Read on to learn the arguments for and against doctors getting MBAs.
Many doctors who own their practice say an MBA helps them manage the practice more efficiently and profitably. Nathan Granger, MD, MBA, co-founder of Clay Platte Family Medicine Clinic in Kansas City, MO, says learning about finance in his MBA courses enabled him to prepare and present monthly practice financial updates to his partners.
Physicians who want to move into management often find they need an MBA to do so. U.S. Army Colonel Timothy Switaj, MD, MBA, says having a management degree enabled him to advance from being commander and chief medical officer at an Army community hospital to his current position as director of clinical operations and chief medical officer for the Army’s San Antonio region.
When Congress was debating the Affordable Care Act Darren Sommer, DO, MBA, urged-elected representatives to support the law but felt his arguments weren’t getting through to them. “I needed a better policy understanding of health care to make my arguments more effective,” he admits.
Long-time practice management consultant David Zetter, CHBC, thinks doctors getting an MBA is “a waste of money” because:
Doctors have several options for getting an MBA degree, including:
Pro: In many dual degree programs students can complete the MBA component in less time than in a stand-alone MBA program
Business has always been a part of practicing medicine, but when most doctors owned their own practice or were in small groups just knowing basic finance was enough to get by. But as medicine grows increasingly corporate, more doctors are seeing value in acquiring the knowledge and skills that come with an MBA degree. But there are also possible downsides to consider. Read on to learn the arguments for and against doctors getting MBAs.