Whether you’re currently working as a healthcare administrator or you’re studying to become one—in a Master of Health Administration (MHA) or related graduate degree program—it’s essential to connect with your peers. Joining a professional organization for healthcare administrators will keep you current with trends in the healthcare industry and give you access to networking, information-sharing, and educational opportunities. Each organization charges annual membership dues, but think of those as an investment in your career. Here are seven top national associations to consider, each with a different area of focus. See which one might be the best fit for you.
We’ve Compiled a List For You
For more than 85 years, ACHE has been focused on advancing leaders in the field of healthcare management. Members are automatically enrolled in one of the 78 regional chapters, which offer education programs, career advancement resources, and volunteer opportunities to get more involved as a healthcare leader in the local community. ACHE produces the annual Congress on Healthcare Leadership, where more than 4,000 participants gather to hear about groundbreaking research, policy updates, and innovations presented by their peers. ACHE is also among the largest publishers of books and journals on health services management, including textbooks and the magazine Healthcare Executive. The organization is committed to educating, engaging, and inspiring its members as they lead within hospitals, healthcare organizations, and health systems.
2. Financial managers:
Founded in 1968, AAHAM provides information, education, and advocacy for professionals involved in the healthcare revenue cycle, including data management and medical records. The organization hosts an annual conference and administers certification exams in the areas of executive leadership, revenue management, and compliance. Through AAHAM’s 30 local chapters, members have the chance to network with others in their area and discuss local challenges and resources. AAHAM publishes the quarterly Journal of Healthcare Administrative Management, as well as Legislative Currents, an online journal about legislative issues affecting healthcare revenue management. It also manages an online job bank and membership directory. Members become eligible for certifications, get invited to special events, and can benefit from AAHAM’s scholarship and awards program.
3. Information managers:
With more than 103,000 members, AHIMA is the premier association of health information management (HIM) professionals. AHIMA advocates for the HIM profession, serves as a thought leader in the world of HIM, and has led the development of information governance principles for healthcare. AHIMA’s training seminars and summits are a resource for current information and training in coding, privacy, security, data analytics, and documentation. Member benefits include earning AHIMA credentials, attending association events, and networking with HIM professionals.
4. Finance and operations professionals:
HFMA is an organization for finance and operations professionals working in hospitals, insurance companies, physician practices, and other healthcare settings. Members gain access to conferences, seminars, eLearning courses, certification opportunities, and more. Full-time faculty and students are eligible for Academic memberships, which provide access to the same resources that Professional membership offers—but at discounted prices. HFMA helps its community of 43,000 professionals understand and influence industry changes.
5. Patient access professionals:
NAHAM is the association for patient access professionals, with a job board, a quarterly journal, education with certification options, and webinars that keep members current on technology and news in the field. At NAHAM’s Annual Conference and through its Access Forum and listserv, members can network and exchange ideas with their peers from diverse settings across the country. They can take advantage of NAHAM AccessKeys®, a tool that helps professionals monitor their organization’s performance across six patient access domains. NAHAM Toolkits are helpful resources about topics such as patient experience, patient identity integrity, and more.
6. Executive assistants:
The AHCAP is an organization for executive assistants, administrative assistants, and other professionals who support our nation’s healthcare leaders. Its vision is for administrative professionals to be recognized as leaders who support and strengthen the delivery of healthcare. The AHCAP advances the professional development of administrators through conferences, education, advocacy, and networking.
7. Insurance professionals:
HCAA’s mission is to support third-party administrators (TPAs) and the self-funded insurance industry through state and federal lobbying efforts. It supports the education, networking, and advocacy needs of TPAs, stop-loss insurance carriers, managing general underwriters, audit firms, pharmacy benefit managers, brokers/agents, human resource managers, plan sponsors, and related professionals. HCAA holds two conferences each year: the Executive Forum and the TPA Summit.
USAHS offers a Master of Health Administration (MHA) program designed for working healthcare professionals who want to improve systems of finance, informatics, operations, policy, and other key functions of healthcare organizations. The program is taught online, with optional on-campus immersion weekends (scheduled to resume in 2022) and an optional internship. Whether you choose the traditional or accelerated track—or our specializations in Executive Leadership, Business Intelligence, or Interprofessional Education—you will gain real-life experience and expand your professional network. During your capstone project, you will work with an industry mentor.