(LR) Matt Waller joins Curtis Barnett, Robert Shoptaw and Kate Mamiseishvili to announce the opening of the Robert L. Shoptaw Masters in Healthcare Business Analytics program at the University of Arkansas.
The Sam M. Walton School of Business, in partnership with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Arkansas and the University of Arkansas College of Education and Health Professions, announced Sept. 2 the creation of the Robert L. Shoptaw Masters Program in Healthcare Business Analysis. 27 Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield Northwest Arkansas Enterprise Center in Springdale.
“The funding of this graduate program by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield is a game changer for our students and the healthcare industry,” said Walton College Dean Matt Waller. This degree will help professionals in the business and healthcare industries turn massive amounts of data into informed analytical decisions. Ultimately, this is a win for both patients and healthcare professionals.”
Kate Mamiseishvili, Interim Dean of the School of Education and Health Professions, added: “We are delighted to offer this new master’s degree in partnership with Walton College. It is a unique program that draws on the expertise of faculty from both universities. It brings together business Analytics and healthcare knowledge to prepare professionals with big data skills to improve healthcare delivery and patient outcomes.”
Shoptaw, who served as CEO of Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield from 1994 until his retirement in 2008, is ready to roll out new programs.
“Arkansas Blue Cross is pleased to honor Bob Shoptaw’s leadership and legacy by supporting Walton College in establishing the Master of Healthcare Business Analytics program,” said Curtis Barnett, President and CEO of Arkansas Blue Cross. “There is a growing need for highly skilled healthcare data analysts who can turn information into insights that enable providers, payers and researchers to develop whole-person solutions that improve patient outcomes, enhance care management and facilitate solutions to patients’ physical health. approach to care initiatives, behavioral health and social needs. Bob Shoptaw has been a leader in our industry in recognizing the critical role data and analytics can play in improving the overall health care system and providing people with affordable insurance and quality care Visionaries.”
Shoptaw joined Arkansas Blue Cross in 1970 as a Hospital and Professional Relations Representative and was promoted to President and Chief Executive Officer in 1994. He held that position until his retirement in 2008, and served as Arkansas Blue Cross Chairman on the Board of Directors from 2009 to 2016. He is now on the board of the nonprofit mutual insurance company.
Throughout his career, Shoptaw has devoted his time and talent to numerous community and civic organizations, including those in the academic and medical fields. Academically, he has served on the Walton College Dean’s Executive Advisory Council and the Arkansas Executive Forum, as well as on the boards of Philander Smith College and Arkansas Business School. He has also served on the Arthritis Foundation, the National Institute for Healthcare Administration, the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement, the Governor’s Rural Health Advisory Committee, the Charity Health Program, and the healthcare-related committees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Associations.
The Robert L. Shoptaw MS in Healthcare Business Analytics program is expected to launch in fall 2023.
About Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield: Founded in 1948, Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, the largest health insurance company in Arkansas. Arkansas Blue Cross and its affiliates employ more than 3,200 people.
The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association consists of 36 independent, community-based, locally-operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans that together provide health insurance coverage to nearly 106 million members (one-third of Americans).
About the University of Arkansas: As Arkansas’ flagship institution, U of A provides an internationally competitive education in more than 200 academic programs. Founded in 1871, U of A has contributed more than $2.2 billion to the Arkansas economy by teaching new knowledge and skills, entrepreneurship and employment development, and discovery through research and creative activity, while also providing training in specialized disciplines. The Carnegie Foundation ranks A-University as one of the few colleges and universities in the United States with the highest levels of research activity. U.S. News & World Report Ranked U of A as the top public university in the nation. Find out how U of A is building a better world at Arkansas Research News.