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Kellie Baker Recognized for Driving Change with Data

Cardinal Innovations Healthcare — March 6, 2020 — 3 min read
For Medical Economics Director Kellie Baker, watching others succeed and accomplish goals they did not believe were possible drives her interest in using behavioral healthcare data to push for better for Cardinal Innovations Healthcare members.

“We focus on ensuring the member not only receives the right service, but at the right time,” Baker said. “Leveraging data, we are pioneering new ways to identify those members in need not only from a retrospective view, but a prospective view. What can we do to help prevent a crisis? These are the tough questions we are gaining new insights on to ensure our members have the best quality of life possible.”

Baker began working at Cardinal Innovations six years ago as a Senior Accountant in 2013. From 2016 to 2019, she served as Manager of Data and Analysis in Cardinal Innovations’ Medical Economics department. In November 2019, Baker took on the role of Medical Economics Director, which involves analysis of large data sets and analyzing monthly claims and financial reports.

“A typical day for me involves heavy data investigation to support leadership in making daily business decisions,” she said. “With the accelerated changes in health care, our team leverages data to strike while the iron is hot and make the best decisions for our members.”

Kevin Manning, Vice President of Medical Economics at Cardinal Innovations, said Baker brings a can-do personality, inquisitive mind and positive attitude to work that influences those around her to do their best.

“At every inflection point, challenge and opportunity, she not only addresses the situation at hand, but also reflects on how to leverage greater team outcomes,” Manning said. “Whether by improving a process, generating training opportunities, or encouraging other employees to test their limits, Kellie maximizes the opportunities for organization growth.”

Whether she’s improving a process, generating a training idea, or encouraging other employees to test their limits, Baker brings compassion and courage to her work, he said.

“Every day, she creatively thinks about technology, processes, and people to benefit those around her, the organization, and our members,” Manning said.

Baker said one of her favorite quotes is, “Great things never came from comfort zones.”

“At times, people question their ability to go outside their comfort zone. It’s when we push ourselves outside our comfort zones that we really start to see the creative juices flowing,” she said.

“Behavioral health really is uncharted territory when it comes to all things data,” Baker said. “We have the opportunity to do some really cool new things. Being the pioneer and on the forefront of this movement is so exciting to me.”

Baker said the changes happening in health care in North Caroline provide a unique opportunity. “As we look towards Tailored Plans and all the changes, it truly excites me that Cardinal can once again pioneer the way we do health care in North Carolina,” she said. “I find this time to be the most exciting knowing that the opportunities for the future can be endless for Cardinal and behavioral health care in North Carolina.” 

Baker said she’s driven to do her best because of the people who work at Cardinal Innovations. “To me, the environment around you every day has a huge impact on your work quality of life,” she said. “I truly enjoy the people around me and that I work with every day.” 

When she’s not at work, Baker can often be found in the garden or at the race track. “Outside of work, you can find me digging in the dirt. I like to refer to it as ‘dirt therapy’ – tending to my garden and my bees,” she said. “On the weekends, you can also find me at the race track changing my husband’s tires on his race car.”
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