MSHS in Health Care Quality

A medical professional holding a patient's hand

Impact health care through policy, patient-centeredness, improvement science, and culture change

   100% Online

   24 Months*

The online Master of Science in Health Sciences (MSHS) in Health Care Quality program was developed for health care professionals aspiring to become patient safety and quality leaders and meet the growing demand for quality-based care.

*The total number of credits and duration of the program depend on the number of transferred credits


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Program Highlights

  • The program is completed 100% online in just 24 months with no visits to campus required; all coursework is delivered asynchronously fully online in a flexible format
  • Accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME). The MSHS in Health Care Quality program is one of the first quality & safety programs in North America to achieve CAHME Accreditation.
  • Created in partnership with the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA)
  • The program is ideal for health care professionals looking to advance into leadership roles in health care quality, patient safety, or research
  • Since 2010 the program has been graduating leaders who impact health and health care delivery across the U.S.
  • 84% Job Placement Rate Post-Graduation


Accreditation and Rankings

  • GW is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • #62 Best National University*
  • #13 Best Online Bachelor's Programs*
  • #7 Best Online Programs for Veterans*

* The U.S. News & World Report – 2024 Rankings

Best Online Programs for Bachelor's 2024 by U.S. News & World Report
Best Online Programs for Veterans 2024 by U.S. News and World Report



The MSHS in Health Care Quality requires successful completion of 36 credit hours. This comprehensive and rigorous curriculum covers 13 domains and 20 competencies related to health care quality and safety while focusing on quality improvement, patient safety science, leadership, and evidence-based practice.



- wendy frisby, mshs in health care quality alumna, ‘17


Program Outcomes

After completing the program, students will be able to…

  • Evaluate appropriate quality improvement patient safety, leadership, organizational change, and research theories/standards applicable to healthcare
  • Develop quality and patient safety improvement initiatives
  • Assess information technology systems to determine the level of support for quality improvement
  • Formulate organizational change plans to sustain a quality-focused culture


Career Outlook

Designed to meet the growing demand for patient-centered, quality health care, GW’s MSHS in Health Care Quality program prepares students with a comprehensive base of real-world skills including data management, analysis of clinical research, and organizational leadership.

There is an expected 32% increase in jobs for Medical and Health Services Managers between 2019 and 2029. The median income for professionals in this category is $104,280 in 2020.1

The online program prepares graduates to fill a variety of roles in health care including:

  • Clinical Director, Quality Services
  • Clinical Nurse Auditor
  • Compliance Auditor Analyst
  • Director of Quality Management
  • Health Care Manager
  • Health Care Quality Analyst
  • Quality & Safety Specialist
  • Quality Assurance Consultant
  • Quality Improvement Nurse


Admission Requirements

To apply for the MSHS in Health Care Quality, you’ll need:

Completed application
3.0 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale
Bachelor’s degree
Personal statement
Two letters of recommendation


Tuition Details

The MSHS in Health Care Quality at GW consists of 36 credit hours. Explore the cost per credit hour and total estimated program costs.

Note: Tuition rates are subject to change and additional fees may vary by program.



– angel rivera, mshs in health care quality alumnus, ‘19


Meet the Program Director

Sabrina Figueiredo


GW’s experienced faculty provide you with the rich, practical knowledge and support needed for you to succeed in the program and in your career.

Sabrina Figueiredo, PhD, MSc

Read Full Bio

Sabrina Figueiredo, Ph.D., MSc, joined the George Washington University (SMHS) as director of the Health Care Quality (HCQ) Program in 2020. Figueiredo comes to GW from McGill University in Montreal, where she served as assistant director of the physical therapy program.

Figueiredo has 20 years of clinical experience in physical therapy, where she focused on rehabilitating seniors and individuals with musculoskeletal disabilities. Her research portfolio, however, is focused in HCQ. “I’m interested in patient-centered outcomes and the coordination of care — how we can deliver health care services based on patient expectations,” she said.

Figueiredo also studies creating innovative measurement strategies to contribute evidence to patient-centered outcomes and care, as well as developing telehealth initiatives to improve seniors’ outcomes. In partnership with the Children’s National Hospital, Dr. Figueiredo is working on a research project to understand the impact of provider burnout in health care quality.

During her tenure at McGill University, she oversaw initiatives related to curriculum development, program evaluation, and accreditation. She created a program logic model and an assessment-and-implementation plan deemed best practices by the Canadian Physiotherapy Accreditation Regulatory Body.



  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Medical and Health Services Managers (visited on May 5, 2021)

   Curriculum Details


The MSHS in Health Care Quality program (100% online) requires successful completion of 36 credit hours.


HCQ 6200 Introduction to Health Care Quality (3)

An overview of the US health care system and the influence of health policy development and implementation on health care quality. Introduction to fundamental concepts of health care quality, patient safety, leadership, and change management. Applicants of the MSHS in Health Care Quality program may use the Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ) credential as an accepted equivalent.

HCQ 6201 Building a Quality Culture (3)

Application of leadership and organizational change theories and principles to the implementation of quality and patient safety initiatives. Focus on strategies for developing the culture and infrastructure needed to support patient safety and continuous quality improvement.

HCQ 6202 Health Care Quality Landscape (3)

Analysis of quality and patient safety challenges in U.S. healthcare with a focus on political and environmental influences.

HCQ 6203 Quality Improvement Science in Health Care (3)

An introduction to quality improvement and patient safety theories, models, methods and tools and their application to quality and safety improvement challenges in health care.

HCQ 6204 Health Care Quality Analysis (3)

Involves application of measurement, data management and statistical analysis principles to quality improvement and patient safety challenges. This course focuses on the importance and design of effective measures and the selection of appropriate analysis tools.

HCQ 6205 Patient Safety Systems (3)

Involves an examination of the epidemiology and sources of error in health care, risk assessment and the design of processes and systems to improve patient safety Focuses on the application of process and technology-based systems to reduce the incidence of error.

HCQ 6275 Leadership and Change (3)

Designed for the student to integrate all of the material from the HCQ program of study in a master’s level proposal for a research projects intended to address a major area of a change within health care quality and/or clinical research. The course includes a series of case studies for which the students evaluate and develop strategic alternatives. The final project is designed to have the student develop a proposal similar to chapter one of a research proposal that can then be pursued after graduation or through a doctoral level program.

HSCI 6263 Biostatistics for Clinical and Translational Research (3)

Basic concepts and methods of biostatistics applied to translational research. Topics include distributions, populations and sample selection, variables, interaction and confounding, hypothesis formulation, correlation, t-tests, ANOVA, regression, and chi.

HSCI 6264 Epidemiology Translational Research (3)

Students explore the basic concepts of epidemiology which includes various epidemiological study designs used to examine disease frequency, cause-effect relationships between risk factors and disease states, and effects of bias as examples. Students apply epidemiologic concepts in the context of translational research.

HCQ 6206 Health Information, Quality and Outcomes (3)

Approaches to medical informatics to support managerial decision making, patient care, and quality improvement in clinical practices. Ethical, legal, and social dimensions of health care information technology.

COHM 6235 Leadership Development in Health Care Systems (3)

Overview of principles related to leadership, including theories and styles, organizational management and values, communication strategies, and change in the context of health care systems. Credit cannot be earned for this course, and HSCI 6223.

COHM 6245 Strategic and Operational Decision Making for Health Care Leaders (3)

Overview of business principles related to health care systems and leadership, focusing on strategic management of health care service delivery in various settings. Credit cannot be earned for this course and HSCI 6241.

Key Dates


Summer 2024

Fall 2024

Spring 2025

Application Deadline

March 20, 2024


July 20, 2024


December 1, 2024


Admissions Requirements

To apply for the MSHS in Health Care Quality program (100% online), you’ll need:

Completed application
3.0 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale
Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
Personal statement: Applicants must include a 250–500 word essay describing your reasons for undertaking study at GW, your academic objectives, career goals, and related qualifications including collegiate, professional, and community activities relevant to your program of interest. Include any substantial accomplishments not already mentioned on the application form
Two letters of recommendation
Official transcripts from every college and university attended. All non-U.S. transcripts (including those in English) must be evaluated by an accredited foreign credential agency. Please find the list of member organizations here:
Application fee: A non-refundable application fee of $80 is required. The application fee is waived for active-duty U.S. military, current GW students, degree-holding GW alumni, current McNair Program Scholars, and graduates of minority-serving institutions (MSI).
Previous work experience (Health care experience preferred)

NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.


International Students

International students should check with individual programs regarding eligibility for visa sponsorship. Generally, online and hybrid programs are not eligible for student visa sponsorship from GW. This would include transfer students from any other institution with an existing visa.

Official transcripts from institutions outside the U.S. must be accompanied by an official transcript evaluation from an accredited independent evaluating agency. Please be sure you request a detailed evaluation that includes all course titles, credit hours, grades, U.S. degree equivalency, grade-point averages (GPA), and date of degree conferral. For a list of acceptable foreign credential evaluation services, please visit NACES.

Applicants who are not U.S. citizens are also required to submit official test scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or Pearson’s Test of English (PTE) Academics or the academic International English Language Test System (IELTS). To be considered for admission, there are required scores that you will need to meet. Score requirements may differ by school and program so check the admissions requirements for your program.

Supporting Documents and Official Transcript

Documents and Official Transcripts not submitted online should be mailed to:

Mail: George Washington University
ATTN: Transcript Processing Center
1415 W 22nd St.
Suite 220
Oak Brook, IL 60523 

Alternatively, official electronic transcripts can be sent to:

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