Tag Archives: medical

We need MD/MBEs not MD/MBAs

We need MD/MBEs not MD/MBAs

GUEST POST from Arlen Meyers, M.D.

The number of MD/MBAs graduating from medical schools continues to expand with about 5% of the roughly 20,000 US medical student graduates having dual degrees. While in past times the idea was to get the knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies to manage health services organizations, many are now doing it on the way to digital health startup land.

Most all of the 38 osteopathic schools offer dual degree programs as well.

However, MBA programs are dwindling and the ones that are still around are rethinking their value proposition and restructuring their curriculum.

For example, business schools are racing to add concentrations in science, technology, engineering and math to their M.B.A. programs as they try to broaden their appeal to prospective students overseas who want to work in the U.S.

Several schools, including Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, have unveiled STEM-designated master’s in business degrees in recent months. The University of California Berkeley’s Haas School of Business recently reclassified its entire M.B.A. program as STEM.

But, BMETALS is the new STEM.

In my view, we are training too many MD/MBAs that don’t add value to the system and that many programs should be terminated or restructured.

  1. We don’t know how much value the graduates contribute to the sick care system.
  2. The programs are usually not domain specific. Some think that’s a good thing, encouraging exposure to how other industries have solved generic problems. Others feel sick-care is so unique that the lessons are not applicable.
  3. Medical students are already up their waists in debt, most of which is taxpayer subsidized. Should additional debt be added to their student loans?
  4. Few of the programs address the needs of physician entrepreneurs.
  5. There are many substitutes for physician entrepreneurs around the world and US schools are no longer the mecca.
  6. Content has become generic and offered for free on the Internet.
  7. Connections are easy to make using social media.
  8. The MBA is losing credibility, given the large number of places that offer them, particularly those below the first-tier schools.
  9. Employers can see through the credentials.
  10. Costs continue to escalate and the programs do not accommodate the specific needs of busy clinician students.
  11. We need a thorough conversation about the policy wisdom of encouraging dual degrees, potentially side tracking graduates into non clinical roles when there is a global demand for clinicians.
  12. We need to track outcomes and roles of graduates to determine whether the dual degree adds value to the communities they are designed to serve and whether they are cost-effective in an era of skyrocketing student debt.

In addition, there is a difference between having knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies in the business of medicine, health systems science, health service organization management, leadership and leaderpreneurship and entrepreneurship/intrapreneurship. There is a confusing array of dual degree programs leaving students scratching their heads and, in many instances, wasting their time and money.

Also, more medical students are jumping ship to pursue non-clinical careers. While the numbers may a small portion of the roughly 20,000 first year US medical students, the trend is evident.

Instead, we should consider re-shuffling the deck and offer a new combined MBE (Masters in Bioinnovation and Entrepreneurship) degree or dual MD/MBE or PhD/MBE program.

According to Prof. Varda Liberman, the new Provost of Reichman University and Head of the MBA in Healthcare Innovation, “Healthcare systems are going through enormous changes worldwide and with the COVID-19, these changes were accelerated. There is an immediate need for a complete redesign that will necessitate innovative multidisciplinary solutions, leveraging technology, science, information systems, and national policy. Our MBA program in Healthcare Innovation, offered by Reichman University, in collaboration with Israel’s largest hospital, the Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, is designed to prepare the future leaders of the healthcare industry to develop solutions that will enable the needed redesign. The program brings together all the unique advantages of Israeli innovation, to provide our students with the tools and skills necessary to understand the complexity of the healthcare industry today. The program brings together all the key players of the ecosystem – those coming from the healthcare system, engineering, entrepreneurship, AI, law, biomedicine, pharmacology, high tech, investment, management, and public policy”.

Here’s how it would work:

  1. A four-year program combining two years in medical school and two years in an MBE program, patterned similar to Professional Science Masters Programs.
  2. The medical school curriculum would be separate and distinct from that offered to medical students interested in practicing medicine. Among other topics, we would teach sales.
  3. Clinical rotations should start on day one, intended to instill an entrepreneurial mindset and emphasize being a problem seeker, not a problem solver at this stage
  4. Interdisciplinary education with experiential learning in project teams that includes business, science, engineering, law and other health professionals.
  5. Experiential learning and a mandatory internship with local, national or international company in biopharma, medtech or digital health.
  6. A new tuition and funding structure, possibly run by private equity or medical technology companies who sponsor applicants. The present medical education business model won’t work if it depends on short term revenue by putting butts in the seats.
  7. Project teams would be offered proof of concept funding and iCorps team support
  8. Domain experts would work with project teams
  9. Each student would be assigned an entrepreneur mentor throughout the program
  10. Social biomedical entrepreneurship and ethics would be core streams throughout training. Those interested in creating non-profits or going into public service might be candidates for tuition deferral or waiver.

Another alternative is to make medical school 3 years instead of 4 and offer a one year track in biomedical and clinical entrepreneurship.

The good news for educators is that you don’t need to start from scratch. Karolinska beat you to the punch.

The purpose of the degree program is to provide students with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need to lead global biomedical innovation. Here’s what the curriculum would include:

  1. Building Biotechnology: Introduction to biomedical entrepreneurship
  2. Regulatory Affairs and Reimbursement
  3. Life Science Intellectual Property
  4. International (Bio) Business
  5. Biotech law and ethics
  6. Internship
  7. International trip
  8. Device and digital health entrepreneurship
  9. Leading high performance teams
  10. Bioentrepreneurial finance
  11. Drug discovery and development
  12. Care delivery entrepreneurship
  13. Social entrepreneurship
  14. Electives in other aspects of entrepreneurship

The David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah is taking its top 10 ranked program for entrepreneurship to new heights with a master’s degree designed for serious entrepreneurs.

The degree is called the Master of Business Creation (MBC), and it’s the first of its kind.

Applicants must be full-time entrepreneurs who want to create, launch and scale a new business, who want more than the 9-to-5 job, who have the drive to overcome the impossible, who want to build their knowledge while doing, and who are willing to put in the hours to make it happen.

We don’t need more physician administrators. We need more physician innovators and entrepreneurs who can lead us out of our sick care mess and close global health outcome disparities. While I believe the optimal career track involves a reasonable time practicing clinical medicine, students are thinking otherwise. For those that do, they need a new path to creating the future and medical and business educators need to create educational products that meet their needs.

Image credit: Pixabay

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The Impact of Virtual and Augmented Reality in Assisting Medical Procedures

The Impact of Virtual and Augmented Reality in Assisting Medical Procedures

GUEST POST from Chateau G Pato

In recent years, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies have made significant advancements, revolutionizing various industries, including healthcare. By simulating real-world scenarios and enhancing the physical environment, VR and AR have proven to be invaluable tools in assisting medical procedures. This article explores the transformative power of these immersive technologies by presenting two compelling case studies that demonstrate their impact on patient outcomes and healthcare professionals’ abilities.

Case Study 1: Surgeon-Assistance in Precision Procedures

One notable application of VR and AR technologies lies in their ability to provide real-time visualizations, allowing surgeons to enhance their precision during complex procedures. To illustrate this, let’s consider a recent case at a renowned cardiac center.

A cardiac surgeon, Dr. Johnson, was tasked with performing a high-risk coronary bypass surgery on a patient with multiple complications. Utilizing AR glasses, Dr. Johnson was able to visualize the patient’s anatomy in real-time, overlaying vital data onto the patient’s chest. This immersive visualization provided an enhanced understanding of the complex vascular network, allowing the surgeon to navigate around potential trouble spots and optimize the bypass graft placement accurately.

The use of AR during this procedure significantly reduced the operation time by 25% and decreased the risk of complications. Dr. Johnson’s exceptional outcomes highlight how VR and AR technologies complement surgical expertise, fostering improved patient care.

Case Study 2: Enhancing Patient Rehabilitation with VR

Beyond the operating theater, VR has also proven to be a powerful tool for aiding patients in their rehabilitation journey. Consider a case involving a young adult, Emily, who suffered a severe traumatic brain injury resulting from a car accident.

Emily experienced reduced cognitive function, mobility challenges, and struggled to regain independence in her daily activities. To assist her recovery, her rehabilitation team introduced VR-based therapy sessions. Through immersive experiences, Emily was transported to virtual environments that stimulated her cognitive and motor abilities, such as virtual grocery shopping or navigating a virtual obstacle course.

By incorporating VR into her therapy, Emily’s motivation and engagement levels increased significantly, leading to improved outcomes in her cognitive and motor skills. Over time, she regained her independence with daily activities, and her overall quality of life improved. This case illustrates how VR can revolutionize rehabilitation practices by providing engaging and customized interventions tailored to each patient’s needs.


The impact of virtual and augmented reality technologies on medical procedures is undeniable. From improving surgical precision to enriching rehabilitation practices, VR and AR have accelerated advancements in patient care. The case studies presented exemplify the transformative potential of these immersive technologies, fostering enhanced patient outcomes and augmenting healthcare professionals’ capabilities.

As VR and AR continue to evolve, we must seize the opportunity to integrate these technologies further into healthcare systems. Investing in research, development, and training will facilitate their widespread adoption, ultimately leading to a future where medical procedures are safer, more efficient, and patient-centered. By embracing these emerging technologies, we can truly revolutionize the world of healthcare, pushing the boundaries of what we can achieve for the benefit of all.

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Image credit: Pexels

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Innovations in Healthcare

A Glimpse into the Medical Future

Innovations in Healthcare: A Glimpse into the Medical Future

GUEST POST from Art Inteligencia

With the rapid advancements in technology, healthcare is undergoing a transformative change. Today, we have the opportunity to witness medical innovations that were once considered science fiction. The future of healthcare promises improved patient care, enhanced diagnostics, and more effective treatments. In this article, we will explore two case studies that provide a glimpse into the medical future and demonstrate the potential impact of these innovations.

Case Study 1: Artificial Intelligence in Radiology

Radiology plays a crucial role in diagnosing and monitoring diseases. However, the interpretation of medical images is often time-consuming and prone to errors, leading to delayed diagnosis and treatment. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing the field of radiology by streamlining diagnostic processes and yielding more accurate results.

One exceptional example of AI’s application in radiology is the work done at Stanford University. Researchers developed an AI algorithm that analyzes chest X-rays to detect pneumonia accurately. The algorithm surpasses the accuracy of trained radiologists, offering a rapid and cost-effective solution for early pneumonia detection. This AI system has the potential to improve patient outcomes by enabling early intervention and reducing the time required for diagnosis.

The AI algorithms can also be trained to analyze other imaging modalities, such as MRI and CT scans, assisting radiologists in diagnosing a wide range of conditions. By harnessing the power of AI, radiology departments can improve the efficiency and accuracy of their processes, leading to better patient care.

Case Study 2: Telehealth for Remote Patient Monitoring

One of the greatest challenges faced by healthcare providers is caring for patients in geographically remote areas. Telehealth, the use of technology to deliver healthcare remotely, has emerged as a game-changer in addressing this issue. Remote patient monitoring (RPM), a component of telehealth, allows healthcare professionals to track patients’ vital signs and health parameters without the need for in-person visits.

An outstanding example of RPM implementation is the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) in the United States. VHA implemented telehealth programs to monitor veterans with chronic conditions, such as heart failure and diabetes. Through a combination of at-home wearable devices and virtual consultations, healthcare providers can remotely monitor patients’ health status and intervene when necessary. This proactive approach has led to significant reductions in hospital admissions and emergency department visits. Furthermore, patients appreciate the convenience of remote monitoring, as it saves them travel time and enhances their overall quality of life.

The integration of RPM into healthcare systems has immense potential to improve disease management and reduce healthcare costs. By utilizing technology to remotely monitor patients, healthcare providers can optimize care, prevent hospital re-admissions, and promote patient engagement.


The healthcare industry is on the cusp of a technological revolution that holds the promise of transforming patient care. Through artificial intelligence and telehealth advancements, we are witnessing the emergence of a medical future that is more efficient, effective, and accessible. The case studies presented in this article are just a glimpse into the potential of these innovations. As the medical landscape evolves, embracing these transformative technologies will undoubtedly lead to significant improvements in patient outcomes and the overall quality of healthcare delivery.

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Image credit: Unsplash

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