Due to new regulations and emerging trends, healthcare administrators face many changes over the next decade. With demand increasing for qualified candidates, administrator salaries remain lucrative, and the profession remains one of the fastest growing fields in the country.
New Ways to Heal
The medical field is undergoing radical improvements in patient cost, convenience and service levels.  Technology is paving the way for patients to find fast answers to their medicinal queries and providing new ways to communicate with caregiving personnel, such as remote monitoring technologies that encourage preventative behavior among patients and medical staff. While acute care facilities grow in number, more medical services venture into the community to provide care where it is convenient for recipients, such as physicians that make house calls and mobile checkup services.
As healthcare organizations work to promote community health standards, teach preventative health education, practice cost-effective treatment and provide more personalized service, the need for qualified staff members rises. Preventative specialists free physicians to help the most severe cases while this relatively new medical talent pool manages minor and routine illnesses as well as assists patients with recurring, non-life threatening conditions. These patients typically require in office visits twice a year. By visiting with non-physician medical staff, patients can reduce physician visits, saving valuable resources and free specialists to reduce illness in the five to ten percent of patients who consume most hospital resources.
Big Data in Healthcare
Big data analytics provides opportunities to improve service in previously unimaginable ways. The technology is allowing institutions to analyze information and forecast issues related to caregiving, financial management, logistics coordination and facilities management.
New legislation requires caregiving facilities to cut costs. Therefore, big data technology’s maturation has arrived at the perfect time to revolutionize the healthcare practice. Medical organizations are slowly implementing improved equipment and tools that can gather information for analysis – such as updated hardware, advanced programs and mobile devices. As institutions mine their information stores, they are learning new and better ways to deliver service.
The New Healthcare System
Healthcare reform presents a demanding challenge for caregiving facilities. Institutions must now abandon long used payment systems for a newly mandated process. The medical community is undergoing a sharp change in focus, from providing efficient patient care to promoting better community health levels. As institutions compete for limited resources, they will eventually find effective ways to conform to the new rules, as demonstrated by this increase in preventative healthcare education.
Once this adjustment settles, improved resource allocation will reduce funding competition along with record keeping requirements. With costs reduced by illness prevention, physicians are likely to start warranting their work, while the new insurance marketplace slowly erases the connection between finance and patient care.
Salaries and Job Opportunities
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare administrators earn between $55,000 and $170,000 each year.  Hospitals, physician offices and specialty nursing facilities provide the highest employment levels, followed by outpatient facilities and in-home health aide services. Respectively, outpatient centers, general hospitals and specialist facilities employ the largest number of administrators. Ambulatory care and mental health facilities also employ significant numbers in the position.
Healthcare Administrators’ Increasing Demand
Administrator job growth will outpace most occupations, growing 17 percent between 2014 and 2020. The BLS attributes this demand for medical specialists to the Baby Boomer populations’ increasing medical needs as well as a large administrator pool nearing retirement.
To date, California, New York and Texas employ the most healthcare administrators in the country, while the District of Columbia, New York and Connecticut offer the highest paying salaries in the field. Iowa City, Silver Springs and Salem operate the most facilities and provide the most jobs in healthcare administration in rural areas.
As more individuals turn to private practitioners, resources and personnel will shift to these practices as well and will increase the need for administrators that specialize in information management. These institutions are likely to choose administration candidates that pursue master’s degrees over baccalaureate candidates.
Changes in policies and available resources present healthcare administrators with several challenges over the next few years. New technologies and practices are emerging that change how caregivers deliver services. Between the aging population and administrators poised to end their careers, the field will experience continued growth for the foreseeable future.
Healthcare markets are expanding. The workforce is growing. That means demand for new leadership is rising, too. Through the online Master of Healthcare Administration in Strategy and Innovation at Adventist University of Health Sciences, you can learn to steer multifaceted health systems toward a culture of innovation, all in line with your core morals. We believe furthering healthcare starts with advancing dedicated leaders like you.