MD/MBA in Health Management

An Update for Applicants to the MD/MBA Program at TUSM - Heller School for Social Policy and Management

For a multitude of reasons, including the complexity of the new MD curriculum, the desire of MD/MBA students for new initiatives and programming, and the School of Medicine’s priorities related to our new strategic plan (e.g., implementation of additional coursework related to racism and health inequity), TUSM has decided to redesign the MD/MBA program. We will launch a planning process in the 21-22 academic year involving faculty, administrative leaders, current students, and alumni to provide recommendations for a new five-year MD/MBA program to replace the existing four-year curriculum.

The new MD/MBA model will be available to the M26 class, so you would apply to the MD program only for M26. There will be a second portal after your second year for admission to a redesigned MBA program between 3rd and 4th year.

TUSM and the Heller School are committed to providing our current MD/MBA students, including the incoming M25 class, with the full four-year curriculum experience as planned. We have been working in an excellent partnership with the Heller School at Brandeis for nearly 26 years and will work with them on the redesign project.

  • 21st-century health care professionals must be trained not only as outstanding clinicians but also as expert managers, innovative leaders, and entrepreneurial thinkers who can navigate — and improve upon — the system in order to better the lives of patients and their families. The MD/MBA in Health Management program allows for an intense, simultaneous study of medicine, business, and health care systems that will give you the tools you need to excel in an increasingly complex healthcare environment.

    Social responsibility is central to health management; at Tufts, health policy is a critical focus of our program. That’s why we have partnered with Brandeis University’s Heller School, a premier business school focusing on social policy and health and human services management. This collaboration offers students a unique, interdisciplinary approach that emphasizes how health care and health care policy can respond to the changing needs of society.

    Practical knowledge and real-world application of learning are fundamental to the MD/MBA program. Our professors bring extensive professional experience to their classes and often invite other working professionals as guest speakers. Students also work directly with executives and managers to conduct hands-on projects that explore cutting-edge health care.

  • I have taken a somewhat less conventional career path by way of FDA and the pharmaceutical industry to teaching at Tufts and becoming the Director of this most extraordinary program.  

    When I earned my MBA later in my career, I had thought that it would give me tools that would interface with medicine at its borders.  But that’s not what happened. Rather, I learned how an MBA could help me to become a better physician: I learned soft skills that improved my interpersonal interactions of collaboration, teamwork, conflict resolution and negotiation; I learned how to manage issues and people; and I learned how to be a better leader. I also learned the hard skills of economics, accounting, finance, IT, and Quality Improvement that complemented my soft skills.

    Over the span of my career, I gradually became aware of universal truths that each of you can expect to experience in your own way:

    • You will never stop learning, growing, developing, transforming
    • You will learn to recognize opportunity; it is all around
    • You will appreciate that you are never alone; you are encircled by family, friends, colleagues
    • You will understand that you never achieve alone; you build on the accomplishments of others and with the help of others
    • You will experience ill and good fortune through no effort of your own
    • You will feel in your very bones how messy life really is: amid joy and success, there will be sadness and tragedy; you will discover wonder, and you bring your own meaning of happiness to your own lives in your own way

    With this program, you will bring together an incomparable medical education and outstanding business training. And doors of opportunity will open for you, beginning with internships, residencies and fellowships, on your way to exciting careers that are limited only by your imagination. In this way, you will help shape the future of medicine.

    Paul Beninger, MD, MBA
    Director, MD/MBA Program