MHSA Student Plans Career in Long-Term Care

OCTOBER 8, 2013 - During her internship at Virginia Hospital Center, Sunbo Igho-Osagie (G’14) has helped launch a new physicians practice.

Igho-Osagie, who is earning a master’s degree in health systems administration at the School of Nursing & Health Studies, had the opportunity to work on many facets of the project – from contract negotiation and identification of the physicians’ necessities, to furniture selection.

“Literally, I think it is one of the best experiences ever,” she says.  “My supervisor includes me in everything and has faith in me.”

Opening Doors

The student – who was a pharmacy technician for four years before deciding to go to graduate school in health administration – says Georgetown’s program creates professional opportunities for its students, such as meeting health care executives.

“The reason I got the internship is because the vice president of physician services came and spoke to us,” she says.  “I reached out to him after that event.”

Igho-Osagie has also gone on a field trip to meet with health policymakers on Capitol Hill, participated as a member of the Healthcare Executives of Georgetown University, and conducted a patient safety project at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital through Georgetown’s chapter of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement Open School.

Next semester, she will take part in the program’s administrative residency at Holy Cross Hospital.

Health Disparities

In the spring, Igho-Osagie was selected to be a graduate intern for the National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities in the federal Office of Minority Health – a role through which she has worked with Laura Anderko, PhD, RN, the Robert and Kathleen Scanlon Chair in Values Based Health Care, and three NHS undergraduates.

“We analyzed health outcomes for five states and the District of Columbia,” she says.  “After we got each number, we compared that to the national average to see if it was higher or lower.”

Specifically, the team looked at various social determinants of health, such as high school graduation, unemployment, violent crime, and poverty, as well as their effect on health outcomes in Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.  The team is preparing its findings for publication.

Long-Term Care

After graduation, Igho-Osagie plans to focus on long-term care and underserved populations.  She says that Georgetown has been the right place to sharpen her skill set.

“I love the master’s program,” she says.  “I love the fact that all of the faculty know each of us personally.  They know what we’re doing and what our goals are.”

She says that tight-knit feeling also exists among her classmates.

“My classmates are very helpful,” she says.  “We study together.  Everybody is willing to help each other out.  That definitely makes a difference.”

By Bill Cessato