How to become a health practice manager in Australia: careers in health
Working as professional business managers in medical practices, health practice managers are at the frontline of healthcare in Australia. They manage and organise the administrative and staffing functions of medical practices, and support and consult with practice principals to ensure smooth delivery of business operations. They also plan for future growth, manage finances, oversee clinic operational issues, have a human resources function and can be involved in IT and risk management. To success as a health practice manager, a relevant qualification in finance and management is needed.
Utilising their business and management skills, health practice managers run the day-to-day operations of medical clinics and practices. Some of their responsibilities include ensuring record-keeping systems are robust, stock inventories are up-to-date, training and supervising staff and managing the business’ accounts. It can be an extremely busy role requiring a passion for delivering outstanding customer service while creating a great work and team environment for staff.
- Planning office services
- Staff management
- Records and account management
- Financial planning
- Upholding occupational health and safety standards
Great communication skills are needed to be a health practice manager, and the ability to relate to people from different backgrounds, as they not only deal with patients from all walks of life, but also doctors and junior and senior medical professionals. The ability to keep up-to-date with legislative changes as well as new developments in equipment and technology systems that can improve business outcomes is also required. Being able to use a variety of management techniques is also an important skill.
- Effective communication and delegation skills
- Financial and administrative skills
- Knowledge of health services
- Conflict resolution
- Good business acumen
Health practice management roles are often filled by people working in the medical profession who have sought to advance their careers. There are a variety of career pathways available in different areas of specialisation.
Chiropractic practice managers have qualifications in health administration and are competent in a variety of administrative tasks. While they commonly work in private practice, they can also find employment in hospitals and community health centres. This position might require reception work, patient liaison, staff training and development, rostering, payroll, banking, marketing and stock control.
Reporting to the practice principal, a dental practice manager is responsible for the business’s successful day-to-day operation. They are in charge of recruitment, staff training and development, management and rosters. They ensure the smooth running of the practice so the dentists can focus on patient care. A Certificate IV and Diploma qualifications in Professional Practice Management are required.
Working in medical centres and doctor’s surgeries, medical practice managers have qualifications in health practice management. They are responsible for human resources, office equipment, rostering and managing staff performance. Keeping office records and accounts up-to-date and managing compliance with occupational health and safety standards and government legislation are also key aspects of this role.
Opportunities exist for health practice managers to work in a variety of medical settings. You can tailor your study for your career path to take on a range of roles within the health practice system.
Start your career
Find a vocational course that will gain you an entry-level role in the healthcare profession.
Strengthen your skills
Gain further qualifications in business management or pursue a career specialisation.
Build your resume
Find study options to pursue high-level employment options that require an extensive qualification or specialisation.
Following professional accreditation, health practice managers are required to register with the Australian Association of Practice Management.