The University of Tulsa Collins College of Business is partnering with the Oxley College of Health Sciences to offer an MBA in Health Care Delivery Sciences designed for professionals working in health care or related industries. The new degree program aims to equip these professionals with the skills needed to serve as change agents and leaders who can address challenges affecting the future of health care. Applications are now being accepted for the fall 2018 semester.
Jeffrey Alderman, M.D., associate professor of Community Medicine and director of TU’s Institute for Health Care Delivery Sciences, says that northeastern Oklahoma — like the rest of the nation — faces increasing health care pressures as well as disparities in life expectancies influenced by race, education, health literacy and other social determinants of health. Health crises such as high incidences of diabetes, opioid addiction and underserved mental health needs require complex solutions that go beyond the traditional health care model. “Dartmouth College pioneered the study of health care delivery as a science in 2010, followed by the University of Southern California, but Oklahoma and surrounding states lack this type of specialized education,” Alderman explains.
The MBA in Health Care Delivery Sciences’ core curriculum includes course topics such as variation and value in health care, communications, quality, ethics, policy and economics, balanced with a foundation of core business knowledge. This differs from graduate programs in health care administration or public health, which focus more on operational management of a health care practice. “Our program will go beyond that to understand not only what’s happening today, but also what health care might look like five or 10 years from now,” says Alderman. “For example, if you lead a health care organization, you have a staff of people running your operations day to day, but who is involved in innovation? Who is looking at strategy and understands the interlacing between policy and social determinants of health?”
The MBA in Health Care Delivery Sciences is designed for working professionals and can be completed in as little as two years. Along with core courses and electives, students will complete a capstone project that addresses a health care challenge of their choosing. Ideal candidates include practicing clinicians as well as non-clinicians such as health system executives, nonprofit administrators, clinical directors, pharmaceutical and insurance executives, attorneys and policymakers.
Alderman emphasizes the affordability of TU’s program relative to those found on the east or west coasts, which can cost upward of $100,000. TU offers a rate of $900 per credit hour for all graduate business degrees. Students can also apply for scholarships and other sources of financial aid.
Associate Dean of the Collins College of Business Ralph Jackson says, “This program will prepare health care professionals to apply concepts from business in developing creative solutions to emerging health care policy issues. It will provide the tools necessary to make a real difference in people’s lives.”