Physician / MBA

MBAlogoThis was developed in cooperation with the American Academy of Family Physicians and is available to complete within the three-year residency curriculum. This is the first program of its type in the nation.

Program Description

In today’s healthcare environment, physicians face increasing challenges requiring skills beyond those acquired by way of traditional medical education. Healthcare organizations need physicians with not only excellent medical education and training, but also effective business management and leadership skills. The Rockhurst University MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians helps physicians gain the leadership and business management skills necessary to provide the highest quality healthcare services, and to effectively lead healthcare management teams, medical practices, and healthcare organizations.

Developed in cooperation with the American Academy of Family Physicians, Kansas City-area Family Medicine residency programs, and practicing physicians, the MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians provides a comprehensive, graduate-level business education which focuses on the specific issues relevant to physicians.


Graduates of the MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians will become leaders of conscience and competence, positively contributing not only to the health status of the patients they serve, but also serving as “agents of change” for the health care delivery system as we know it. Graduates will be optimally prepared to drive health system change toward improved disease prevention and health promotion, and overall improvements in healthcare quality and efficiency.


The MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians seeks to provide educational and developmental experiences that build physicians’ knowledge, skills and competencies to enhance their effectiveness as clinicians, business managers and leaders.

The MBA in Health Care Leadership is designed to meet the needs of practicing physicians, physician-managers, and physicians-in-training. Scheduling of coursework takes into consideration the rigors of medical practice, residency and fellowship training programs.

The MBA in Health Care Leadership for Physicians has been fully integrated into the UMKC Family Medicine Curriculum. This full integration is unlike any other residency program. This unique opportunity has been designed with family medicine residents in mind. The education program occurs at nearby Rockhurst University, a Jesuit university nationally ranked for quality of education. The MBA time commitment is planned into the schedule of residency to allow success in both endeavors without constraints of personal life.

Rockhurst-PMBA-Class-photoBTop row, second from left: Christopher Adams MD, Todd Shaffer MD, Michael Richardson MD, Gretchen Dickson MD, Gary Rosas MD

Bottom row, third from left: Bridgett McCandless MD, Virender Singhal, MD (CMH)

“This is the Best Decision I ever made. Medicine will change more in the next 10 years than it has in the past 100 years. Physicians who have the skills to adapt to the changing business model will be the most successful as we move to a more international and team approach to the delivery of health care. With their vast array of experience and knowledge, my professors concentrate on helping us build our leadership abilities and challenge us to be outspoken in health care reform.”

–Todd Shaffer, MD, MBA
Residency Director and Professor

MBA Program Highlights include:

  • Less than 1/8th is on-line course work. No business prerequisites are required.
  • Personalized Leadership Assessment and Development Program. Leadership and management skills are taught in an interactive style with emphasis on value, ethics and social just.
  • The curriculum is totally built around physician’s since it is a physicians MBA program.
  • The bulk of class work is on Wednesday evening and part of one weekend per month in R2 and R3.
  • Duties and rotations for residents are the same, but call will not be scheduled during class time.
  • Rockhurst has a track record of an excellent MBA program including partnerships.
  • Continuing Education Credits are available.
  • Extensive computer skills development
  • Active Physician Leader Alumni Network
More Information:

Rockhurst MBA Website

The few physician-only executive MBAs in the country specialize in leading physicians into the areas of healthcare management, marketing, and strategic planning, along with multiple leadership and career planning goals.

The MBA Program was created to assist physicians in developing business and organizational skills which are becoming increasingly important in the ever-changing healthcare environment. A physician executive must know how to effectively manage a business, understand the managed care environment, create and implement new strategies, and efficiently manage an integrated delivery system.