Furthering your education in the field of healthcare management is a smart move in today’s medical world. Your Master’s in Healthcare Management can open professional doors that you may not even be aware of.

If you are interested in healthcare management, an MHA will give you access to exciting positions where you can use your passion to streamline patient care, help create successful medical practices, and much more.

These intriguing — and in-demand — positions also bring with them the possibility of lucrative salaries. The jobs can be accessed with either a bachelor’s degree in healthcare management or with a master’s degree, though offerings and salaries will vary according to degree level, experience, and location.

If you are considering earning your MHA, you might be wondering what you can expect from a master’s that you can’t get from a bachelor’s. Read on for more information about both options.

What a Bachelor’s in Healthcare Management nets you

A bachelor’s degree is required in order to work in just about any healthcare management field. The bachelor’s prepares candidates for positions in management, supervisory areas, and even executive careers that include perks, benefits, and decent salaries.

If you are just starting out in the healthcare management sector, a bachelor's degree may be sufficient for entry-level jobs in many areas of Health Management. You might also be able to obtain a senior-level spot in a smaller business, or a middle-level role in a large company.

According to Payscale, medical and health services managers with a Bachelor’s in Healthcare Management have an average salary of $55,000 per year at entry level. However, this salary range varies based on location, size of facility, and a position’s duties and responsibilities.

What can a Master’s in Healthcare Management offer?

While a bachelor’s will get you a livable salary with benefits and a job in the field you enjoy, a master’s can take you even further. An advanced degree opens you up to positions where you can plan, coordinate, and oversee medical and healthcare services. You could even manage an entire department in the healthcare field or a whole facility.

The higher your level of education, the more responsibility you will be granted, and the higher salary you will be offered. Responsibilities for an MHA generally fall into the areas of hospital work, doctors’ offices, nursing homes, home health care organizations, and outpatient care centers, but there are many areas in which you can obtain work as well.

It’s also notable that an MHA can prepare you for healthcare roles that are very desirable. U.S. News and World Report reports that the position of medical and health services manager is one of the top 100 jobs available today. Many people who acquire their Master’s Degree in Health Administration have impressive job titles, including:

  • C-Suite (CEO and COO)
  • Clinic manager
  • Department or division director
  • Department or division manager/supervisor
  • Facility manager
  • Health services manager
  • Hospital administrator
  • Nursing director
  • Operations manager

The average Master’s in Healthcare Management salary varies based on location as well as responsibilities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary range for those with this degree was $98,350 in May of 2017. The lowest 10 percent of earners reported making less than $58,350, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $176,130.

Bachelor’s versus master’s programs

As we’ve mentioned, salaries for these degrees can be very different depending on location, so it’s important to evaluate and compare averages before deciding where you want to work and how far you want to go with your degree.

View this quick comparison overview of the average salaries for bachelor’s and master’s degree holders in healthcare management, based on statistics from Payscale and divided by city:

City Bachelor’s degree Master’s degree
New York $50,677 $105,393
Boston $51,204 $94,672
Atlanta $50,495 $85,962
Chicago $68,625 $71,535
San Francisco $51,018 $103,187
Los Angeles $52,809 $63,918

These rates express a huge difference in lifelong earnings between those who stop at their bachelor’s degrees and those who go forward to earn their Master’s in Healthcare Administration. To make it even more clear, here is a breakdown of total earnings, on average, from a 20-year career in those areas:

City Bachelor’s degree Master’s degree
New York $1,013,540 $2,107,860
Boston $1,024,080 $1,893,400
Atlanta $1009,900 $1,719,240
Chicago $1,372,500 $1,430,700
San Francisco $1,020,361 $2,063,740
Los Angeles $1,056,180 $1,278,360

These numbers illustrate a clear picture: not only does location matter immensely in your salary potential, but so does your degree.

Consider your options in the field of healthcare management

Before you move forward with your job search, think about where you want to be in the future — physically, financially and in your career. The decisions you make now will affect which jobs you are able to obtain and how much money you can expect to make down the road.

Earning your Master’s in Healthcare Management is a smart move that may open doors to positions that will give you responsibility, longevity, and high wages. But pursuing a master’s is a big step, and one that is only yours to take. Use this information to make an informed decision for your future.

Works cited

Medical and Health Service Managers. (April 13, 2018). Retrieved August 27, 2018 from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/medical-and-health-services-managers.htm#tab-5.

Healthcare Administrator Salary. (n.d.). Retrieved August 27, 2018 from https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Health_Care_Administrator/Salary.

How Higher Education Affects Lifetime Salary. (August 5, 2011). Retrieved August 28, 2018 from https://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/articles/2011/08/05/how-higher-education-affects-lifetime-salary.

What is a Medical and Health Services Manager? (n.d). Retrieved August 28, 2018 from https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/medical-and-health-services-manager.

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