Joseph Howard is the Chief Operating Officer at ARC Healthcare
Check out his LinkedIn profile HERE.
Which segment of the industry are you currently involved?
I am currently involved in healthcare consulting with a focus on providing results-driven and solution-focused services and software recommendations to clients. We provide clients turnkey results that are meaningful, measurable and maintainable in contributing to overall quality and affordable care. Our goal is to ensure that clients are receiving the best value and up to date changes and innovations in the industry. We support our clients by providing solutions in the following areas:
i. Provider Network Development and Contracting Services to build a network(s) of qualified providers to address the needs of members and providers.
ii.Offer Outsourced Call Center Support by managing the large volume of calls from both providers and members to help them navigate new requirements, provide education and direction to properly access care.
iii.Use software solutions to create workflow efficiency, provide CRM support and manage provider network adequacy and streamline roster validation.
How many years have you been in the Medicaid industry?
I have been in the Medicaid industry for over twenty-five years.
What is your focus/passion? (Industry related or not)
My focus and passion, in general, is service, personally, as well as professionally, to serve those who are underserved, the least, the last, the left out. I have a strong desire to serve and offer those who are subjected to healthcare disparities, not necessarily due to something of their own doing, but based on their plight in life, an opportunity to receive healthcare on par with those who can afford it. My focus is on serving them because I firmly believe that the best way to be a good leader is to serve.
What is the top item on your “bucket list?”
I have never really had a bucket list until my mother passed in October. There were two places that she wanted to go that she had never been and I tried to take her there, but she got to the point where she was mobile enough to go to those places. Rhode Island is one of them, and the other is the Holy Land. I want to do that because they meant so much to her and because of that they also mean a significant amount to me.
What do you enjoy doing most with your personal time?
I enjoy spending time with family. I get a lot of strength and energy from family, whether we are sitting in a room, just laughing and joking, watching a movie, or just talking about how our day went. Family means a significant amount to me and I am just very thankful for them and for every moment that we have together.
Who is your favorite historical figure and why?
In the grand scheme of things, it is Jesus because of what he stood for. He was divine, but he was human, and he showed us how to live out humanity while relying on divinity to lead the way.
What is your favorite junk food?
My favorite junk food is plain potato chips. It can be Lay’s or it can be the ones with the ridges. I can never stop at one.
Of what accomplishment are you most proud?
The accomplishment I am most proud of is becoming the fulfillment of my mothers’ dreams. What I mean by that is, in the era that she grew up in, during the height of civil rights, and not having much opportunity for educational advancement, she always stressed the importance of completing high school and getting a college education, even though at the time she did not have that herself, she later went on to get her college degree, but she pushed me to do that long before, and although as I was matriculating through school at all levels and I was learning things that she didn’t know, she still realized the importance of what it meant for my future and just becoming the fulfillment of that is my proudest accomplishment because it set the stage for many others to follow.
For what one thing do you wish you could get a mulligan?
This is quite funny to me, but my high school senior portrait. I had a lot going on and so much was happening that I forgot and it was at the end of band practice one evening that somebody brought it to my attention that it was the last day for senior portraits. There was no other time for me to take a senior portrait. I had just come out of the hot sun after 2 hours of practice and was not picture ready, but if I didn’t get the portrait at that time, I wouldn’t be in the year-book. It wasn’t the best portrait, so if I could do that over again, it would put a smile on my face.
What are the top 1-3 issues that you think will be important in Medicaid during the next 6 months?
The number one issue is being able to properly and effectively respond to what the new healthcare normal will look like post the COVID19 pandemic. It is important that we plan now for what’s to come otherwise, we will scramble to adequately provide and meet healthcare needs.
Number two is focusing on the quality of healthcare. It has become apparent through the effects of COVID19 that there are significant gaps in the quality and service of healthcare.
Number three is the focus on our preventive healthcare efforts, because when we focus on preventive measures, we can avoid things like the full onslaught of COVID19. While we may not avoid it happening, we can avoid the number of lives it reaches because by taking a preventive posture now. This is a testament to the Benjamin Franklin adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Although he was addressing fire safety, the sentiments rang true for healthcare and many other life experiences. We can get messaging out sooner. We can raise the awareness of it. Tens of thousands of people had been affected and quite possibly died before we became serious about the messaging.