Transforming Healthcare Delivery

Debbie Weitzman, Tiffany Olson, Kathryne Reeves, Cardinal Health

Debbie Weitzman, Tiffany Olson, Kathryne Reeves

Company Brief

Cardinal Health (cardinalhealth.com) helps pharmacies, hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers, clinical laboratories and physician offices focus on patient care while reducing costs, enhancing efficiency and improving quality. They operate the nation’s largest network of radiopharmacies and provide medical products and services to many of America’s most prestigious medical institutions. Most U.S. hospitals use their products and services to provide care for their patients. Now, they’re making this same quality and exacting standards of performance available to patients through products that help provide affordable healthcare at home. They apply their nearly 100 years of experience and expertise to reduce the total cost of healthcare and to improve the lives of patients. Their scale and experience lead to solutions across the entire continuum – not just at certain points, but from start to finish; not only today but well into the future.

Would you provide an overview of your roles at Cardinal Health and your key areas of focus?

Weitzman: In July, I assumed the role of President, Pharmaceutical Distribution, which is responsible for enabling the power of pharmacy with scaled solutions and distribution throughout the care continuum from hospital to home.

Olson: As the President of Nuclear Pharmacy Services, I lead the nation’s largest network of more than 130 nuclear pharmacies, 30 Positron Emission Tomography (PET) manufacturing sites and two nuclear manufacturing sites that manufacture, prepare, dispense and deliver more than 10 million radiopharmaceutical doses annually.

An important part of that is finding new ways to prepare and bring life-changing therapeutics and diagnostics to market. By partnering early in clinical trials and identifying opportunities for advancement in immunotherapy, we’re advancing new drug commercialization while improving the way patient care is delivered.

Reeves: I began at Cardinal Health leading our Enterprise Marketing team, which is building the capabilities of our global marketing community, fostering marketing talent management and boosting the Cardinal Health brand. Recently, I moved to an operational role, serving as Senior Vice President and General Manager of our Medical Services businesses – a broad portfolio that, in combination with our product and logistics offerings, brings valued solutions to our customers.

What are the keys to Cardinal Health’s strength and leadership in the industry?

Weitzman: Healthcare is in flux more than any other industry, which offers both opportunities and challenges. Cardinal Health has a broad view of the healthcare industry – from pharmaceutical and medical products to a wide network of retail, acute care and ambulatory providers. For this reason, we’re able to provide essential insight into the complex supply chain-related interactions and activities required to keep the healthcare system’s backbone running at peak performance. How we go about transforming the way healthcare is delivered is what sets us apart and makes me proud to work at Cardinal Health.

How much of an emphasis does Cardinal Health place on building a diverse and inclusive workforce?

Olson: We have a deep commitment to foster an inclusive, optimistic environment where all employees feel they can build a strong future, grow personally and professionally, and enjoy their work while making meaningful contributions.

Cardinal Health has established employee resource groups to support a more diverse and inclusive workplace. These groups are sponsored by our executives, and our employees actively participate. They include our Women’s Initiative Network, Veterans and Military Advocates Network, African American Network, Asian Pacific American Network, Disability Awareness Network, Equality Network and Hispanic American Network.

I’m personally a member of the Women’s Initiative Network, where our goal is to foster partnerships that create a great place for women to work and grow their careers.

Cardinal Health has a major commitment to corporate responsibility and community engagement. Would you discuss this commitment and how engaged Cardinal Health’s employees are in these efforts?

Reeves: We know the critical importance of supporting our communities, and we do that as a corporation and encourage our employees to get involved.

Each year, the Cardinal Health Foundation, of which I’m a board member, invests millions of dollars to improve the health and well-being of our communities, focusing on three core areas:

  • Better patient outcomes: Over the past decade, the Cardinal Health Foundation has invested more than $9 million in more than 300 grants to hospitals, health systems or other health-related organizations to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs.
  • Reducing prescription drug misuse: With Generation Rx, we are fighting the epidemic of prescription drug misuse through prevention education, drug take-back programs, prescriber education and community collaborations.
  • Building healthier communities: We support the wellness of all the communities where our employees live and work around the world. We encourage service among our employees, who support numerous nonprofit organizations. Cardinal Health employees personally contributed nearly $2.7 million (including the Foundation match) to nonprofits in 2016 alone, and we also work through international agencies to donate medical supplies and funding for those who need them in times of natural disaster.

How do you describe the Cardinal Health culture?

Weitzman: We talk about our scaled solutions, our global presence and our breadth of products and solutions. What makes Cardinal Health different though? Honestly, it’s our employees. Every employee has a deep understanding that every interaction, every shred of strategy, and all of our creativity and innovation impacts a patient — and we are all patients at one time or another. Each of us has a personal investment in providing cost effective, quality patient care. Culture has been well defined and embedded in our Essential Values – they are practical and aspirational, and we take them into account in everything we do.

What do you tell young women about the opportunity for women in the industry?

Reeves: I tell young women that they have every opportunity to lead – and that leadership is a very big responsibility. It means working harder in their studies, and pursuing coursework and degrees that may not play to their strengths, but challenge them and expand their capabilities.

Weitzman: Raise your hand. You can’t succeed if you don’t try new things and show a willingness to put yourself forward to work outside your comfort zone. You can’t wait for an invitation or recommendation. Keep your eyes open and volunteer for stretch assignments. Bring forth your big ideas if you have done your homework on the return for the business and customers.

Olson: It’s clear leadership opportunities are there. It comes down to knowing what you’re passionate about and then positioning yourself to seize it.

I also feel a deep responsibility for developing the next generation of female leaders through mentorships and succession planning. Through Cardinal Health’s Women’s Initiative Network, we promote development through networking opportunities and educational events. I encourage young women to find opportunities like these and go after them.