Project Management in Healthcare: Definition and Stages

What is project management in healthcare? Project management in healthcare is an organizational process that improves how medical facilities function. Its purpose is to resolve issues in the current operations and implement policies that enhance patient care and foster positive relationships with stakeholders.

For those who want to have an impact on healthcare delivery, project management in healthcare is a popular career choice. There are many jobs available if you’re up for the challenge. Project manager roles will expand by 12 percent, or 6. 2 million jobs, by 2020 in the U. S. , according to the Project Management Institute’s Talent Gap Report. 2.

Project Management for Healthcare

Stages of project management

The project management process undergoes four stages, including:


The goal and scope of the project are determined by healthcare project managers. They estimate costs, which forecast the potential financial resources the project will need, and they foresee difficulties and prepare responses to them. Following the conclusion of the initiation phase, managers submit their plans for organizational leaders’ approval.


The planning phase outlines every task of the project. Each task’s completion date and the professional assigned to it are determined by the managers. They also finalize the budget, which determines the tools they’ll need and how much time they’ll have to achieve their objectives without wasting money.


Working on the designated tasks and keeping track of the project’s advancement are both part of the project execution. During this phase, difficulties could arise, and managers would need to change their goals as necessary. Additional supervisor or stakeholder approval might be needed.


Upon completion of the project, managers assess the success of their work and compile the data into a document. They can refer to the document in their upcoming projects. Additionally, managers meet with team members and organizational leaders to talk about what went well and where they can improve.

What is project management in healthcare?

The organizational process of project management in the healthcare industry enhances the efficiency of medical facilities. Its goal is to improve patient care, implement policies to improve current operations, and foster positive relationships with stakeholders. Effective project management can strengthen the following areas:

Skills for healthcare project managers

The specialists who supervise the phases of enhancing a hospital’s operations are known as healthcare project managers. They use soft skills to perform well in their role. In order to succeed as a healthcare project manager, it may be beneficial to develop skills like:


The role of a healthcare project manager requires leadership, which can take many different forms, including:


Effective problem-solving abilities enable healthcare project managers to locate problems and fix them as they carry out their duties. When unexpected events occur, like a reduction in the organization’s budget or broken medical equipment, they can maintain composure. They can also determine where a problem originated and give instructions to team members on how to handle a unforeseen circumstance.


Because the environment of a medical facility is constantly changing, healthcare project managers must adapt to keep up their productivity. Here are some situations where professionals might modify their working style:

Interpersonal communication

Healthcare project managers can communicate with a variety of professionals from various backgrounds thanks to their interpersonal skills. It’s crucial that they make recommendations that their audience can understand. For instance, communicating with doctors may require a different communication style than communicating with insurance companies.

Examples of project management in healthcare

Project management can result in the following things for healthcare organizations:

Adding a new hospital wing

Hospital stakeholders want to offer neonatal surgical services at their facility, which would necessitate building expansion and a new group of surgical staff. The project manager for healthcare estimates the cost of building a new hospital wing and purchasing new medical equipment. They aid in securing seasoned medical professionals from across the nation to head the department during the execution phase. The managers monitor the successful outcomes of neonatal surgery once the wing is open.

Implementing personnel training;

Healthcare project managers determine that new hire training is necessary for physicians, so that they can enhance their bedside manner when speaking with patients and their families. The first step of the project is to evaluate the cost of hiring a consultant to lead the training and reserve time for instructional sessions. Next, the managers accommodate the busy schedules of the doctors so that every member of the medical staff can attend the training.

Replacing the beds in hospital rooms

Patients at a small-town hospital inform the administrators about how uncomfortable the beds are. A budget-friendly strategy is developed by the healthcare project manager to replace each bed in the facility. They suggest purchasing mattresses from a particular manufacturer that reduce back pain and stabilize a patient’s spine, improving patient comfort and ensuring the safety of their post-operative recoveries.

How to become a healthcare project manager

Consider performing the following actions to pursue a career as a healthcare project manager:

1. Gain a college education

The minimal educational requirement for healthcare project managers is a bachelor’s degree. You must educate yourself on the workings of medical facilities and the lingo used by doctors when treating patients. Disciplines these professionals may study in college include:

2. Earn a masters degree

Consider obtaining a master’s degree to specialize in a particular industry and increase your employment options. It might be beneficial to pursue an advanced degree in a field related to medicine, for instance, if you have a bachelor’s degree in business administration or economics. Similar to this, if you have a bachelor’s degree in nursing, you can study health administration in your master’s program to develop the leadership skills required for your desired position.

3. Work in a clinical role

You can become qualified for the position of a healthcare project manager by having professional experience in the medical industry. In order to gain knowledge of the field and expand your network of contacts, think about applying for entry-level positions. As a healthcare administrator, for instance, you would process patient paperwork and coordinate the admission and discharge process. Before graduating from some degree programs, students may be required to complete clinical internships, another way to enter the workforce.

4. Pursue a project management certification

Although a certification is not necessary for the position, having one can enhance your credentials and make you more attractive to employers. The Project Management Institute (PMI) offers three professional certifications:

Salary and job outlook of healthcare project managers

Please note that Indeed is not affiliated with any of the businesses mentioned in this article.


What do project managers do in hospitals?

They direct healthcare initiatives from beginning to end, keeping track of and reporting on the development all along the way. Additionally, they oversee and coordinate the efforts of the entire project team. Healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics, medical offices, and nursing homes employ healthcare project managers.

What are the four types of project management?

Project managers can be divided into four different types.
  • Technical Project Manager.
  • Adventurous Project Manager.
  • Expert Project Manager.
  • Supportive Project Manager.

Are there project managers in healthcare?

Project managers are employed by health systems, hospitals, pharmaceutical firms, medical groups, insurance firms, and healthcare suppliers to support their business transformation initiatives. The process groups and how they affect the project are known to project managers.

What are the 3 types of project management?

3 Top Types of Project Management Methodologies
  • The Scrum Methodology. …
  • The Waterfall Methodology. …
  • The Lean and Six Sigma Methodologies.

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