Healthcare Operations Management - FAQ

Below are some frequently asked questions for the Healthcare Operations Management degree offered online at Nebraska Methodist College.

If you still have questions, contact admissions:

Laurel Zentner Laurel Zentner
Recruitment & Recruitment & Admissions Coordinator
(402) 354-7170

How is this degree different a Healthcare Administration degree (HCA)?

A healthcare administration degree is generally very generic and provides basic business knowledge for individuals in healthcare.  The Healthcare Operations Management degree focuses on developing, planning and managing healthcare systems and operations, with a strong emphasis on applied knowledge rather than theoretical.  Our goal is to make you a more effective healthcare manager.

What is unique about this program?

Our program is tailored to the working professional with a framework and course design that provides flexibility to balance professional and personal commitments with your academic goals.

Course are offered in 1-credit, 4-week long sessions. There will be eleven 4-week modules per year.

Students have the flexibility to take up to three courses during any 4-week sessions, or sit out a session when you get too busy at work or home - the choice is yours. 

Courses are taught by industry leaders who engage students in applying industry standards and learning cutting-edge techniques. 

Why have 1-credit courses?

The program is designed for busy healthcare professionals.  Courses focus on a specific topic versus a range of topics. By limiting each course to 1-credit, the course will require work but will not be overly time intensive over a four-week period. This is important for a working professional.

How would I apply this to my work?

The following are examples of how you would be able to apply coursework:

  • Determining the schedule for a suite of operating rooms to minimize turnover time.
  • Developing worker schedules that ensure coverage and account for employee preferences.
  • Making inferences from large amounts of data.
  • Making a decision on what type of equipment to purchase - balancing cost, reliability, capabilities, and maintenance requirements.
  • Tracking incident rates for medical errors to measure if something systematic is happening in an area or in a facility.
  • Determining the approach for replenishing supplies to balance limited storage space with patient and facility needs.
  • Creating schedules for preventive maintenance to reduce downtime for equipment.
  • Developing approaches for developing and nurturing teams.
  • Creating a long-range strategic plan for an area of your facility.
  • Selecting a project that has the best return on investment when having to choose among multiple options.
  • Develop a mentorship and succession plan for your organization.

How does this program relate to the Healthcare Analytics Certificate Program (HACP)?

The Healthcare Analytics Certificate Program is a non-credit degree program developed as a professional development opportunity for employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs.  The Master of Science in Healthcare Operations Management (HCOM) is a for-credit program with the focus on career development and advancement, and open to anyone who meets the criteria for admission.  For individuals who have passed courses in the HACP program, program degree requirements will be reduced.

What should I expect within a typical course?

Courses will be very applied and focused and are developed for the working professional. Courses will be structured around threaded Pillars of Learning:

  • Content: reading (book chapters, industry articles, research articles),  presentation (voice over PowerPoints, video, YouTube, podcasts)
  • Faculty-Student Interaction: discussion forum (group or individual posts), webinar, conference call.  For interactive components (webinar, conference call), they will be recorded if a student cannot participate during the live event.
  • Writing: memos, letters, literature review/reference paper, other assignments
  • Application: case studies, applied projects assignments in the courses will develop your resourcefulness, creativity, benchmarking, and reflective practices.


What if I don't want to get a master's of science degree?

You can take a small handful of courses that interest you as a non-degree seeking student. Per the College policy for non-degree seeking students, you can take up to 9 credits. Limited financial aid options exist for non-degree seeking students.  Contact Online Admissions for more details.

If you already have a master's degree, you can earn a post-masters graduate-level certificate in Healthcare Operations Management by completing 10 courses.  See this webpage: Healthcare Operations Management Certificate page for more details.

    What is the schedule of courses?

    Courses will be offered in each of our traditional academic terms (Fall, Spring, and Summer). Within each academic term, there will be numerous modules.  View the listing of courses for 2013.