What Does a Hospital Manager Do? (With Duties and Salary)

Updated 26 March 2023

A hospital requires a team of skilled administrators to supervise operations and manage the institution efficiently. Hospital managers often work with the hospital's administrative teams to plan and coordinate health care services. If you want to work in a medical facility but not directly with patients, you may want to know more about a hospital manager's role. In this article, we answer, "What does a hospital manager do?" and outline the skills, qualifications, average salary and other details of this profession.

What does a hospital manager do?

A hospital manager, also referred to as a hospital administrator, plays a crucial role in managing the hospital's day-to-day operations. They oversee daily work processes, devise departmental strategies, manage the infrastructure and employees and plan the finances and budget of the facility. They are responsible for the hospital's fiscal performance and the welfare of patients. They coordinate with employees of various departments to ensure that each patient receives the best care and treatment.

These professionals also play a vital role in the top-level decision-making process of a hospital. They define the overall strategy of the health care facility to improve operational efficiency, streamline costs, increase revenues and dispense the best patient care. Hospital managers also ensure that the facility complies with national and state-wide health laws and policies. They attend various health care industry events, like conferences to keep themselves and their team updated with the latest health care procedures and regulations. They also hold staff meetings and execute training programs for employees of all levels.

Related: How To Become a Hospital Administrator: A Complete Guide

Day-to-day tasks of a hospital manager

The day-to-day tasks of hospital administrators vary based on the size of the healthcare facility, setting and services. Here are some of the typical duties of a hospital manager:

  • manage the hiring, training and performance of hospital staff

  • serve as a liaison between the staff, management and patients

  • design and implement short, medium and long-term goals for the medical facility

  • frame budgets and operational strategy for each department

  • oversee the finances of the hospital, including setting the rates for various health services, budgeting and revenue monitoring

  • raise funds for the healthcare facility via fundraising events and community partnerships

  • streamline the operational procedures of the facility to provide patients with the best care

  • develop new policies for the hospital to improve patient experience and satisfaction

  • oversee the progress of research (if done) at the hospital

  • ensure compliance with various government policies and legal regulations

  • manage the insurance reimbursement for patients by ensuring tie-ups with insurance providers

  • ensure the security and safety of patient healthcare records and other facility data

  • communicate with doctors, specialists, nurses, ward attendants and vendors

  • educate the general public on important health issues via campaigns and community events

What skills do you require to become a hospital manager?

Recruiters often look for candidates with the following skills:

  • Data analysis skills: to handle healthcare records and patient data analytics

  • Communication skills: to effectively connect and engage with employees at all levels and patients

  • Analytical skills: to understand and comply with current healthcare policies and regulations

  • Leadership skills: to motivate employees to deliver their best for patient care

  • Managerial skills: to hire, train and delegate tasks to the right staff and to develop creative solutions to staffing and patient issues

  • Crisis management skills: to effectively handle any issues without damaging the institution's reputation

  • Media skills: to represent the institution positively in both online and offline platforms

Related: Management Skills: Definition and Examples

Which course is best to become a health care administrator?

Most health care facilities recruit managers with a master's degree in health care management, hospital administration or a related field. You can still become a hospital manager with an MBA in any stream if you have sufficient work experience in a health care facility. Here are some of the courses you can pursue to build your career as a hospital manager:

  • Bachelor in Hospital Administration (BHA): It is a three-year undergraduate program available at numerous universities and colleges. To join this course, a candidate requires a minimum of 50% aggregate marks in 10+2, with biology as a primary subject.

  • Master of Hospital Administration (MHA): It is a two-year postgraduate program available to graduates with a bachelor's degree in any science stream. The admission is carried on the basis of an entrance exam and marks obtained in the UG course.

  • MBA in Hospital and Health Care Management: You can pursue an MBA specialising in healthcare management after completing a UG degree in any discipline. The duration is the same as other MBA programs (two years), and you can join the course after taking a management entrance exam.

  • MBA in Hospital Administration: This is another specialised MBA program that is perfect for candidates interested in a career as a hospital administrator. You can join this course after completing a bachelor's degree in any discipline.

  • PG Diploma in Hospital and Health Management: This is a one-year postgraduation diploma course offered to candidates with a bachelor's degree in hospital management, hospital administration, pharmacy, dental or other related medical streams.

  • PhD in Hospital Administration: Candidates with a master's degree in hospital administration can pursue a doctorate program. On average, it takes three to seven years to complete a PhD.

Related: What Is a Medical Officer? (Plus How To Become One)

What are the requirements to be a hospital manager?

The actual requirements may vary from one health care facility to another. Here are some of the common requirements that most hospitals look for:

  • a master's degree in health care administration, business administration or a postgraduate diploma in hospital and health management

  • previous experience working in a health care facility or senior management in a similar organisation

  • knowledge of the hospital and health care industry with familiarity in medical terminology

  • hands-on experience working with spreadsheets and other data analysis tools

  • familiarity with medical transcription

  • in-depth understanding of various health care regulations and laws

  • ability to supervise and lead a large team of professionals from various departments

Hospital manager specialisations

Generally, hospital managers oversee the functioning of all departments in a health care facility. In contrast, administrators can also specialise in specific areas like:

  • Patient management: This involves handling everything related to the patients in a hospital. It includes guiding patients with their payment options, overseeing medical insurance claims and other patient-related government regulations.

  • Informatics: Hospital administrators specialising in informatics are responsible for efficiently storing, securing and utilising patient data. They have a strong grasp of IT and data analysis.

  • Law and public policy: Administrators with a specialisation in law and public policy are responsible for making sure that the facility complies with the governmental laws and regulations. Most administrators with this specialisation also hold a degree in law.

  • Finance: Hospital administrators with finance specialisation handle the budgeting, purchasing and forecasting of the financial operations of the facility. They often hold a bachelor's or master's degree in accounting or finance.

Read More: 12 Best MBA Specialisations To Help You Advance Your Career

How is the work environment of a hospital manager?

Hospital managers usually have a private office in a hospital or health care facility. They can either work independently or as part of a team of hospital administrators. Generally, hospital managers begin their workday in their private office, reviewing the immediate tasks before them. They then visit various departments to interact with doctors and patients to understand the overall functioning of the hospital.

Hospitals are fast-paced environments that operate round-the-clock, and hospital managers generally have long working hours to meet the hectic demands of the health care business. They usually have a fully-packed schedule that extends beyond the traditional workweek. Sometimes, the hospital requires them to work during the weekends, holidays and nights. Even when they are not working, they are always on-call to handle any emergencies. Despite the long working hours, the satisfaction administrators get from helping numerous patients keeps them motivated.

Salary of a hospital manager

Administrators working in big cities usually earn more than those who work in smaller or rural hospitals. The average salary of a hospital manager is ₹23,170 per month. Location plays a crucial role in determining the salary of hospital administrators. For example, the average monthly salary of a hospital manager in Delhi is ₹61,407, while the average salary of a hospital manager in Bhopal is ₹20,857 monthly. The salary increases as the candidate gains work experience and advances to more senior positions in the health care facility.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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