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Comparing MBA Online Degrees for Healthcare Professionals: MBA-HCA vs. MBA



If you’re in the health care field and want to advance your career, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) may be the step up you need. Take a moment to learn about MBA options for medical professionals, including a health care MBA and other valuable MBA concentrations.

Keep scrolling to read "Comparing MBA Online Degrees for Healthcare Professionals: MBA-HCA vs. MBA" or complete the form to download a PDF version! 


Chapter 1

Why Should Health Care Professionals Consider an MBA?

Determining whether to go back to college is a big decision, but it’s well worth considering in many cases. By going back to school, you can:

Open up new opportunities

If you’re not entirely satisfied with your current work situation, a new degree can help you gain access to new, exciting opportunities. These programs sharpen in-demand skills and broaden your understanding of business and leadership.

Clinical roles can be demanding, and although this profession may have fit your lifestyle and passions at one point, it’s perfectly understandable if your priorities and desires shift over time. By moving into an administrative role within health care, you can still enjoy working in the field you love while operating in a role that better fits your current lifestyle and career goals.

Increase your earning potential.

As you boost your credentials and qualify for more advanced roles, you can also increase your earning potential. Earning an MBA can be a great way to meet your financial goals and take on these advanced roles with confidence. 

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for registered nurses is $77,600, whereas the median salary for medical and health service managers is $101,340. That’s a significant difference of $23,740. An MBA can help you qualify for various roles with high-earning potential.

Chapter 2

MBA in Health Care Administration

There are various MBA programs you can pursue to meet your career goals. In many cases, the best choice for health care professionals is an MBA in Health Care Administration (MBA-HCA). This degree is tailored to the medical field, so it is the ideal fit if you want to apply business skills in a health care context.

Professionals outside the health care industry may also consider enrolling in an MBA-HCA program. For example, you may have a business background that you want to apply in a health care setting. Many educational and professional backgrounds can lead you to a health care MBA.

The MBA-HCA Program

The MBA-HCA Program at Mount Vernon Nazarene University (MVNU) consists of 12 courses, including six general business courses and six health care courses. These courses cover vital industry-specific topics such as health care management, health care leadership, and the legal aspects of health care organizations.

The program takes 19 months to complete online. However, learners are able to expedite graduation with MVNU Online’s Fast-Track option, which enables learners to shorten program completion to 11 or 15 months (depending on the selected MBA program). It is possible to comfortably manage your MBA-HCA degree alongside other responsibilities. Many students continue to work while earning their MBA-HCA degree.

What You Can Do with a Health Care MBA

An MBA in health care management or administration equips professionals with practical skills to prepare them for administrative positions in health care. For example, with an MBA-HCA, you could: 

  • Manage and oversee operations at a hospital, medical practice, home health agency, or clinical laboratory.
  • Direct and coordinate a specific program or department in a health care organization.
  • Lead and organize public health programs and campaigns.
  • Research and evaluate health-related policies.
  • Oversee drug development as a pharmaceutical project manager.
  • Serve as a health care consultant, providing organizations with medically informed legal and business advice.
  • Start a new business as a medical entrepreneur.

According to the BLS, demand for medical and health services managers—which encompasses many of the roles above—is growing at a rate of 32 percent over the course of 2020-30. That is significantly faster than the average growth for all careers!

With so many types of health care organizations and leadership roles available, the possibilities are endless for a motivated professional with an MBA-HCA qualification.

Chapter 3

Other MBA Options for Healthcare Professionals

The MBA-HCA isn’t the only option that is relevant to healthcare. In fact, there are several other MBA concentrations to consider depending on the specific area in which you would like to work.

These programs include nine core business courses and three courses focused on the area of concentration. These programs do not include courses focused on health care, but they can equip professionals for business roles that are critical to health care organizations.

Let’s look at some of the best MBA concentrations to consider outside of the MBA-HCA:

Organizational Management

An MBA in Organizational Management is a great general option if you want to focus more on business and leadership skills without dedicating courses to health care topics.

This MBA program is a strategic choice if you want to earn an advanced qualification that could help you in health care, but also want to keep your options open in case you choose to look for an opportunity outside of health care. Organizational management skills are useful in a variety of industries.


An MBA in Accounting is a great option if you’re good with numbers and want to move into an accounting role within health care or another space. Demand for accountants is expected to grow 7 percent from 2020-30, according to the BLS. 

Medical accountants serve an important role in various health care settings, including hospitals, medical offices, and more. These professionals oversee incoming and outgoing finances, ensuring financial bookkeeping, billing, and taxes are accurate and comply with relevant regulations. These responsibilities are also critical in most other organizations, giving you flexibility.


Another popular MBA concentration in the quantitative arena is finance. These degree-holders can take on roles including financial manager, financial analyst, budget analyst, or even chief financial officer. In particular, demand for financial managers is growing at a rapid rate of 17 percent from 2020-30.

Whereas accounting focuses on day-to-day financial operations, finance tends to be more focused on future-oriented financial strategies to help a company grow. As with accounting, medical facilities and companies of all sorts need finance experts who understand their industry. These professionals can help them manage their finances efficiently to help them deliver quality care and enjoy a thriving business in the process.

Business Data Analytics

If you enjoy working with data, an MBA with a concentration in business data analytics is a great option. Data analysts can hold a variety of titles. According to BLS, both market research analysts and operations research analysts are in high demand, with job outlooks growing by 22 percent and 25 percent from 2020-30, respectively. 

In a health care context, properly collecting, storing, and analyzing data is critical to individual organizations and broader research initiatives. For example, you could serve on a medical research team and contribute to advancing the field through big data. 

Chapter 4

Why Choose MVNU for Your Health Care MBA Online Degree?

Whether you pursue an MBA in Health Care Administration or another MBA program, MVNU is an institution you can trust for a quality online education that helps you meet your personal and professional goals.

Feel valued.

As a Nazarene school, our faith undergirds the coursework, community, and values our students experience. Our online learners are never treated as just another number in the system but instead as valuable members of a rich and thriving learning community.

Receive support.

With small class sizes and faculty and staff who are actively involved, you can feel well supported throughout your educational journey. Our faculty are not just researchers—they are focused on instruction. Some are even actively working in the field, allowing them to share their on-the-job insights and experiences.

Enjoy flexibility.

MVNU provides online MBA degree programs that are flexible enough to fit your schedule, even if you’re still working. Asynchronous learning allows adult learners to complete coursework when it fits their schedule rather than making time for live classes. Earn your degree in a way that suits your lifestyle.


Apply Now to Get Started Earning Your MBA

An MBA can help you gain a leg up in your health care career. Explore graduate programs from MVNU to find the degree and concentration that best fits your interests and goals, and apply now to get started!

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