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Developing the skills you need to thrive professionally in today’s health care environment

Physician Leadership Course

The WSMA Physician Leadership Course is a 40+ hour hybrid-distance leadership skills-development course for physicians and physician assistants who want to know more about health care leadership.

Once out of residency, many physicians will find themselves leading a multidisciplinary team charged with delivering the highest quality care to our patients. To be an effective team leader, core leadership competencies are required—skills not taught in medical school. Without these skills, physicians may find themselves unprepared and overburdened with unexpected responsibilities—a recipe for burnout.

The WSMA is committed to helping physicians develop the skills they need to thrive professionally in today’s health care environment, regardless of the type or size of your organization. Developing core leadership competencies can strengthen clinician resilience, improve time and stress management, and help you achieve greater workflow efficiency.

The WSMA Physician Leadership Course combines face-to-face and online learning to enable course participants to begin developing and honing their leadership skills at their convenience. Designed with a physician's busy schedule in mind, only three in-person classes are required; the remainder of the course is conducted online. It’s important you are present all-day for the three in-person sessions. If you are unable to attend all three sessions, then it’s best register for the PLC when you can.

The full curriculum for the WSMA Physician Leadership Course is detailed below. The max capacity for the course is 30 participants. Individuals or group/system teams are encouraged to apply. The tuition for the course is: WSMA Member: $2,250; Non-member: $2,800. A 5% discount is offered for groups of five or more.

Course details

The Physician Leadership Course will be held in-person at The Silver Cloud Broadway Hotel, March 3 to May 12, 2023. The first two days will be held Friday and Saturday, March 3-4. Course participants will then have 11 weeks of online instruction and interaction, finishing with the final in-person session on Friday, May 12.


Edward A. Walker, MD, MHA

This course is led by Edward A. Walker, MD, MHA, professor emeritus in the departments of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and health services at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Register for the Physician Leadership Course

Register online for the Physician Leadership Course. Questions? Contact Monica Salgaonkar at 206.956.3641 or

Cancellation Policy

Refunds are available for live event registration depending on when the refund is requested in relation to the start of the course.

  • 91 days or more until start of event: a 100% refund less a $100 processing fee per person
  • 61 – 90 days until start of event: a 75% refund
  • 31-60 days until start of event: a 25% refund
  • 30 days or less until start of event: no refund

WSMA reserves the right to cancel the course. If so, preregistered participants will be notified, and full refunds provided. No shows will receive no refund. Registrations may not be transferred to another person at any time. A participant may transfer registration one time to the next available course if space permits. All subsequent transfers of registration will incur a change fee of $250. All refunds will be issued to the original form of payment.

For in-person courses, the WSMA cannot be held responsible for other costs or expenses, including cancellation/change charges assessed by airlines, travel agencies, or hotels.

Physician Leadership Course Curriculum

This is a course for physicians and physician assistants who want to know more about health care leadership. Many physicians and PAs who take this course will go on to further training and become leaders and managers in their local clinical care settings. The course is a basic "boot camp" to familiarize physicians with the four important components of health care leadership: performance improvement, patient safety, and high reliability; leadership and management of individuals, teams and organizations; planning and finance; and creating and maintaining a personal leadership development plan.

Course philosophy

The course is designed from a social-constructivist point of view, which maintains that experienced adult learners do best when they work in teams to build new understandings of their previous experience by developing new, better-informed mental models. We will work in teams, sometimes face to face and at other times asynchronously, using multimedia resources and health care-oriented case scenarios to acquire a basic understanding of leadership, management, and quality improvement.


Unit 1 – Leadership and Management

Week 1 – In-person/Live
Module 1: Managing Yourself and Others: Personal Style and Emotional Intelligence
Module 2: Managing the Organization – Teams and Culture: Working in Teams and Basics of Coaching

Unit 2 – Quality and Patient Safety

Week 2 – Online
Module 3: Performance Improvement Basics

Week 3 – Online
Module 4: Patient Safety, Error Reduction, and High Reliability Organizations

Week 4 – Online
Module 5: Disclosure of Error and Just Culture

Unit 3 – Planning and Budgeting

Week 5 – Online
Module 6: Personal and Short Range Planning

Week 6 – Online
Module 7: Long Range and Strategic Planning

Week 7 – Online
Module 8: Finance 101 – Budgets and Revenue Management

Unit 4 – Synthesis and Application

Week 8 – Online
Module 9: Engaging Physicians in Change

Week 9 – Online
Module 10: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Leadership

Week 10 – Online
Module 11: Capstone Case Formulation

Week 11 – In-person/Live
Module 12: Planning for Next Steps: Communication, Influence, Feedback, Conflict & Negotiation

No partial AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ will be awarded for the online activity.

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