Scalpel … Suture … Spreadsheet: B.U. And Mass Medical Society Unveil Executive MBA Program for Physicians and Health Care Managers

in Business, News Releases, School of Management
June 22nd, 1999

Contact: Janice Zazinski, 617/353-4198 |

(Boston, Mass.) — In the latest example of the medical profession embracing management philosophy, the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) has partnered with the Boston University School of Management to offer an executive MBA program designed to meet the emerging needs of physicians and health care managers.

This marks the first time a state medical society has partnered with a business school to offer such a program. Publisher of the influential New England Journal of Medicine, the MMS is considered one the nation’s most prestigious and influential medical societies.

Boston University’s School of Management was selected from among 22 business schools that submitted proposals. The School of Management was selected, in part, because it has offered a Health Care MBA program for 26 years which has consistently been rated in the top 20 by U.S. News & World Report.

William Bigoness, Associate Dean for Executive Learning, said there are a number of health care industry trends that have spurred interest in this program.

“Physicians are very intelligent people, but their training is not in management,” he says. “If you’re a 45-year-old physician today in a medium-sized practice, a lot of your decisions are being driven by management business criteria as opposed to health care criteria. Doctors often aren’t familiar with the basics of finance, marketing, management and human resources. This program will help put control of these issues into their hands.”

According to MMS president Marylou Buyse, M.D., a survey of its 17,000 members made clear the demand for management training by physicians.

“The economic pressures imposed by the rapid changes in health care and increased competition among health care providers have forced many physicians to become businesspeople as well as clinicians,” says Dr. Buyse. “In addition to tackling the clinical challenges of our profession, we must now also tackle the practice of management issues.”

As BU and the MMS were designing the program, their research also showed most physicians were emphatically not interested in a program just for doctors. Though they may sometimes be adversaries, they wanted to interact with fellow students from all sectors of the health care industry, including HMOs, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies.

“By bringing together students from diverse health care fields, the program is a micro-environment of what physicians deal with every day,” says Dr. Wiley Souba, Chief of Surgical Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Souba, a graduate of B.U.’s Executive MBA program, helped design this new program for physicians and health care leaders. “The Health Care Executive MBA will give players in the health care field the ability to build a powerful arsenal of effective skills and qualities that will benefit themselves, their organizations, and the constituencies they serve.”

The first students of the 18-month program start classes in September 1999 and will graduate March 2001. Tuition is $59,500, and is all-inclusive, covering all class materials, lodging and parking, most meals; and transportation and accommodation for an off-site trip.

Contacts:William Bigoness, Associate Dean for Executive Learning, Boston University School of Management, 617/353-6791Alan Cohen, Faculty Director, Boston University’s Executive MBA Program for Physicians and Health Care Managers; 617/353-9220Dr. John A. Fromson, Vice President for Professional Development, MMS, 1-800-322-2303Dr. Wiley “Chip” Souba (pronounced SHO-ba), adjunct professor of Health Care Management at BU, Chief of Surgical Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital, and professor of surgery at Harvard Medical School; 617/726-8555

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