Denver, Oct. 15, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Westwood College is launching the School of Healthcare to prepare students for quality jobs in the rapidly growing healthcare industry. Healthcare is the fastest growing industry in the U.S. at 17.9 percent of gross domestic product in 2010 with future growth projected at an annual average of 5.7 percent for the next decade, nearly one percentage point faster than prior years*.
See video from Westwood College at: http://inr.synapticdigital.com/Westwood/schoolofhealthcare
Fueled by the addition of more than 34 million uninsured Americans who will gain health insurance coverage under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, healthcare is expected to produce 5.6 million new jobs between 2010 and 2020**.
Westwood's new programs create additional opportunities for workers to learn the skills to pursue a career in this growing sector. The School of Healthcare will feature three primary degree and diploma programs, including:
• Medical Office Management
• Medical Insurance Coding and Billing
• Medical Assisting
The associate degree programs for Medical Office Management and Medical Insurance Coding and Billing require students to complete seven terms of coursework, mixing core industry-related content with general education classes. The diploma for the Medical Assisting program includes five terms of coursework, totaling 955 clock hours, rather than the industry-standard of 720. These additional requirements are provided to give graduates the right set of classroom learning and practical skills to be immediately employable in the healthcare field.
"Healthcare employers have indicated that degrees themselves are not always enough to meet the immediate needs of the growing healthcare industry," said John Keim, Chief Academic Officer and Provost for Westwood College. "Westwood College has tailored its programs to ensure students have the specific training they need to enter the workforce including the personal and professional skills necessary to achieve career success."
Responding to California's significant needs for qualified healthcare workers, the new School of Healthcare programs will be available initially at all four of Westwood's California campuses with expansion planned to additional campus locations nationwide in future years. California outpaces the national average in its demands for qualified healthcare workers and demand for healthcare jobs is on track to increase 27 percent from 2010 to 2020, compared to 19 percent for all other job sectors in California***.
The first students enrolled in the program are expected to graduate in March 2013. Individuals interested in any of the three healthcare programs may learn more at http://www.westwood.edu/programs/school-of-healthcare.
*Source: Centers for Medicaid & Medicaid Services, June 2012
**Source: Employment by major industry sector, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, September 2012
***Source: "Healthcare State Report," Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, June 2012
About Westwood College
Westwood College is an institution of higher learning with 14 campuses located in California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois and Virginia. Westwood offers a hands-on, career-focused curriculum in sought-after fields such as healthcare, technology and business. Westwood is nationally accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) A 2012 survey conducted by Noel-Levitz showed Westwood students are significantly more satisfied than the comparison group of approximately 125 public and private colleges, particularly in the areas of course content, quality of instruction and the school meeting their career goals. For more information, visit http://www.westwood.edu.
Source: Synaptic Digital