company
    • Musical Selections – Mrs. Theda Oliver
    • Inspirational Speaker – Jade Harrell, from Sunday Morning Live with Jade Harrell, from Majic 104.9 (Clear Channel Communications)
  • 01:50-02:00 | Closing Remarks/Prayer – Mrs. Myrtis Spencer




This empowering conference is brought to you with the help of these sponsors:


  • University of Missouri–St. Louis College of Nursing
  • University of Missouri–St. Louis School of Professional and Continuing Studies
  • University of Missouri–St. Louis Office of Multicultural Affairs
  • Mary Ann Lee Endowment for Oncology Nursing & The Des Lee Collaborative Vision
  • Sista Strut Breast Cancer Walk
  • National Coalition of 100 Black Women
  • Office of Minority Health, Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services
  • Genentech
  • First Civilizations
  • Chi Eta, Phi Rho Chapter
CNA Training Classes:
A list of cna classes in in each state., Sign up for an information packet from school closest to you!

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