Graduate students talking with advisor


Master of Science in Healthcare Services Management

David Dobrzykowski and Professor Gary Branning discuss the U.S. Healthcare Systems and Managed Markets course offered in the Master of Science in Healthcare Services Management program

The Master of Science in Healthcare Services Management curriculum comprises 36 credits and can be taken on a full-time or part-time basis or fast-tracked to finish in just one year. Hybrid in-person and online courses and evening classes allow greater flexibility for busy schedules. Our program places an emphasis on data-driven results, problem solving, operations excellence and interprofessional leadership. The core of the program’s course load focuses on operating a healthcare services organization and is buttressed by courses providing general business acumen tailored toward healthcare.

After completing this program, you will be ready to:

  • Effectively lead healthcare provider organizations in the midst of value-based reimbursement shifts.
  • Improve organizational performance through operations excellence.
  • Develop the data analytical skills needed to drive decision-making in population health.
  • Lead inter-professional teams of physicians, nurses, and other providers.

Courses by Semester


    Semester 1: 10 credits

    Course #TitleCR
    22:373:622US Healthcare Systems & Managed Markets3
    22:799:696Healthcare Services Management3
    22:960:575Data Analysis & Decision Making3
    TBAHealthcare Legal and Ethics1

    Semester 2: 10 credits

    Course #TitleCR
    22:010:577Accounting for Managers3
    TBAHealthcare Operations Analysis3
    TBAManagement Skills – Professional Development3
    TBAHealthcare Innovation and Technology Management1

    Summer Semester

    Optional internship or summer classes for students in one-year program.

    Semester 3: 2nd Year, 10 credits

    Course #TitleCR
    TBAHealthcare Marketing3
    22:799:676Lean Six Sigma3
    22:390:659Healthcare Finance3
    TBAHealthcare Seminar1

    Semester 4: 6 credits

    Course #TitleCR
    22:799:650MS-HSM Industry Client Project3
    22:799:648Valuation of New Business Ventures3

    * Qualified students have the option of waiving up to 6 credits in recognition of prior career experience. Course waiver requests are to be approved by program director(s) on a case-by-case basis.

    Sample Course Descriptions

    Courses taught by leading industry scholars and researchers with practical industry experience and critical business insights make the Rutgers Business School MHSM program stand out among similar programs. Here is a brief description of just some of our course offerings.

    Accounting for Managers

    This course is an introduction to financial statement analysis, which builds on the fundamentals of accounting, including understanding the accounting equation and its application in building the balance sheet, the income statement, and the statement of cash flows. Basic accounting concepts, accounting principles, and the audit report are presented. Students work in teams to analyze corporate financial statements. The relationship of economic value to accounting measurement is explored together with factors influencing management choices among competing valuation principles. Theory is applied to the valuation of the asset, liability, and owners' equity accounts. Emphasizes the heavy reliance on estimates in constructing financial statements and how management can use such estimates to strategically manage its reporting responsibilities.

    22:010:577 - (3 cr)

    Data Analysis and Decision Making

    This course introduces statistics as applied to managerial problems. Emphasis is on conceptual understanding as well as conducting statistical analyses. Students learn the limitations and potential of statistics, gain hands-on experience using Excel, as well as comprehensive packages, such as R or SAS. Topics include descriptive statistics, continuous distributions, confidence intervals for means and proportions, and regression. Application areas include finance, operations, and marketing. Introduces the basic concepts of model building and its role in rational decision making. Knowledge of specific modeling techniques, such as linear and nonlinear programming, decision analysis, and simulation, along with some insight into their practical application is acquired. Students are encouraged to take an analytic view of decision making by formalizing trade-offs, specifying constraints, providing for uncertainty, and performing sensitivity analyses. Students form groups to collect and analyze data, and to write and present a final report.

    22:960:575 – (3 cr)

    Healthcare Finance

    This course is designed with an emphasis on applications of analytical tools in healthcare organizations. Combinations of lectures and discussions on different topics important to healthcare finance will enable students to develop analytical skills necessary to solve a variety of financial management problems. After completing this course, students should be able to analyze investment decisions, evaluate different sources of financing projects, analyze cost of capital, understand the issues of reimbursements including physician payments, capitated payments and fee-for-service payments, differences between for-profit and non-profit organizations, taxable and tax-exempt bond issues and their impact on the supply of charity care by non-profit hospitals, and the operations of physicians’ practice.

    22:390:659 – (3 cr) 

    Healthcare Innovation and Technology Management

    The course examines, from a managerial perspective, the critical issues in planning and implementation of healthcare technologies such as electronic health record (EHR), Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), telemedicine, social media and mobile devices, personal health records, and other emerging technologies. It examines salient issues such as benefits from, selection of, and user support of EHR. It also addresses emerging concepts of Regional Health Information Exchanges and provides an overview of Practice Management Systems.

    Healthcare Legal and Ethics

    This course covers important legal and regulation issues such as Stark law, anti-kickback, anti-trust, and EMTALA, as well as their implications on the operations and management of healthcare services organizations. It provides updates on the last legislation changes and also discusses physician employment models and work ethics issues in healthcare services organizations.

    Healthcare Marketing

    The market of healthcare services is quite unique: although patients receive the services, the payment comes from insurances and government agencies. So, who to market to and how to market is a complex question that yields unique answers. This course provides an understanding of the frameworks, tools, and strategies for marketing healthcare services. Main topics covered include patient behavior, market segmentation and targeting, pricing, branding, relationship management, marketing research, promotion, and advertising of healthcare services. Students will learn to develop and implement effective and efficient marketing plans for healthcare services.

    Healthcare Operations Analysis

    The objective of this course is to introduce qualitative and quantitative models and tools to efficiently manage operations for healthcare services and extended healthcare supply chains. Topics include demand forecasting and management; appointment scheduling systems; resource and capacity planning; queuing and managing waiting lines; hospital procurement and Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs); inventory and material management; drug distribution and pharmaceutical supply chains.

    Healthcare Seminar

    The healthcare industry is rapidly changing – new regulations and government policies are rolled out rapidly, new technologies and business models are emerging quickly. Therefore, it is important to keep up with the latest policy, technological innovations and best practices. This course is designed to keep students current on the latest developments in this industry. Senior executives, accomplished researchers, industry observers and federal and local government officials are among the relevant speakers who will be invited to present the latest developments and trends in the management of healthcare services organizations. Classes will be carried out in multiple forms, such as seminars, forums and panels. Topics will be solicited each semester from our industry advisory board, faculty and students.

    Healthcare Services Management

    This course provides strategies, techniques, and best practices to improve unit, organizational, and integrated delivery system performance by applying key concepts from operations and supply chain management to the healthcare context. Topics include the operational implications of current regulatory and reimbursement trends; organizational design and referral patterns; vertical integration and professional services outsourcing; healthcare policies and legal issues related to aligning physicians and hospitals, clinical integration via information technologies (e.g., electronic health records and regional health information exchanges); service process design; quality assurance; managing population health; and project management for healthcare organizations. The objective is to effectively manage information, material and financial exchanges for healthcare provider organizations to improve the quality of services and efficiency.

    22:799:696 - (3 cr) 

    Lean Six Sigma

    Lean six sigma is an application of the quantitative six sigma quality management techniques within a lean enterprise. The goal is to create an efficient organization that continuously reduces waste and operates at the most efficient levels possible. In addition to covering the fundamentals of Lean and Six Sigma, this course will equip students with other important tools and strategies to improve the performance of business processes. Students will practice solving business problems and improving processes through case studies, team exercises and simulations, self-assessments, and guest lectures. Topics covered will include: six sigma improvement methodology and tools, lean manufacturing tools and approaches, dashboards and other business improvement techniques. Students will also gain an understanding of: the strategic importance of business improvement, the need for fact based management, the significance of change management, and how to deploy these tools in different parts of the value chain.

    22:799:676 - (3 cr) 

    Management Skills – Professional Development

    This course explores human dynamics by examining the role of management and learning styles in the effective functioning of organizations. Topics include personality types, motivation, cognition and learning, communication, team development, and leadership. Through class discussions, case analyses, simulations, and group projects, students learn critical managerial skills such as communication, decision making, conflict resolution, and team building.

    MHSM Industry Client Project

    In this course, students form teams to work on real life consulting projects provided by healthcare organizations under faculty supervision. The healthcare organization will appoint a senior executive as the contact person for each team and the team will interact with the corresponding organization at least 3 times during the project: initial briefing and data collection, mid-term reporting and final presentation. The course aims to integrate the whole curriculum of the proposed degree program, and build students’ problem solving skills and teamwork skills using real life consulting engagement, thus significantly enhances students’ employability.

    22:799:650 – (3 cr) 

    U.S. Healthcare Systems & Pharmaceutical Managed Markets

    The health care industry in the United States is one of the most controversial and changing systems in the global economy. In recent years it has transformed into a conglomerate of public and private entities; each with its own agenda, funding sources and place in the market. Topics of discussion will include characteristics of the health care system, public/private sector roles, health care markets, managed care impact, congressional proposals, health policy changes, health care reform strategies, and the role of patients/consumers.

    22:373:622 – (3 cr) 

    Valuation of New Business Ventures

    Knowledge contained in the supply chain can be used to foster new demand-driven product innovations and to initiate new ventures. Virtual company teams are formed to plan the design, assembly, marketing and distribution of new innovative products. A business plan will be formed by each virtual company team. The business plan will include: a marketing plan; financial analysis including income statements and balance sheets, procurement, supplier alliances, logistics and fulfillment plans for the products to be produced. A design plan for the proposed new product will also be produced. The expected outcome of each project is a marketable new product together with a design of its supply chain that is resilient, profitable, cost-effective, and responsive to the highly dynamic market. A large number of project opportunities will be encountered as the participants work through the introductory material.

    22:799:648 – (3 cr) 

    “As healthcare continues to move away from fee-for-service to pay-for-performance, it is critical for both healthcare providers and administrators to develop expertise in the analytics that identify and track population health outcomes and in the strategic realignment and integration of providers to facilitate the transition to the new model of healthcare delivery.”
    —  Marc Klapholz, MD, FACC, Professor and Chair, Department of Medicine, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, Chief of Service (Medicine), University Hospital