Where can a MD-MBA program lead?

“With the issues in healthcare today and the changes needed for reform,” says Dr. Maria Chandler, MD/MBA Faculty Advisor and Associate Clinical Professor in Pediatrics at the University of California Irvine’s College of Medicine, “we can’t even fathom the opportunities that will arise for the youngest of us.”

As director of the Association of MD-MBA Programs (AMMP), Dr. Chandler has seen the organization grow from 33 programs in 2003 to more than 65 in 2012 throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe.

“In general, we see all graduates doing a clinical residency and in many case, fellowship,” she observes, “so all want to practice clinical medicine. The great thing is the leadership opportunities we see arising. For example, a graduate from UCI (University of California, Irvine) was on the fast track both in his group in the Bay Area and became the youngest medical director they’ve had, and he holds a position in the national association.

“Others have started nonprofit clinics from the ground up,” she continues, “and others are trying to change the world with entrepreneurial ventures. They all see the industry with a new set of ‘lenses’ and can’t wait to help lead the way to more success for patients.”

Interest in MD-MBA programs solid

Interest in these dual degrees has been strong from the start.

“From the very beginning, the MD-MBA program exponential growth has been due to the demand from students,” Dr. Chandler says, “and it continues to be.

“In our area, on the West Coast, there are fewer medical schools and fewer MD-MBA programs. For that reason, we are able to recruit the top students who want to be in California. We offer up to 15 out of our class of 100 to pursue a MD-MBA degree and usually fill the slots.”

Dr. Chandler says she has seen the demand wax and wane in recent years as students struggle with the extra loans that are needed.

“I am hoping that scholarships will be more available in the future to help with the differential in cost,” she says.

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More > The Rapid Growth of MD/MBA Programs: Are They Worth It? from the American College of Physician Executives.

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