Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Center for Education in Health Sciences
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Courses

Master of Science Degree Courses

 HQS 401: Introduction to Healthcare Quality

Course Directors: Kevin Weiss, MD, MPH, and Stephen Persell, MD, MPH

National leaders in healthcare quality will introduce students to the history of healthcare quality and measurement of healthcare quality. Students will achieve a familiarity with definition and measurement of quality of healthcare in a variety of healthcare settings and the public policy drivers of quality improvement. Interactive exercises and discussion will engage students in the challenges of behavior change and quality improvement and the role of public policy as a driver of improvement including financial incentives in public reporting.

 HQS 402: Introduction to Patient Safety

Course Director: Donna Woods, EdM, PhD

Leading national patient safety scientists and policymakers will introduce students to relevant theory, content, tools and methods in the field of patient safety. Faculty will engage students through selected readings, presentations, interactive exercises and discussions. Students will be introduced to patient safety problems and high-risk contexts for error occurrence. Students will learn error theory and systems thinking as well as methods for risk assessment and patient safety improvement. Students will be challenged to consider the roles of varied healthcare stakeholders in building a safer healthcare system.

 HQS 420: Introduction to U.S. Health System

Course Director: Joel Shalowitz, MD, MBA

This course analyzes the important stakeholders in the health industry, how they interact with one another and how managers can successfully create and deliver value to key stakeholders. It presents and integrates analyses of patients (and those who advocate for them), providers, product companies, government and payers.

 HQS 440: Fundamental Methods for Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

Course Directors: Julie Johnson, PhD, MSPH

Students will gain working knowledge of basic data collection and analytical techniques that are common in the implementation, evaluation and study of healthcare quality and safety. Through sessions focused on fundamental concepts of data collection, organization and analyses, students will learn to create and use data to answer empirical questions. The lecture series will provide a thorough understanding of course concepts and the laboratory series will provide opportunity for hands-on application. Basic statistical tools for data analyses, interpretation and presentation will prepare students to critically evaluate published scientific literature as well as quality improvement policies, reports and measures of clinical performance, efficiency, healthcare quality and patient safety.

 HQS 501: Advanced Healthcare Quality

Course Directors: Kevin Weiss, MD, MPH, and Cynthia Barnard, MBA

Classroom exercises and discussions will engage students in critical thinking about healthcare quality and leadership. Focus will be directed toward advancing public policy, quality improvement strategies and medical delivery models that improve the quality of healthcare. Through this course, students will learn of techniques for effective improvement science, define quality and select/develop meaningful metrics reflecting quality for an organization, demonstrate understanding of how to implement major quality improvement strategies based on proven methodologies for effective teamwork, solid process and measurement and achieve improved and sustained outcomes.

 HQS 502: Advanced Patient Safety

Course Directors: Donna Woods, EdM, PhD, and David Liebovitz, MD

Dynamic interaction with leading national patient safety scientists and policy makers will engage students in learning advanced theory, content and skills for patient safety leadership and practice. The course readings, presentations, hand-on exercises and discussions are designed to develop students to a level of mastery in the field of patient safety. Sessions will focus on developing safety leadership, safety culture, the legal and policy context for patient safety at the state and federal levels. Safety theory, methods and skills will be applied across varied healthcare contexts: ambulatory care, hospital-based care, labor and delivery, long-term care, special concerns in pediatrics and in the context of communication across transitions. The impact of health information technology on safe medical care within and across institutions will be explored and principles of effective implementation will be demonstrated and discussed. Students will have the opportunity to work with simulation tools to develop and run simulation scenarios. Students will be introduced to what is currently known about effective methods for error disclosure. Students will develop proficiency with patient safety risk assessment and improvement methods, principles of safe system design and key patient safety priorities.

 HQS 510: The Business of Quality and Safety Improvement

Course Director: Joel Shalowitz, MD, MBA

This course is taught by distinguished faculty from Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management and is offered as a series of three weekend sessions. The topical content areas covered by this course include leadership, culture, negotiations, organizational behavior, leading effective teams and change management. This course is designed to complement the capstone project experience.

 HQS 430
Capstone I

 HQS 435
Capstone II

Faculty Development Program Core Courses

 HQS 401 and 402: Introduction to Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

Introduction to Healthcare quality and Patient Safety

These courses will be taught as a summer intensive. The intensive program begins with a reading period, followed by two weeks of classroom-based instruction. They will cover introductory theory and concepts of healthcare quality and patient safety. Students will be provided an overview of the field and will acquire knowledge of key facts and methods for assessment and improvement of healthcare quality and patient safety. These courses will be interactive and will involve direct application of knowledge through activities and assignments.

 HQS 499: Independent Study

Or a graduate level elective at Northwestern University

This course is designed to provide Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety students with an opportunity to explore an area of interest related to patient safety and quality improvement. The primary objective of the independent study is to facilitate the student’s career advancement goals. Students may also choose a graduate-level elective at Northwestern University.

 HQS 501 and 502: Advanced Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

These courses will be taught as a summer intensive. The intensive program begins with a reading period, followed by two weeks of classroom-based instruction. The purpose of these courses is to immerse students in the more advanced theory and concepts of healthcare quality and patient safety. Students will acquire working knowledge of key priorities in healthcare quality and patient safety and will develop a level of proficiency in the methods of these fields. Students will also develop a familiarity with key healthcare quality and patient safety literature. These courses will be interactive and will involve direct application of knowledge through activities and assignments.

Certificate Program Core Courses

 HQS 401 and 402: Introduction to Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

Introduction to Healthcare quality and Patient Safety

These courses will be taught as a summer intensive. The intensive program begins with a reading period, followed by two weeks of classroom-based instruction. They will cover introductory theory and concepts of healthcare quality and patient safety. Students will be provided an overview of the field and will acquire knowledge of key facts and methods for assessment and improvement of healthcare quality and patient safety. These courses will be interactive and will involve direct application of knowledge through activities and assignments.

 HQS 499: Independent Study

Or a graduate level elective at Northwestern University

This course is designed to provide Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety students with an opportunity to explore an area of interest related to patient safety and quality improvement. The primary objective of the independent study is to facilitate the student’s career advancement goals. Students may also choose a graduate-level elective at Northwestern University.

 HQS 501 and 502: Advanced Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

Advanced Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety

These courses will be taught as a summer intensive. The intensive program begins with a reading period, followed by two weeks of classroom-based instruction. The purpose of these courses is to immerse students in the more advanced theory and concepts of healthcare quality and patient safety. Students will acquire working knowledge of key priorities in healthcare quality and patient safety and will develop a level of proficiency in the methods of these fields. Students will also develop a familiarity with key healthcare quality and patient safety literature. These courses will be interactive and will involve direct application of knowledge through activities and assignments.

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