This course opens with a comprehensive overview of the functions of various types of healthcare organizations: providers, insurance companies, government agencies, and professional associations. Alternative payment and provider models are reviewed. Regulatory bodies and issues are explored. Healthcare reform efforts and proposals are discussed. Supply and demand projections for personnel are examined. The work of key federal agencies (NIH, National Center for Disease Control, and Food and Drug Administration) is reviewed as well as the activity of national and international non-governmental organizations. Major national and global public health challenges are introduced.
This course focuses on macro analysis of the current financial state of healthcare in the United States. The interrelationships of value, quality, and price are analyzed. The importance of transparency of quality and its effect on value is articulated. Compensation and payer models are compared including the role of employer benefits, private health insurance plans, Medicare and Medicaid, and various mechanisms used to cover the costs of prescription drugs. Current issues, such as pay for performance, cost saving through prevention, cost shifting, and healthcare for the aging, are discussed.
This course focuses on methods of communication within medical teams and units, across an organization, and among healthcare organizations. Techniques for communicating highly technical medical information to patients, families, and differently trained providers are examined. Foundational technical language of medicine and the basic terminology associated with common disorders and treatments, new technologies, and regulations are reviewed. Basic principles involved in leadership skills and change management are introduced.
Healthcare systems are dynamic and require constant attention to maintain relevance and competency. In this course students encounter and explore the strategic management functions required to lead and administer various types of healthcare systems. Techniques are explored for analyzing a system and moving it forward from where it is to where it needs to be.
Strategic planning for maximum use of financial resources is critical to success within a healthcare system. The starting point includes understanding all of the basic components of a strategic plan: mission, vision, strategy and tactics. A strategic plan answers the questions: Why are we here? Where are we going? How will we get there? What resources do we need? Creative and innovative thinking when considering allocation and management of resources is explored. Students learn the conceptual language and systems of strategic planning and decision making. They learn the application of these principles to provide successful change management within an organization.
Patient satisfaction, an element of healthcare management, is often a result of how well the entire healthcare system functions. Students examine successful examples of cooperation, compatibility, and dedication within the workplace and explore what contributes to a harmonious and effective healthcare environment. Interpersonal skills are discussed, as well as ethical guidelines and laws that define acceptable workplace behavior.
This course describes variations in healthcare delivery systems locally, nationally, and globally as they relate to policy, structure, and finance. Comparisons of systems are made relative to expenditure of resources and outcomes. Students learn about healthcare coverage, access to care, healthcare rationing, provider manpower distribution, and seeking healthcare in foreign countries (medical tourism). The discrepancy between the desirable and the practical is explored, and students are asked to outline and defend a system that they believe is both desirable and practical.
This course examines and is structured around key recommendations in the Institute of Medicine?s Crossing the Quality Chasm. It covers the movement to health care quality in the U.S., starting with definitions of quality and a historical perspective on quality initiatives. The class reviews quality initiatives in the past 10 years, including efforts by the Institute of Medicine, Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, various accrediting organizations (e.g. NCQA), and employer-based initiative such as HEDIS and Leapfrog. Patient safety requirements, programs and culture are examined. The class explores the challenges of and techniques for establishing and measuring the quality of health care in various organizational settings. It examines the impacts of delivery system model and health information technology on quality and service, and explores recent efforts to link quality with payment. Throughout the course, there is an emphasis on how students, as healthcare leaders, introduce and sustain an emphasis on quality in organizational settings.
Students begin to learn how to apply ethical theories and principles to draw conclusions about a situation. Students develop this skill by analyzing case studies. Through the readings and papers assigned in the course as well as class discussions, it becomes apparent how ethical considerations vary depending on the perspective of the stakeholder or ?assessor.?
This class provides students with an understanding of the political and legislative procedures that lead to healthcare policy change and reform. Students examine the influences and functions of government agencies, legislative procedures and healthcare related professional associations in relationship to other entities such as providers, insurers and consumers. Students objectively evaluate how policy changes occur at the federal and state levels and subsequently affect the everyday functioning of leaders in the healthcare environment. Federal Healthcare Reform is impacting the healthcare environment and these policy changes are shaping the way it will be delivered and paid for in the future.
Students explore the dynamism in healthcare and the continuing emergence of new trends and policy issues. The relationship between emerging issues, the ability to adapt to the issues, and the challenges inherent in change are explored. Adaptation to change as a leadership skill is an underlying theme throughout the course. Students develop expertise in analyzing issues, considering and weighing proposed policies, and in defending strategies for bringing about change.
Healthcare information technology systems can improve cost and efficient, when systems are properly evaluated and implemented. Good IT systems are also increasingly being associated with better patient outcomes. However, healthcare has lagged other industries in adoption of IT systems. A major challenge to healthcare professionals is understanding the major underlying technical concepts involved in the jargon-filled world of healthcare information systems. This foundational course provides a working knowledge of key HIT definitions and concepts. It is not designed to turn students into network administrators or software developers; rather, it is to equip the student to become an active and valuable participant ? or even a team leader ? in the evaluation, selection, implementation and ongoing operation of health information systems. Contents of this course are intended to prepare students for the remaining HC 4300 series. Students should complete this course first in the series.
There are advantages and benefits to electronic health records systems, in how they aid in improving patient care. However, there are also significant barriers to implementation and adoption. Cost is often cited as on barrier; compatibility of electronic systems is another. There is also significant impact to the way providers interact with and treat patients, so there is significant resistance to change. There are also many anecdotal stories of complete system failure. In this course the major components and processes involved in properly selecting and implementing electronic health records are discussed, along with solutions to overcome barriers to adoption. The focus is on ensuring successful electronic health record implemtnation.
Healthcare information systems are generally viewed as disparate pieces rather than integrated systems. Limitations inside/outside of organizations inhibit the flow of patient data across care boundaries. A decrease in providers in rural settings in creating a widening gap in access to quality healthcare, particularly for certain populations and specialties. The advantages and challenges of various technologies that can impact these issues are discussed. Special focus is placed on how communication, safety and efficiency are increased while distance becomes less of a barrier. Health information exchanges are also covered, which allow patient data to be shared between and among healthcare organizations, and also support such concepts as quality reporting, disease registry and evidence based medicine.
There is a large focus in healthcare technology on electronic records systems. However, there are many other important systems that form the complete framework of modern connected healthcare. This course covers the major healthcare information technologies and topics other the electronic health records systems. This course includes electronic practice management (EPM/PMS) systems, scheduling, billing, diagnostics/labs, reporting, credentialing, compliance and payment interfaces (including self-pay, private insurance and Medi-gov). Prerequisite: HC 4300 or HC 4301, or approval be the academic advisor.
This is an advanced special topics seminar course. The focus is on specialized areas of interest. Topics courses may be used as electives within the Healthcare Leadership degree and certificates, and, with advance approval from Academic Director, may substitute for core courses in the degree or certificate programs.
The Capstone Project provides students the opportunity to research a topics, problem, or issue within their field of study, and work individually with a Capstone advisor. Similar in weight to a thesis, but more flexible, this final project synthesizes and applies core concepts acquired from the program. The student selects an appropriate Capstone advisor who is knowledgeable in the field of study to work closely with and whom can guide the research project. Evaluation will be focused on the quality and professionalism of applied research and writing; critical and creative thinking; problem-solving skills; knowledge of research design, method, and implementation; and contribution to the field and topic of study. View the Capstone Guidelines for additional details. Prerequisites: A Capstone Proposal that has been approved by both the Capstone Advisor and the Academic Director, unconditional acceptance as a degree candidate, completion of at least 40 quarter-hours (including all core courses) with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better, and a B or better in MALS 4020. A final grade of B or better must be earned in this course to meet degree requirements.
The Capstone Seminar is a graduate seminar in which students utilize the knowledge and skills gained through the degree program to create a culminating work that critically addresses a problem or issue in the degree field of study. The student produces a paper of 7000-8000 words that presents a position on a relevant problem or issue, supports the position with professional and academic work in the field, analyzes and tests the paper position, and discusses the role of the findings within the field of study. The seminar is dependent upon collegial discussion of student research and work under the facilitation of a faculty member, and it is governed by the quality of participation and contributions of the students. The course structure, facilitated by the faculty member, guides the students through the process of independent research and writing of a capstone paper; the instructor provides intensive feedback on the capstone process and papers. Students are responsible for generating the course content through ongoing discussion of and peer feedback on the capstone process and individual papers, as well as the analysis and contextualization of focused students papers within the wider degree field of study. Students professionally and academically communicate their findings through written work and oral presentations. Students must have: unconditional acceptance as a degree candidate, completion of at least 40 quarter-hours (including all core courses) with a cumulative GPS of 3.0 or better, and a B or better in MALS 4020. A final grade of B or better must be earned in this course to meet degree requirements. Students must complete the Capstone Seminar in one quarter; no incomplete grades are assigned.