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Due to the complexity of healthcare systems in many countries, as well as the many different healthcare career options available, healthcare administration courses are quite varied in nature. Some courses are designed to prepare people for careers managing medical practices or departments in larger healthcare institutions, such as hospitals. Others prepare people for careers in specialized areas of healthcare administration, such as information management or medical billing. Individuals who are interested in entering upper-level management and executive positions will likely be required to take several different types of healthcare administration courses that include training in regulatory compliance, ethics and marketing. Some healthcare administration courses are offered as continuing or professional education by healthcare schools, professional associations and industry vendors.
Some healthcare administration courses are offered as part of an undergraduate degree or certificate program intended to prepare individuals for careers managing small medical practices or overseeing a department in a healthcare institution. These programs tend to offer training in office management skills as well as business principles and communications, although both bachelor’s and associate’s degree programs typically also include liberal arts courses as well. Specific healthcare administration courses may include training in medical terminology, privacy and ethics as well as the business of healthcare.
Individuals who are interested in entering specific areas of healthcare administration, such as insurance billing or managing patient records may likewise complete healthcare administration courses as part of a certificate, undergraduate or even a postgraduate level program. Like those who enter medical office administration programs, these individuals will take the courses in medical terminology, including anatomy and physiology, as well as healthcare systems. In addition, these individuals may take more detailed healthcare administration courses that focus on the complicated privacy regulations that exist in many countries. They may also take career-specific courses in health informatics and insurance billing codes.
In some countries, including the United States, those who aspire to upper-level management and executive jobs within the healthcare industry are typically required to hold a postgraduate degree. As such, there are numerous postgraduate degree programs in healthcare systems and administration. Some of these courses may focus on practical, business oriented topics such as marketing, public relations and cost management. Other course options may include healthcare law as well as developing pertinent policies within healthcare institutions. Depending on a student's career aspirations, he or she may also want to pursue training in the management of healthcare organizations.
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