Home » Healthcare » Health Management » Master of Health Management Online in Australia

Master of Health Management Online in Australia

Prepare for greater job responsibilities in health care with a 100% online postgraduate degree.

Hospital staff walking and talking


A Master of Health Management is a 12-subject postgraduate program for professionals seeking senior roles in Australia's healthcare industry. Graduates gain the skills and qualifications to be considered for positions where they manage people, patient services, and organisational units.

Classes are generally made up of working professionals, such as registered nurses, midwives, social workers, occupational therapists, and speech pathologists. From across healthcare organisations and professions, individuals take the course to enhance their career prospects.

In studying for this degree, you learn management strategies. You're also likely to orient towards a leadership mindset in your professional life. The curriculum combines the challenges of healthcare with essential administration skills, preparing you to manage and lead effectively.

Related: What Is Health Service Management?

Choose Your Specialisation

Although master's degrees in health management are generally well-rounded, you can focus on a specific field of study through electives and specialisations. Strengthen specific aspects of your skill set while building core managerial knowledge and skills for use in healthcare organisations.

(a) Health Information Management

Illustration of medical staff inspecting charts

Collecting quality health data and using it well is a focus area when you do a Masters in Health Information Management. As part of the degree, you may study topics such as health informatics, data analysis, and managing information systems. With the expansion of healthcare data sets, demand is stronger than ever for data and information wrangling expertise.

(b) Health Leadership and Management

Smiling healthcare professional consulting with young woman

A Masters in Health Leadership and Management gives you the opportunity to gain highly transferable skills. Rather than specialising in a particular niche within the health sector, you learn strategies for roles such as organising teams, leading change, managing finances, and handling disputes.

A Masters in Health Service Management is similar to other Masters in Healthcare, though tending to emphasise "service". In other words, you may study health administration from a consumer perspective. The consumer – whether a patient, client or facility resident – deserves safety and high service standards. Services must also be accessible and affordable. Managers must therefore balance several competing priorities... READ MORE

Registered nurses and midwives can major in leadership and management as part of an online nursing master's degree. Students explore topics such as leading and managing in a healthcare setting, health systems and change, ethics in health care, and finance for a health manager. The program is designed for nurses but still represents general administration training... READ MORE

What You'll Study (Course Structure)

Masters of Health Management programs consist of 12 subjects normally, including core subjects and elective units. You can major or minor in certain specialisations by choosing enough electives from the relevant study stream. Here are topics you can expect as core subjects in Australian healthcare manager courses.

  1. Health systems. Design of health systems in Australia, including funding, politics, trends and policies.
  2. Epidemiology. Study of disease occurrence, distribution, and determinants in populations.
  3. Management and leadership. Development of leadership and managerial capabilities in patient service organisations.
  4. Financial management. Budgeting, allocation of resources for clinical and other staff, and financial literacy.
  5. Quality and risk. Patient care quality, risk understanding, and use of safety measures.
  6. Health law. Legal and ethical considerations, including patient rights and data privacy.

A health management degree balances the exploration of health-specific issues with the development of general business administration skills. It is ideal for professionals committed to the health industry but also keen to gain broader management perspectives and practical skills.

Related: What Degree is Best for Healthcare Management?

What People are Saying About the Program

Claire Harris
Claire Harris, who completed a Master of Health Service Management online, unlocked extra gears in her thinking and confidence, saying, "To step into a more senior leadership role, I always knew I would have to complete a master's degree. ... It really gives you that step up into another arena of more strategic thinking, stronger leadership skills, and a better understanding of why our healthcare systems are put together the way they are."
Alana Hooi

Alana Hooi, an RN and Compliance and Clinical Services Co-ordinator, had a clear purpose in studying for her Masters of Health Management online, remarking, "I started this course to give me a more well-rounded experience moving into the management stream. Leadership is inherent in your personality and in your experience, but I think management is a learned skill. We see a lot of leaders in healthcare that come up through the ranks. They make wonderful leaders but not always the best managers. I really wanted to be a great leader while also being a good manager."

Dr Andrew Lancaster

Comments from Lerna Courses Director Andrew Lancaster: I believe higher education offers enormous benefits for almost any aspiring health manager. Achieving your potential in a different phase of your career sometimes requires a significant mindshift, and learning outside your workplace. Your previous and current managers can serve as useful role models, both good and bad, but there is a bigger world out there.

Healthcare is a practical and people-orientated field that naturally produces good managers, in my opinion. But extra training is required. You may, for example, lack skills in areas such as finance, and strategic planning. Achieving optimal organisational performance goes well beyond the people skills needed to manage a team.

From my years spent in Canberra, at times working alongside the top public servants in the country, I can say that the best managers do have extra knowledge and insight. Moreover, I'm certain these abilities were cultivated with the help of postgraduate education. I could see the benefit of formal study in the fluency with which leaders would converse on management topics, and the confidence they had from applying proven strategies.

Career Opportunities and Salaries

Job opportunities are abundant in health coordination and organisation. The National Skills Commission projects employment of Health and Welfare Services Managers in Australia will experience 26.5% growth over the five years to 2027. Graduates work in public and private healthcare practices, including fields such as aged care, allied health, dentistry, medical science, medicine, nursing, paramedicine, physiotherapy and public health.

Some of the different types of roles you could are to: manage a hospital department or health practice, manage health data and information services, develop public health policy, plan staff development and performance assessment, manage risks, and design health services delivery.

The future for healthcare management in Australia looks bright with promising job prospects. Clinic Coordinators typically earn around $93,485, while Nurse Managers have an average salary of $122,352. Practice Managers come in at an average of $80,977.

Source: Is Health Services Management a Good Career?

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements vary by program. But you're generally expected to have a healthcare background, with relevant qualifications and/or experience.

If you seek entry based on academic qualifications, your bachelor degree or higher qualification may need to be in a health or human services field. Likewise, for course admission based on professional experience, you should have worked extensively in healthcare or human services.

† Online courses are available in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Gold Coast, Newcastle. Australia-wide.