LITTLE ROCK — The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health’s Master of Health Administration (MHA) program is converting to a 100% online format in the fall 2023 semester to better position it to produce health administrators for the state.
The MHA program also received reaccreditation through the Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) through 2030. The UAMS program is the only CAHME-accredited one in the state.
“The CAHME accreditation is the gold standard for MHA programs and our program is continually accredited by CAHME,” said Stephen Bowman, Ph.D., MHA, associate professor and MHA program director. “Employers value students who graduate from CAHME accredited programs, as they know it’s an indicator of the quality of the student’s education. Some administrative fellowships are only available to students who come from a CAHME accredited program. This is a prestigious accreditation.”
The program’s conversion to an exclusively online format is part of the UAMS Vision 2029 plan to make Arkansas the healthiest state in the region.
“Unfortunately, there are areas in Arkansas that don’t have adequate coverage of health care management professionals,” Bowman said. “That’s why it’s important that we’re able to provide an education for people throughout the state. In the past we’ve reached primarily working professionals who live within a 30-mile radius of our campus.
“We can now appeal to a wider-scope of people in Arkansas. Offering an online program provides more flexibility for students who are working and who also don’t live in central Arkansas. Ultimately, that will create an Arkansas workforce which is appropriately supported by our MHA program.”
Currently, there are 48 students in the program. Through the online format, they will continue to meet live each week with professors and peers. Classes will continue to engage students with online breakout rooms, group activities, team-based learning and in-depth discussions.
Bowman said the new structure will uphold the long-established standards, expectations and student opportunities of the program.
“We will assure the highest standards of quality, rigor and student engagement for the online program consistent with our program’s standards that have been in place for several decades,” Bowman said. “Opportunities for real world engagement with practicing health care administrators will continue. Students will benefit from formal mentoring, peer support and engagement.”
“Student opportunities already in place, will remain just as accessible as they’ve always been,” he added. “We’re providing people from anywhere in Arkansas with an opportunity to get an elite health administration education.”
UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,240 students, 913 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 11,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit www.uams.edu or www.uamshealth.com . Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.