Online PhD in Health Care Administration

By earning an online PhD in health care administration, you will take part in advanced research and tackle coursework that covers analysis, strategic planning, and organizational change in the field of health care. Courses on ethics, law, and quality improvement assist experienced health care professionals who are looking to obtain an upper-level position in a public or private health care environment. The doctor of health care administration program is going to prepare you to become a reliable administrator who is able to effectively respond to the ever-changing industry of health care. This three to four year program will immediately qualify you to oversee a health care department or an entire facility. You will learn how to critically observe as well assess concerns and trends of the health care system. With this online education, you will further your own development as an advanced health care leader, being able to address the health delivery demands of corporations and the people who depend on them. In short, you will acquire the necessary tools to ensure organizational sustainability.

About Online PhD Programs in Health Care Administration

With an online PhD program in health care administration, students are challenged to develop as well as enhance leadership roles in the healthcare industry. The course students will take can assist you in being able to better examine and apply problem-solving methods in an effort to improve performance. You will learn real-world strategies that you can use in your own field as well others. Experienced and professional faculty members – who can offer students a direct relationship with healthcare leaders – traditionally teach this program. Looking at the classes you might take, Medicial University of South Carolina offers courses such as those listed below

Year One:

  • Seminar on Financial Management. This course will focus on improving the executive’s ability to use financial information for strategic decision making.
  • Community and Global Health. This course covers demographic measurement, epidemiological methods, outcomes assessment, health promotion, and disease prevention from a managerial perspective.
  • Managing Healthcare Information Resources. This course examines the state-of-the-art of information technology and its application to patient care and strategic management in health care organizations.

Year Two:

  • Foundations in Leadership. The seminar on leadership has a two-fold goal. The first order is for the class to undertake a critical assessment of the literature and research on leadership effectiveness. The second goal is to provide an opportunity for students to sharpen their own leadership abilities through an experimental simulation.
  • Foundations in Strategic Management. An advanced seminar on principles of strategic management applied to health care organizations and integrated delivery systems.
  • Applied Research. An advanced seminar on principles and techniques for designing and implementing studies of organizational effectiveness in health care organizations and integrated delivery systems.

Year Three:

  • Quantitative Methods for Research. This course will focus on the fundamentals of logic and decision making.
  • Foundations in Health Policy. This course will provide a conceptual and analytical understanding of health policymaking and politics, including their impact on health administration and leadership.
  • Strategic Management of Change. This course focuses on an array of issues involved in leading strategic change in complex health care organizations.

For your dissertation, students are expected to choose a relevant topic and then perform original research on the innovative issue. Choosing your dissertation topic can be a challenge, but as long as you are able to find a subject to focus on that interests you, completing this component of your degree program can be much more enjoyable. In an online PhD program in health care administration, a suitable topic could be – Patterns of Medication Use and Related Health Care Service or The Impact of Reimbursement Mechanisms on Quality of Care, Medication Adherence and Health care Service Utilization in Type 2 Diabetes Medicaid Enrollees.

Value and Criticisms of a PhD in Health Care Administration

For those who choose to pursue an online PhD in health care administration, these individuals are well positioning themselves to become a leader in their field or serve as a credible instructor for future employees or college students. Earning your PhD is also a fantastic way for someone to build upon the skills they have already acquired from their mass of working experience. From covering advanced techniques in applied research, to strategic management of change, a PhD allows any student the chance to look deeper into their profession and introduce themselves to new and innovative ways of conducting business in the realm of health care administration. As far as the disadvantages of an online PhD in health care administration, students are advised to consider their future career plans prior to enrolling. The financial investment that has to be made alone may not be worth the degree if a graduate has no intentions of becoming a professor or instructor on the subject they are studying. The years it takes for any student to complete the program should only be committed to for those looking to change professions or are certain that this degree could advance them to an upper-level position within their current industry.

Application&Admission Requirements

For those looking enroll in an online PhD program in health care administration, applicants must meet the criteria put in place by every college and university. Generally, candidates will need to possess some experience in a management or policy position in the healthcare field. A bachelor’s or master’s degree in a relevant discipline such as business administration, public health, or public administration is also required. Applicants who will be considered should demonstrate proficiency through previous coursework or professional working experience. Having a foundation of knowledge in health finance, statistics, or organizational behavior would be an advantage for any prospective student as having this type of background prevents you from having to make up any deficiencies. The admissions committee of the college or university you are applying to may interview all final candidates. A completed application consists of an application fee, contact information, previous education, three references, a career goal statement, and an up to date resume.

Career Options&Job Market

Students who earn an online doctorate degree in health care administration have the opportunity to attain a series of prestigious careers. Some of the healthcare leadership positions graduates can look to pursue include being a chief nursing officer, hospital vice president, or health system president, as well as such academic leadership roles as a university president or college professor. While the annual salary ranges heavily for these positions, they all offer graduates the opportunity to take on a leadership position in their respected industry. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics employment of health services managers is projected to grow "faster than the average". The average annual salary for medical and health services managers was $80,240 in 2008. Furthermore, job opportunities for health care administration PhD graduates are expected to be good – especially for applicants who have work experience in healthcare to go along with strong business management skills.

Where to Find Information

  • The Journal of Health Administration Here readers are able to enjoy a quarterly peer-reviewed journal which chronicles research, case studies, and essays by leading health care administration educators and professionals.
  • California State University This link will offer you an in-depth look at the Department of Health Care Administration for CSU, which you can use to compare to any program you are considering enrolling in.
  • Concordia University This link takes you to a series resources, from books to journal articles, for students of health care administration at CU.
  • A Day in the life of a Health Care Administrator This link offers students a general look at the daily routine for a healthcare administrator.

How to Get Funding

Students in need of financial aid have more than one option to consider. Whether it is a loan, scholarship, or PhD fellowship program, students are encouraged to apply for any form of federal aid by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online. Afterwards, students will need to complete the GSM Application for Federal Financial Aid. However, with the application process being as time-consuming as it is, it is recommended that you ensure your eligibility prior to taking any action. By visiting the official websites for each form of funding you are looking over, you will be able to find the requirements for each. Earning an online PhD in health care administration is much more plausible when students have the financial assistance they need to pay for their education. If you have any further questions regarding funding, please be sure to speak with your college or university’s financial aid office.

  • Federal Direct Stafford Loan. With the Federal Direct Stafford Loan, students have the opportunity to earn low-interest loans while pursuing their PhD. The maximum loan available is $20,500 per academic year, along with a fixed interest rate of 6.80%.
  • Federal Perkins Loan. For full-time students who find themselves in significant need of financial aid, Federal Perkins low-interest loan is something to consider – offering an average of $3,500 per academic year – with a fixed interest rate at 5.0%.
  • Campus-Based Aid. The financial aid office of a college or university handles almost all Campus-Based programs. The majority of institutions in the United States actively participate in the programs made available by the federal government.

Essential Advice

  • Seek out work experience before further education – After earning a bachelor’s degree, student’s can be hungry for even more knowledge. However, jumping immediately into a PhD program is a move that should be avoided. Students should take the time to reflect on the skills and knowledge that have just learned before rushing to acquire more. By gaining work experience, you will be able to discover what your strengths and weaknesses are, allowing you to then build upon the foundation you have created.
  • Funding – Online doctoral programs in health care administration can be of significant value to those who earn this PhD. However, not everyone has the same financial backing needed to afford an online PhD program. Before you dive too deep into the application process, it would be wise to ensure that you are eligible for some form of financial aid, and that you have a plan for how you will pay for your education.
  • Find more information – While a PhD can be a valuable tool for any individual, depending on the career you are pursuing, it may not be necessary. A great way of learning more about the degree you are considering is by speaking with individuals who are currently enrolled in online doctoral programs in health care administration and find out more information.