What is an Entry Level Public Health Salary?

Looking at the big picture, obtaining a Master's in Public Health provides the chance to start working on improving the healthcare system and helping people. The degree also impacts an entry level master of public health salary and position.

Understanding the average MPH job salaries for different entry level positions helps individuals decide on their next step for a new career. Below are five areas of work to get an idea of the breadth of the field.

Healthcare Administrator

A healthcare administrator usually works in a medical facility, such as a hospital or a large doctor's office, to coordinate or direct specific healthcare services. In most cases, a healthcare administrator obtains a Master's degree in public health, business or related healthcare field. Depending on the size of the medical facility, job responsibilities vary significantly. Some healthcare administrators manage and organize healthcare services for the entire facility while others work in a specific department due to a larger size.

Educational standards for the best MPH careers in healthcare also vary based on the location and the facility. Many facilities require a master’s degree and prefer an education in public health or healthcare.

SALARY: The salary for an entry level position as a healthcare administrator usually starts around $53,940 per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (For the purposes of our salary numbers, we’re tracking the bottom 10% of earners in the field; that can be considered conservative.)

Working in Family Health Services

A director of family health services provides an opportunity for new graduates to manage a medical facility that specializes in the care of families and individuals. In most cases, a director of family health services manages the financial aspects of the facility as well as public relations and ensures the facility runs smoothly while providing healthcare services.

Individuals are hired for a position as a director of family health services in a family health center. Most directors work from and manage most of their responsibilities from the office.

SALARY: The salary for an entry level position as a director in family health services usually starts around $55,800 per year, according to the BLS, though some individuals earn as much as $71,800.

Working with a Public Health Attorney

A Master's in Public Health allows a graduate to work with a public health attorney in the creation of new laws and regulations related to public health standards. The job responsibilities focus on working with legal representatives and government officials to evaluate current local, state and federal laws regarding public health. An entry level position usually provides a supporting role for more experienced legal professionals. 

Any individual who plans to go further in this field and work as an attorney must obtain a law degree and appropriate state licensing. A new graduate can work with a legal firm to gain experience while working on (even) further education.

SALARY: BLS data shows that the salary for an entry level position working with a public health attorney generally starts around $54,000 per year.

Medical Staff Coordinators

Managing the medical staff in a hospital or a medical facility usually requires a coordinator to help organize responsibilities and ensure the administrative aspects of a team are organized and work as smoothly as possible. A report from the Economic Research Institute a compensation reporting company, details the requirements of many healthcare positions. It notes that medical staff coordinators (PDF) usually require a Master's degree in healthcare, public health or business administration before their first day on the job.

The position primarily works with the staff members so that each individual understands his or her responsibilities and schedule. The position also provides a chance to work with different medical professionals.

SALARY: The best entry level jobs as a coordinator or working with the medical staff coordinator in a junior role usually start around $55,800 per year.

Working in Non-Profit Organizations

Positions in a non-profit organization vary based on the type of work provided and the goals of the organization. Generally, the salary in a non-profit starts lower than other positions,; however, it offers a chance to work more closely with individuals and specific efforts that make positive changes, quickly.

Responsibilities in a non-profit range from:

  • Managing the non-profit agency
  • Working with public relations for greater awareness of the specific cause
  • Improving organization and efficiency for families or communities to more quickly get what they need

SALARY: The ERI report on healthcare salaries mentions that the MPH job salary for an entry level position in a non-profit usually starts around $36,000 per year. (PDF) Here, too, the BLS notes, the exact salary varies widely based on the job responsibilities and the organization.

Starting a new career with a master's degree in public health provides the opportunity to allow people to live better, and to work with governments to change living standards and regulations in a multitude of industries.

An MPH allows college students to find the best public health careers. An MPH salary varies significantly in different positions, though most entry level positions start at a reasonable salary and provide strong opportunities for career growth.

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