Healthcare Management Salary: How Much Will I Earn with an MHA?

Still debating whether or not a Masters of Healthcare Administration degree is worth the investment? Consider this. In a highly competitive job market, a master’s degree will help you stand out from the competition. It will prove that you have the skills, dedication and acumen it takes to command the senior level executive positions that not only hold the most responsibilities, but pay the highest salaries. On average, master’s degree holders report a 25% higher income than those with only a bachelor’s degree.

Masters of Healthcare Administration Salary Factors

The degree to which a MHA will influence a salary depends on a number of factors:

  • Location – Annual mean wages for healthcare occupations vary widely in different states and cities. In 2010, a BLS study revealed that the top paying states for Medical and Health Services Managers were Massachusetts, Washington, Rhode Island, New York and Connecticut. The top paying Metropolitan areas for the same profession were San Jose, Madera, Boston, Rochester, and Tacoma.
  • Size – Larger hospitals pay more competitive salaries than smaller healthcare organizations.
  • Level of responsibilitiesHospital CEOs (who almost always hold a MHA degree) make up to $245,000 dollars, whereas Medical and Health Services Managers make up to $90,000.
  • Working experience – The salary of a hospital CEO with 4 years of experience ranges from $59,495 to $150,117, while a CEO with 20 years + experience makes between $115,553 to $245,774.

Some of the highest paying healthcare executive jobs are:

  • Hospital CFO – Hospital’s chief financial officers can make up to $257,000 per year. CFO’s with a masters report an average of 14% higher income than those without.
  • Hospital CIO – Chief Information Officers, who regulate all data that passes through a healthcare organization, make anywhere from $100,000 to $300,000 per year, depending on the size of the organization.
  • Nurse Administrator – Nursing administrators, responsible for overseeing nursing staff, can make well over $100,000 a year.

Additional Ways a MHA Affects Salary

  1. Stronger networking – Don’t underestimate the power of a strong network. The people you meet in your MHA program will lead to future career, partnership and business opportunities, as you meet students who are also destined to become healthcare leaders and executives in the future.
  2. Professional development – MHA students are required to take discipline specific, advanced coursework that prepare them for specialized roles in management. Coursework is also combined with analytical, leadership, time management and critical thinking skills that prepare students for upper level management.
Industry Pay
Hospital Pay
Base Total Cash Base Total Cash
    Independent $647 $795 $440 $470
    Subsidiary $500 $553 $326 $383
COO $382 $430 $265 $297
    Independent $368 $417 $257 $265
    Subsidiary $281 $329 $196 $219
CMO $363 $412 $300 $330
CIO $270 $301 $194 $216
Head of patient care $211 $236 $183 $200
Head of nursing $222 $249 $177 $195
Head of human resources $232 $257 $160 $169
Head of quality improvement (nonMD) $132 $140 $106 $108
Head of professional services $205 $232 $174 $186
Head of ambulatory services $151 $159 $123 $123
Head of service line N/A N/A $147 $175
Head of support services $182 $200 $159 $172
Head of corporate development $227 $260 $210 $210
Head of managed care $184 $189 $132 $135

Source: American College of Healthcare Executives

Related Articles to Salary, Healthcare Executive Pay