Health department offers new Masters program

The Department of Population Health now offers a new master’s degree program called Health Care Quality and Safety to target working professionals in the medical field.

“There’s an emphasis on not only the service you provide but the quality of service,” said Yue Xie, advisor for Health Care Quality. “Our focus is kind of trying to serve that niche.”

The new degree will consist of four semesters. It will be a 16-month long degree with 36 credits. The application deadline for the program will be July 31 of each year.

“It’s a combination of courses in Health Care Quality and Safety along with courses in Health Care Management,” Xie said.

The degree will be made into a hybrid online in-class education style. The first week of the semesters would be in-class located in the Woodlands, then the rest of the semester will be online.

“We are targeting professionals and getting them together on a regular basis in-class would be a challenge,” Xie said. “But we still want a feel of an in-class.”
The target career of this degree would be health care professionals with some clinical experience.

“There are major facilities currently hiring health care quality professionals with a clinical background,” Xie said. “It is going to change outside of just clinical and add in more of a quality profession.”

Health care is one of the fastest growing fields in the United States. Xie said hospitals need more than doctors and nurses to cover all aspects of the medical branch.

“They’re hiring a number of health care quality professionals to do this job and keep track on health care and improving that quality,” Xie said. “However, there are very few professionally trained health care quality professionals.”

Since the medical field is growing, new systems are starting to develop within the discipline because everything needs to be updated.

“The health care entities want to improve the quality of the care provided so there won’t be any waste in the system,” Xie said. “It is important to not only provide that service at that time, but also make sure that patient stay healthy.”

According to Xie, hospitals aren’t just building around their clinical employees. Now that the medical discipline has been reaching out more, there has been a greater increase in the types of jobs people have in health care.

“Ultimately you need a mixture of clinical professionals who understand and also those technical people who will know skills that are outside of the traditional clinic health care,” Xie said.

For more information about an MS in Health Care Quality and Safety, contact HealthQualitySafety@SHSU.EDU or Xie at (936) 294-2717.

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