Johns Hopkins Professors: Why Business and Medicine Work Together

Johns Hopkins Professors: Why Business and Medicine Work Together

Christopher Myers believes that business and medicine go hand-in-hand. so much so that he thinks a “Management 101” course should be embedded into the curriculum of every medical school. Myers, an assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School, and Peter Pronovost, a professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, recently stated their views in an invited commentary for Academic Medicine.

“What’s needed are more methodical efforts at the outset of medical education, drawing on research-based theory from psychology, sociology, and the organizational sciences,” Myers said. “The med schools could partner with business school faculty and other management scholars to bring MBA-style training to the health care context―Management 101 for med students.”

According to the Association of American Medical Colleges Medical School Graduation Questionnaire, only 0.7 percent of 2016 medical school graduates completed an MD/MBA program. But there may need to be stronger future emphasis on how business and medicine work together.

Myers and Pronovost suggest that the basic management training taught to business students should become equally known among medical students. They outlined the following examples in their article, “Making Management Skills a Core Component of Medical Education:”

    • Individual and interpersonal dynamics (judgment, decision making, motivation, communication, negotiation, and conflict management).
    • Team and unit dynamics (leadership, information management, and team processes).
    • Organizational dynamics (organizational culture, inter-organizational networks, and managing change).


Ultimately, the authors say that their ultimate goal to to protect patients from ineffective management of medical teams and organizations.

“We are not naïve enough to believe that instituting ‘Management 101’ in medical education will completely resolve the leadership challenges facing physicians …,” the article concludes. “Still, it is a necessary first step toward elevating management abilities onto more equal footing with clinical knowledge for the majority of medical school graduates, and more adequately preparing these graduates to lead and manage the delivery of high-quality, safe care in the modern medical enterprise.”


About the Author

Max Pulcini

Max Pulcini is a Philadelphia-based writer and reporter. He has an affinity for Philly sports teams, Super Smash Bros. and cured meats and cheeses. Max has written for Philadelphia-based publications such as Spirit News, Philadelphia City Paper, and Billy Penn, as well as national news outlets like The Daily Beast.

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