The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health on Dec. 16 announced that it will launch an online master’s degree program in health care administration in the fall of 2021.
The degree will be the first of its type to be offered by a University of California campus.
The program is designed to meet the growing need for health care management specialists. It will focus on developing students’ skills in finance, strategic marketing, quantitative problem solving and analytics. As an online program, it will give students across the country access to the Fielding School.
“The Master of Healthcare Administration program will provide a strong management foundation for professionals to excel in critical roles across the health care landscape, from hospitals to community clinics, and at biopharmaceutical companies, insurance firms and public agencies,” Ron Brookmeyer, dean of the Fielding School, said in the announcement.
“We’re thrilled to add the MHA degree to our unique roster of opportunities for students who are dedicated to leading improvements in health care for both individual patients and communities as a whole,” he added.
Applications for the MHA program will open in January. Enrollment will be limited to 40 students per course and financial aid will be available.
According to the announcement, demand for health care management specialists is expected to increase as the population expands and a substantial portion of the current workforce reaches retirement age.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports taht there were more than 422,300 jobs for medical and health services managers in 2019, and there will be more than 555,000 such positions by 2029 — more growth over the next decade than any other occupational group.
“As the large baby boom population ages and as advances in health care information technology change the ways that providers use data, there will be an increased demand for experts in health care administration and leadership,” UCLA professor Leah Vriesman, the head of executive education programs at the Fielding School’s Department of Health Policy and Management, said in the announcement.
A key target for the program is professionals interested in management careers within health systems. These include hospitals, clinics, nursing facilities, biopharmaceutical companies, large physician groups, insurance companies and health technology.
“In the online MHA, students will expand their professional networks and consult with health care organizations on real projects,” Vriesman said in the announcement.