Making Your Way in Health Care

A reader looking to enter the field wonders what academic credentials are necessary and how best to target the job search

Q: I am an African-American man with a Master's in health administration, a post-graduate certificate in health-plan management, and 13 years' experience in managed care. Most of my experience has been in sales and marketing. But to broaden my background, I've worked in operations for quite some time now.

I'm considering getting a PhD. in health-care administration. But I've been told that an MBA would be a better investment if I'm interested in climbing up the corporate ladder. My goal is to eventually run a consumer health-services company or consumer-products company focusing on health care for the underserved population.

The areas I like most are product development and marketing. Could you tell me what opportunities exist for someone with my background and experience? Also, what would be the best path for reaching my goal? I want to stay in health care but not managed care. -- F.J., Southfield, Mich.


You're in luck. Health care is a fast-growing field where good jobs are expected to abound as the U.S. population ages -- and people need more professionals like you to take care of them. For instance, a government report released earlier this year predicts that the demand for medical- and health-services managers will increase 32% by 2010.

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