In recognition of the critical need for leaders educated in the intellectual disciplines and practices of medicine and management, Harvard Medical School (HMS) and Harvard Business School (HBS) established the MD/MBA program and enrolled its first students in the fall of 2005.

The program's mission is to develop outstanding physician leaders, skilled in both medicine and management, to take positions of influence through which they will contribute substantially to the health and well-being of individuals and society.

Structured to be completed in five academic years, the MD/MBA program educates prospective leaders from a wide range of health care organizations. This includes those that finance and deliver health services as well as those that develop and market pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and other health-related products. Participants are strongly encouraged to enter and complete a medical residency, or other kind of postgraduate clinical training, upon graduation from the joint degree program. MD/MBA graduates are expected to provide the informed leadership necessary for innovation and progress at the intersection of medicine and business. The opportunity to combine these disciplines drives the enthusiasm of faculty and the ambitions of degree candidates.

Curriculum Overview

The curriculum of the MD/MBA program is rigorously grounded in fundamental management concepts — including strategy, economics, finance, marketing, operations, and more — and the core science and clinical disciplines of medicine. Further, the MD/MBA is designed as an integrated curriculum, rather than simply a sequence of MBA classes added to the standard medical education. 


Harvard Medical School

Years 1, 2 and 3 of the MD/MBA program are at Harvard Medical School. Students pursue either of the two curricula offered at HMS: the Pathways Curriculum or the Harvard-MIT Program in Health Sciences and Technology. In the first year, students are also encouraged to attend a bimonthly seminar on health care management and entrepreneurship. The third year at HMS offers clinical and advanced integrated basic/population science experiences that will provide customized pathways for every student. During this year, MD/MBA joint degree students will begin, in earnest, their management related studies with a dedicated, two-month experience, co-lead by HMS and HBS faculty that includes both a didactic classroom course, “Medicine and Management,” that links clinical and managerial perspectives and an intensive set of online modules on analytic methods. The course will also offer students the opportunity to develop and defend their proposals for the scholarly project that must be completed within the joint degree program, co-mentored by HMS and HBS faculty, and submitted prior to graduation.

Harvard Business School

During the fourth year of the MD/MBA joint degree program students join all other HBS students and pursue the Required Curriculum and FIELD. By studying under a common curriculum, students build a solid, broad foundation of general management concepts and skills across all the key disciplines.

Harvard Medical School and Harvard Business School

Fall & Spring Semesters

HBS: 18 credits of Elective Curriculum courses; typically 6 semester-long courses; one three-credit elective can be structured as a faculty mentored independent study experience and devoted to the required “Scholarly Project.”

HMS: Remainder of advanced experiences and completion of “Scholarly Project” 

Students can opt to spend a full semester of electives at each school separately or to spend both semesters taking classes at both schools. 



Applicants interested in the MD/MBA Program apply to HBS and HMS separately and are selected independently. 

Students currently enrolled in the HMS MD Program can apply to HBS only during their second year at HMS and in the second of three rounds of HBS admissions. A student must first be admitted to the standard, two year MBA degree program, after which they will be considered for endorsement by HMS to join the five year, joint degree program. Endorsement decisions will be based on a student’s academic performance while at HMS. 

Students currently enrolled at HBS must apply to HMS before its November deadline. Once a student has been admitted to and enrolled in the joint MD/MBA program, the student must complete both degrees successfully in order to achieve graduation from Harvard.

For all other applicants not currently enrolled at either HBS or HMS, please note that each school will maintain its separate admissions timetables and requirements. Such applicants are required to apply to HMS by the November deadline, and to HBS in the first two of three rounds. 

Tuition and Financial Aid

In Years 1, 2, and 3 of the MD/MBA program, students are registered at HMS pursuing core medical curricular requirements and pay full HMS tuition and fees. Students apply to the HMS Financial Aid Office for financial aid in these years and follow standard HMS financial aid policies and procedures.

In Year 4, students are registered at HBS pursuing the MBA Required Curriculum and pay full HBS tuition and fees. Students apply to the HBS Financial Aid Office for financial aid in Year 4 and follow standard HBS financial aid policies. View a student budget for the HBS MBA Class of 2018.

In Year 5, students' primary school of enrollment is HMS, and students pay HMS full-year tuition and fees. Students apply to the HMS Financial Aid Office for financial aid in Year 5.

Students in the joint degree program will be limited to a total of five years of financial aid from HMS and HBS toward the MD/MBA degrees.


What is the mission of the MD/MBA Program?

The program's mission is to develop outstanding physician leaders, skilled in both medicine and management, to take positions of influence through which they will contribute substantially to the health and well-being of individuals and society.

Why should I consider the program?

The MD/MBA joint degree is for individuals whose ambitions will be fulfilled at the intersection of medicine and business: for example, in hospital administration, medical device entrepreneurship, health and public policy, and more.

What are the typical career objectives of students?

Students in the MD/MBA program combine a passion for practicing medicine with a growing desire to expand their interests into new ventures — to conduct research, manage hospitals, shape public policy, launch health care-related entrepreneurial ventures, balance medical needs with economic realities, reduce costs to patients while increasing quality, and apply engineering to medicine to produce the best medical devices.

How is the degree curriculum structured?

See the curriculum timeline above.

How do I apply?

Applicants apply to HMS and HBS separately and must be admitted independently.

With whom can I speak to get more information?

Information about admission requirements can be obtained by contacting both the HBS and HMS admissions offices.