Azalea Kim, MBA 2013, MD 2014
New York, NY
What made you decide to go into your sector of interest?
"Unsustainable" and "broken" are just a sample of the words used to describe the American healthcare system. These are not only words thrown around by policy wonks but what I've heard around the dining room table my whole life. Coming from a family of healthcare providers, each with his or her take on what should be done to improve healthcare delivery, it was hard to feel reassured about a career in the healthcare sector. Yet, I find myself today a medical student training in a system ripe for change and progress towards healthcare delivery innovation that pushes for higher quality and efficiency in the utilization of limited resources. As an MD/MBA candidate, I hope to equip myself with the knowledge, experience, and skills that will enable me to contribute meaningfully to this progress. It's an exciting time to be in healthcare!
What kind of leverage do you think having an MBA will give you in the healthcare industry?
I think the role of MD/MBAs is still evolving, but I am confident that my time at HBS will enable me to go beyond the clinical sphere to be engaged in the broader, strategic decisions that are made about healthcare delivery at the management and leadership level. The MBA at HBS has rooted me in a common business and general management language. It has exposed me to issues of quality improvement, controlling costs, managing growth, and achieving sustainability across industries that have undoubtedly shaped my specific views on healthcare. The MBA will open many doors that would previously have not been options for me with only my background in health policy and clinical medicine.
How do you envision your MBA degree having an impact in healthcare delivery?
I have always envisioned myself first as a primary care physician directly engaged in patient care. From this perspective, I hope to be involved in the development of high quality, cost-effective health systems that bring value to patients, improve lives, and treat patients and communities as partners in achieving these goals. I feel that the MBA degree is one of the few opportunities for me to combine my background in health policy, love of patient care, and passion for health systems improvement. I hope to find that this combination, in this specific time in history, will yield a career much greater than the sum of its individual parts.
“The MBA degree is one of the few opportunities for me to combine my background in health policy, love of patient care, and passion for health systems improvement.”
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