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Health > Under the Rainbow9/30/09 IS Online

Ahead of the Class

UH West O‘ahu offers Hawai‘i’s only undergraduate degree in health care administration.

By Craig DeSilva

Hawai‘i faces a growing number of issues in the health care industry, including how to care for the state’s rapidly aging population.

To prepare health care administrators for these challenges, the University of Hawai‘i West O‘ahu offers a bachelor of arts degree in public administration with a concentration in health care administration. The program, which began last fall, is the only undergraduate health care administration program in the state. It’s intended to address the increasing need for health care administrators as well as provide career development for current administrators wanting to advance into management positions.

“There’s a demand for more health care managers in Hawai‘i,” says Kristina Guo, Ph.D., director of the health care administration program. “We need a workforce to meet the needs of the large number of elders and people aging in Hawai‘i.”

Guo says the program prepares students to work in a variety of health care settings, including hospitals and long-term care facilities. The curriculum is designed to further their understanding of local and national health care issues and provide solutions to these challenges.

“Health care is changing so fast, especially when we talk about health care reform under President Obama’s administration,” Guo says.

The program also offers online courses to students who live on a Neighbor Island or work during the day and are unable to attend classes.

 
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