Earning a master’s degree in public health (MPH) and a master’s degree in health administration (MHA) is good assurance of a personally and financially rewarding career. Recent statistics indicate that health care administration is one of the most rapidly growing career fields. The field of health care administration is seeing annual growth of approximately 5-7% per year, and the median pay for health care administrators is over $90,000 per year.
Combining health administration skills with public health expertise means that you will always find yourself well qualified for many health-related careers that pay well. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that medical and health services managers will see job growth of 22% by 2020. Many of those types of jobs are in health care administration and also public health.
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With your MPH/MHA dual degree, you will be able to obtain managerial work in hospital and health center administration. Many public health agencies at the local, state and federal levels, as well as public health organizations in the nonprofit sector will find your dual master’s background of great value.
If you are interested in earning your dual MPH/MHA, please consider the following recommended programs:
University of North Carolina: This top university now offers an Executive Master’s Degree in Public Health, and an Executive Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration. This is a top dual degree program that is currently ranked #3 in US News and World Report.
University of Utah: This is an ideal degree choice if you are interested a public health career with a focus on population health. This program will prepare you well for success in the public health, health care and medical industry. Both degrees may be completed in three years.
Des Moines University: The dual degree programs that are offered at Des Moines University can largely be completed online. The MHA degree includes 48 semester hours, with most of the classes online. The MPH and MHA programs also have Executive Residency Workshops that allow you to come to campus twice per year and work with future health care leaders.
The classes that you will take in your dual degree program will vary, but expect to complete courses similar to those outlined below:
Public Health Concepts
Health Behavior and Education
Most dual MPH/MHA programs will have some sort of capstone project where you will integrate what you learned into a research project.
Salaries and Careers
Overall, the career path for health care administrators and managers with a background in public health is excellent. Forbes Magazine has called the master’s degree in health administration one of the best degrees for job growth.
Employment for medical and health service managers will increase by 22% by 2020, which is a strong rate of growth.
The median wage of these types of health care professionals is $84,200, and the top 10% earn over $140,000 per year. This salary level will be for people with many years of experience and who hold master’s degrees in health administration, nursing and public health.
Many health care administrators and managers work in hospitals and doctors’ offices. With your MPH degree, you also could work in public health agencies for the government, nonprofits, and possibly public health hospitals.
Other professionals with a dual MPH/MHA degree may become public health directors, social welfare administrators and health agency directors.
Most health care administrators move up the executive ladder in an organization over time. If you are a department manager in a public health facility, you could become an executive that is in charge of several departments, or eventually the entire facilty.