Medical and Health Services Managers: Valuable Skills

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A medical services manager sits at his desk while discussing health care challenges.

Motivated individuals pursuing a career in health care should consider enrolling in a Master of Public Health (MPH) program. MPH graduates can offer a unique and valuable perspective when in leadership and management positions, as their knowledge of managing population health is likely to be greater than that of other health care graduates. Equipped with this level of education, graduates may seek out more prominent administrative positions and prepare to advance up the chain of any health care institution or organization. Those who complete an online Master of Public Health come away with more than a degree; they have the skills to succeed as managers and supervisors in medical and health services positions.

Skills for Medical and Health Services Managers

Medical and health services managers are responsible for coordinating the administrative tasks that keep health care organizations operating effectively. They manage the various administrative teams that perform important back-end tasks, such as billing and resource allocation. They also organize interdisciplinary teams of health care professionals, ranging from cleaning staff to clinical specialists. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), medical and health services managers earned a median annual salary of $99,730 in 2018, and the employment of these professionals is expected to grow by 18% between 2018 and 2028. Developing the following competencies will prepare both current and aspiring medical and health services managers for advanced roles in their field.

Improving the Quality of Health Care Services

Aspiring administrators must continuously strive to improve the quality of health care in a facility or organization. A job candidate who has the ability to enhance the quality of the health care services they manage will often be seen as more valuable than those who do not have the ability to drive up quality. This is because health care managers and administrators are frequently responsible for maximizing efficiency in their organization, without sacrificing the quality of their services. Facilitating timely and effective care, appropriately communicating medical information and procedures to patients, monitoring health care standards, and knowing the proper referral pipelines for patients who need special care are all important skills that prospective medical and health services managers should study at length.

Remedying Public Health Disparities

Qualified medical and health services managers understand the impact that health disparities can have on a patient population. They must have insight into the risks individuals in rural areas might face, the social factors that play into disparities of certain minority populations and underserved communities, and the specific living conditions across the U.S. and around the world. They also benefit from knowing how to educate and inform others about disease prevention and how to mitigate healthcare-related challenges that frequently take place in these environments. A Master of Public Health can help prospective health care workers improve the quality of care patients receive and close the gap in national and international disparities in health care.

Grant Writing and Program Planning

To truly impact the medical arena, competent administrators must be adept at grant writing and have the ability to maneuver the national grant writing processes. MPH programs typically cover program planning and the guidelines of grant application process writing, as well as where to search for grants.

Identifying Causes and Influences of Disease

Aspiring medical and health services managers can position themselves for long-term career success by learning the most effective ways to retrieve, analyze, and interpret data and act on the results. Using this skill, they can process data to learn what diseases are most heavily impacting a specific patient population. This is a valuable asset to health care organizations because this knowledge can be applied to prepare for a coming disease.

Master of Public Health at Ohio University Curriculum

Professionals can hone the aforementioned skills in Ohio University’s online Master of Public Health program. The curriculum features the following courses, among others:

•Epidemiology in Public Health

Epidemiology is the study of why particular diseases are more common in certain populations. This data is then used to devise tactics and measures to combat and prevent those diseases. By observing and collecting this information, those in health care roles can more effectively diagnose, treat, and manage patients in those groups.

Evaluation and Quality Improvement in Health Care

This course is designed to familiarize students with the basics of health programs and how they are evaluated. It will teach students about the research practices and methodologies connected to health education and behavioral sciences. The course also explores particular evaluation cases and processes that are not a widespread practice.

Rural Health Disparities

Historically, rural centers have received less effective health care and experienced higher rates of mortality and disease. Sickness and disease can also impact certain populations more than others because of living conditions and access to public health facilities.

Grant Writing in Public Health Practice

Grant writing is essential for improving health care quality. As such, a comprehensive understanding of the appropriate language is paramount, as well as how to concisely structure proposals. Students are immersed in critical information about the different types of grants and learn how to develop their own proposals, with an emphasis on narratives, planning programs, justifying budgets, and time frames. They also learn how to successfully navigate evaluation processes and grant requests, as well as source the grants that improve the quality of health care in their facilities.

Learn More About Becoming a Medical and Health Services Manager

To achieve success in the medical field or to attain high-paying administrative positions at any medical institution, professionals need to be equipped with the knowledge a Master of Public Health provides. An advanced degree can distinguish

Learn how the Ohio University online Master of Public Health program prepares students to improve health care quality, recognize health care disparities, and identify causes and influences of disease, ensuring graduates are ready to take on leadership roles in public health.

Recommended Readings

How to Become an Epidemiologist in Public Health
How to Become a Health Educator
Public Health vs. Medicine: What’s the Difference?

Sources

Association of American Medical Colleges, “Health Disparities Affect Millions in Rural U.S. Communities”
BMJ, “What Is Epidemiology?”
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Grant Writing Guidance & Tips
Ohio University, Online Master of Public Health Degree Course Descriptions
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Medical and Health Services Managers
The World Health Organization, “10 Ways to Improve the Quality of Care in Health Facilities”