With the escalating cost of health care and changes to federal and state health policies, it is becoming increasingly important to understand how care is delivered today and how it can be improved in the future. “The current U.S. health care system is poorly designed to solve the problems of the high costs of care, rapid shifts in demographics, dramatic health workforce shortages, complex social determinants of health, and dramatic regional, city, and neighborhood health disparities,” said Gerard Clancy, M.D., president of The University of Tulsa. “To combat these problems, we must invest in new educational models that teach students how to re-engineer the health delivery system with attention to historical, efficiency, quality, access, cultural, social and mental health factors that exist in every community.”
The University of Tulsa Oxley College of Health Sciences and the Graduate School now offers an online certificate program in Health Care Delivery Sciences. The 15-hour program plus a culminating capstone project, is designed for mid-career professionals that desire to become leaders within their own organizations and the health care industry. Participants complete courses in the science of health care delivery, quality improvement science in health care, population health, strategic planning and health care policy.
Each 14-week course includes online instruction comprising a lecture, readings and live group discussion though video conferencing with the option of lunchtime or evening discussion sessions. Through this program, we are hoping to educate tomorrow’s leaders and change agents – who will make our health care system more effective, satisfying and affordable.
- Evaluate current and anticipated ways that health care delivery systems function and interact with the populations and communities they serve
- Apply interdisciplinary and analytic thinking skills when evaluating health care delivery issues
- Evaluate creative and innovative ways to solve health delivery challenges
- Communicate clearly about anticipated benefits/burdens of an ever-changing health care delivery system
- Apply leadership skills while collaborating with colleagues, peers and stakeholders
Course instructors include Jeffrey Alderman, the Institute director; Jan Figart, Thom Walsh and Jen Clark. Alderman received his bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University, master’s in science from Dartmouth College, and M.D. degree from George Washington University School of Medicine. He continues to practice Palliative Medicine and is a member of the Society of General Internal Medicine, Oklahoma Hospice and Palliative Care Association, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and the American College of Physicians.
Figart is the former associate director of the Community Service Council of Greater Tulsa where she worked for nearly 19 years. She received her master’s in nursing from the University of Oklahoma College of Nursing and a doctorate in health administration (D.H.A.) from the University of Phoenix. She is a registered nurse.
Walsh is a practicing physical therapist who earned his master’s and Ph.D. degrees from Dartmouth College where he stayed on as a post-doctoral fellow at the Dartmouth Center for Health Care Delivery Science. He has published a seminal work on navigating to value in health care and is currently working on his second book. Walsh consults nationally in the field of health care delivery science work with private and public institutions including the U.S. Navy.
Clark is an advisor and Palliative Care physician for the Hillcrest HealthCare System in Tulsa, OK. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree and Medical Doctorate from the University of Kansas. After completing her internship and residency at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, SC, she went on to obtain board certifications in Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, and Hospice/Palliative Medicine. She consults in the fields of Hospital Quality, Leadership and End-of-Life Care.
TU’s Graduate School is now taking applications for the certificate program. While an enrollee need not be a full-time graduate student, application processing is handled by graduate admissions. Requirements include a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and at least one to three years of professional experience working directly in clinical care, or a health-related industry.
The certificate includes the following courses:
HCDS 7033 The Science of Health Care Delivery
HCDS 7053 Quality Improvement Science in Health Care
HCDS 7023 Population Health
HCDS 7043 Strategic Planning in Health Care
HCDS 7013 Essentials in U.S. Health Care Policy
HCDS 7110 HCDS Capstone Project
The final requirement of the certificate program is completion of a capstone project. The project allows students to pursue independent research on a question or problem of their choice, engage with the scholarly debates in the relevant disciplines and, with the guidance of a University of Tulsa faculty mentor, produce a scientific narrative that addresses a challenge faced by the current health care system.