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5 Careers for Those with an MBA in Healthcare Administration

Thursday, March 10, 2016 | 12:00 AM

Whether you want to work in the White House or on Wall Street, in a large health maintenance organization or for an entrepreneurial startup, there are many healthcare careers open to MBA program graduates.

Healthcare spending is on target to reach 20 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) by 2021, and this means that the demand for professionals holding an online Master of Business Administration in healthcare administration will continue to grow — and with it, the variety of available opportunities. Here are five careers worth exploring.

1. Healthcare policy expert

Government healthcare spending is increasing at a rapid pace. This is largely due to the increased number of Baby Boomers who are now Medicare-eligible as well as the larger roll government is playing in healthcare due to the Affordable Care Act.

This increase is creating demand for healthcare policy experts in government agencies and in the private sector. Legislators and regulators rely on these policy experts, as do leaders in healthcare and investing. Professionals pursuing these healthcare careers can move freely between the public and private sectors.

2. Data analyst

"Big Data" is critical to modern industry, including healthcare. The healthcare system collects more data now than ever. The ability to “mine” and manipulate this information properly can mean the difference between a profitable healthcare organization and one on the verge of bankruptcy.

As healthcare spending approaches 20 percent of GDP, policymakers and regulators are already working to minimize the spending curve. Data analysis—which includes identifying waste and finding opportunities to economize—is increasingly becoming an essential skill. MBAs in healthcare careers with the financial background to interpret data and act upon its trends will be in great demand.

3. Opportunities at large private employers

The healthcare sector has been consolidating for many years, and the trend shows no signs of stopping. A handful of large health maintenance organizations (HMOs) and preferred provider organizations (PPOs) dominate the scene. These organizations employ legions of middle and upper management positions. Organizations hiring for these leadership positions will prefer candidates holding a healthcare MBA.

4. Positions with smaller private employers

While the single physician practice is fairly uncommon today, local physician groups are still very popular, and they often participate in PPO plans. A group of 75 physicians, for example, is small by HMO standards, but it can be quite successful in a local community as a member of a PPO.

While yesterday’s lone, private-practicing physician did not need someone with a healthcare MBA, these smaller to medium-sized groups usually employ MBAs in management positions.

5. Entrepreneurs

Because such a large portion of our national budget goes to healthcare, many entrepreneurs are working to innovate in this field. Combining their knowledge of the healthcare industry with entrepreneurism holds a lot of promise for individuals who like the excitement of founding and growing a company.

From developing new management or information systems to ushering new medical devices or drugs into the marketplace, healthcare MBAs have many opportunities ahead of them. With such a wide range of healthcare careers among a variety of employers, tomorrow’s professionals should be able to land the jobs they want with the companies they prefer.

Learn about University of Texas Rio Grande Valley MBA with a concentration in Healthcare Administration online program.


Marr, B. (2015, April 21). How Big Data Is Changing Healthcare. Retrieved October 20, 2015, from

Wayne, A. (2012, June 12). Health-Care Spending to Reach 20% of U.S. Economy by 2021. Retrieved October 20, 2015, from

Smith-Barrow, D. (2013, June 20). Find Health Care Opportunities for B-School Students. Retrieved October 20, 2015, from

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