Director and Department Chair
Melissa Varao, Ph.D.
David DeJesus, Jr., M.S., M.B.A.
Master of Science in Healthcare Administration
Classes are offered online.
Accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE)
About the Program
This fully accredited graduate program in Healthcare Administration prepares professionals, with either a clinical or business background, for the challenges of managing in the rapidly changing field of healthcare. The curriculum is designed to allow the student flexibility to tailor the program to meet their educational, professional, and personal goals. It is directed and taught by full time faculty members and respected healthcare and cybersecurity professionals who blend theoretical foundations with personal experiences from their areas of healthcare management expertise. The program's structure develops the essential healthcare knowledge and skills within the context of the University's commitment to the Christian tradition and emphasizes a sense of personal values and professional responsibility to better meet the needs of others.
A Master of Science or Certificate of Graduate Studies in Healthcare Administration may be earned. A Certificate of Graduate Studies in Healthcare Leadership, ,and a Certificate of Graduate Studies in Cybersecurity and Healthcare Administration may also be earned. In addition, a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration with a concentration in Cybersecurity or a Certificate of graduate studies in Cybersecurity and Healthcare Administration may also be earned. All course credits earned in certificate programs contribute to credits for the Master of Science degree.
Students explore various research techniques and then apply that knowledge to an analysis of existing research and to designing and implementing their own research projects. The course includes preparation of appropriate research questions, a literature review, qualitative and quantitative approaches, research designs, and threats to internal and external validity, sampling techniques, data collection methods, and ethical considerations. A basic overview of the application of research methods to program evaluation is provided. Ethical issues are explored in some depth.
This course will explore the historical development, current state and possible future trends of health care financing and delivery in the U.S. Course components include a general overview of the size and scope of the health care system; issues related to the underlying need for health care, different modalities for financing and reimbursement and will conclude with evaluation and policy issues.
Students are introduced to basic marketing principles and practices related to the health services industry. They examine consumer needs, target market concepts, strategies for attaining goals, current market practices, cost benefit analysis, ethical considerations, and marketing resources. The development of positive relationships within an organization is explored as a marketing strategy, including the role in marketing played by employees, physicians, patients, and the community. Class presentations and a term paper provide opportunities for students to research and discuss current healthcare marketing topics.
This course will assist students in understanding the effective use of human resources to achieve organizational goals within the constraints imposed by ethical considerations and legal obligations. The processes used to determine human resource requirements, recruitment, selection, development, utilization and accommodation of human resources in contemporary organizations will be explored. Students will apply case analyses methods to assess the issues, stakeholders and supported options to resolve pertinent human resource management situations.
This course is designed to provide current and future healthcare leaders with both the theory and practice of building effective teams that are running on all cylinders. Using common examples that exist in healthcare along with the experience of students, we will consider the role of the leader, alignment, communication, training and feedback in the development of effective teams. We will also examine the conflicts that arise within teams and how best to address them. We will explore how to measure whether your team is functioning at a high level.
Healthcare is a dynamic workplace where professionals from different educational programs and experiences must work together to achieve outstanding results in patient care, clinical outcomes, quality measurement, all while under significant financial pressures. Inevitably, differences will arise that need to be addressed effectively while maintaining interdependent relationships. Students will follow the "Getting To Yes" and "Difficult Conversations" principles, in application to healthcare specific situations.
This course provides an overview of the healthcare environment and introduces financial concepts through financial statements reviews and analysis. Discussions address the development and use of revenues, identification of operating expenses, strategies to contain costs, and the financial interaction between healthcare providers and third party payers. Class presentations and a term paper provide opportunities for students to research and discuss current healthcare financial topics.
This course is the fourth course in the Healthcare Leadership Certificate Program and is intended to pull together the learnings of the prior three courses using a student-selected leadership project involving change. At each stage of the project, students will incorporate their personal leadership approach, the culture of their group, and their comfort with finding common ground. This seven-week hybrid course will follow John P. Kotter's eight step "Leading Change" process. Students will explore each step of the change process, applying related concepts to their project and to other healthcare specific situations.
This course provides students with foundational knowledge of analytics, covering key components of the data analysis process, including strategies for effectively capturing and communicating information, and the pitfalls in doing so.
Students explore the current and recurring ethical issues facing health professionals in today's healthcare environment. Topics include the right to refuse treatment, the right to die, physician-assisted death, organ donation, resource allocation, and issues related to healthcare reimbursement and administration, such as cost containment and quality assurance. Other topics include informed consent, confidentiality, autonomy, nutrition and hydration, professional codes, the Human Genome Project and cloning. Traditional theories of ethics as well as decision making models are also examined.
Students focus on three major areas that contribute to the establishment of national health policies: health planning, health research, and health services. They examine the methodology for policy planning, goal setting, allocation of resources, plan implementation, evaluation, and regulation. Health policy as it relates to health research involves discussion of major illnesses and diseases, environmental factors, new technology and health research, and the social, political, and economic factors influencing policy development.
The regular occurrence of cybersecurity incidents has led healthcare organizations to treat cybersecurity as a risk that needs to be actively managed, rather than just an issue that technology alone can solve. From medical data tracking, to electronic health records, and bedside life support systems, information communication technology has streamlined healthcare delivery. Moreover, this is only the beginning-more and more healthcare related devices are connecting to the Internet to increase efficiency and deliver better patient care. However, the latest apps, mobile operating systems, and medical devices also create many privacy and security challenges. This course provides students an introduction to cybersecurity and resiliency in healthcare administration. Drawing on recent cybersecurity incidents in healthcare, students are introduced to cybersecurity threats, threat actors, cybersecurity risk management best practices, laws and regulations applicable to electronic health records, and basic techniques to build enterprise-wide cybersecurity awareness.
Students examine the law relating to healthcare administration. Course topics include: the physician-patient relationship, professional liability, credentialing, medical records and disclosure of information, HIPAA regulations, consent to treatment, hospital liability, and the institution-physician relationship. Recent legislation regarding issues in healthcare administration is also discussed.
As large scale data breaches become increasingly ubiquitous in health care organizations, concern for healthcare information data security has moved from an information technology (IT) problem to a board level problem. Managers in healthcare enterprises must have the strategic level policies in place to deal with the current and emerging cybersecurity challenges. This course will be divided into two parts. Throughout the first half of the course, students will develop an in-depth understanding of major and continual healthcare policy reforms as it relates to digital health and cybersecurity, with a particular focus on how federal policy is driving health information technology innovation. The second half of the course will give students the skills necessary to develop strategic level policy documents and build end-user cybersecurity awareness in a healthcare organization to include, 'BYOD' policies, standards for medical devices, cloud usage policies, 'SWOT' analysis, among other risk management policies and procedures.
Students examine the political, social, economic, and healthcare issues that pertain to older people and their families. They look at housing, health and social programs, long term care, reimbursement, and public policy issues. Past, present and future trends that affect the aging population are also explored.
As healthcare enterprises progressively adopt electronic health records and other digital health technologies, various privacy and security risks arise. Healthcare enterprises must ensure compliance with various legislative, regulatory, and standards regimes. This course provides students an in-depth understanding of the various federal and state legislation and regulation that governs healthcare and cybersecurity, from the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy and security rule, to the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, and the Rhode Island Identity Theft Protection Act. Moreover, standards and rules governing risk management and the effective use and protection of patient data will be covered. This will include an overview of the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) frameworks on cybersecurity and risk management, Federal Trade Commission rulings on customer data, and Food and Drug Administration regulations on medical devices, among others. Finally, the course will also cover how various legislation, such as the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015 impacts healthcare.
This course provides healthcare leaders with a broad overview of public health issues, the meaning of health promotion and disease prevention with a consideration for health status and risk factors. This course balances a view of the historical development of public health and moves to current challenges such as dealing with a global pandemic, including COVID-19. The material is current, relevant and critical for anyone who wants to understand how to improve the health of a community.
This capstone course is taken at the conclusion of the student's graduate healthcare studies. The course will review and reinforce the core competencies the student has acquired during their course of study. Through case studies and actual healthcare management situations students will have the opportunity to apply the techniques and skills acquired during their previous course work. Completion of 30 credits or approval from the graduate program director is required.
With the emergence of more advanced healthcare related technologies and the required integration of "Internet of Things" devices into healthcare settings, health care enterprises are more frequently becoming the targets of advanced cyber threat actors bent on data destruction or obtaining intellectual property and patient personal identifiable information (PII). As the number and scope of attacks increase, health care administrators are pressured to better understand these threats and make technical decisions that have traditionally been outside the scope of their responsibility. "Hacking the Future of Healthcare Administration" will introduce students to the cyber threats directly targeting and impacting health care enterprises currently and in the future. Students will research and evaluate historical case studies of various compromises in healthcare settings and learn how best to address similar situations, while also proactively mitigating against future events.
Digital health-one of the fastest growing industries in the US economy-is rapidly changing, with current and future disruptive results for the delivery of healthcare. Innovation in healthcare requires leaders that are trained to think and act as entrepreneurs, while also maintaining a culture of cybersecurity safety and resiliency. This course provides students an overview of how technology is developed and applied to healthcare and medicine-from telemedicine, to quantified self, and other emergent digital health platforms. Moreover, this course provides students in-depth knowledge of the vocabulary and skills necessary to engage in digital health entrepreneurship, to include lean start up methodologies; stakeholder, market, and competitor analysis; venture capital; mergers and acquisitions; initial public offering (IPO) transactions; and designing and patenting for sales.
The internship is an individual work experience or project in an organization (normally off-campus) under the supervision of a practicing professional and structured by a Salve Regina University faculty member. Although the specific nature of the internship varies with the student's academic interest, there should be a close relationship between the program of study and the non-academic setting. The internship is a supervised learning experience for academic credit typically consisting of a minimum of 120 hours of on-the-job experience occurring within a semester.
Special topics courses with healthcare administration and management content are offered on a periodic basis.
A focused study on a subject outside the graduate catalog. An independent study provides opportunity for original and in-depth research on a specific topic or regional issue of the candidate's interest and professional focus. It is an important part of the curriculum and should be used to supplement existing coursework. A student selects a topic of research from a single field of learning or one which is interdisciplinary and prepares a research paper(s) to be submitted to the professor. The quality of the research paper should be appropriate to graduate level research. A list of preliminary readings and/or assignments and a means of assessment/ evaluation are clearly defined in advance of the study.