Although there are many great career fields that an individual could go into, becoming a hospital administrator may be one of the best. In addition to offering individuals an opportunity to build wealth, the roles and responsibilities indigenous to the world of hospital administration can engender the type of personal and professional growth that generates a sense of fulfillment while facilitating upward social mobility. Yet while becoming a hospital administrator can entail personal and professional success, there are also a plethora of challenges that result from choosing the career.
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If you are considering a career in hospital administration, take note of how these three challenges may affect you:
1. Medicare/Medicaid Payments
As many individuals who work within the field of hospital administration know, the management of Medicaid payments is one of the most recent and substantive challenges being faced by the industry. In discussing how Medicaid payments are presenting challenges to hospital administrators, Director of Healthcare Programs Mike Steel points out that there are a number of uninsured and underinsured Americans throughout the nation. The hospital administrator's recognition of this financial strain is amplified by the fact that the government places caps on the reimbursements that Medicare and Medicaid patients can receive. In short, the more Medicaid and Medicare clients a hospital sees, the less money they take in. These financial challenges make it substantively difficult for hospital administrators to provide medical services to an aging populace who rely on Medicare and Medicaid to address their healthcare needs. In order to grapple with the challenge, hospital administrators are left with the challenge of finding ways to offset the expenses of their patients while simultaneously expanding their healthcare services in order to serve more people in need of medical attention.
2. Changes in Pay Structure
Just as hospital administrators have to grapple with the challenges presented by the prevalence of Medicare and Medicaid, changes in pay structure also present unique problems that healthcare professionals must address. Although the pay per service model of payment was once prevalent, it has grown outdated. In this contemporary era, new regulations make it mandatory for hospitals to charge fees based on the patient's overall quality of care and outcome. Moreover, the consumer's point of view regarding payment is becoming increasingly important. This shift has resulted in hospitals attempting to do all that they can to make sure that the patient's hospital experience is comfortable. To facilitate this comfort, hospitals are putting gardens and play areas on the property of children's hospitals while women's imaging facilities are being enhanced with spa environments. Hospital administrators hope that these additions to the traditional health care setting will justify increased fees as they facilitate the well-being of patients.
3. Shortage of Healthcare Professionals
In this contemporary era, there is a shortage of healthcare professionals. At this point, the healthcare industry is expected to grow more than twice as fast as any other industry each year. In light of these realities, hospital administrators are faced with the task of figuring out how to acquire a sufficient quantity of quality employees. Moreover, healthcare professionals are now expecting to earn higher salaries in order to pay off their student loans. This means that hospital administrators must also figure out how to pay new hires more.
If you are interested in pursuing a career as a hospital administrator, you should know that doing so can be very advantageous. At the same time, however, you should note that becoming a hospital administrator can entail a variety of challenges. In recognizing what these challenges are, you can determine whether or not hospital administration is the correct career field for you to pursue.