Job Family: Business Administration and Operations Health Services Administrators
Services Offering this Occupation
Army  | Navy  | Air Force  | Coast Guard

Supplemental Information
Photo 1:
Manager conducts inspection. Photo 2: Nurse administrator conducts training.

Short Description
In hospitals and clinics, all of the departments – emergency, X-ray, nursing, maintenance, administration, and food service – must work together to provide quality health care. Health services administrators manage hospitals, clinics, and other health care facilities. They also manage individual departments or specific health care programs within a hospital.


What They Do
Health services administrators in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Direct the operations of support departments, such as maintenance, food services, or administration
  • Develop and manage budgets for health care facilities or programs
  • Meet with hospital department heads to plan services and keep the health care facility running smoothly
  • Direct personnel activities, such as hiring, employee evaluation, staff development, and recordkeeping
  • Plan for delivering health services during emergencies and test these plans during exercises
  • Direct the day-to-day operations of the nursing department

Helpful Attributes
Helpful attributes include:
  • Ability to express ideas clearly and concisely
  • Interest in health care
  • Interest in planning and directing the work of others
  • Interest in working closely with people

Training Provided
Job training is provided for some specialties in this occupation. This training consists of classroom instruction and practical exercises. Course content typically includes:
  • Planning and directing health services
  • Patient unit management
  • Nursing service administration

Work Environment
Health services administrators work in hospitals, clinics, and other health care facilities. Most work at facilities on land, but some work aboard hospital ships and ships with large sick bays.


Civilian Counterparts
Civilian health services administrators usually work for hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, health maintenance organizations (HMOs), or other health care facilities. They may also work for colleges and universities, public health agencies, insurance companies, or health management firms. Civilian health services administrators perform duties similar to those performed in the military. Depending on the programs or facilities they manage, civilian health services administrators may also be called hospital administrators, nursing services directors, emergency medical services coordinators, and outpatient services directors.

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