LEAWOOD, Kan. -- Recognizing the growing need for family physicians to understand both the business and clinical aspects of medicine, the American Academy of Family Physicians, in cooperation with Kansas City-based Rockhurst University, has established the first fully-integrated family medicine/master of business administration program.
Beginning in 2004, family medicine residents will be able to simultaneously complete their medical-specialty training and earn a master's degree in business administration.
"Healthcare is increasingly the business of medicine as well as the art of medicine. Family physicians completing this dual program will combine top-notch medical skills with the business skills necessary to be leaders in America?s health care arena," said Norman Kahn, M.D., vice president for science and education at the American Academy of Family Physicians.
"Physicians' need for business acumen has grown with the spiraling complexity of reimbursement regulations, employment law and business tax rules," said Myles Gartland, Ph.D., assistant professor of economics and healthcare leadership curriculum coordinator at Rockhurst. "The goal of the MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians program is to complement medical education with the business and leadership skills necessary to effectively lead healthcare management teams, medical practices and health care organizations."
The dual family medicine/MBA program has been integrated with the family medicine residency programs at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Baptist-Lutheran Medical Center and the University of Health Sciences/Medical Center of Independence, all in the Kansas City area.
Between 25 and 35 students are expected to begin the first business course in the dual program in June 2004. They will earn their MBAs and complete their family medicine residencies in 2007.
The AAFP Foundation provided $55,000 in support of the program?s development. The program was developed with the consultative assistance of Perry Pugno, M.D., director of the AAFP's Division of Medical Education.
Rockhurst began offering graduate business education designed for healthcare clinicians three years ago through a dual-degree program with the University of Health Sciences. Last year, the university added a track tailored for nursing students at Research College of Nursing.