Meet Our Expert: Sarah Hearn

Strategic Hospital Advisor Sarah Hearn’s physician father inspired her to pursue a career in healthcare. In her early scholarly and career paths, she focused on maternal and children’s health in developing countries. After a year of working for a nonprofit in Nicaragua, she returned to school for a graduate degree in public health.

Sarah continues to be fascinated by the complexity of the U.S. healthcare system. With 16 years of experience in the industry and academia, she’s learned there’s always more than one way to achieve any goal. “Just because you see someone reach a desired outcome in a certain way that worked for them, it doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve that same outcome in your own way that plays to your own strengths,” Sarah said.

Sarah has been drawn to the complexity of legislation, dating back to her first job watching C-SPAN and updating her boss, a life insurance estate tax lobbyist, on activities in Congress. Now Sarah works with the complicated rules surrounding 340B. She explains the nuances of the program to benefit advisors, hospital and health system benefit administrators, and in-house pharmacy teams. Her biggest challenge is simplifying the program to help everyone understand the endlessly complex legislation and its political implications.

Working in 340B has taught Sarah about the holistic pharmacy world, from rebates and pharmacy benefit managers to specialty pharmacy operations. Sarah has helped set up successful 340B programs that helped hospitals keep their doors open on tight budgets.

“I feel lucky to have a job where I get to work with hospital clients who have 340B programs in their infancy,” Sarah said. “I don’t think there’s anyone in the marketplace right now that offers the kind of in-house pharmacy and 340B support to hospital clients that we do.”

Even with seven years of working directly with 340B, Sarah learned even more about the day-to-day running of a 340B pharmacy when she achieved 340B Apexus Certified Expert status in 2023.

When she’s not diving into the depths of complicated legislation, Sarah enjoys hiking, climbing mountains, and watching PBS documentaries with her sheepadoodle Poppy. Upcoming plans include hiking Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Western Europe, with her boyfriend.

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