Defining competencies and performance indicators for physicians in medical management

Am J Prev Med. 1998 Apr;14(3):229-36. doi: 10.1016/s0749-3797(97)00068-8.


The recent and profound changes in the American health care delivery system have created a need for physicians who are trained and willing to assume a high level of responsibility for managing evolving health care organizations. Yet most physicians receive no formal training in medical administration and management because changes in medical school and residency education have lagged behind changes in clinical practice and reimbursement. To avoid haphazard approaches and unnecessary duplication of resources, it is important for physicians involved in managerial medicine to collectively identify competencies in this area needed in the marketplace. The American College of Preventive Medicine (ACPM), with funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), undertook an effort to identify competencies essential for physicians who will fill leadership roles in medical management. Like ACPM's earlier effort to develop core competencies in preventive medicine, this project drew upon the theoretical model of competency-based education. This article describes the strategy we followed in reaching consensus among a diverse group of physician executives and preventive medicine residency program directors, and includes the list of medical management competencies and performance indicators developed. Recurrent issues that can sidetrack competency development projects are also presented as well as suggestions for overcoming them. The competencies can serve as a framework for expanding current core preventive medicine training in management and administration and for developing new training programs to equip physicians with the special expertise they will need to provide management leadership within the changing landscape of health care delivery.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Competency-Based Education
  • Education, Medical, Graduate
  • Humans
  • Job Description*
  • Leadership
  • Marketing of Health Services
  • Physician Executives / education*
  • Physician Executives / standards*
  • Preventive Medicine*
  • Professional Competence / standards*
  • Societies, Medical
  • United States