This is another area where physician administrators can add value. Because of their similar medical backgrounds, clinical staff may find the physician executive more relatable than a leader who does not possess a clinical background. Physician leaders can help close this gap to form a collaborative and synergistic relationship.
Opportunity for growth
When organizations bring physicians into leadership positions, there is one obvious consideration to keep in mind: a majority of physicians may not have as much formal business training as their counterparts with MBAs and degrees in hospital administration.
The number of physicians seeking out this additional training has increased in the last few years, as evidenced by the growth of MD/MBA degree programs offered through university programs (from six in 1993 to 65 today, according to the Association of MD/MBA Programs). As physicians transition from the clinical to business side of leading an organization, they must be willing to invest in their business and leadership development.
Physicians are meant to be leaders. They build trusted relationships with patients, lead clinical staff to provide effective patient care, train the next generation of physicians, and have long been critically important liaisons between clinicians and executives.
As our nation’s healthcare system evolves and enhanced outcomes and improved patient experiences become more important to the financial stability of our care networks, there is a growing need for physician leaders to grow into executive positions, bringing their invaluable firsthand knowledge of patient care into the boardroom.
John Turner is vice president of physician solutions at Quorum Health Resources, the largest health care professional services company for non-urban hospitals and health systems nationwide. With more than 25 years of progressive and reliable health care leadership experience in for-profit and nonprofit health care environments, Turner has a track record of driving organizational success in operational and financial objectives through a strong makeup of strategic research and operational execution.