HADM 5032

Foundations of Healthcare Delivery

Professor Phillip J. Decker, Ph.D.



To provide the student with an understanding of the leadership, organization and financing of health services in the United States, and to identify and discuss current trends in health care delivery, management and operation of hospitals, physician practices and managed care companies.

The course is a descriptive overview of the health services delivery system in the United States and an introduction to selected systems of other countries. Specifically, the course includes understanding and developing:

  • Understand healthcare delivery systems for the United States.
  • Assessment of your competencies as a leader
  • The historical development of the healthcare system.
  • The structure and role of institutional and individual providers.
  • The utilization of the personal healthcare system.
  • Public health services.
  • Evaluation and review mechanisms.
  • Financing and insurance systems.

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Undoubtably the heaviest course load of reading, writing, and testing.  Yet, I found this course, like MGMT 5133, one of my favorites because of how it informed and stretched me.  The most important assignment to me was a detailed self-assessment based off of the book by Dye & Garman Book, Exceptional Leadership.


While the knowledge of the US healthcare system–its history and its likely future–was very helpful for me, my biggest take-away was our first assignment on Exceptional Leadership.  I honestly feel as if that book is a mini-MBA all within one thin volume.  I learned more from that book that in the 4 years of seminary or 25 years of attempting to lead and serve within churches.

Here is my assignment for reflection on Dye & Garman’s Exceptional Leadership: McNamaraJ_Assignment2_Dye-Garman_ReportPartsA-B

I am done with chasing my own tail and settling for mediocrity!

While I just finished one of the hardest summers of my life–being a full time graduate student as I processed through all the emotions and details of walking away from twenty-five years of being a congregational pastor–I came away with a huge conviction: I am DONE with chasing my own tail and settling for mediocrity!  I want to do whatever it takes to become an exceptional leader.  More than just that conviction, thanks to Dr. Decker’s class, I also got the breadcrumbs and many other tools to help me on the path.