Healthcare Administration Certification
By an allied health world contributing writer
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What types of specialty certifications are available in this field?
There are a variety of specialty certificates available that can increase the marketability of administrators and managers. One certification specifically for healthcare managers or administrators is the Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives distinction (FACHE). To be eligible to sit for this exam, one must meet the following criteria: possess a master's or higher level of post Bach degree, currently work in a healthcare management position, have at least five years of healthcare management experience, have been a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives for at least three years, have three references from current Fellows, have 40 hours of continuing education earned in the past five years, and have participated in at least two healthcare related and two community or civic activities.
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In addition to the above-mentioned criteria, to earn the FACHE distinction, one must pass the Board of Governor's Exam. This exam includes 230 questions focused on the following knowledge areas: governance and organizational structure, finance, healthcare technology and information management, quality and performance improvement, laws and regulations, professionalism and ethics, healthcare, management, and business. Each exam question has four possible answers, only one being correct.
In addition to the FACHE distinction, health information managers can earn other certifications more specific to their job. For example, the Registered Health Information Administrator credential from the American Health Information Management Association may be a good choice for a health information manager. To earn this credential, a bachelor's degree and passing a certification exam are required.
Are continuing education units required in this field?
The only individuals who must maintain continuing education units are those who have the Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives designation. These individuals must renew their certifications every three years by participating in two or more healthcare activities and at least two community or civic activities. In addition, the individual must have completed 24 continuing education hours since their last recertification or in lieu of CEUs they may retake the Board of Governor's Exam.
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Is a state licensure required to work as a healthcare administrator or manager?
For those who are employed in nursing care facilities, a bachelor's degree and license is required. To become licensed each state issues a licensing exam. Some states also require a license for those who work in assisted living facilities.
But areas outside of nursing care and assisted living facilities do not require any type of state licensure credential or national certification with the exception of Puerto Rico. A licensure is required to practice as a healthcare administrator in Puerto Rico. In all other states certification is voluntary through national organizations such as the American College for Healthcare Executives.