The University of Alabama at Birmingham is introducing a new master's of science in healthcare quality and safety program this fall. It's one of many graduate programs in health administration that are evolving to meet the changing needs of the industry.
The program, which has enrolled 10 students and is expected to grow to 25 students by 2020, will prepare individuals to provide leadership in the design and implementation of clinical and non-clinical process-improvement and patient-safety activities in complex healthcare environments, said Christy Harris Lemak, professor and chair of the UAB Health Services Administration Department.
Graduate degree holders increasingly must meld data-analytics skills with high-level communication abilities, said Kathy Noland, vice president of senior executive search at B.E. Smith, a Lenexa, Kan.-based executive search firm. “Today's successful healthcare leaders have technical expertise and contemporary soft skills,” she said.