Lucasz S. Babiarz
Lucasz S. Babiarz
Home Region

Lancut, Poland; Glen Cove, New York

Undergrad Education

Johns Hopkins University

“I can combine the two things I enjoy most together.”

For Lukasz Barbiarz, the potential of a joint MD/MBA degree was revealed in a person, a chief of neuroradiology at Johns Hopkins, David M. Yousem, who had obtained both degrees. Traditionally, physician-researchers have struggled to find ways to fund their studies, but, says Lukasz, his mentor was able to apply his MBA skills to the problem. "He analyzed department activities to see which brought in the most revenue," says Lukasz. "He emphasized those activities to increase profits, then applied the profits to support student research—such as collecting data and publishing—that down the road will improve therapies."

Exposure to a broad range of clinical and business models

At Johns Hopkins, Lukasz had double-majored in neuroscience and economics. The move to the HBS MD/MBA "just made sense," he says. "Here, I can combine the two things I enjoy most together." In fact, Lukasz's clinical rotations are themselves lessons in both clinical care and business operations. At Cambridge Hospital, Lukasz worked largely with a poor and medically underserved population. Later, he served a rotation in primary care with MD VIP, a boutique medical service in which patients pay a flat fee in addition to their insurance coverage. "It was a great opportunity to see two completely different business models," says Lukasz. "In one, I got to see patients for 10 to 15 minutes; in the other, for as much as an hour."

The impact of economic issues on clinical care is one of the key things that inspires Lukasz's interest in the MBA. "In the doctors' world, there's a separation of money from care," he says. "But at the Business School, you get an alternative perspective." Lukasz looks forward to developing a foundation in finance, accounting, business strategy, and leadership—"all the things," he says, "that aren't emphasized in medical school. Many doctors have noble or genuinely new ideas for medicine. But most of them are not addressing management issues or learning how to change the system. The MBA can give me the skills I need to make changes."

Leadership in administration

At his first summer internship, Lukasz worked with Peter Slavin, MD, MBA, president of Massachusetts General Hospital. Shadowing Dr. Slavin was a lesson in the difficult balancing act any health care manager must make. "At the meetings I attended, the participants addressed high-level strategies for the coming year—choosing departments to expand, which to cut, how to plan the annual budget. I got to see what's really involved in hospital administration." After completing his joint degree, Lukasz intends to fulfill his residency in radiology or interventional neuroradiology—"a nice combination of the medical and surgical worlds"—then pursue his interests in health care management and administration while balancing his clinical duties.