Q: Where did you grow up?
The Hawkeye State! The one and only Sioux City, Iowa.
Q: Where did you go to college/graduate school?
The University of Iowa for undergrad; The University of Kansas for graduate school (Master of Health Services Administration).
Q: What are your favorites?
Food: Steak (Filet Mignon)
Movie: Saving Private Ryan
Musicians: Well…. as a mid-western Iowa boy, I’m a pretty big classic rock guy (go figure). I love a ton of bands and musicians, but the first ones to come to mind are AC/DC, Rolling Stones, and the Eagles.
Destination: My wife is a high school French teacher, so we love to visit Paris—and it certainly helps that she knows the language. Stateside we enjoy an annual family vacation down to the Naples, FL area and love visiting the white sand beaches of Marco Island.
Q: What do you like to do outside of work?
Living in Indianapolis offers some great options for sports and social activities, so I like to take advantage of all this city has to offer whenever possible. When I’m not in the office, I love to play tennis and enjoy landscaping and gardening around my house. Having worked as a consultant for many years, I also enjoy traveling and I’ve developed a passion for collecting great wine. With 3 young boys, I take a lot of joy in watching them play sports. And of course, following my beloved Iowa Hawkeyes along with the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals, which have remained my favorite sports teams since childhood.
Q: What kind of work does your company do in 340B and what makes it stand out?
Alinea provides 340B consulting and advisory services to covered entities across the nation. While we are most often engaged for 340B auditing, implementation, optimization, and ongoing advisory, we also consult in areas such as specialty pharmacy, contract pharmacy network development, and general pharmacy financial and operational improvement with 340B as a complementing factor. In addition to those areas, we provide 340B management and staffing solutions to covered entities that need our specialized expertise or resources to assist with day-to-day program monitoring and performance.
What makes Alinea stand out? I think we have an extremely passionate, talented team that really understands the details and intricacies of operating a 340B program. Our team has worked in the 340B space for over two decades, and we are able to build on this experience to deliver great solutions for our clients.
Q: Why did you choose to work in the 340B space?
With a healthcare regulatory and finance background, I was afforded an exciting opportunity to help develop a 340B service line with a number of pharmacist-consultants at Ernst & Young (many, many years ago!). I always enjoyed working with safety net providers and my background in regulatory programs, disproportionate share hospitals, and risk management provided an excellent platform to help covered entities navigate the complexities of 340B. Combined with my interest in pharmacy operations and drug pricing, as a healthcare consultant 340B offered an opportunity to provide a meaningful impact to covered entities most in need of the cost savings generated through the program.
Q: What do you feel is your most significant contribution to the 340B world or to a 340B customer/client?
Admittedly, while I certainly have a number of highlights serving clients in 340B over the last couple decades, I’d say my most significant achievement is helping build such a great team here at Alinea focused on delivering exceptional service to our covered entity clients. As a leader at Alinea and in the 340B space, it feels good to know that I’ve been instrumental in helping develop not only a great network in the 340B community, but also a “go-the-extra-mile” culture at Alinea which has translated to exceptional results for our clients.
As a company, I’d say our biggest contribution is our commitment and ability to adapt to an ever-changing 340B regulatory environment while providing timely compliance support and guidance to our clients.
Q: What advice do you have for a young professional who has recently launched a career in the 340B space?
The best advice that I have for a young professional is to immerse themselves in the 340B regulations and key tenets to ensure there is a strong foundation of knowledge and subject matter expertise. Additionally, as 340B touches so many areas within the provider setting, there’s a real opportunity to expand your knowledge to different areas such as reimbursement, billing, EMR and technology, legal and regulatory, pharmacy operations, and the drug industry/market in general. I’d also stress that, within a rapidly changing 340B environment, it is critical to keep up with 340B program FAQs and news (e.g., 340B Report) and serve as an advocate for the 340B Program. And always keep in mind that the benefits from the program allow covered entities to stretch scarce resources and continue to provide care to the patients they serve.
For questions, Keith can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org