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Health Care Administration & Support

Health care administration and support roles have two distinct tracts:

Management & Administration

Running a hospital, healthcare facility or a doctor’s office is more complex than meets the eye. Someone is responsible for scheduling of workers, patient flow, proper storage of patient data, training of professionals, maintenance of equipment, ordering of supplies and negotiate payments with insurance providers and payment networks. This list is not comprehensive, but these activities are the responsibility of a health care administrators and managers.

Careers in Management & Administration:

Medical Billing and Coding

The importance of this position can not be underestimated. In 2017, the US spent 3.5 trillion on health care. This amounts to $10,790 per person and almost 18% (17.9%) of gross domestic product (GDP).

Private insurance is responsible for 34%, government (local and federal) 56% and out of pocket (10%). With government playing such a large role, it is important to account for every penny. This is where medical billing and coding professionals come in.

Medical billing and coding professionals gather, process, and preserve medical records of individuals in hospitals. They also process, preserve, gather, and report patient information for health necessities and values in a manner constant with the healthcare industry’s numerical coding system.

Medical Transcriptionists

Medical transcriptionists copy medical reports recorded by doctors and other healthcare professionals using various electronic devices, including office and emergency room visits, diagnostic imaging readings, operations, chart evaluations, and final synopses. They record dictated reports and translate abbreviations into a comprehensible form. They also edit these transcriptions as needed and return reports for review and signature, or correction.

Health Care Managers

Health care managers direct, plan and implement strategic medical and health services in hospitals, managed care organizes and similar healthcare organizations, including hospitals or health agencies both private and public. Specifically, a health care manager is responsible for budgeting for operations [e.g. hiring and scheduling of staff, equipment maintenance, oversee contracts with suppliers], managing data and information flow within the organization and workplace safety.

Health Care Administrators

Unlike clinicians, health administrators do not deal directly with patients. Instead, they are responsible for policy, processes and initiatives that are designed to improve hospital and health care facility operations.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 300,000 people are gainfully employed in health administration, from middle management to CEO positions. According to the BLS, healthcare administration is projected to by 17% between 2019 and 2025.

You can find administrator/managers in hospitals, physician group practices, nursing homes and home health agencies. They also work in the public sector, for example in health departments, or in the private sector, such as with pharmaceutical companies, health insurance providers, consulting firms or companies that make medical supplies and equipment.

Assistants & Practitioners

Assistants and practitioners support clinicians and nurses directly and indirectly in hospital operations and patient care. Others operate independently as massage therapists, naturopathic physicians, physical therapists and personal trainers. Each specialty requires their own specific certification.

Medical Assistants

The American Association of Medical Assistants classifies a Medical Assistant as a person that works alongside physicians in outpatient offices (medical offices and clinics) or ambulatory care facilities. (e.g. Urgent Care). Medical assistants are cross-trained to do clinical work and administrative work. The administrative work encompasses patient management, medical billing and coding and arranging for laboratory services. On the clinical side, medical assistants will prepare patients for examination, take vitals of patients, and assisting the physician during exams.

The CMA (AAMA)® Certification, a highly desirable certification, will help prospective MA’s obtain a competitive advantage in the marketplace.

Physical Therapy Assistants and PT Aids

In the US, our promotion of fitness and the fitness craze has resulted in the number of injuries increasing by 22% from 2012- 2017. Throw in an aging population and this equates to strong demand for physical therapy, specifically physical therapy assistants and PT aids.

Physical therapist assistants help physical therapists in providing therapy procedures. In some states, may help in the development of management plans, carry out routine tasks, record the progress of treatment, and adjust specific forms of treatment in accordance with patient status and within the scope of treatment plans recognized by a physical therapist.

In most cases requires accredited or formal training program completion.

Dental Assistants

Dental assistants help dentists, set up apparatus, prepare patients for procedures, and keep accurate records.

Specific tasks include taking x-rays, inquiring about patient history, sterilizing instruments, patient comfort and care, teaching patients about oral health care and basic administrative procedures.

Job prospects for Dental Assistants, according to the American Dental Assistants Association is expected to grow by 30% from 2012-2020.

Massage Therapists

Massage therapists implement therapeutic massages of soft tissues and joints. They often help in the evaluation of range of motion and muscle strength, or suggest individuals therapy strategies.

There are currently 265+ accredited massage therapy institutions in the United States. Training programs in massage therapy generally require a high school diploma, though post-secondary education is useful. Previous studies in broad subjects such as science (especially anatomy and physiology), business and humanities are helpful.

To learn more about massage therapy careers, visit the American Massage Therapist Association.