CAHME-Accredited Programs Represent “Beauty and Strength” of Diversity

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

CAHME programs produce an annual report to demonstrate how they fulfill their mission and meet the requirements of accreditation. This information is required by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation and has the added advantage of enabling programs to benchmark their progress.

These annual reports provide a fascinating insight into many aspects of CAHME-accredited programs. As just one example, programs provide data on the diversity of their student body. CAHME’s accreditation Criteria IIA2 states that programs “will have recruiting practices and well-defined admission criteria designed to recruit and admit qualified students and to pursue a diverse student population as reflected in the Program’s mission-defined market.” For the 2017/18 academic year, CAHME programs reported the following ethnic breakdown of students: White or Caucasian: 58.9%; Asian: 17.6%; Black or African-American: 12.6%; Hispanic: 9.9%; Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 0.7%; Native American: 0.3%.

The chart below illustrates racial and ethnic diversity percentages for most CAHME programs. The overall average is 41 percent.

Figure 1: CAHME Accredited Programs, 2017 – 2018, Percent Enrolled Students from Racial/Ethnic Minorities by Reporting Program. (Excludes programs from Canada and Puerto Rico. Ten programs did not report. Overall percentage based on total enrollment for all programs.)

Diversity in developing the next generation of healthcare leaders is not just a crucial issue but, to paraphrase the writer Maya Angelou, represents both “beauty and strength.” Diverse healthcare leadership produces more innovative ideas and emphasizes inclusion in decision-making. Equally important, it helps ensure that future healthcare leadership reflects the increasing diversity of American society. This feature of leadership will be increasingly important, especially as health systems tackle cultural competence and issues around the social determinants of health. 

“You can’t manage what you don’t measure” is a familiar aphorism in the business world. By asking programs to report on the diversity of their enrollment, CAHME’s accreditation requirements acknowledge the important impact of diversity and its contribution to increasing the pool of diverse healthcare leaders and advancing the quality of healthcare management education. 

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

Measurement Lags as Competency-Based Education Grows in Importance

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

Few developments in healthcare management education—and its accreditation—have been as important and impactful as the evolution toward competency-based education (CBE). The emphasis on competencies has meant that programs have had to transition away from merely imparting management knowledge and skills to students in favor of measuring what students can accomplish with the knowledge, skills and behavior they acquire. Studying leadership is useful; actually leading is a competency.

After several years of review and collaborative discussion, CAHME introduced CBE as an important standard for accreditation in 2007 and in 2013 fully committed to CBE by removing curriculum content from our accreditation criteria. With more than five years of accreditation visits since then, we are able to draw some conclusions about how programs have fared. While support for CBE has been strong among programs and employers, a majority of programs continue to struggle in measuring their students’ achievement of competencies. Reviews of both empirical and anecdotal data by CAHME leadership and staff suggest that more than two-thirds of programs either “partially met” or “did not meet” criteria for assessing competencies.

CAHME is committed to helping programs both adopt competency standards and to improve measurement of competencies. CAHME’s benchmarking tool enables programs to review other programs that have succeeded in measuring competencies. All new CAHME programs are automatically subscribed to Enhanced Benchmarking, and 82 percent of accredited programs participate.  A recorded webinar on the site helps to explain the capabilities as well. It is also a major focus for our ongoing series of CAHME Boot Camps, which will again be held at the annual meetings of ACHE and AUPHA.

In 2020, CAHME is committed to publish a White Paper that will focus on competency measurement.  We appreciate the support of Peregrine Academic Services in helping to underwrite the costs of the white paper.

The use of competencies will continue to expand. Our recent certification standards for programs in Healthcare Quality and Safety includes competency assessment. CAHME also supports the International Hospital Federation in creating global management competencies. (I had the honor of co-authoring  the recently published article in the World Hospitals and Health Services Journalalong with Bernardo Ramirez of the University of Central California, Dan West of the University of Scranton, and Bob Hernandez of the University of Alabama at Birmingham that discusses competencies in global accreditation.)

CBE is a vitally important standard for accreditation. It validates quality education to program stakeholders, makes graduates more attractive to employers, provides an opportunity for consultation and feedback from colleagues, and underscores the importance of continuous improvement. In short, CAHME’s commitment to competency-based education is a cornerstone in our mission of advancing the quality of healthcare management education.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

CAHME Marks Newly Accredited and Re-accredited Programs

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

At our May Board meeting, CAHME approved accreditation for a new program: the University of Louisville School of Public Health & Information Sciences Master of Science in Health Administration. With its addition, a total of 106 programs in the US and Canada now meet CAHME standards—an all-time high.

The Board also re-accredited five programs:

Accreditation is at the core of CAHME’s mission to advance the quality of healthcare education. Achieving accreditation, or re-accreditation, is the culmination of significant effort by programs to demonstrate that they meet CAHME standards. And those standards are important. Students look for CAHME-accredited programs as assurance that they will offer a high-quality educational experience that will best prepare them for leadership. Hospitals and health systems look to hire graduates of CAHME-accredited programs knowing that these new executives are coming to them not just with academic credentials, but with proven competencies in meeting the challenges of providing healthcare in communities across the country and around the world. CAHME maintains a searchable database of accredited programs on our web site which includes program information, accreditation history, contact info, and links to program webs sites.

I want to acknowledge, too, the many volunteers for CAHME who provide such important support as conducting site visits, reviewing applications, and serving on a range of committees that advance the quality of healthcare management education.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

CAHME Certifies Healthcare Quality and Safety Programs

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

At its May meeting, the Board of Directors of the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) approved certification for four programs in Healthcare Quality & Safety. The newly certified programs are offered by George Washington UniversityThomas Jefferson University, the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and the University of Illinois at Chicago.

The certification of these programs represents an important milestone in an almost three-year process that is continuing. In the Fall of  2016, David Nash, MD, MBA, founding dean of the Jefferson College of Population Health, approached CAHME about the idea of offering certification—and ultimately accreditation—for healthcare quality and safety education. Dr. Nash joined with Christy Lemak, PhD, of the University of Alabama at Birmingham to accelerate the process. A survey of programs demonstrated strong interest and by the fall of 2017, ten leading healthcare quality and safety programs across North America had agreed to support the effort.

Under the chairmanship of Billy Oglesby, PhD, MBA, FACHE, Associate Dean of the Jefferson College of Population Health, the Healthcare Quality & Safety (HQS) Committee formed and laid out an aggressive timeline to develop certification and accreditation standards and competencies. Committee and subcommittee representation included both academicians and practitioners.  Last November the CAHME Board approved the certification standards and four of the founding 10 programs applied for certification. Leading academics, practitioners in quality and safety, CAHME Board members, and staff from the National Association for Healthcare Quality (NAHQ) provided an independent review of the applications.

“Improving the quality and safety of healthcare is imperative for health systems not only in the US, but around the world,” Dr. Oglesby said, noting strong interest when he and Dr. Nash reported on the CAHME initiative during the 2018 convention for the International Society for Quality in Health Care. “One key to success is to ensure programs offer students of healthcare management the academic foundation that will allow them to lead the changes needed to achieve safer and higher quality healthcare.”

“CAHME certification and (eventual) accreditation of HQS instruction broadens our ability to fulfill our mission of improving the quality of healthcare management education, both in North America and globally,” said Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE, president and CEO of CAHME. “We are grateful to the many academic and industry leaders who have worked so hard to achieve this important milestone.”

CAHME Board Changes

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

CAHME is fortunate to benefit from the guidance of our Board of Directors who set the overall strategic direction for the organization and provide important oversight to all our activities.

At our most recent board meeting in May, CAHME welcomed three new board members who represent both the professional and academic stakeholders in CAHME’s mission. New board members are approved by CAHME’s Corporate Members.

Ronald W. Holder, Jr., MHA, FACHE, FACMPE, is an executive with Baylor Scott & White and the immediate past chair of the Medical Group Management Association. He was nominated by MGMA.

Forest S. Kim recently concluded his role as program director and associate professor at University of the Incarnate Word Graduate Program in Healthcare Administration.  In July, he will begin as director for the Baylor University Robbins MBA Healthcare program. Forest was a contributor to CAHME’s recent publication on benchmarking. He was nominated by AUPHA.

Todd A. Nelson is chief partnership officer for the Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) and formerly served as Vice President for Education at HFMA and as a hospital CFO. Todd was nominated for the board by HFMA.

The Board also appointed members to the CAHME Executive Committee:

We are grateful for the selfless contributions of time and talent our board members make to support CAHME’s mission of advancing the quality of healthcare management education.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

CAHME and Wharton Research Data Services Announce Recipient of First CAHME/WRDS Grant

The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) and Wharton Research Data Services (WRDS) have named Edmond Hooker, MD, DrPH; Peter Mallow, PhD; and Michelle Oglesby, MS, of the Xavier University Department of Health Services Administration as recipients of the first CAHME/WRDS Best Paper for Empirical Research Award. The award recognizes the authors’ use of data for an innovative analysis of Emergency Department visits, which was published in January by the Journal of Emergency Medicine.

The article, titled “Characteristics and Trends of Emergency Department Visits in the United States (2010 – 2014)” describes how the authors used national claims data for ED visits to develop a new classification system that more accurately identified what health issues drive patients to hospital Emergency Departments. Among the article’s surprise findings: mental health and substance abuse are the second-most frequent reason for ED usage (trailing only abdominal problems). Under earlier analysis systems, mental health did not appear in the top 20 diagnoses.

In selecting the authors from Xavier University, CAHME President and CEO Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE, noted that the panel of judges “were impressed by the relevancy of the research, the novel approach taken, and the robustness of the analysis. Its publication in such a respected journal suggests it could have broad impact as well.”

“This type of analysis is important for healthcare leaders and policy makers,” said lead author Edmond Hooker, MD, DrPH. “It provides an invaluable tool to aid in resourcing and staffing the emergency department. For instance, we have seen a decline in mental health and substance abuse beds, but our results show that we should be adding more inpatient psychiatric beds to serve this vulnerable population.”

“The CAHME-WRDS Best Paper Award for Empirical Research is an exciting collaboration between two organizations focused on advancing excellence across the healthcare research sector,” said Robert Zarazowski, Managing Director of WRDS. “This is a natural partnership for WRDS, and we look forward to highlighting high-quality, impactful research from the sector.” A part of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, WRDS provides global corporations, universities and regulatory agencies the thought leadership, data access and insights needed to enable impactful research.

The CAHME/WRDS Award includes a grant of $1,500. The award program is open to any CAHME-accredited program or faculty from a CAHME-accredited program.

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About WRDS: Wharton Research Data Services (WRDS) provides the leading business intelligence, data analytics, and research platform to global institutions  ̶  enabling comprehensive thought leadership, historical analysis, and insight into the latest innovations in academic research.

WRDS provides researchers with one location to access over 350 terabytes of data across multiple disciplines including Accounting, Banking, Economics, ESG, Finance, Healthcare, Insurance, Marketing, and Statistics. Flexible data delivery options include a powerful web query method that reduces research time, the WRDS Cloud for executing research and strategy development, and the WRDS client server using PCSAS, Matlab, R and more. Our rigorous data review and validation give users the confidence to tailor research and create a wide range of reliable data models. WRDS unique array of Services offer access to a suite of analytics developed by our doctoral-level research team, tutorials, research support, and Classroom by WRDS— a teaching and learning toolkit designed to introduce business concepts in the classroom. The WRDS Experience is more than just a data platform.

An award-winning data research platform for 50,000+ commercial, academic, and government users in 35+ countries, WRDS is the global gold standard in data management, innovative tools, analytics, and research services  ̶  all backed by the credibility and leadership of the Wharton School.

About The Wharton School: Founded in 1881 as the first collegiate business school, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is recognized globally for intellectual leadership and ongoing innovation across every major discipline of business education. With a broad global community and one of the most published business school faculties, Wharton creates economic and social value around the world. The School has 5,000 undergraduate, MBA, executive MBA, and doctoral students; more than 9,000 participants in executive education programs annually and a powerful alumni network of 96,000 graduates.

CAHME Awards Student Scholarship and Faculty Research Grant

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

CAHME is pleased to announce the recipients of our newest scholarship and faculty grant awards:

CAHME/Judy Baar Topinka Foundation Scholarship for Health Policy
Our first Judy Baar Topinka Foundation Scholarship for Health Policy has been awarded to Kelly Page, a first year Master of Healthcare Administration student in the Health Policy and Management Department at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. Kelly is a member of the executive board of the Health Policy and Management Student Council and

Kelly Page

also serves as a Senator for the Graduate and Professional Student Federation. She also chaired an educational service organization to address health disparities experienced by young women in Nairobi, Kenya. Through her collaboration with a non-profit there, she was able to provide access to personal hygiene products and health education to more than 100 young women. In nominating Kelly, Jeffrey Simms, MSPH, of the Gillings School at UNC wrote “Judy Baar Topinka dedicated her life to the service of others and the pursuit of accessible care for the people of Illinois. We feel Kelly exemplifies these same characteristics and we are confident that she will continue this beyond her academic career into her professional career.” Congratulations, Kelly!

CAHME/Wharton Research Data Services Best Paper for Empirical Research Award
Congratulations to Edmond Hooker, MD, DrPH; Peter Mallow, PhD; and Michelle Oglesby, MS, of the Xavier University Department of Health Services Administration for receiving the first CAHME/WRDS Best Paper for Empirical Research Award. The award recognizes the authors’ use of data for an innovative analysis of Emergency Department visits, which was published in the January 2019 issue of the Journal of Emergency Medicine. 

The article, titled “Characteristics and Trends of Emergency Department Visits in the United States (2010 – 2014)” describes how the authors used national claims data for ED visits to develop a new classification system that more accurately identified what health issues drive patients to hospital Emergency Departments. Among the article’s surprise findings: mental health and substance abuse are the second-most frequent reason for ED usage. Under earlier analysis systems, mental health did not appear in the top 20 diagnoses.

In a press release, lead author Edmond Hooker, MD, DrPH, said “This type of analysis is important for healthcare leaders and policy makers. It provides an invaluable tool to aid in resourcing and staffing the emergency department. For instance, we have seen a decline in mental health and substance abuse beds, but our results show that we should be adding more inpatient psychiatric beds to serve this vulnerable population.”

In making the award, Robert Zarazowski, Managing Director of WRDS noted that working with CAHME “is a natural partnership for WRDS, and we look forward to highlighting high-quality, impactful research from the sector.” A part of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, WRDS provides global corporations, universities and regulatory agencies the thought leadership, data access and insights needed to enable impactful research. The CAHME/WRDS Award includes a grant of $1,500. The award program is open to only to faculty of CAHME-accredited programs.

CAHME is grateful to partner with WRDS and the Judy Baar Topinka Foundation for these awards and scholarships that help to highlight programs and students who are advancing the quality of healthcare management education.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

CAHME’s Global Perspectives Expanding

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

“Think Globally, Act Locally” a familiar bumper sticker reads. CAHME, however, is both thinking and acting globally as part of our strategic focus on creating global accreditation standards for healthcare management education. We established a Global Advisory Council in late 2017 to begin the work of organizing a process for global accreditation as a “backbone” of professionalism in healthcare management. We are leveraging the relationships faculty from CAHME-accredited programs already have with universities around the globe.

Interest in accreditation for programs across the world is accelerating. In addition to CAHME’s ongoing work with programs in Nairobi, Kenya, and Tblisi, Georgia, we have had discussions with programs in Thailand, India, Brazil, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, the Slovak Republic, and Grenada. 

This summer, the World Hospitals and Health Services Journal will publish an article co-authored by myself, Daniel J. West, PhD, FACHE, of the University of ScrantonBernardo Ramirez, MD, MBA, of the University of Central Florida; and Robert Hernandez, PhD, of the University of Alabama at Birmingham exploring how CAHME’s emphasis on competencies can be adopted by programs internationally. The benefits to these international programs are the same as have been seen by CAHME-accredited programs in the US and Canada for the past 50 years: to validate educational quality, to assure the relevance of management education to the healthcare profession, to help students choose a program with confidence in its content and standards, and to provide a framework for continuous improvement in the industry. I will share the article with you upon its publication. (CAHME-accredited programs can also subscribe to the journal at a special discounted price of just $150 a year. Email journal@ihf-fih.org to learn more.) 

These same themes are highlighted in the next episode of CAHME’s Getting to 100 video series. Episode 7: Global Perspective features Sherril Gelmon, MHSc, DrPH of Portland State University and Dan West who were interviewed during CAHME’s 50th  anniversary celebration last year.

The creation of global networks among universities is not new and is reflected in such long-standing practices such as health management partnerships, study-abroad programs, or Fulbright and Rhodes Scholarships. CAHME seeks to leverage the relationships of faculty from accredited programs who want to help expand global accreditation through the CAHME Mentorship Circle (contact me if you are interested!).

The International Hospital Federation has endorsed the concept of global accreditation. IHF recognizes that more countries are becoming “players” on the global higher education stage, and that CAHME’s strategy for accrediting programs globally can advance the professional management necessary to lead increasingly complex healthcare systems. This is a difficult, but necessary, challenge, and I believe CAHME, IHF, and our partners can leverage best management practices world-wide, question established behaviors, and create a generation of leaders with the skills, knowledge, ethics, and commitment to become professionals seeking to ensure the health of communities across the globe.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

Understanding Technology’s Impact on Students, Programs, and Healthcare

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

It’s hard to imagine healthcare without technology. From the first X-ray machines that made medical imaging possible just over one hundred years, virtually every facet of healthcare today has been improved by technologies that diagnose, treat, and manage disease and injury. And the same is true for modern healthcare management: it simply would not be possible without a wide range of technological advances such as data management and digital communications.

Nor has healthcare management education been immune from technology’s impact. As just one example, online instruction has ballooned in recent years and CAHME has established accreditation standards and criteria to ensure that this “virtual” educational experience is as rigorous and effective as traditional face-to-face learning. Additionally, the next generation of healthcare leaders—now in undergraduate or graduate training, or in the early stages of their careers—have a very different relationship with technology than Gen X or Baby Boomer leaders. These latter two demographic groups had to “adopt” technologies that Millennials and younger have grown up with. That has important implications for the work force. For example, some experts have suggested the younger generation is more comfortable interacting online rather than in person. What does that mean for your next planning retreat?

These are the sorts of issues addressed in the latest CAHME video in our Getting to 100 series. Episode Six focuses on the impact of technology, and features the insights of Karen Wager, DBA, professor and associate dean for Student Affairs at the Medical University of South Carolina, and Carla Smith, FHIMSS, who recently retired from her role as executive vice president for the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society.  Leading programs will need to adapt to this changing technological environment and its impact on student expectations and behaviors. Recently, the US Department of Education has started revising standards to encourage accreditors and universities to be more innovative and responsive to a technologically changing workforce.

CAHME is watching these developments closely and will work with academia and leading practitioners to refine our standards and practices to ensure, just as we have for more than 50 years, that we continue to advance the quality of healthcare management education.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME

CAHME White Paper, Training Help Programs With Benchmarking

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE

Does your program benchmark? Benchmarking provides an external standard against which to measure your program’s own outcomes and can often identify ways to improve performance. As a practice that started in the corporate world in the 1980s, benchmarking is now widely accepted as a powerful management tool across a wide range of industry sectors—including higher education.

CAHME is working to support programs that want to pursue benchmarking. We recently published, with the support of Peregrine Academics, a white paper entitled Benchmarking for Graduate Healthcare Management Education Programs: Perspectives from the Field. The white paper is available for free on our website. It explores current trends in benchmarking and profiles four CAHME-accredited programs using benchmarking to drive performance improvement. I strongly encourage you to read the white paper to learn more.

In addition to this new white paper, CAHME offers “enhanced benchmarking” as a free resource to our accredited programs.  Enhanced benchmarking is intended to help programs pursue their goals for continuous quality improvement. Our benchmarking data includes site visit report information (including self-study) and program annual report data.

During the AUPHA annual meeting in June, CAHME will host a Benchmarking Breakfast as part of our Boot Camp. During the breakfast you can learn more about how your program can take part in CAHME’s enhanced benchmarking initiative. Our goal is to have 80 percent of accredited programs signed up for enhanced benchmarking by June 30. You can register and learn more on our web site.

Benchmarking supports CAHME’s mission to advance the quality of healthcare management education. We believe benchmarking can encourage common advancement across the industry. Programs that perform well can contribute to the common advancement of graduate programs overall.  CAHME’s goal is to not just make one program better, but to make every program better.

Anthony Stanowski, DHA, FACHE
President & CEO
CAHME