Finding a home in the home health care field

Joyce Markiewicz.

Joyce Markiewicz, EMBA ’03, has spent more than two decades working in the field of home health care. Starting as a registered nurse, she is now president and CEO of Catholic Home Care, a division of Buffalo’s Catholic Health system.

A Buffalo-area native, Markiewicz received a bachelor’s degree in nursing from D’Youville College. Eventually, she decided to move her nursing career from a hospital to a home care setting.

“I felt that working in home care would afford me greater flexibility with my family as well as allow me to provide care in a less hectic environment than an acute facility,” she says.

She began her home care career at a small for-profit agency, then spent seven years with Olsten Health Services. “I quickly discovered that it was the business component of the industry that I found most interesting,” she says. She moved into management roles at Olsten, including general manager and area manager of Western New York operations.

Markiewicz soon realized that making the leap to a senior-level position would require an advanced degree.

“While filling out college applications with my son, I decided it was time to pursue an Executive MBA degree at the UB School of Management,” she says. “The program took me from a daily operational mode of thinking to looking at situations with a broader perspective. The insight and skills that I gained were exactly what was missing to advance my career.”

Markiewicz accepted a position as branch manager of the Buffalo and Erie, Pennsylvania, offices of American Home Patient while working toward her degree. Then, one year after receiving her EMBA, she was named vice president of operations for Catholic Health Home Care. A year later, she was promoted to president and CEO of the $42 million operation.

Catholic Home Care employs more than 670 people and includes three home care agencies, a free-standing infusion pharmacy, an oral distribution pharmacy that services Catholic Health’s long-term care facilities and adult homes, a newly formed, joint venture for respiratory and durable medical equipment and a “Program of All-Inclusive Care of the Elderly” (PACE).

As a member of the Catholic Health System Senior Leadership Team and the Catholic Independent Practice Association (IPA) Clinical Integration committee. Markiewicz is involved in the development of the strategic planning for the health system.

“One of the key components of my role is to develop community-based programs and services that meet the needs of patients being cared for in their homes,” she says. “This includes understanding the quality initiatives and best practice guidelines that are followed by our primary care physicians and implementing standards of care to align with these initiatives.”

Markiewicz is happy that she has found a position that matches her own beliefs about health care.

“Being part of a health system is a wonderful opportunity to understand and participate in strategies to improve the health of our Western New York community,” she says. “I am blessed to work with extraordinary leaders and clinicians that do not consider their work a job, but a ministry. Being grounded in our Catholic Tradition provides extraordinary balance in decision making and remaining focused on our mission.”

Written by Cathy Wilde