Online Master of Health Administration Program Overview | Open House Webinar

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Duquesne faculty and enrollment advisors walks potential students through the Duquesne University’s online Master of Health Administration program and the concentration options offered.

Webinar Participants: 

  • Brenda Swanson-Biearman, RN, MPH, DNP – Assistant Professor
  • Peter D. Giglione, JD – Adjunct Professor, Trial Advocacy Program Coordinator
  • Ahmad Khanijahani, PhD, CPH – Assistant Professor
  • Joan Kiel, PhD, CHPS – Professor, Chairman, University HIPAA Compliance
  • Faina Linkov, PhD, MPH – Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Health Services Administration and Public Health
  • Sonali Ibanez– Enrollment Advisor

Transcript

Sonali Ibanez:

Hello, everyone. Thank you so much for joining us today for our Online Master’s of Health Administration’s Open House. My name is Sonali Ibanez, and I am an enrollment advisor for the Master’s of Health Administration Program out of Duquesne University. Today, we will be discussing what the program entails along with meeting the faculty and staff and hearing from them. Today, we have with us during this open house, is going to be Dr. Kiel. Dr. Kiel is a professor. If you don’t mind, Dr. Kiel, could you just tell us a little bit about yourself?

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Good afternoon. I am a professor in the program, and I teach the course in healthcare human resources management, and I also teach that at the undergraduate program. And in addition, it was part of my doctoral degree. Also, I have a research interest in medical informatics and how technology effectuates healthcare delivery.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much for sharing. Next we have with us Dr. Khanijahani. Do you mind just sharing a little bit about yourself, a little bit about your background please?

Ahmad Khanijahani:

Sure. Hi, everyone. This is Ahmad. I’m an assistant professor at the Department of Health Administration and Public Health at Duquesne, and I hope to see you soon here. I teach a variety of courses in healthcare administration, intro courses and master’s level and graduate level. Also, I have been teaching quality improvement, risk management, and some other courses here. In terms of research, I mainly focus on the use of secondary and available data sources. So I do not collect my data. I use available data sources. Usually, I use national surveys. I pull up those surveys related to health or census data. I perform analysis on those, and that’s basically my research area. But it can be related to mostly, anything related to health policy, health administration, and health economics based on my background and my research interests in the department. Thank you.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you so much for sharing a little bit about yourself, Dr. Khanijahani. I really appreciate that. Now I’m going to just switch it over to Dr. Swanson-Biearman. Would you like to tell us a little bit about yourself please?

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

Hi. My name is Brenda Swanson-Biearman, and I’ve been at the university for about, oh, almost nine or 10 years now, and I have a varied background. My background is in nursing, but I also have my master’s in public health and a doctorate in nursing business. So the courses that I teach here at Duquesne have ranged from the clinical area in the physician assistant program, and now I’ve segued over to the public health program, which we recently developed, and also into the MHA program. So classes that I like to teach are things like managerial epidemiology, health promotion, things that are involved with public health. My areas of interest are toxicology, which is kind of a subset of emergency medicine, specifically pediatrics and injury epidemiology and different ways people can be poisoned. So it’s kind of very interesting and a different kind of research than typical research.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

And then I do a lot of translational health systems research, where people have already done research on some aspect of healthcare, and then somebody else goes in and replicates that research so that they can have the same quality of outcomes that other people have had. So I sit on a lot of doctoral committees at Waynseburg University for that, but I’m very excited to have you all come and kind of matriculate through Duquesne because I think we have a great program.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you so much, Dr. Swanson-Biearman, and I completely agree with you. And next we have Professor Giglione. Would you like to share with us also a little bit about yourself?

Peter Giglione:

Sure. Hi, everybody. Good afternoon. My name is Pete Giglione. I am a full-time practicing lawyer. I’m not a full-time professor. I practice mainly in the healthcare arena, from the lawyer’s side anyways. I’m also a law professor part time at Duquesne. I teach in the School of Law. I’m the Director of the Trial Advocacy Program in the law school, and I also teach in the School of Health Sciences, both at the master’s and undergraduate level. At the undergraduate level, I teach a class called Legal Issues in Healthcare mainly to seniors. And I teach a Healthcare Law and Ethics course for the first time. We just tried it. We just finished it actually this semester. I had a really great semester. It was an all online course, as you’ve probably seen. And I co-taught that with an ethics professor from the bio-ethics program, which was a great experience. So I’ve been teaching at Duquesne for over 10 years. I really, really enjoy it. Actually, I enjoy it more than I enjoy practicing law many days of the week. Trust me on that. But it’s a pleasure to talk to you all today, and I hope to see you or speak with you in the future.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much, Professor. And last but not least, we have Dr. Linkov. Would you also enlighten us with a little bit about yourself?

Dr. Faina Linkov:

Sure. I’m Faina Linkov, and I’m currently a professor, an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh. But as of July 1st, I am moving to Duquesne University, and I am honored to become a chair of this wonderful department and to join this wonderful team. I have many different research and teaching interests. One of the things that I really like to do research on is health systems research. One of my recent projects focused on whether pathways of care improved patient outcomes. That was a very exciting project. Additionally, I did quite a bit of research in the area of molecular epidemiology, where I looked at whether inflammatory markers change as people lose weight through diet and exercise and also bariatric surgery. And finally, I have a huge interest in global health and global health research. And to that extent, I hope to share my interest and expertise in global health with the students in this department and in other departments.

Dr. Faina Linkov:

In terms of my teaching experience, I’m planning to teach research methods to undergraduate students and possibly Introduction to Health Services Administration. And then I’m also looking forward to being a guest speaker in various courses, especially in this program. So I’m generally extremely looking forward to seeing older students coming into the program and meeting each of you individually and sharing my interests in public health, global health, and health services administration. So thank you so much for coming and also for having me here in this meeting.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you so much for sharing, Dr. Linkov. I’m just going to tell you a little bit about our program really quick. This program is definitely designed for students interested in improving the health and quality of life for people across their lifespan. This program is definitely suitable for students working as healthcare professionals or even mid-career practitioners, even recent college graduates. So mainly, this program does focus on integrating healthcare and business management. You’re going to learn how to understand healthcare trends, develop solutions, and make a meaningful difference in the healthcare industry overall. So this program essentially does take about two years to complete, which is around 42 total credit hours, and that translates to 14 courses in total. One great thing about our program is that we definitely offer three different concentrations on which you could choose, and we will definitely be going over that in a little bit.

Sonali Ibanez:

So here we have a list of courses in our Master’s of Health Administration. The first three courses on the top are going to be mainly the foundational courses. And then we have nine core courses. Dr. Khanijahani, do you mind elaborating on some of the courses that you teach or some of the courses that are going to be either the foundational or the core?

Ahmad Khanijahani:

Sure. Thank you. As you can see on this slide here, we have a variety of courses depending on your interest and your background or what you want to do in your future. We have introductory courses: Intro to Healthcare Systems, Managerial Accounting, and Health Services Research and Statistics. It doesn’t matter what background you are coming from, if you know already anything about healthcare administration and healthcare systems, this can be a very refreshing course. If you are coming from a different background and you haven’t had similar undergraduate or graduate courses, these are really great courses to introduce you to healthcare systems and healthcare administration.

Ahmad Khanijahani:

We have nine courses. We created our each course. Those also cover different areas. For example, we can see anything from Human Resources, Marketing and Strategic Planning, Healthcare Economics and Policy, Law and Ethics, Healthcare Informatics, and again Financial Management, Operational Research and Quality Management, Leadership, and also we have a capstone project. So we have tried to cover most of the main areas and expertise that anyone who wants to go work in any type of healthcare institution, we have a variety of courses to cover your interests and your future expectations.

Ahmad Khanijahani:

Additionally, I think if you are planning to go pursue your PhD program, these courses, they give you a very good understanding of different areas, and you can potentially apply to different programs in healthcare economics, healthcare policy, or public health, or epidemiology, because we have different courses that you can see which one you like and which one you are more interested in and also which one is more beneficial to your future expertise and professional work that you’re doing in any type of healthcare institution. So overall, I would say we have different courses, and you will gain a comprehensive set of knowledge and a skill that will help make you successful in your future job. Thank you.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you so much for sharing that. Would anyone else like to add anything about any foundational courses that you teach or any of the core courses? All right, thank you.

Ahmad Khanijahani:

I can start with the courses that I teach if… I think there are other slides that my colleagues will talk about. The introductory course that I’m teaching right now for this program is Introduction to Healthcare Systems, so we’re offering that, and I’m teaching that. And also among the core courses, I will be teaching Operations and Quality Management in Healthcare and also most probably Healthcare Economics and Policy for the upcoming semester.

Sonali Ibanez:

Great. Thank you. Thank you for sharing. So next we have one of the concentrations that we offer within our program: The Health Informatics and Data Analytics. What this pretty much entails is accurate, actionable data which drives business decisions, which is fairly imperative in healthcare and all other industries as well. So I would like to have Dr. Kiel tell us a little bit about this specific concentration and how it would benefit our students.

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Thank you.

Sonali Ibanez:

Of course.

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Thank you. The student will take two specific classes in the concentration. They also take one within the earlier courses, but the two specific classes are Health Informatics and Data Analytics, and the second one is Data Mining and Predictive Modeling. And within those two courses, the students will gain skills and access SQL and Python. And those are very, very good skills to have for really any industry, but when you think about how resumes are looked at today, they are first put through a computer program, and the computer looks at various terms on the resume. So terms such as SQL and Python, which are database and data analytics skills would be very useful. And when you think about this concentration of health informatics and data analytics, if you’ve watched the news in the past two months with the pandemic, we keep hearing the term doctors and data, so we really have to know that, prior to this and in the future, healthcare is and will be data reliant.

Dr. Joan Kiel:

For example, when healthcare does strategic planning, the old way was to ask, “Where do we want to be in three to five years?” and then people sat around a table and thought about goals and objectives that were then set. But now we’re looking at data. And yes, we still have goals and objectives, but we also have what’s called dashboards, and that’s why with the skills of SQL and Python, you can set up these dashboards.

Dr. Joan Kiel:

It’s the same thing when we look at finance. To have a background in coding with ICD-10 and CPT coding is very important. And then we extrapolate data and that’s how healthcare, for example, insurance companies decide what they’re going to pay for and what they’re not going to pay for. They’re looking at data correlations and various outcomes. So this is a very powerful concentration. Thank you.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you so much for sharing that, Dr. Kiel. Especially now that data is more valuable than oil, I think that this is definitely an important skill to have. So next, another concentration that our program offers is healthcare compliance and risk management. This particular concentration is one of the few of its kind that’s offered through our MHA program in the nation. So I want to hand it off to Professor Giglione. Would you like to tell us a little bit about this concentration in particular and the courses that it entails?

Peter Giglione:

Sure. We’re still building the curriculum for this particular course, but the dean thought it was a great idea, and I wholeheartedly agreed to really make this an area of emphasis for the program because it’s such a hot issue right now and will continue to be in the healthcare field. Really, the upper-level corporate compliance for larger hospital groups, such as UPMC or other ones around the country, really there’s no, I don’t think, concentration anywhere in academia that would provide any students with this type of knowledge that’ll prepare them to get right into the field and work in that sort of environment.

Peter Giglione:

By way of example, the attorneys and workers that I know who work for companies like UPMC and that do this sort of work that we’re going to train the master’s students for here at Duquesne are typically lawyers that really were not specifically trained in anything related to this. They sort of learned it as they were going along through the years. They also tend to be a little bit older, and there’s not a lot of younger people coming out of school right now to sort of take these jobs and fill these roles. So the compliance and risk management is just critical, and if we can teach it in an academic setting rather than having people just learn it on the job while they’re out there, the students will be much better prepared for their careers once they have taken the course and obtained the master’s certification and the master’s degree relating to these areas.

Peter Giglione:

Just using UPMC by way of example, I know one of their top risk-management attorneys, who I deal with relatively frequently, he’s getting ready to retire, and the other colleague he has is also close to retirement age. And those two are essentially the ones that are overseeing most of the risk management issues for the health system. They’re on-the-job trained. They’ve just been doing it for a long time, and we’re not aware of any other courses that are going to go into these specific areas that we intend to go in here. Sorry, if I’m rambling a little bit. It’s sort of an all-encompassing area. I could talk for a long time about it, but I’d be happy to take any questions and give you any details that we know at this point.

Sonali Ibanez:

Yeah. Thank you so much for sharing that. And yes, if we do have any questions in regards to that, we will definitely ask you towards the end. We’re just going to cover this last concentration, being population health. And just to give you a quick synopsis as to what it is, it’s controlling diseases that saves lives, which makes it vital to our society. So I’m going to pass it over to Dr. Swanson-Biearman. If you can elaborate and just highlight on this particular concentration, I would highly appreciate it.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

Sure. Population health is a very exciting area to learn more about. You’re actually living through an historical event right now. Hopefully, we won’t see it again, but you never know. So the fact that you are kind of moving through the COVID crisis now really reiterates and reaffirms the necessity to address population health issues. Population health really has got to do with protecting and improving the health of communities through healthcare systems. As part of administration in healthcare, part of your job is to also work with the community. We all want to keep our communities healthy.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

So we have two classes that are part of this population health track. There’s Managerial Epidemiology, which is learning all of the aspects of epidemiology that are necessary for business, healthcare business. So you’ll understand kind of what our epidemiologic concepts are. What is prevalence? What is incidence? How to plan and organize your facility for delivering healthcare services and prevention. We also will have Health Promotion offered as well. And health promotion is just implementing and evaluating all kinds of health education that will be any kind of program that may be disseminated from the system. So you’ll probably see this where you live. They have smoking cessation programs, nutrition programs, diabetes programs. A lot of these things are sponsored by the healthcare systems.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

So you need to know what does your community need? What’s prevalent in the community? What’s a problem? How can we address it? What’s the best way to get this information across so we have the healthiest people in the community? We want to make sure that we’re not wasting hospital resources, having people show up at the emergency department, who really could have been cared for in a different manner. So we re-evaluate how people are treated and treating them in the best ways that they can have the best health.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. And thank you so much for sharing that with us. Now I’m going to go over some of the admissions requirements and some of the things that we look for. So some of the general requirements is going to be having your bachelor’s degree from an accredited university. Also, an undergraduate GPA of a 3.0 or above. What’s great about our program is that there’s no GRE or GMAT scores required for admission. There’s no prior work experience needed either and no prerequisites required. So this is definitely appealing to many students. We do ask for official TOEFL scores, and that is obviously if it is applicable. A resume is something that you would submit when you are starting your application file. A statement of purpose, which is going to be an essay. And then lastly, three letters of recommendation. They can be either academic or professional. And one more item is your transcripts from each post-secondary institution that you have attended.

Sonali Ibanez:

This program is online. We do have residency requirements. You would be able to graduate in two years. We do even accept transfer credits, and we do enroll three terms per year, in the fall, spring, and summer. Currently, we are enrolling for the fall. So I have a question for you guys. Since there isn’t any work experience or prerequisites required, what types of students are you looking for, or what type of student would be a great fit for this program?

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

Hi, this is Dr. Biearman.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

I think that some of the students we would like to see is anybody with a healthcare background obviously, just because a lot of these people do like to move into more administrative type roles. So anybody that has any kind of a background in nursing, if you work in radiation technology. There’s a lot of different jobs that people perform in the hospital and health systems and certainly can move well into health administration. I like seeing people with a variety of backgrounds because they bring a different focus and a different set of eyes. They look at things differently. So it’s nice to have people from a variety of backgrounds that can just look at a problem in a different way. And really, a lot of these administrative tasks are problem-solving, conflict resolution, things like that, that are very purposeful and are shared amongst other professionals.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you. Great. So now we’re just going to go over some questions that we have from our audience. Professor Giglione, I have a question for you from one or our students. Is the healthcare compliance risk-management concentration aimed at individuals who are new to the field or early in their careers?

Peter Giglione:

Actually, I don’t think it really is going to matter. I don’t think it’s really going to be geared towards either one, to tell you the truth. It’s going to be an all-encompassing area. So we’re not necessarily, based on my conversations with the dean, we’re not just looking at people that have already been in the field working at it. We’ll take students who have never had any experience with it at all, with any of those areas at all, and teach them. And I can tell you that the way I teach… I’m likely going to be involved with teaching one of those courses under that umbrella, and I teach very practically because I’m a practicing lawyer. I’m not what most people would consider to be an academic by trade. My job is a full-time lawyer, and so I teach how things are actually in the field, not as much theory necessarily or asking questions hypothetically of what could happen. I look at here’s what the law is. Here’s what risk management is. Here’s what policies and procedures should be. Here’s the way it’s suppose to work in the real world. And so we teach it from a very, very practical perspective, which I believe is going to be the goal for the risk management and compliance courses as well as the law and ethics course.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much for answering that for us. We do have another question from a student, and this is an open question. Anyone can feel free to answer. The question is, what kinds of jobs or careers can students expect to get after completing this particular degree?

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

Hi, this is Dr. Biearman. I think there’s a lot… As healthcare grows and changes and evolves, a lot more administrative positions continue to open up in the healthcare field. So I do expect and suspect that there will be a lot more of a vision for people who have specializations in certain areas of healthcare. Health administration can be any part of administering health at any level of the hospital. It could be unit-based. It could be department-based. And then you can move right up to vice presidency and president, because that’s what administrators do. So I would expect that you could see people within a hospital system doing that.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

You can also see people within health groups: The American Lung Association, The Heart Association. They also take health administrators through those kinds of outreach and charitable type of programs. So I see them in all of those places as well. Pretty much where you see any kind of health being administered in some way, and even in public health, you can see a health administrator, because somebody has to manage how does health, how the information, how the programs are disseminated.

Peter Giglione:

And yeah, I totally agree with that. This is Professor Giglione. I would just add as well that there are a lot of jobs in the larger health systems where they are basically reacting to changes in the laws constantly. I’ll give you by way of example, last year, there was a Pennsylvania Supreme Court case called Shinal versus Toms, which essentially changed how informed consent must be done. It used to be that basically anybody could explain the risks and complications to a patient before they went into a surgical procedure or any procedure that involved something being introduced into the body or given any type of drug. And that particular case now says if you’re going in for a surgery, the actual surgeon that’s going to be operating on you has to be the one that is explaining all the risks and complications to you. It can’t be a delegate. It can’t be a nurse. It can’t be a physician’s assistant. When that happened, I know for a fact that the larger health systems immediately… They kind of freaked out at first because they had to change all of their policies relating to informed consent, and they had to train their doctors that here’s how you have to do informed consent now.

Peter Giglione:

So there are people in the field that are just constantly dealing with the changes in the law, both as far as cases and as far as the legislative actions or congressional actions and changing corporate policies, procedures, and training accordingly. So the risk management and compliance issues that we are going to cover will prepare students to get into that career field as well.

Dr. Faina Linkov:

Hi. This is Professor Linkov. I also wanted to add that healthcare administration is a growing field, so those in healthcare administration can expect a huge job growth. It is estimated that about… There is going to be about 18% job growth up to 2028, which is really exciting for you guys if you choose this career route. It’s not like you’ll be looking for jobs. Jobs will find you basically.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much, Dr. Biearman and Professor Giglione and Dr. Linkov. We do have another question, and this is also open. How do you think COVID-19 has changed the field for healthcare administrators?

Peter Giglione:

This is Professor Giglione.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

I think that some… Okay.

Peter Giglione:

Oh, go ahead.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

Go head.

Peter Giglione:

Oh, I was just going to say I could tell you on the nursing-home angle and the hospital angle, it is forever changing how things are going to be done, particularly with regard to nursing homes. We have one particular nursing home in Pennsylvania, in Beaver County, which for those of you listening is not far from Pittsburgh. It’s about a half an hour or 40 minutes. Excuse me. And it has become essentially ground zero for the COVID virus in that county. The state has stopped doing nursing-home inspections completely. The Department of Health has ceased doing them. And they have sent a consulting group in there to try to clean up the mess that’s occurred. But I think the main problem came down to there not being proper infection-control procedures in place to react to this when the first cases were diagnosed, and the staff, quite frankly, didn’t know what they were doing, whereas if you compare that to the hospitals, at least in our area, we have not seen much outbreaks or issues in any of the hospitals. And I think that’s because the hospitals are very good at infection-control protocols and procedures.

Peter Giglione:

So I think it’s going to change everything because, after all this is over and probably even now it’s being done, new rules and procedures are going to have to be put into place in case something like this happens again. So I think it’s forever changed it, as well as you look at the potential litigation impact of the virus. Are people going to be bringing lawsuits for COVID patients, for people that were diagnosed with COVID in a nursing home or a hospital? I think that’s a huge question, and I don’t know if it’s one that’s going to be able to be done. But in that area alone, I think it’s forever changed the landscape.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. And would anybody else like to add to that?

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Yes, hi, this is-

Ahmad Khanijahani:

This is Professor Khanijahani. Okay. Let me just go over quickly. I’ve been working on COVID-19 data in terms of health policies, and it has several implications. One of the major ones is we have seen recently changes in telemedicine. There has been [inaudible 00:33:37] they should have been provided in person, but now they are okay to apply it and also be compensated by payers if they provide it through telemedicine. Another impact of COVID-19 in terms of decision-making is it is more focused on data, that there is a lot of transparency and real-time data in terms of number of cases, number of deaths, state policies over testing numbers, and all of those, that as the healthcare policy-makers, they try to implement more data into decision-making and in terms of opening up new places or heightening the restrictions or anything like that. So the use of data in decision-making, especially in this pandemic, and also expansion of telemedicine, I think, are two of the areas that have been impacted by COVID-19.

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Yes, I would agree. I was going to talk about the data piece, but Ahmad, you covered that nicely.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect.

Dr. Faina Linkov:

Can I interrupt for one second. One thing that I think will be really important is risk assessment and risk communication, because I think whatever has been going on with the COVID-19 epidemic, the public is really scared because I think everything that the media is telling us can be interpreted in multiple different ways. So the risk communication will be changing, and the people who are working in their health communications, risk communication, and also risk assessment will be getting more and more global participants in my opinion.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

This is Dr. Biearman. I just also wanted to add that the public health component of this or the population health is, of course, what Dr. Linkov said and what others have addressed, but as a health administrator, the other thing that you have to worry about is not only protecting patients, but now you have to protect your employees as well and all the people who work in the health system. So that’s another layer that the health administrator needs to consider. And you did see problems that we had. We had people that didn’t have… or felt that they didn’t have the appropriate number of personal protective equipment. You have a Center for Disease Control that said one thing one day and then changed some of their attitudes and thoughts going out. So people have been very confused, whether to wear a mask outside, not to wear a mask. What’s the social distancing rules? We’ve seen a lot of confusion on what’s allowed to open and what’s not, around here especially.

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

So I do think that COVID has very much affected everything. Already legislation is being introduced to have changes especially in the long-term care facilities, and it’s probably sorely needed at this point. So definitely very appropriate for the Master’s in Health Administration.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you all for sharing. So onto the next question, and this is also going to be an open question. One of our students asked, they are a billing and coding specialist, and they want to go to school for more. Would this be a good route for them to better their future?

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Well, billing and coding is a specialty upon itself, and so I would advise the student to define what they mean by better future. Do they want to get into one of the areas of our three concentrations? Perhaps if they are working in the billing and coding area now, they can ask one of their mentors where they can go. What is their next step? I don’t know how many years of experience they have or what their schooling background is. But I always advise students to have a professional mentor.

Sonali Ibanez:

Yes, and I agree with you. Also, if the student wants to also reach out to me, I’ll be more than happy to sit down with you and see what it is that you’re really looking for, and we can go into the program concentrations more in depth.

Dr. Faina Linkov:

I also wanted to add that again all of us would be very much interested in speaking individually with each interested student. And also, it’s really important to point out that our program is about expanding job and career horizons. So it’s not going to be just billing and coding that we’ll be learning with you guys. It’s going to be how to take what you already know, learn a little bit more, and make yourself marketable and available for broader horizons of jobs.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much, Dr. Linkov. I have a question, and I want to ask Professor Giglione. A student asked will most of the legal compliance issues be local to Pennsylvania or national?

Peter Giglione:

Both. The way that we’re preparing this and the way that I already teach the classes that exist is if there is federal law on points, I teach it, but if we’re getting into state-law-specific issues, I normally teach Pennsylvania, because there’s certain areas where every state law varies slightly, and it would be impossible with the time we have allotted to cover more than a couple of states. I mean, sometimes I will address the neighboring states, how they stand on things, such as Ohio, West Virginia, New York, or Maryland. But if there is a federal standard or a federal law, we do review it. We do cover it in the class. If we do get into state-law-specific issues, I generally will teach the Pennsylvania stuff in the class, but I also tell the students if anybody wants to know… If you’re practicing or you’re going to be working in Texas and you want to know what the law is there on this issue, I can look it up. It’s really not a big deal. So I hope that answered the question, but we generally try to cover both.

Peter Giglione:

Also, if we’re covering big, broader concepts, I try to teach what the general rule is around the country. Just by way of example, a physician’s liability to a third party if a patient hurts or kills somebody or infects somebody with a disease that wasn’t diagnosed, stuff like that is going to vary by state. But there’s sort of a national standard where most states follow a certain rule, and so we will cover that particular rule and not just Pennsylvania specifically.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you. We had another question come in. A student was asking if they should pick a concentration. I do highly recommend that a student should choose a concentration, but they are able to opt out. You can choose an alternate option and not have a concentration area and take classes from all three concentrations. So that is another option, but we do highly recommend that students choose a specific concentration. Does anyone have anything to add to that question?

Dr. Joan Kiel:

I think that’s appropriate advice, and perhaps they don’t want to pick a concentration at the very beginning of the program, see what they like and what interests develop along the way, and then perhaps pick a concentration. But I think they know themselves and where they want to go and will make the decision that will best affect their future.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you. I do have another question. A student was asking if this program is 100% online. The program is 100% online in regards to the courses and assignments, but we do have two residency requirements, which is one online and one on campus. Would any of you like to elaborate a little bit more on that as to what the residency requirement entails? So we do have one that’s online. And then the one that is on campus, the visit is about three days long. It’s from Friday to Sunday, and that is where you’re going to be meeting speakers. There’s going to be a resume writing workshop. It is a great networking opportunity where you can connect with classmates, faculty, industry experts, and there also will be prospective employers there as well. Okay. Anybody would like to add anything to that? Perfect.

Dr. Faina Linkov:

Hi. This is Faina Linkov again. What I wanted to add is I’m talking continuously within Duquesne about our commitment to continuous quality improvement to online education modules. So we are trying to achieve the best possible quality for online education here in Duquesne. And now it’s especially relevant with the COVID epidemic, where a lot of our classes will be going online. But in this particular program, even though we already have quite good experience with online education, in the upcoming year we’ll be working even more closely to make sure that everybody has the most optimal experience as well studying online.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much, Dr. Linkov. We do have another question. Are any of the courses in this program synchronous, and if they are, what does that entail? How are you guys teaching specific courses and things like that?

Dr. Joan Kiel:

There are components of the courses that are synchronous that are done through Zoom. So the students would meet at a certain time that would be free for all of them, because some students are working, some students are not. So sometimes it’s during the evening hours. And the student, of course, knows well ahead of time.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you so much. So I’m just waiting to see if we have a question. Another student had asked, does Duquesne help me find a job after graduating? Would any of you like to answer that or elaborate on that? I know as an enrollment advisor-

Dr. Joan Kiel:

Duquesne has a career center that the students can both walk into and use their online modules. There is a piece called handshake that the students put in their various traits and skills, and then available jobs would be emailed to the students so that they could apply for them.

Sonali Ibanez:

Perfect. Thank you. And also the residency requirement that is located on campus, that’s also a great way to network and grow your professional growth by connecting with the faculty and staff, other classmates who do have similar interests as you do. So yes, thank you for sharing. And then we have another question. Is there an application fee? There isn’t an application fee, so that is a good thing. You can definitely just go online and apply. You can reach out to an enrollment advisor, and we can definitely go over what the application process looks like along with seeing if our program will be a great fit for you. Would anybody like to add anything else, some of the benefits or highlights about our Master’s of Health Administration program?

Sonali Ibanez:

All right. Well, perfect. I think those are all of the questions that we have for today. I just want to thank each and every one of you for joining us and elaborating a little bit about yourselves and about our program. I know this is definitely going to be a great tool for students to look and review. And you’ve answered many of the questions that students had today, so I really appreciate it. Thank you so much. And for students, if any of you are interested, please do reach out to us. Contact an enrollment advisor. The number is there on the screen, and we would be more than happy to work with you and just dig deep and get to know this program a little more and see what it entails and get you to enroll if you are interested. So thank you all very much. Would anybody like to add anything before we wrap up?

Brenda Swanson-Biearman:

No, thank you. I look forward to seeing everyone here.

Sonali Ibanez:

Thank you. Thank you guys so much. Bye.

Peter Giglione:

Thank you.

Ahmad Khanijahani:

Thanks.