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The Smurfit school at University College Dublin has become the latest European business school to move into the healthcare sector with a specialist MBA in Health Care Management. The degree is intended to address the increasing need for sophisticated management skills within the health sector.

The programme, which draws on faculty from both Smurfit and UCD School of Medicine and Medical Science, is especially designed to prepare doctors, nurses, administrators, and pharmaceuticals specialists to take on the joint role of manager and health care professional. In Ireland the health sector is responsible for an annual budget of more than €12 bn and employs more than100,000 people.

The part-time programme will begin in September 2007 and will be taught over two years at the weekends. An international elective module will be held in Brussels over the period of one week.

Business schools in the US have long seen the opportunity in teaching effective management skills to doctors and other healthcare professionals, with universities such as Duke and Harvard leading the way. In Europe schools such as the Tanaka school at Imperial College in London - which can draw on the huge medical faculty of the university - have also set up such programmes.


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