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Health Service Administrator

Health service administrators plan, organize, direct, co-ordinate, and evaluate programs and services. They promote healthy lifestyles and provide health care services to individuals, groups, and communities.

  • Avg. Salary $100,755.00
  • Avg. Wage $52.74
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook above avg
  • Employed 3,500
  • In Demand High
Also Known As

Continuing Care Administrator, Executive Lead, Health Administrator, Health Authority, Hospital Administrator, Primary Care Administrator

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Managers in Health Care (0311) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Managers in Health Care (A321) 
  • 2011 NOC: Managers in health care (0311) 
  • 2016 NOC: Managers in health care (0311) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

Average Wage
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Interest Codes
The Health Service Administrator is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Managers in Health Care

Interest in co-ordinating information to direct, control and evaluate the delivery of health care services within departments and establishments; and in directing health care supervisors and professionals, and in recruiting health care staff


Interest in negotiating with a board of directors and senior managers to maintain and establish standards of health care; and in monitoring the use of diagnostic services, in-patient beds and facilities to ensure effective use of of resources


Interest in developing and implementing plans for new programs, special projects, new material and equipment acquisitions and future staffing levels for the departments and establishments

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Updated Mar 31, 2018

Health service administrators may be in charge of an entire organization or a specific location. They may manage one or more programs or departments within an organization. In general, they:

  • develop plans, policies, and processes for health or wellness programs and services. These can apply to a:
    • single organization
    • group of organizations
    • larger entity such as a health authority
  • design organizational structures
  • recruit, develop, retain, and manage staff
  • advise leadership or the governing body on policy and operating matters (such as helping to develop the mission statement)
  • ensure compliance with laws, regulations, and policies (such as safety and professional standards of practice)
  • develop and maintain effective working relations with:
    • other health and wellness entities
    • governments
    • professional associations and unions
    • the media
    • other stakeholders in the health care system.
  • carry out operating plans and manage budgets
  • provide effective leadership (so the organization can fulfill its goals and objectives)
  • promote professional development among personnel
  • promote public understanding of health, wellness, and health services.
Working Conditions
Updated Mar 31, 2018

In general, health service administrators work in an office setting. They rarely work regular office hours. They often attend meetings or complete tasks beyond the 8-hour workday.

They may need to travel between sites or programs within the organization and to other health service organizations.

Health service administrators ensure their organization is effective. They must ensure the utmost quality in the programs and services they provide. At times the work can be stressful.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Health service administrators need to possess:

  • people skills
  • the ability to be very well organized
  • the ability to listen, speak, and write well (including public speaking)
  • the ability to work well with others
  • leadership and team-building skills
  • the ability to build consensus
  • excellent negotiation skills.

They should enjoy:

  • community engagement
  • co-ordinating information
  • directing the work of others
  • negotiating with governing boards and senior managers
  • fundraising activities
  • developing, implementing and evaluating plans.
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2018

There are no standard education requirements. They vary with the position, size, and nature of the health service organization. Employers may promote from within the organization or hire applicants who have related post-secondary education or certification.

Health service administrators need both education and experience. Those with a background in medicine, pharmacy, nursing, or accounting may take continuing education courses in health service administration or management. Those with graduate degrees in health management most often start in junior admin positions and get on-the-job experience in not-for-profit organizations.

There are many education options for Albertans interested in this field. For example:

  • The Canadian College of Health Leaders (CCHL) offers an online Certified Health Executive (CHE) program. Candidates have up to three years to successfully complete the program. Applicants must:
    • be members of the College in good standing
    • hold a master’s degree with at least 2 years of experience in Canadian health leadership or a bachelor’s degree with at least 5 years of experience
    • demonstrate educational and professional advancement through a Prior Learning Assessment Recognition (PLAR).

Certified members must take part in the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program.

  • The Canadian Healthcare Association (CHA) learning department offers a 2-year distance education program. Successful completion leads to a Health Services Management certificate. Applicants must hold a management position in a health organization. CHA also offers other management programs for:
    • those new to management roles
    • senior managers in long-term care organizations
    • those in quality and risk management.

Programs include one-week intramural classes held in Ottawa every April. CHA Learning has an agreement with Athabasca University regarding articulation credits for some programs.

Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Athabasca University

NorQuest College

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

For a list of health leadership-related master’s programs, see the CCHL Strategic Alliances and Partners web page. For a list of health leadership-related certificate programs, see the CCHL Certification web page.  

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Certification is not required, as there is currently no legislation regulating this occupation.

Those interested in a role as a health administrator may also become certified in:

  • leadership
  • lean process improvement
  • safety
  • public policy
  • other areas relevant to health leadership.
Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Health service administrators work for:

  • regional health authorities
  • public health organizations
  • primary care networks
  • academic institutes
  • specialty hospitals and acute care hospitals
  • ambulatory care units
  • multilevel care facilities
  • continuing care facilities
  • mental health units
  • rehab agencies
  • health planning agencies
  • health associations
  • health charities and foundations
  • government departments
  • private consulting companies
  • military hospitals and clinics.

Some administrators start in junior positions and advance to senior management. Others start in small not-for-profits and move on to senior positions in larger organizations.

Health service administrators are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 0311: Managers in health care. In Alberta, 88% of people employed in this classification work in the Health Care and Social Assistance [pdf] industry.

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events that affect overall employment (especially in the Health Care and Social Assistance industry)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities that come up when people leave existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities that come up when new positions are created)
  • size of the occupation.

In Alberta, the 0311: Managers in health care occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 3.7% from 2019 to 2023. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 112 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

NOC groups often include several related occupations. Although there is labour market data for the larger NOC group, this occupation makes up only a part of that group. It means data for this occupation may be different than the data shown. For example, only some of the 112 new positions to be created will be for this occupation. It also applies to other data for the NOC group such as number of people employed.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Salaries for health service administrators vary greatly depending on the size and nature of the health service organization and the administrator’s qualifications and experience.

Managers in health care

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $21.69 $48.53 $34.23 $30.17
Overall $35.00 $66.89 $52.74 $54.63
Top $37.00 $92.48 $68.08 $69.09

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.

Industry Information
Public Administration
Health Care & Social Assistance

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years


Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties


Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months


Vacancy Rate

Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Health Care and Medical Sciences
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 31, 2018

Canadian College of Health Leaders (CCHL) website:

HealthCareCAN website:

Get information and referrals about career, education, and employment options from Alberta Supports.

Updated Mar 31, 2018. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook, and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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