October 14, 2023

10 Highest Paying Healthcare Administration Jobs 2024

The Highest Paying Healthcare Administration Jobs | 2024

If you are considering a healthcare career but aren’t sure that direct patient care is the route for you, a role in healthcare administration may be just what you’re looking for.

Healthcare administration offers a vast array of career opportunities. There are full and part-time healthcare jobs, opportunities to transition from clinical roles, and even more options for those who pursue advanced degrees.

This article takes a deep dive into the highest-paying healthcare administration jobs, their roles, requirements, and salary data to help you set and achieve your career goals. Read on to find out more about what a career in healthcare administration could look like for you. 

Why Consider Healthcare Administration Jobs?

A position in healthcare administration can allow you to combine a passion for working in the healthcare field with a broader scope.

Healthcare administration broadens the scope of working in the healthcare field. As an administrator, you'll be able to apply your passion for healthcare delivery at higher levels, improving your facility's operations, finances, or management. A career in healthcare administration may be right for you if:

  • You love working in hospitals but prefer administrative work
  • You want to leverage your clinical experience as an administrator to make positive changes for patients and workers
  • You have management, business, finance, or operations skills that you want to use in a healthcare role

A healthcare administration career also offers the potential to earn high salaries and has a strong career outlook! The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a 28% job growth outlook, which is much faster than average.

What is a Healthcare Administration Career?

Healthcare Administration is a broad field with several career opportunities and paths. Before we dig into the highest-paying positions, let’s define what healthcare administration is and explore some of the jobs available within it.

Healthcare administration, often called health administration or medical administration encompasses people involved in making decisions around a healthcare system’s business strategies. These are the people in charge of, or involved in, planning, directing, and coordinating the business activities of healthcare providers or organizations.

With this broad definition, it’s no wonder there are so many career opportunities within it!

10 Highest Paying Healthcare Administration Careers

Now that you know a little more about the field, let’s take a look at some of the highest-paying jobs available, along with their job duties, and education requirements

  1. Healthcare Chief Information Officer (CIO) - $164,187
  2. Hospital CEO - $158,844
  3. Hospital CFO - $142,417
  4. Chief Nursing Officer - $140,760
  5. Hospital Administrator - $125,280
  6. Nursing Home Administrator - $111,301
  7. Clinical Informatics Manager - $103,706
  8. Hospice Administrator - $98,937
  9. Health Clinic Administrator - $93,170
  10. Government Agency Healthcare Administrator - $78,792

1. Healthcare Chief Information Officer (CIO) - $164,187 Annually

What is a Healthcare CIO?

A healthcare chief information officer (CIO) manages the information technology (IT) needs and computer systems of a healthcare facility. They make high-level decisions regarding data processes, collection, and strategic plans for the future of technology in their healthcare facility.

Healthcare CIO Salary

The increasing need for technology in healthcare has caused this role to rise and become one of the highest-paying healthcare administration jobs. On average, healthcare CIOs earn $164,187 per year, per ZipRecruiter reports on October 10, 2023.

Requirements to Become a Healthcare CIO

At most hospitals and healthcare facilities, CIOs must hold at least a master's degree. You can achieve this role with a Master of Business Administration (MBA), a Master of Computer Science, or a Master of Management Information Systems (MIS) degree.

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2. Hospital CEO - $158,844 Annually

What is a Hospital CEO?

A Hospital CEO, sometimes referred to as the Executive Director or President of a hospital or healthcare facility, is responsible for the “quality, safety, experience, care, community relations, financial performance” of a healthcare facility” according to an actual Hospital CEO, Michael Goldberg

Hospital CEO Salary

According to Payscale, the average annual salary* of a Hospital CEO in 2020 is $158,844. 

Requirements to Become a Hospital CEO

You need at least a master's degree to become a hospital CEO. Many professionals in this role hold either a Master of Healthcare Administration (MHA) degree or an MBA degree. Additionally, you’ll need robust management and leadership experience before taking on this position.

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3. Hospital CFO - $142,417 Annually

What is a Hospital CFO?

CFO stands for chief financial officer. Hospital CFOs are C-level healthcare professionals who manage the financial aspects of hospital administration. They deal with financial decision-making, weigh risks, manage budgets, and ensure that the hospital operates in a cost-effective way.

Hospital CFO Salary

The average hospital CFO salary is $142,417 per year, according to ZipRecruiter reports from October 10, 2023.

Requirements to Become a Hospital CFO

You'll need at least a master's degree to work as a hospital chief financial officer. Many professionals in this role hold degrees in healthcare administration or finance. You'll also need plentiful leadership and management experience to be a competitive candidate for hospital CFO positions.

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4. Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) - $140,760 Annually

What is a Chief Nursing Officer (CNO)?

A chief nursing officer (CNO) is a nonclinical administrative position within a healthcare system. They are considered the top-level nurse within an organization, and they oversee other nurses and the implementation of patient care.

CNO Salary

The average annual chief nursing officer salary is $140,760, according to Payscale.

Requirements to Become a Chief Nursing Officer

You'll need at least a Master's degree to work as a CNO. Typically, CNOs will hold an MHA or a Master of Nursing Leadership degree.

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5. Hospital Administrator - $125,280 Annually

What is a Hospital Administrator?

Hospital administrators are in charge of the entire hospital, a responsibility that places them among the highest-paying healthcare administration jobs. They oversee things like department and facility budgets, healthcare delivery efficiency, PR, and community outreach. 

Hospital administrators wear many hats as they oversee the business side of running a hospital and plan long-term strategy and patient care. Many hospital administrators also operate as the "face" of the hospital and work directly with other admin staff.

Hospital Administrator Salary

According to the BLS, the median average salary for medical and health services managers employed at hospitals is $125,280 annually. Hospital administrators generally start at somewhere around $100K for smaller hospitals and reach well beyond that for larger-scale operations. 

Requirements to Become a Hospital Administrator

You should accrue years of senior administration experience to become a competitive candidate for hospital administrator positions. In addition, you'll also need a master's-level education. Many hospital administrators hold an MHA or MBA degree.

6. Nursing Home Administrator - $111,301 Annually

What is a Nursing Home Administrator?

A nursing home administrator is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of a nursing home. In this role, you'll also conduct long-term planning, ensure the nursing home or facility meets legal requirements, and oversee and maintain fiscal operations.

Nursing Home Administrator Salary

The average nursing home administrator's salary is $111,301, per ZipRecruiter* reports. The bottom 25% earn $95,500, while the top 75% make as much as $130,000.

Requirements to Become a Nursing Home Administrator

Though not always required, employers often prefer candidates with direct patient care experience for nursing home administrator roles. For instance, many nursing home administrators begin as RNs in the nursing home they will eventually manage. 

Other nursing home administrators may be physician assistants, nurse practitioners, or physicians. In addition to experience, many nursing home administration roles also require a master's-level education.

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7. Clinical Informatics Manager - $103,706 Annually

What is a Clinical Informatics Manager?

Clinical informatics managers combine healthcare management with information technology. They oversee a healthcare facility's informatics program to ensure the secure storage and transmission of electronic health records. They also analyze data to identify and rectify healthcare delivery inefficiencies.

Clinical Informatics Manager Salary

On average, clinical informatics managers earn $103,706 per year, according to Payscale.

Requirements to Become a Clinical Informatics Manager

You'll need at least a bachelor's degree to work as a clinical informatics manager. However, many employers prefer master's-educated candidates. You should also gain robust experience in both healthcare and database management.

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8. Hospice Administrator - $98,937Annually

What is a Hospice Administrator?

As a hospice administrator, you will oversee a facility that specializes in hospice, comfort, and end-of-life care. In addition to all of the duties of a regular healthcare administrator, you must also be skilled in working with staff, patients, and family members around end-of-life care. This can include personal skills such as empathy, compassion, and self-care to deal with difficult emotions. 

Hospice Administrator Salary

According to Salary.com, hospice administrators make an average salary of $98,937 per year.

Hospice Administrator Requirements

Many hospice administrators have a nursing degree and license along with an MHA degree.

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9. Health Clinic Administrator - $93,170 Annually

What is a Health Clinic Administrator?

Health clinic administrator is a catch-all term that refers to all administrators in stand-alone clinic settings. These settings can be anything from a large cancer treatment center to a humble doctor's office. Since health clinic administrators can work in such vastly different environments, their roles, responsibilities, and salaries vary widely.

Health Clinic Administrator Salary

The BLS categorizes health clinic administration jobs under the "administrative services manager" umbrella. As of May 2022, administrative services managers working in healthcare (i.e. health clinic administrators) earned a median annual salary of around $93,170. 

However, salaries in this field will largely vary based on clinic size, geographical area, and clinic specialty. For example, a health clinic administrator at an urgent care facility may not earn as much as one who works at a plastic surgery clinic.

Requirements to Become a Health Clinic Administrator

Like nursing home administrators, many clinic administrators begin with direct patient care and move up to a managerial role. Employers may require candidates to hold an RN license and a master's degree.

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10. Government Agency Healthcare Administrator - $78,792 Annually

What is a Government Agency Healthcare Administrator?

Working specifically for a government medical agency--such as the Department of Human and Health Services or a military branch--can come with a lot of perks, such as tuition reimbursement, insurance, retirement, and more. 

Instead of dealing with patient care efficiency and equipment budgets, you will be overseeing agency operations. Duties include managing agency-wide operations, planning for future governmental programs, and overseeing budgets and staff. You may also be involved with community outreach, training, and speaking with the public, such as the updates that have been released during times of an outbreak.

Government Agency Healthcare Administrator Salary

Government agency healthcare administrators earn an average annual salary of $78,792, according to Glassdoor*, but can reach over $100,000 annually. 

Requirements to Become a Government Agency Healthcare Administrator

Most government healthcare administration roles will require a master’s or a doctorate degree. 

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What Do Healthcare Administrators Do?

In a healthcare admin role, your duties could include everything from:

  • Managing a team
  • Setting an annual budget
  • Working with providers to set business goals
  • Overseeing an administration team that carries out office tasks
  • Community Outreach
  • Recruiting and training new staff
  • Creating schedules for employees
  • Maintaining, organizing, and analyzing records
  • Participating in facility regulation
  • Improving the efficiency of healthcare services provided

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Where Do Healthcare Administrators Work?

With a healthcare administration degree, you can work in various settings, including:

  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Home care
  • Health services
  • Public health and community outreach
  • Private offices
  • Remote positions

The majority of healthcare administrators work in hospitals, followed by private offices, nursing and residential care facilities, and lastly, outpatient clinics. 

Most healthcare administrations also work full-time in traditional daytime 40-hour work weeks. However, many of these roles may also require some weekend, on-call, and holiday hours. 

How Much do Healthcare Administrators Make?

The highest-paying healthcare administrator jobs surpass $140,000 per year. Your hospital administration salary will depend largely on your role, where you work, your education level, and several other factors.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) classifies healthcare administration under “medical and health services managers.” On average, these workers earn $104,830 per year or $50.40 per hour. Not only do these wages surpass all other management careers, but they are more than double the average total median income of all other occupations.

But where you work can affect how much you earn - Here's a breakdown of how much medical health services managers earn by industry, per BLS reports:

  • Hospitals - $125,280
  • Government - $119,100
  • Outpatient Care - $101,890
  • Physicians Offices - $99,440
  • Nursing Homes & Residential Care - $93,610

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*The BLS reports a median national salary of $100,980 for Medical and Health Service Managers. However, they don't give specific salaries for many job titles within the healthcare administration field, so we've listed averages from other reputable sites. It’s important to know that these salaries are just estimates, and they can vary depending on the location in which you work.

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