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The general agenda for the Managing Hospital Operations seminar is outlined below. To view a detailed agenda of an upcoming seminar, please select the specific date and location here.
Modeled after the nation's top business school curriculum, Managing Hospital Operations delivers pertinent management theory through case studies, allowing for deeper participant involvement in a collaborative environment.
In five months, participants will learn how to transform their organizations by applying management techniques and strategies not traditionally used in health care. In addition to two face-to-face meetings, the program includes the following:
Participants will examine case studies and  peer-reviewed articles from Harvard University and Boston University. To gain the full value of this program, participants are required to complete all reading assignments before the face-to-face meetings in February and April 2011. Case studies are only available in hard copy and will be mailed along with additional meeting materials upon enrollment. Early enrollment is strongly recommended.
Face-to-Face Meetings
The program includes two in-person seminars.
Seminar 1: An Introduction to Management Science
This two and a half day session will provide an introduction to management science through case study analysis and group exercises. Participants will learn the basics of queuing and variability methodologies and how they apply to health care and other industries.
Seminar 2: Tackling Common Hospital Problems
In this two and a half day session, participants will study solutions to the various hospital problems such as: re-engineering the OR, managing a walk-in clinic, availability of beds in a Rehab/Skilled Nursing Facility, and utilizing Radiology capacity. Participants will also discuss individual projects.
Individual Projects
During the five-month program, participants will work on two separate projects.
  • Hospital Project: Throughout the duration of the program, individuals will tackle an operations challenge from their own hospital concerning the ED, OR, ICU, inpatient units, office practice, or the hospital as a whole. Individuals are required to complete a hospital project and Dr. Litvak will provide written or verbal feedback. The faculty will select 10 to 14 individuals to report out on their hospital projects during the second face-to-face meeting in April 2011. The criteria by which teams are selected is based on results or patient throughput.
  • Observation Project: Hospital teams will choose an industry outside health care (e.g., past participants have visited establishments such as Panera Bread, Target, and Starbucks), analyze its operations practices, and share their observations and recommendations during the second face-to-face meeting in April 2011.
Application Sessions and Learning Communities
These bi-weekly, 1.5-hour web-based sessions are led by Dr. Eugene Litvak and will address individual questions on case studies and provide support on individual hospital projects. Attendance at these sessions is highly encouraged for participants seeking more concentrated instruction from Dr. Litvak. A listserv (email distribution list) will also be available for ongoing communication and support. Past participants have found that these resources greatly enhanced their ability to apply the concepts within their own organizations.

Program Curriculum​


The curriculum covers the theory behind operational strategies as well as their application, as seen through a collection of case studies. The program covers such topics as:

  • Production process: Learn what “production” means in health care, and how it relates to patient flow, marketing, human resource management, and revenue

  • Process analysis and design: Employ analytical tools to understand process

  • Productivity analysis: Learn to define and quantify productivity

  • Quality standards: Develop and implement standards effectively  

  • Project management: Manage people, projects, and processes

  • Operational tools: Gain knowledge of tools such as critical path analysis, inventory location, and queuing theory to smooth operations and reduce variability