CAHME-Accredited Online MHA Programs

What Is CAHME Accreditation? 

As you consider graduate programs in healthcare management or administration, one of the differentiating factors between programs can be accreditation. The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) is an accrediting body for healthcare management programs, and it aims to ensure participating institutions meet high standards to better prepare students to become healthcare leaders. The organization primarily accredits Master of Health Administration (MHA), Master of Public Health (MPH), Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Master of Public Administration (MPA) programs.

To qualify for accreditation through the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education, a program must:

  • Have an established graduate degree in healthcare quality and safety with at least one class of students admitted.
  • Be part of an institution that has obtained regional accreditation or similar recognition.
  • Provide mission, vision and values statements that align with its college or school’s mission and values.
  • Design curricula and teaching methodology that connect coursework and students’ learning styles to intended student outcomes.
  • Demonstrate that courses are designed to be interactive between students and instructors.
  • Have a quality improvement program.
  • Ensure resources—including library facilities, technology and learning spaces—support its goals.
  • Comply with laws that protect equal opportunities and not discriminate against applicants, students, faculty or staff based on gender, sexual orientation, age, race, ethnicity, religion or disability.
  • Have a process for handling formal students complaints and use complaints to improve the program.
  • Have a policy on academic freedom and standards for faculty and make faculty members aware of grievance procedures.
  • Support faculty development, research and service within the healthcare quality and/or patient safety fields.
  • Include faculty responsibilities that are consistent with its institution’s policies and have a policy for evaluating faculty performance.

More information about the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education’s accreditation standards can be found in the 2021 CAHME Accreditation Standards and Self-Study Handbook [PDF, 850KB].

Is CAHME Accreditation Necessary?

Future MHA students may wonder, “does CAHME accreditation matter?” There are a number of reasons why accreditation status might help you determine which program to pursue or which university to attend. According to the U.S. Department of Education, accreditation was designed to foster a culture of continuous improvement to academic quality at higher ed institutions. It may also be used to establish criteria for professional certification and licensing. This makes accreditation status one of the primary considerations for many prospective students. 

Programs that are CAHME-accredited indicate students will receive a high-quality education that focuses on updated content and industry standards. The Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education is not the only accrediting organization for MHA programs and other graduate-level health management programs. However, the Council on Higher Education Accreditation recognizes the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education as the only body that can grant accreditation to individual graduate programs in health management

Advantages Of CAHME-Accredited Schools

As of April 2021, the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education accredited more than 120 programs. Students and graduates of CAHME-accredited schools and programs have some unique advantages.

According to CAHME, benefits for students enrolling in CAHME-accredited schools and programs include:

Additional Benefits 

Beyond the graduate degree program experience, CAHME-accredited schools may provide you with expanded employment opportunities. According to CAHME, some employers exclusively prefer candidates who have graduated from CAHME-accredited programs. More than 90% of graduates from CAHME-accredited schools and programs obtain positions in healthcare management within three months of graduation, the organization reports. 

About GW’s CAHME-Accredited Online MHA Program 

MHA@GW is a CAHME-accredited online MHA program from the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. Designed for healthcare professionals looking to improve global health care structures, the MHA@GW curriculum focuses on healthcare management, health economics, financial leadership and policy. 

With full- and part-time options, the CAHME-accredited online MHA program allows students to graduate in two to four years. The program is broken into eight 10-week learning modules, including virtual learning paired with immersion experiences on its Washington, D.C. campus and at healthcare facilities. Learning module topics include medical informatics and decision management, community and population health and health economics and quantitative methods.

Earning an MHA through GW’s CAHME-accredited online MHA program can prepare you for careers in clinical administration, executive leadership, healthcare planning and management and other paths.

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